September 7, 2010 at 10:36 am | Posted in father, parents | 15 Comments

In her book The Bereaved Parent, Harriet Sarnoff Schiff wrote, nowhere in the history “of sex discrimination is there a more glaring injustice than that thrust upon a bereaved father.”  I could not agree more with this statement.   Evan, during that awful August, took care of everything.  Evan spoke to the doctors.   He spoke to the nurses.   He took care of Jake.  He took care of me.

I remember once waking up in the hospital around 2 am and trying to figure out where Evan was.   I could hear him but I could not see him.   It turns out he was in the bathroom trying to check all of the messages.  He wanted to make sure he let all of our family and friends know the latest update.   He wanted to ease everyone’s worries if possible.

Evan returned to work 2 weeks after Jake and later Sawyer passed away.    I on the other hand was home on “maternity leave” (which being home on maternity leave with no baby is no picnic – but this post is about fathers not mothers).    Evan got up, got dressed every day and worked.

Jake’s headstone was ordered and when it came in it was wrong.   The name on it was Jack.   The next headstone to arrive was also wrong.   I could not handle it.   Evan took care of all the details and made sure that by the time I saw it, it was correct.   I thank him more than I can ever express in words.   I am still amazed at his strength.

It must be very difficult

To be a man in grief,

Since “men don’t cry”

and “men are strong.”

No tears can bring relief.

It must be very difficult

To stand up to the test,

And field the calls and visitors

So she can get some rest.

They always ask if she’s all right

And what she is going through.

But seldom do they take his hand,

“My friend, but how are you?”

He hears her crying in the night

And thinks his heart will break.

He dries her tears and comforts her,

But “stays strong” for her sake.

It must be very difficult

To start each day anew

And try to be so very brave –

He lost his baby, too.

(Author Unknown)

Evan holding Jake

Evan holding Sawyer


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  1. Thank you Lanie; that acknowledgment is so important xoxo

  2. How important to recognize that you each need to support each other too. Evan is so lucky to have you.

  3. I am so glad that you posted this, and the poem. I remember being struck by its poignancy…

  4. Lanie, you write so well. Everyone’s journey in grief is unique. You are recognizing Evan’s journey and appreciating him and what he endures. My thoughts and prayers are with you both. All my love.

  5. Beautiful poem and words. Thanks for sharing. xo

  6. You are blessed to have each other. Lanie, I hope you continue to write about your journey. I appreciate each post more and more. I love you friend.

  7. You are so right. So intuitive. Evan is lucky to have you, and you are lucky to have Evan.

    This grief thing is such a journey. Such an unwelcome visitor who refuses to leave, yet we know must stay.

    Blessings. To all of us.

  8. Lanie, this is beautiful.

  9. Thank you, Lanie. You have given me perspective on so many things throughout the many years.

  10. Lanie, this speaks volumes about two very strong people. So much has been asked of both of you. Keep taking care of each other!

  11. Lanie, what a touching poem. Thanks for sharing it.

  12. Evan was truly heroic in putting aside his own pain/needs and taking care of you and your beautiful babies. When I hear about reality shows like “Teen Mom,” and their portrayal of cold, detached young fathers, I wish that Evan could go on a lecture circuit on “How to Be a Loving Husband/Father.” Hooray for all the great fathers in the world! Much love to you both, Karen

  13. Thank you, Lanie. I have sometimes fallen into the same habit of neglect with Evan (augmented by the fact that I know you so much better). But whenever I give him a hug, I can feel that he needs it as much as anyone.

    Strength and wisdom to you both.

  14. Dear Lanie,
    We think about you and your family often. It is so difficult to know what to say, so too many us say nothing. But we are caring for you, and thinking of you, and you are always in our hearts. Your words are beautiful and very important to share.

  15. Wonderful post, Lanie. Thinking of you and Evan and wishing you both strength and comfort.

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