Today at the grocery store, the cashier asked me when I was due. I was a little surprised because this is the first time I’ve been asked about this pregnancy by a complete stranger. He told me his fiancee was pregnant, and he could see the band from my maternity pants (so much for no-show secret panels!) I told him I was due in April, and we started chatting a bit. His fiancee is about as far along as I am, and he was telling me about his family…super sweet guy! Then, he asked the question I was waiting for, “Is this your first?” I paused and thought, “What do I say to a complete stranger in this situation?”
This shouldn’t be a complicated question, but it is! The simple answer is, “No, this is my second child.” But, the hard part is the conversation usually doesn’t end there. Then people want to know how old they are and where they’re at. And, it seems like the further you get into the conversation, the harder it is to tell them that your child passed away.
There have been a few times where I’ve told the truth, but then things usually get really awkward really fast because 1) people don’t expect that to be the answer, and 2) they never know what to say. Rarely someone will have a response that makes me think they must have dealt with it in their own life somehow.
So, today in the Harris Teeter check out line, I just told him, “Yes, this is our first child.” And, like always, I felt horrible. I feel like I’m denying my daughter, but it’s hard to live through that pain with complete strangers. I know it’s a question that I’ll have to keep answering, especially since the baby bump is becoming pretty obvious. I just wish I knew the perfect thing to say.