Today was the annual Service of Remembrance at the hospital where Chiara was born. The nurses and staff put together a lovely service for families who lost babies. There are readings of poems, musical interludes, the reading of all the names, and a time for parents to speak. This was the third year we attended. We brought our boys and sat with another family we met last year. The mom and I made a special connection and we've kept in touch. Her friendship has become very important to me. Being there together made the event far less sad than it has been in the past.
Today I had planned to read a poem during the parents segment of the program, but I chickened out. I read the poem in the car on the way there and I just cried. I didn't have the courage to get up today. Here's the poem I was planning to read:
The Sitting Time
by Joe Digman
Don’t listen to the foolish unbelievers
who say forget.
Take up your armful of roses and
the flower and the fragrance.
When you go home to do your sitting
in the corner by the clock
and sip your rosethorn tea
It will warm your face and fingers
and burn the bottom of your belly.
But as her gone-ness piles in white,
It will be the blossom of her moment
the warmth on your belly,
the tiny fingers unfolding,
the new face you’ve always known,
That has changed you.
Take her moment, and hold it
As every mother does.
She will always beyour daughter
And when the sitting is done you’ll find
bitter grief could never
poison the sweetness of her time.
Oh, my sweet love, my only daughter, I cherish your short time with me. I miss you so.