One of my most read posts is this one (Another Amazing Milk Mommy ). I recently got a comment on it from a man who knows the family. He thanked me for allowing the family to serve us. I was so touched by that. And I realized how true it is. It made me think about how humbled I feel that they shared the milk with us.
It is so hard to allow others to serve us. It is so hard for me to allow others to serve me. As a social worker, it is my job to serve people. And I feel blessed when they allow me to do it. But, oh it is such a challenge to reverse things and accept it. Perhaps that was part of why I struggled so much with my feelings about this family, about using this milk. I felt like I was taking something from them, but this gentleman reframed it for me, helping me to realize that we indeed were able to give them something in the midst of their suffering (at least I hope so).
For some reason, I still haven't used all of that sweet baby's milk. I see it every time I open the freezer to get milk out for baby E. It reminds me of the family, of the baby, and I say a little prayer for them. I think I have been hesitant to use it all because I don't want to forget them. I don't want to forget their loss. I don't want to forget their great gift.
But also, complete honesty, I haven't wanted to use the last of it because it would feel to me like letting go. And how silly because it's not like he was my baby, and I never even met him. But I feel connected to him, and to his family, and I think I've been feeling like that milk is the connection. And, while it is the reason we met, I don't need to have a physical connection. The milk was what brought them into our lives, for a beautiful, brief moment. But, it will be their selflessness, grace, strength, beauty and love that will remain, even once the last of the milk has been used. And, the more that I think about it, the more I know that using the milk is what the family would want. That momma spent so much time pumping the milk for her sweet baby, and I know she wants my sweet boy to use it and thrive on it.
Today's lesson - even though daily I am faced with others' pain, and I am able to not lose myself in it (by the grace of God), sometimes, there is pain that you can't help but be affected by. Sometimes there is pain that you should be affected by. Sometimes that pain, even though it isn't yours, is there to teach you something.