Comforter

Comforter

From Chicken Soup for the Nurse's Soul Second Dose

Comforter

Of one thing I am certain, the body is not the measure of healing—peace is the measure.

George Melton

“My baby, I want my baby!” I sobbed when my first pregnancy ended at thirteen weeks in a miscarriage. Numbly, I’d nodded while my doctor scheduled a D&C surgery. My husband’s worried eyes were the last thing I saw before the anesthesia took effect and swept me into a dreamless sleep.

As I woke from my drugged-induced slumber, I felt the finality of my loss. I cried for the child who was so wanted, yet inexplicably gone.

I felt soft tissues dab my cheeks as someone gently dried my tears.

“I want my baby,” I whispered.

“Oh Cindy, I know you do,” a kind voice murmured.

It was a nurse in the post-op room. I couldn’t see her clearly without my glasses and through my tears. But I thought she must be beautiful because she didn’t shush me, she just kept mopping my tears. The anesthetic numbed my body, yet left my emotions raw, and I was unable to suppress the grief that seemed to swell from my empty womb.

When my sobs subsided the nurse leaned down very close to me and said, “Cindy, I lost my husband three months ago, and he loved babies. I know that he has welcomed your child in heaven and I know that he’ll watch over him.”

My eyes cleared and I saw that she was young—just a few years older than me, in fact.

Her words gave me much-needed peace. Soon, I was wheeled into the recovery room, and I never saw her again. But I’ve not forgotten her. Out of her own grief her words wove a blanket of comfort that warmed and soothed my aching soul.

That morning when my pain was most fresh and raw, she let me grieve. If I could have seen her more clearly, I think I would’ve seen the traces of her own tears and the mark of her own loss, so cruel and new.

Nurses are trained to heal the body, but I was blessed with one who helped heal my heart.

Cindy Hval

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