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It wasn’t funny for me!

This happened last year, 2016 May. Though I wrote it, I couldn’t post this at that time because I was deeply affected. I was 5 months pregnant at that time. One year later, I still feel the same. 


 

I’m not a Mother’s day person. I don’t wait eagerly for the arrival of this particular day to make me feel special nor do I take the time to wish my mother on this day. I talk to my mother almost every day. My son expresses his love for me through his words and his acts almost every day. I believe that every day is a Mother’s day for me, for every mother out there. Some days are way more special because of how it turns out to be, but that has nothing to do with the calendar date, not for me at least.

But this Mother’s day one of the forwarded messages that found its destination to my phone from my college WhatsApp group made me cry for all the wrong reasons. This message was intended as funny but it triggered a sea of emotional distress within me.

The message was

Congratulations to all the fathers who made Mother’s day possible! Happy Mother’s day!!

Are you wondering what is offensive in this? How and why in the world would someone cry over a funny message? How can anyone be hurt with these few words?

Before Kanna was born, there was a time when I and my husband found out that we were having our first baby. We rejoiced just like any happy couple would do. But soon I started having abdominal pain. It was so severe. Severe than any of the headaches I had dealt with in my life. Severe than the contractions I had endured 15 months later. Day and night I suffered this pain. On top of that, I had severe nausea. I couldn’t eat or drink. I threw up anything that I tried to eat, even water. Everyone around me advised me to eat for the baby’s sake. I was tired and couldn’t even tell them how hungry I was! I was starving. I was so damn hungry!

I had seen the worst during those two months. I saw my husband broken and helpless. There wasn’t anything that could make the situation better. I took the medicine for nausea but that didn’t work either. I cried for the most part of those two months because I was so damn hungry and I couldn’t eat a bit. If you haven’t deprived of food, you will never know what hunger means. It kills you from inside out. It sucks the soul out of you and leaves behind nothing less than a shadow of what is supposed to be you. I thought about dying. I was sure that the baby is not going to come out any healthier this way. I was giving up because that was all I could do to help me out of the day-in-day-out pain.

Finally, we terminated that pregnancy. I woke up pain-free. I ate without throwing up at the end of two months. Nausea, stomach pain, tiredness, they all left me along with our baby! I felt happy. And I felt guilty, having lost our first baby and feeling relieved because of the after effects it brought. I didn’t shed tears over that loss. But my heart kept weeping. No words could express what exactly I felt during those days.

After that my desire to have a baby, to hold mine in my arms kept growing. When I was pregnant with Kanna, I knew that it could get a lot harder. I knew what it could do to me. But I was willing to put me through that ordeal. Thankfully, there wasn’t any abdominal pain threatening to take the life out of me. I could eat though I threw up. I could eat. I was nauseated throughout the nine months. I threw up after giving birth to our baby. But I bet anyone will do the same after a labor that lasts for 36 hours!

As far as I know, I didn’t become a mother because I slept with my husband. Of course, that was the first step. But it was me, my ability to endure the hurdles that finally brought a baby in our lives. I couldn’t withstand the severity of pains, nausea, and hunger at the first time. Deep inside, I blame me for the loss, even though the decision was a mutually agreed one and arrived at after the discussions with the doctor and the weeks of torture that we had been through, emotionally and physically!

Not an August goes by without reminding me of those treasured initial days! Not an October goes by without reminding me of the last day of my unborn baby! My inability to bear the pain made me a mother of an unborn, dead baby. That is an ache that will stay with me.

So yeah, I couldn’t find the fun-ness in that message. Instead, it showed an outlet to all those memories stuffed deep inside me.

I don’t know if every other woman would feel the same way I did. But every woman who had a miscarriage, who had a termination, who had a difficult pregnancy, who had to monitor their blood sugar throughout the pregnancy by pricking themselves to make sure the baby’s well being, who had difficulty in conceiving, who had to go through treatment after treatment, might be able to resonate with me. And it’s okay if I am the only one who feels this way. I am a human, an emotional one. And I believe it is necessary to let the people know when their words, even if not intended that way, hurts me.

So yes, that funny message failed to make me laugh but succeeded in making me cry for more than an hour. It broke my already broken heart. I am not an overly sensitive person. But even a practical person like me have difficulty in getting rid of certain pains. Some aches are here to stay, I realize that!

Would you want to know if your words unintentionally hurt someone? If your harmless words act as a fuel to someone else’s fury, would you want to know that you did that? Would you take it as their bad because that wasn’t in your intention or would you stop by to ask the why behind the fury? Or are you the kind who hangs on to “if-only” after the harm is done?

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10 thoughts on “It wasn’t funny for me!”

  1. BellyBytes says:

    Having gone through a miscarriage myself, I can imagine how you feel. This is something that will stay with you all your life but don’t stress about it. It’s very natural. And I personally, didn’t find the message offensive but I can imagine that it triggered something in you that made you teary eyed. Don’t be hard on yourself Vinitha….. you’re only human. Keep smiling.

    1. Vinitha says:

      That message opened wounds from deep inside my heart. When I think rationally I do feel that I should leave it alone and should not take it to heart causing those hidden bruises to come alive. As you said I’m only human and my experiences in life may have resulted in growing an allergic reaction to senseless jokes. Funny how painfully we patch those wounds with bandages and walk around as if everything is fine, only to be poked with something harmless causing a havoc. Then we realize that nothing was healed, but only hidden!

  2. Shilpa Gupte says:

    I, too, was forwarded that “joke” on WA on Mother’s day. And, after reading your account of what you went through, I feel people need to be considerate towards others esp before cracking jokes that they find funny; for all you know, the joke might (as it did in your case) open up wounds people have kept hidden from the world!
    Motherhood is not a “gift” from a woman’s husband/partner. it is a choice the woman makes for herself and her child. It’s the woman who goes through unbearable pain to bring a child into this world, and frankly, the man makes no contribution in this entire process, except maybe being by her side. I don’t mean to sound bitter, but it is a fact, isn’t it? So, a woman becomes a mother thanks to her husband, but she becomes a “mother” in the truest sense only by her own selflessness and her love for her baby, and therefore people need to learn to use their words with care.
    Hugs to you, Vini! I know you won’t be able to get over that painful incident ever. Whatever I say, or your family says, those wounds will stay afresh in your mind. Maybe, if you embrace all that happened back then and look at your babies now, you might be able to accept that it was a part of life, a painful truth, the kind we all have to bear with in our journeys.
    Stay strong, my dear. But, as I said, whenever you feel the need to grieve over it, do so, unabashedly.
    Love n hugs!

    1. Vinitha Dileep says:

      That’s where I am failing, Shilpa. I had accepted the bitterness, the shortcomings, all that life had presented me with and I was/am content with my life despite all those. I have embraced pain when need be. I was at peace. Or so I thought. That message showed me that it is not the truth. I always think that words carry more power than we realize. How easily wounds can be opened up with a few words (which were not meant to harm anyone in this case)! Thank you for your kind words, Shilpa. Means a lot to me. I am not just saying. Hugs to you too.

  3. vishalbheeroo says:

    I can try to understand how tough it is for someone and right painful to lose a child like this. It was in my childhood when I overheard Mom and Dad telling how I would have a brother but he died in the embryo. They thought the secret was hidden from me. It affected me and felt bad with pang of jealously, growing up with the feeling of being unwanted though Mom and dad did everything for me, whatever I asked was never denied. It’s very painful. If I can feel that pain, cannot imagine what you went through as a mother. I am not sharing on Twitter since what you share is not for public consumption. It brought me back to this phase of childhood.

    1. Vinitha Dileep says:

      I’m so sorry that it brought memories from your childhood, Vishal. As a parent it is always difficult. As a kid who were not supposed to know about that loss it must have been different and confusing for you. But I believe for parents all kids hold the same love and place in their heart. if possible talk to your mom and dad and pt your and their mind a ease about it. Talk only if you think that it could bring you and them a sort of closure. I don’t regret anything. I value my kids more than anything. But yeah, that doesn’t mean that it will be any less painful to think about the loss. Many people I know had more than one miscarriages. That is why I felt that that joke was bad in taste. Thank you for sharing your experience with me, Vishal. We are only humans! Hugs.

      1. vishalbheeroo says:

        Please do not be sorry Vinitha. It was confusing at that time and felt the love lacking. Honestly, I don’t think talking would help and no closure, I guess. But, with maturity, I understand what they have been through. I don’t hold anything. As humans, I felt good to share this feeling at that time and this chapter is closed for me:)

        1. Vinitha says:

          That’s good, Vishal. I’m sure that your parents are proud to have such an understanding and mature person like you as their child. 🙂

  4. Dashy says:

    My own mother had a miscarriage before I was born, and I hadn’t given it much thought at first until one day during a conversation mom told me what it was like. Reading this reminded me of that. Of course I can only imagine what it must have felt like. Talking about jokes, people all over the world crack jokes that offend some people somewhere. Usually the public in general aren’t affected by it and they pass it on, and it really is a tough job trying to make people understand that it hurts someone. We can only express ourselves and let them know, they may or may not heed our words. Much love, Vinitha. 🙂

  5. Esha Mookerjee-Dutta says:

    I’m so glad you spoke about this pain and shared it in a post. When things remain bottled up for a long time, they need to be brought out through a process called purgation which can be very painful but also emancipating and relieving! I think we all have some wounds that do that to us and you are perfectly normal in feeling and reacting that way to the incident that left you bitter and hurt. One thing I’ve realised over the years is that there is no insurance against hurt. There will be triggers and memories that continue to hurt us as long as we live, but if we share and talk about it with our near ones and our friends who understand us, it can be immensely relieving. Any growth is a painful process, Vinitha, as is Motherhood too, most of the times. Once you bring out the stressful memories and the hurt, you will find it easier to ackowledge the hurt and walk past it easily. I’ve had to have an abortion once and I feel the hurt and the pain as much even today, knowing fully well that I had no other choice then but to go ahead with that. Acknowledging this has taken me a lot of time. Today, I’ve come to accept myself and accept that event as a part of life that I have to endure as long as I live. I totally understand your pain, dear and let me assure you, be your normal self, and continue to acknowledge your feelings and emotions as you always do. Its only when we are in denial that we do ourselves no good. You’ve done a wonderful thing by baring your thoughts in this amazingly honest post. I only hope it makes you feel a little lighter, knowing that we all support you in this. Keep writing, Vinitha! Hugs <3

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