Kennedy’s Footprint

On March 22nd, 2008 my water broke prematurely during my first pregnancy.  We were told that at 22 weeks the odds were most definitely not in our favor, but everything possible would be done.  We spent the next five days in the Maternal Fetal Care unit squeezing out every last drop of hope.

“If we can just hold on for one more week, the road will be long and hard, but she’ll have a chance…”

Kennedy Hope was born on March 27th, 1 pound, 3 ounces, 11 inches.

Sometime during those twilight hours of painless labor, she left us.  Her body, in its tiny perfection lay quiet and still in our arms before we had to let her go.

Upon my release from the hospital, I scoured the internet and bookstores for any piece of women’s literature that might draw me into its pages as an invitation to bear witness to the author’s pain and extinguish my agonizing loneliness.

The few books that served this purpose contained simple and raw journal entries of women living through their own grief after the loss of a baby.  I gripped my leather journal, and into its pages poured tears, anger, unanswerable questions and desperate prayers as if it was a diagnosed daily pill.  I always felt that I would share selections of these entries in some form, hoping to take what I had gained from the honesty and bravery of those women before me and pay it forward.

It has been four and a half years since Kennedy swept in and left an indelible footprint on our lives, re-routing and forging the path on which we currently find ourselves…for better and for worse.

It is my wish that my story of Grief, Healing and Faith will help to make other women feel less alone as they wade through the hazy muck of their own palpable grieving.

I welcome you to join me as I take a trip backwards to offer my hand to those who may find comfort in it.

To all women suffocating in sadness, please know you have an unseen friend in a Sisterhood we all wish did not exist.

Kennedy Hope – March, 27th, 2008

Click on the photo To be linked to ‘Kennedy’s Footprints’ Blog

Motherfog Entries on this:

Honoring the Adoption Trail

Days of Remembrance

Etched in the Sand

Journeying East, Day Two

The Truth

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9 responses to “Kennedy’s Footprint

  1. I know it took a lot of courage to write that entry and I love you for that. Thank you.

  2. Em, I just came accross this info to your blog about sweet Kennedy and I will read each and every entry, but will wait until I find a quiet place free of my grandson’s visit at the present time. Know that you will never walk the path of grief alone, I will always be there to offer support anytime you need, we share that sisterhood. hugz Marilyn

    • Marilyn, Thanks so much for this. Unfortunately, It wont take you very long to read every entry as there is only one! I have high hopes for this blog, but am sort of sucking at adding to it. I will though. And I so appreciate your support. I do hope you know you have mine as well.

  3. I hope you write that book for other mothers. And for you and Kennedy. Thanks for this beginning.
    So sorry for your loss.

    • thank you so much. It is a slow work in progress. These things always become something different than what we first envision. I’m not sure where this is going, but I know it has a place somewhere.

  4. I am in the same profession as you. I have had the same experience as you had with your Kennedy. My son Abraham was born at 20 weeks in July 2008. I held him for 4 hours before I could let him go. He is buried with his sister who died the year before. I am still numb with disbelief. I can’t believe that happened to us. To me. And to him. After 8 pregnancies and two live births I am the mother of a three year old girl and a beautiful son about to turn one. I feel the artistic to need to return to engagements and stage roles that are coming my way but I can barely imagine not being there every night at bedtime. I suppose I can’t bear to miss a second of their days as they are flying by so quickly.

    I am cancelling a callback for Fantine this week because I just can’t leave my children yet. I’ll probably regret the once in a lifetime role…. but I won’t regret my children’s memories of my face at night.

    I don’t know how you manage everything. Especially after our losses. It is difficult to imagine leaving our babies. At least that is how I am feeling.

    • Rachel,

      I simply cannot imagine all you have been through and everything you express on here makes perfect sense. I experienced only a fraction of what you have and yet I can honestly say that Kennedy’s life changed the course of our lives drastically. I don’t know how much you have read of my blog, but I am leaving show business to go teach performing arts to inner city children at a charter school. I am scared to death of this life change, but also excited and invigorated. These past five years brought me to the realization that I don’t want the “performer’s” life as a Mom. Touring with children (especially once school aged) is not a desirable option for our family and missing bed times for an 8:00 curtain doesn’t sound appealing either. Once my children are in school, they will be on the opposite schedule, leaving very little family time. While working full-time will be a huge adjustment for all of us, I know that they will be home with my husband and that I will be able to come home for dinner, bedtimes and all weekend. Not an option on an 8 show a week schedule.

      It also helps that the mission of this school is right in line with my goals as a human being on this Earth. After Kennedy’s loss, I couldn’t shake the need to impact society in a deeper way. I thought about becoming a therapist who specializes in Women’s issues (like ours) and was accepted into a couple of different schools to start on that path. It just never worked out with the timing, and financially didn’t add up. This school opportunity came out of the blue while I was beating my head against the wall in a business i really had no interest in being a part of any longer.

      We are teaching them the arts not to guide them toward 42nd street (although they could if they so choose) but in order to give them the skills to carry themselves in a bright, proud and positive way in the world. I feel so called to do this work and after 4 years at home (it will be 4 when I begin) I feel ready to get working. I thank Kennedy everyday for pushing me toward a more meaningful journey and I fully believe she has changed us all in profound ways.

      I know that things aren’t always tied up in a pretty bow as I am sounding and that there are many challenges ahead, but I feel ready for the ride.

      Your son is still a baby and it makes sense that you feel like you lack creativity. These years are precious….and HARD. I felt guilty for a long time that I wasn’t enjoying “every minute of it” with my kids. I felt that after losing Kennedy, I had no right to not just be thankful every day. I am thankful every day. But that does not mean that I don’t go a touch crazy every day! My kids are 3 and a half and 2 and I’m just now staring to come out of the “fog”, if you will, but I have gone in and out of losing my mind for the past 4 years!

      I have rambled. But there was so much I wanted to respond to. You sound like an amazing woman. Always honor how your are feeling at any given moment. You have been through more than most can comprehend. I wish you all the best. Please feel free to reach out any time.

      Emily

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