I Refuse

By | 2017-02-07T10:02:09+00:00 February 7th, 2017|Parenting After Loss, The First Year|4 Comments

When will people get it through their heads that I will not be silenced?

I refuse to tell you his was my first pregnancy when it was not–doctors offices can fix their forms to include stillborn babies, because I will not chose a box that doesn’t embody my reality.

I refuse to tell you I have one child when I don’t. I also refuse to tell you I have a dead baby, because she is very much alive in another dimension.

I refuse to be ashamed to have a teddy bear in all of our family photos. I sleep and travel with her bear sometimes, and it facilitates sibling bonding with my children in the way I’m allotted.

I refuse to fail to mention my child to make you comfortable.

I refuse to hide her perfect, beautiful pictures because you can’t appreciate my portion in motherhood.

I refuse to look at signs from her as just a happenstance.

I refuse to abandon the bereaved community that was there for me better than I could be for myself, all because I got my “happy ending.”

I refuse to let an outsider judge my deep intricate grief process at face value–if you have something negative to say, or even think, I refuse to care.

I refuse to forfeit the honor of commemorating my daughter.

Don’t expect it.

Don’t challenge it.

Don’t question it.

And thank God you don’t have to understand it.

I really try to have a gracious tone, but I hear the little comments and I see the facial expressions, and every once in a while, I just have to remind myself and everyone else that mothering a child in heaven is a process not to be judged. It’s to be observed.

Genuine questions are welcomed. Saying Joislen’s name is celebrated. And remembering her with me is cherished.

But one thing I refuse to do is forget my daughter, for you.

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About the Author:

Trish-Ann Taylor
Trish Taylor, a native Floridian, lives in San Diego, CA with her husband and son. She is a woman of faith and teaches teenagers at her church. She’s a dedicated mother to her children. Her step-daughter Makenzie was born May 19, 2009. Her first biological daughter wound up living her full mortal life in her mother's womb; Joislen Grace Taylor was born into eternity on August 16, 2015 after a 40-week healthy pregnancy for unexplained reasons. Trish's rainbow baby, Dwayne III, aka "D3”, was born September 19, 2016. She is a veteran and is passionate about advocating for women's health. She is pursuing her career as a labor and delivery nurse with doula bereavement training. Trish works alongside local hospitals in San Diego to bring about necessary change to better accommodate grieving families. She writes moving pieces inspired by her faith and her endless love for her daughter on her blog Our Journey with Joisey.


  1. Tricia February 7, 2017 at 12:16 pm - Reply

    Thank you for this! Me too!!!!! When people ask if this child (I’m 34 weeks pregnant) is our first, I tell them that it our fourth, but that hopefully it will be our first living child.

  2. Jessie February 9, 2017 at 11:19 am - Reply

    This is beautiful.. we are mourning: celebrating our child that had just passed. I am slowly but surely developing plans to always include him in our future.. because he is still in our hearts and watching us from heaven. So far I have decorated his room with things that we knew of him ( pictures from the nicu, his foot prints, etc.) and his teddy bear sleeps on the headboard of our bed.. haven’t thought of having it in our pictures – what a beautiful idea.. thank u so much for your inspiration:) God bless you

  3. Jennifer Richardson February 10, 2017 at 9:37 pm - Reply

    You perfectly captured my thoughts and feelings since my daughter Violet passed at 36 for unknown reasons. Thank you for this!!!

  4. Leslie H. February 11, 2017 at 6:12 pm - Reply

    Amazing as always! ?

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