Celebrating the Life of Jubilee Shalom Duggar
I can’t help but think today about the birth of Christ and the reason this day is celebrated by billions of Christians around the world. I am also so aware of the unanticipated loss of a tiny little one who will never know the daily love of the family known as Duggar.
Years ago when a woman miscarried a baby, it was glossed over as if there was no need to grieve. Either that woman was told explicitly to move on, or get pregnant again and all would somehow be well again.
I will never understand how others could expect parents to not grieve the loss of a child whether it was before or after it was fully formed within its mother.
As the pictures now attest, there is no doubt a baby is fully formed so young, with its tiny toes and hands so amazingly defined.
Not allowing a mother and father and older siblings to grieve the death of their child and sibling doesn’t miraculously made the loss go away. It doesn’t erase their life because they were so young or because they weren’t fully formed or their mother didn’t have the privlege of giving birth to them.
The expectation of welcoming that child into the family and the anticipation of all the wonderful things they would do, be or have experienced in their lives are what family members think and dream about.
But when those dreams are shattered when the baby isn’t born, when the child is miscarried within the mother, the entire family feels sudden grief. And there is no sidestepping it. Because it’s real and it hurts deeply.
Young children, who cannot verbalize their pain, may act out instead. Older children may become quiet because they, too, may not have just the right words to comfort themselves or their parents, whom they are very aware are disappointed and grieving.
I honor the Duggars for their sensitivity in helping themselves and their children deal with the death of their beloved Jubilee Shalom. This child has helped millions around the world better understand that a woman who miscarries has every right to grieve the death of that very wonderful and anticipated child.
And while years ago the body of that child would simply be discarded, we now know this antiquated practice does not serve their grieving loved ones. We have finally graduated to realize that a regular funeral, burial in some cases, and a memorial service are the better things to do.
A young child, just weeks old, is no less loved or honored, than a adult of several decades or scores.