For us, our first loss happened about a year after we met, and we’d only been married a few months. It sort of defined our relationship in that grief and baby loss has always been a part of who we are as a couple.
We were stationed in Hawaii at the time, so just about as far away from our families as we could get, and had no choice but to rely on each other to get through it. Well, I suppose we could have turned away from each other, but luckily we didn’t. We shared our heartbreak, taking turns being the strong one (mostly him) and connected over our sadness.
Ultimately, I think it brought us closer together super fast. We had been together just long enough for that honeymoon period to start wearing off- where suddenly the little quirks that were cute when you first met become annoying. We went from the petty beginning of the relationship arguments like who does the dishes to burying our baby, so suddenly the small stuff didn’t seem like such a big deal. It’s as if we totally skipped over that adjustment stage- I honestly can’t remember the last time we argued about something.
I feel like Raime was a catalyst in cementing our commitment to each other. Because of her, we knew that we could rely on each other through anything. I was never so sick in my life as I was when I was in the hospital for the week leading up to her birth, and Aaron was right there at my side the whole time, even when I wasn’t coherent. That right there is true love.
I will never forget the look on his face when Raime was born and they handed her to him. Just thinking about it breaks my heart- such love and pain and pride all at once.
While of course I wish it never happened, losing our baby in the beginning of our marriage gave us strength. It brought us together, and instead of breaking us apart, our commitment to each other was fortified.
It seems unlikely- that a successful marriage could be built out of grief and loss, but it works for us.