Assigning Shape to a Void or Teaching Grief to Children 101

You fumbled happily, cluelessly, through washing newborn babies. Pulling tiny, fragile arms through soft cotton onesies and holding your breath in hopes of saving theirs the first 1,000 nights you put them to bed.

You flick through books about sleep training, feeding, behaviour, development, and you start to snuggle up to the lie that you may just know what you’re doing.

You vow to eradicate your family’s unique albatross that sits quietly in shadows behind doors and monotony. So when she asks you why you’ve been crying, you’re surprised that the thin veneer of life hasn’t stretched this far. She asks if he’ll be okay and when all you can do is sit slowly on the edge of her bed…

she knows. 

Her tiny little arms and her tiny little legs climb into your lap in monumentally familiar shapes and she cries silently into your neck. 

In this dry and airless landscape you recall perfectly her newborn feet, her delicate back, her earth shattering sadness and you know love.


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