Those of us who are enduring the death of our beloved baby are all too familiar with the myriad of emotions that follow: sadness, guilt, depression, frustration, anger and denial, to name only a few. These emotions rarely are felt one at a time and instead are a constant and overwhelming whirlwind of feelings.

Anger is simply the outward expression of hurt, fear, and frustration. Some days the anger can be so overwhelming, so consuming and intense it threatens to overpower every rational thought. Parents can feel anger towards the doctors and nurses involved in their medical care and the care of their baby, towards themselves, towards other parents whose baby is alive and healthy, towards that person who said something unthoughtful, towards God for “allowing” their baby to die. Some days anger is simply anger, undirected towards anyone or anything in particular. Simple, pure, anger.

Anger is a natural, acceptable emotion for parents to feel in the days and weeks following the death of their child. “In your anger, do not sin. Do not let the sun go down on your anger” (Ephesians 4:26). Take time to feel your anger, to address your anger, to talk with a trusted person about your feelings.

Sadness is another long lasting emotion moms and dads have to endure following the death of their baby. It is an intense reaction to the current stressors that sometimes feels as though it is all-consuming. At the beginning of your grief journey, sadness is at its most powerful and while it feels it will last forever, the pain and sadness you are feeling over the death of your baby will soften over time. “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; He rescues those whose spirits are crushed” (Psalm 34:18).

Emotions are part of the life that was given to us by God. Instead of attempting to ignore those feelings, embrace them. Allow yourself to feel the tangled mess of your emotions as they are there to help you through your grief.