Right around Sarah Catherine’s birthday last month, a good friend sent me this poem.
It so perfectly captures the thoughts that go through my head when someone inevitably asks me how many children I have. And it’s the prefect answer to the question.
I remember writing about this very topic last year around this time. I was still in the height of my grief and I had no idea how to answer. I would feel terrible not honoring Sarah Catherine by including her in our children, but I’d stumble over the question and awkward silence would follow.
It’s taken a lot of time and a lot of courage, but I am finally able to speak up and “count” Sarah. In fact, just before I saw the poem above, I was with a group and someone said to me, “you have only have 2 children.” It halted me in my tracks and I finally spoke up.
“No, I have three.”
“We lost Sarah Catherine, but she still counts. I have three.”
There was a slight awkward pause, the person admitted to forgetting about our loss (ouch, but understandable) and then the conversation moved on. Thankfully with none of the pitying looks that I wrote about last time.
I stood up for myself. I stood up for Sarah Catherine. It wasn’t a huge thing. It was 2 sentences, but it made a huge impact, at least for me.
It showed me that I can include Sarah Catherine when I tell people about my children. And as long as I handle the situation with confidence, others can feel sad with me, instead of pity for me.
It’s a huge step in the right direction.
So, how many children do I have?
I have three.
I have two that run and one that flies.
Dude is 6, Spud is 4, and Sarah Catherine would be 1.