I don’t know what to say

It is already some months ago that I tried to find the courage to go into town to shop for new clothes. I didn’t want to wear maternity wear anymore, but I didn’t fit into my old clothes yet. I didn’t know what my size was now, so I decided to just go to one shop and pull out everything that seems nice to me.

I went to the fitting room with quite a lot of clothes. How confronting. My body, still out of shape. My uncertainty, what would suit me now. The colors, I wanted to feel beautiful, but I did not want to wear too shiny clothes. After all, I am mourning.

I tried on every piece. A lot of it was too small, too big, too happy, too short. Of some items I wanted to try another size and I gathered courage to speak to a real person. I so hoped I wouldn’t cry.

The saleswoman grumbled that I had taken too much clothes into the fitting room. I appologized and gave her the clothes that I didn’t want to buy. She decided to stay friendly and gave me the clothes in different sizes. I was so relieved. I certainly could use some kindness.

I tried these other clothes on, chose five items that I would give myself and at the pay desk I felt embarassed about buying so many items. To make an excuse I said: ‘well you know, I was pregnant’…

O NO! I thought. What are you doing? and I hoped she hadn’t heard what I said. But the saleswoman – the same who helped me while I was trying on clothes- responded: ‘O, how wonderful. Is it a boy or a girl?’ ‘A girl’, I whispered and in my heart I begged her to ask no more. But she continued: ‘O, that is so nice. How is she doing?’

I hesitated, but managed to say: ‘she passed away’ when tears began to stream. The woman was shocked and said: ‘O no, I am so sorry, I don’t know what to say. I just had a grandchild’. She almost started to cry herself and also the customers who were waiting to pay were shocked. I couldn’t hear what they were saying. The only thing I managed to say was: ‘It’s okay. I also think it’s terrible.’

I paid and somehow made it to my bike. While cycling home, crying, I suddenly realised that this somehow did me well. It was actually such a blessing that this happened, although it was painful for everyone present. But isn’t it really terrible, that my daughter died? It is!

Dear saleswoman. You might not have had words to say, but for me it was good to see that it shocked you. You can’t really do more than that. You can not take away my sadness, you cannot change our situation. But you showed that it touched you and for me, seeing that you at least wanted to say something encouraging to me and told how sorry you were, that did me well. Thank you!

2 thoughts on “I don’t know what to say

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