Monday, April 27, 2009

How to tell Jackson

I struggle with how or when to tell Jackson that he has a little brother. He never knew I was pregnant, never knew Benjamin was born or that he died. He sees his pictures on the side table. He sees me crying a lot. I know he understands that something sad happened. He visited me in the hospital.

I don't remember what I was doing the other day but I was at my computer and a photo of Benjamin came up unexpectedly. Jackson was sitting on my lap and I told him that the picture was of Benjamin. I told him that he was his little brother. I told him that Mommy misses him very much and that was why mommy cries a lot. And of course I started crying. He was concerned and said Mama about 20 times. I tried to pull it together but it's hard sometimes. I hate crying in front of him. I hate that he gets concerned. I hate that he doesn't know why I'm crying and sometimes takes it personally. I hate telling him that 'Mommy is sad'. But some days I am sad. Some days I just need to cry. Some days I can't hold it in until he is napping.

I want him to know all about Benjamin. I want him to know that he has a little brother. A little brother that didn't get a chance to live outside of me. But I don't want it to scare him. He's too little to know death that well. He's too little to be scared that another baby will die. I've got that covered enough for the both of us. I want him to be innocent and naive. I want him to know that I am pregnant now and to believe that in October he will have a little baby to fawn over.

But I am scared. I'm scared to tell him I'm pregnant. I'm scared to explain to him that I will be having a baby. I'm scared that if I tell him all of that and the worst happens again then I will have to tell him that horrid news. I am glad that he never knew I was pregnant with Benjamin. I'm glad I didn't have to look at his sweet face and tell him that his baby that he was so excited about was not going to come home with us. I'm glad that I didn't have to see him sad about it. My heart could not have taken that.

So now I just don't know what to do. I don't know when to tell Jackson that I am pregnant. I don't know when to tell him all about Benjamin. I don't know what is appropriate to tell a 2 year old and what is best left until they are older. I don't want to keep anything from him, but I don't want to unnecessarily burden him with sadness.

Eventually he'll know I'm pregnant. Hopefully that happens when he comes to visit me in the hospital with a screaming kicking baby in my arms.

And eventually he'll know all about Benjamin. When the time is right. Whenever that may be.

1 comment:

  1. Hi there,

    I stumbled across your blog and wanted to tell you about a lovely book you might use to help explain things to your Jackson. It is called, "We were going to have a baby but we had an angel instead." I have the sister book, "Someone Came Before You," for children born after a pregnancy loss. It is a beautifully illustrated and simply written, and when the time is right I'll read it to my son.

    Hugs to you