Living with the loss of stillbirth and learning to live in the sunshine of our new normal.

Friday, December 16, 2011

I have been thinking about this post for several days. But for several days, I have been too sick to even sit up long enough to type, let alone put myself through this. I don't want to think about it. I don't want to share it (even with the 3 people who *might* read this.) I still have this attitude that She Was Mine. I don't want to share her, still.
So for 4 days now, I've known I would have to let this out. I've known that eventually, I would let this slip. But I figured that I would wait until the details were foggy and it could be a few short sentences. Like I always do. Then I read this and I was/am ready. Kind of.
It's funny, the things you stumble on. I was on Pinterest and I clicked on a link to a tutorial of a crinkle toy. You know, the little tag toys/rags for babies that crinkle and make babies smile. And it was a cute blog, and I just happened to look at the title bar and see "Joy's Story."And I knew what her story was. I've read enough blogs to know. So I read it. I read every word of her story, because she is someone's daughter, and somewhere, maybe, she's Charlotte's friend.

But really, my story this week is short and simple and probably silly.
We were at a local photography studio this week, getting Sophia and her cousin's pictures taken with her Gramma and Papa. While we were waiting for our photographer, a family was leaving the studio. Mom, Dad, big sister, little sister. Big sister hung back a little, looking at the Christmas decorations, or talking to the girls.. I was distracted. Her dad said, "Come on, Charlotte." Jolt number one.
A few minutes later, we were called back to the studio. The girls were positioned on the couch, and silliness ensued. Trying to get 3 girls (age almost 4, 2, and 4 months) to both look at the camera and smile at the same time? These people are good. In the studio next to us, a little girl, maybe 4 or 5, was having her holiday pictures taken. The studios are really just one big, open room. So really, in the same room as us, the other photographer was saying, "Smile, Charlotte! Where's Charlotte? Good job, Charlotte!" Over and over, for 10 minutes. I was trying to concentrate on my own girl and her cousins. (For the record, this was the first time since the womb that Sophia has willingly posed for pictures! She was amazing!) But come on. Two little girls in less than 10 minutes named Charlotte? Are you kidding me?
So there it is. My horror story of the week. Thrown in alongside the holiday stress, the money woes we're all feeling, the craptastic weather, my upset tummy. And the fact that her 5th birthday is in 2 months. This is our 5th Christmas Without Her. The fifth time we've not been able to watch her open presents. The fifth Christmas that all I can do is hang a couple of special ornaments for her. That's all I have. I don't get to buy Christmas jammies for my two girls. I don't get to fill her little pink stocking. But everywhere around me, people are shouting her name.

I feel like I could spend most of my time being angry. That is something I've refused to do from day one. Even with our trail of disasters. My anger wont help. It wont bring our daughter back. It wouldn't fix our leaking house. It wouldn't have reversed my husband's cancer. And it wont help now. With all of the unknowns we are staring straight at. With any of the things that fate, or the universe, or God, or whatever, has taken out of our hands.
(As I am typing this, Sophia is watching Nick Jr. The little in-between shows section where a mom or dad reads to their kid. This mom was reading a book to her daughter, you guessed it, Charlotte. Seriously!?!)
Some people will tell me that maybe she's trying to say hello. Maybe this is all some sort of sign. But I can't feel her. I can't hear her voice. I can't see her face. I can only close my eyes and remember how soft her skin was. The way she smelled. The shape of her perfect red lips. And the silent house we went home to. The empty pink room. The pink frilly dress in the closet. Somewhere in all of this chaos, I will learn to survive this. Every day, I have to survive this. I have taken 3 words with me on this journey. "Believe" "Hope" and "Joy." For some reason, I was able to feel meaning in all of these. Reading that blog tonight really slapped me in the face. I need to remember my words. I think these are the things that might help me bury my anger and uncertainty. I will close my eyes tonight and I will pray, and I will hope that heaven isn't as far away as it seems. For all we know, heaven could be right next to us, waiting for us to notice it. I need to stop listening to the shouting and start listening for her voice again.

We cling to the HOPE of Heaven.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

I had a dream last night that I was in Chicago and I was trying to take pictures of a rainbow with a disposable camera. Very strange. But the rainbows were everywhere. They were huge and they were vivid and I couldn't get a single one captured on my little wind up camera.

In other news.. I have a little jewelry box in my closet that my friend gave me when I was Maid of Honor at her wedding. Most of what is in it is Laura's stuff. A set of amethyst earrings and necklace in yellow gold, some Tinkerbell earrings.. But today I re-found my two sterling silver rings that I've had for about 10 years. One is an amethyst and the other is a garnet. Purple was always my favorite color, and garnet has always been my favorite semi-precious stone. So how odd is it that my 2 girls' birthstones are amethyst and garnet? And does this mean we wont have any more kids? Because I only have these two rings? Yes, I wonder and even believe stupid things like that. Sue me.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

For all of October, I ignored this blog.
I had a lot to say, but I didn't say it.
October 15 we did the Walk to Remember (although to be honest, we didn't walk. We hung out and waited for the walk to be over so we could release balloons and go home.)
The other day, Sophia saw a balloon tied to a real estate sign. She said, "That balloon is floating up to Jesus." I told her that we let the balloons go up to the babies who live in heaven with Jesus.
This is Sophia with Charlotte's balloon.
She was playing with her grandpa and another balloon when Charlotte's name was read. I let go of the balloon. A few minutes later she asked where her sister's balloon was, and I told her I let it go. She cried. Mostly because I didn't let her let it go. I wonder how many years it will be before she understands any of this.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

I wrote Charlotte a letter in my head today.
I've been thinking about her non-stop for 3 weeks (or so). Everything (everything, everything, every thing) reminds me of her lately. I know this isn't supposed to be easy, but it never gets less hard. I want to hold her hand and listen to her talk about her day. I am angry again. And I am hurt. And I am confused. She is so far away.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

I was at the dentist today and the dental assistant was chatting me up while we waited for the dentist. She asked how many kids I have. I said, "I have two, but I only have one with me. Our first daughter passed away." She asked how long ago. "Five years this coming February." She asked how. I said, "She was stillborn at 37 weeks." She expressed sympathy and changed the subject quickly.
A few minutes later, she asked what my 3 year olds name is. I told her. Then she asked me a question that I have not encountered. "Did you name your other baby?" I was surprised. And shocked. And a little insulted. I said, "Yes, her name was Charlotte." The girl was young, not married, no kids of her own. She's obviously never been close to anyone who has experienced a loss like ours. Here's what I wish I would have told her..

Yes, we named our daughter. She was not a figment of our imaginations. She was our baby, our hope. We heard her heart beating, we saw her swimming in my body. We carried her for nine months. We talked to her, read to her, sang to her. We took her to the movies, we knew her favorite foods. We had a life planned for her, around her. She was the center of our universe. We painted her bedroom, we bought her blankets, clothing, toys. We kept a journal of the times she would kick, how she would respond to her daddy's voice. She and I had special songs that we would listen to as I drove to work. She had brown hair. She had my nose. She would have loved giraffes, and the color purple. The day we lost her was the worst day of our lives. We had to buy her a casket. We had to pick out a headstone. We had a funeral for her, but we will never get to throw her a party. I think about her every day. I miss her every moment. I would do anything to talk to her, to tell her how much I love her.
Yes, we named our daughter. Her name is Charlotte.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Tonight I feel like I don't need sleep. Like I could go for days without sleeping at all. I tried to go to bed, but couldn't fall asleep. At least there's Lifetime Movie Network.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

It can't be 1:00. All Sophia and I have done today is sit on the couch and watch cartoons OnDemand. I haven't showered, cleaned, done any laundry.. And today is my last day off. I guess it doesn't help that I was up all night, nauseated and throwing up. I don't know why. Something I ate, probably.
One of the cartoons we watched had a little girl named Charlotte. It made me mad. How could they name a child Charlotte? That's our name. Don't they know that it hurt me? I guess that's one of the things I am going to have to get over. And since it only started about 2 years ago (the name bothering me) I guess it's possible that it will just stop.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

This morning I was on Pinterest, just looking around. I saw a picture of a bride and groom sealing a time capsule at their wedding. I thought, wouldn't it be fun to do that at Sophia's birthday party? Have all the guests bring something to put in it. For her 5th birthday, I thought, and she could open it at her 10th. And re-do it for her 15th. And I thought, I should start planning, only 6 months to go. And then I realized-She's not turning 5 next year. Charlotte is.
So then started crying, feeling like a shitty mom for getting my kids ages mixed up. For letting my mind plan something for my 5 year old that I wont get to have a party for. I may still have the time capsule party for Sophia's 4th. Or I wont. So that was my shitty mom moment of the day.
About 45 minutes later, Sophia woke up and came downstairs. She asked me to go upstairs and get back in bed with her. I said, "No way, it's time to party!" And she said, "But I don't want to party. I want to sleep." So I went upstairs and snuggled with her (but didn't let her go back to sleep because then she'd be up all night. It's 10:50- guess who's still up?) But we snuggled, and we giggled, and that was my not-so-shitty mom moment of the day.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

This picture makes me smile.
I knew it had been a while, but I didn't realize a month had gone by.
A lot has happened, but a lot of it I don't want to talk about.
I know, I'm a terrible blogger. I never would have survived blogging in the golden days of blogging. When it was cool.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

I was struck by a thought yesterday while listening to talk radio. The host said he believes in heaven and hell. That's all it took. I started thinking that yes, I believe in heaven. I believe that we go somewhere better than this. And I had to admit to myself, that I haven't given it enough thought. Not the right and wrong, not the who and why. But what is heaven? It is paradise. It is the ultimate reward. I can imagine sunshine and rainbows all the time. The brightest stars you've never seen. The perfect temperature. No gusting wind. Amazing, fragrant flowers, and no allergies. And of course, this is all beside who is there waiting for me.
And that's what I thought about yesterday.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

I'm reading a book right now, a new book. A book that I had no idea would affect me. But it turns out to be a book about a woman who lost her baby girl. Different circumstances, but they don't have to be mine to hurt. Her pain makes me look at mine. She wonders what her daughter would look like "at this age". Why don't I do that? Oh, I know why I don't do it, but I need to think about it. Not letting myself think about it is what makes her feel so far away. I don't let myself think about it because it hurts. It hurts. Would she have brown eyes like me, or blue eyes like her daddy? Would her hair be brown like her sister's, or blond like her cousin's? Questions like that are enough to keep pregnant women up at night. And it's worse when you will never know.
Last weekend, we went to a barbecue. There was a little girl there, whose mommy was pregnant with her when I was pregnant with Charlotte. This beautiful little girl and Sophia became instant friends. They held hands as they ran around playing in the yard. They giggled, they hugged. I kept looking at her and thinking, she could be Charlotte. She could be. It was a tough night. Because I can't very well tell anyone where why I'm standing against the wall holding my breath. Crazy person. I feel like I'm always the crazy person in the room, whether anyone notices, or not. Because I know what's running in my head. And people think I'm anti social. Or bitchy. But I'm just trying to hold the crazy in. It's not my party, and I can't cry here.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

I hate feeling powerless. I do believe that is human nature. We want to do things. We want to help people. We want to make a difference.
On Easter, Mike, Sophia and I drove to Las Vegas. The next day, we drove to San Diego. My sister, her husband, and their son live there. That evening, we drove to San Clemente, about an hour north, where my brother, sister in law, and their son live. The next day, we all went to Disneyland. The next day, to the beach. The next day, San Diego zoo. But none of those things matter today. (I will get to blogging about that later. I've been avoiding it and it wasn't until the past 2 that days I figured out why.)
I miss my family. I miss them like I can't describe. My sister is my best friend. Her son is Sophia's best friend. Not a day passes that Sophia doesn't ask to go to Aiden's house, or tell me she wants to share her toys/snack/zoo with Aiden. I cried every time she said his name for 2 weeks when we got home. (yes, that means I only stopped crying yesterday). I've been trying not to even think about my family, because they're 900 miles away. I am really good at pretending that if I ignore a problem, it's not a problem. (Unless it's someone else's problem. Think husband and cancer..)
So yesterday the word grief starting dancing in my head. I feel like I am grieving for the life that we don't have. My family lives in California because my brother and my brother in law are Marines. They are stationed there, they work there, and so it falls in line that they live there too. I just haven't accepted it yet. I keep waiting for them to come home. Because my mind is evil and it thinks Utah is home, even though they've lived in California for 4 years. I've spent the past 4 years pouting because they left, and I miss them. And there's not a single thing I can do about it.
I can't lie. If gas was $2.50 a gallon, I would drive to California twice a month. I would drive 12 hours each way just to spend a day with my nephews. That sounds 10x more horrible, because I have 2 nephews that live down the street, that I see less often than that. I guess I explain that away by saying that they are teenagers, and could care less if they see me. But I know they love Sophia (who they do see more often, at my mom's house.) I know this doesn't make a cup of sense. I'm trying to work it out in front of my eyes, instead of behind them. I'm trying to face it, so I can live with it. I explained to Sophia (again) today that we couldn't go to Aiden's house, because Aiden lives far, far away. And I cried. Because I don't know when we will see him again. I don't know when I will get to meet my niece, who will be born in August. It crosses my mind that if I worked more hours, if I got a job that paid a better wage- if I worked all the time, we could afford to visit them again. But how can I make that choice? (the job thing is another thing I will bitch about at a later date.)
Back to the powerlessness. I feel like I can't help any of us. I can't help Wyatt, who spent last week in the hospital. I can't help Aiden, who misses his Sophia. I can't watch the kids and let my sisters and brothers have adult time. And I really can't spend more time in the middle of the night worrying so much about things I can't do.
And, it snowed today.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

I have to be honest, Mother's Day this year came and went with not much of anything, good or bad. I had to work all day, and Mike made me breakfast. That was it. Bacon and an 8 hour shift. I received and gave cards, phone calls, texts. But I didn't feel like it was a special day.
And that's okay. I think that since my first MD, just a few short weeks after losing our daughter, it's just a day I'd rather skip over. That may sound harsh, because I am, in fact, a mom. I have been since I heard my Charlotte's heart beating. Since I saw it fluttering at 8 weeks. And, of course, I have a mom. A good mom. A mom who was a much better mom when I was 3 than I am to my 3 year old. I look at pictures of myself and my older sister, and our hair was always done. Our clothes were clean. We ate 3 meals a day (at the table, as a family.) We learned our letters and numbers before we went to kindergarten, and we played outside until it got dark. Don't get me wrong, I am a good mom. Maybe an above-average mom by today's standards. My girl tells me (and total strangers) that we are best friends. She tells me "I love you, mommy," without being prompted. She knows her numbers, to 20. And most of her letters. But she watches more tv than she should, because mommy is on the computer. And her hair is almost never "done." (But lets go ahead and blame that on the fact that she hates to have her hair combed. And okay, I will admit it, I'm crap at hairstyles.)
I think it didn't even occur to me that Mother's Day came and went and is over. And that I ignored it. I don't really dwell on my first MD, when I spent all day literally locked in my bedroom, alone and crying. I was a mom and no one dared call me. I was a mom but I didn't have a baby. I was a mom but no one needed me. My sisters and my mom gave me my beautiful mother's ring. A teeny, tiny gold ring with a dark purple amethyst. What I wouldn't give to find it in a pocket of an old purse..
But I guess my point is, I maybe feel a little bit like I push past this holiday now. I jump over it like a puddle. The other side is safer. The other side is dishes and laundry and Facebook, and not a day when I have to face the missing daughter that I try not to miss so much.
That makes me a liar. I miss her too much already. But then I read a babylost blog, or I talk to someone who visits her son's grave every day. And I feel that I am lacking. That I do not hurt enough. That I am too busy hopping over puddles to notice that my feet are wet anyway.
But sometimes I do notice. It's been raining for 3 days and not a rainbow in sight. Before I lost Charlotte (and really, because we lost Laura,) I never would have noticed. (by the way- did you know that after you lose a baby, your next child is called a "Rainbow Baby"?)
I don't talk about her every day. I don't cry every day. Sometimes I feel like she's already slipped away. That she was a part of a different, past life. That what I have now is everything. It makes me feel like a demon- feeling like I have a good life. How is life good, when you buried your child? When you had to sit at a table and choose a casket to bury the daughter you had been choosing clothing for just a week before. How can anything ever be okay again when you sat in the hospital and let a stranger take your baby away, without taking pictures of her, without dressing her, without seeing her eyes and hearing her cry?
And then Sophia sits next to me on the couch and asks me to read her a book. And that book turns into 3 books. And those books turn into a giggle fest because she called a hamster a lobster. And then it suddenly doesn't matter that I hate mother's day. She is more than a distraction. She is my best friend, my co-conspirator. And then today is just another day on the way to tomorrow.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

I don't like big crowds of people. I like them even less when Sophia is with me and we are trying to make our way through them. She is so small and so ready to run, and I doubt my ability to keep up with her. So I tell her to stay with me. I tell her not to run too far ahead. But she's 3, and 3 year olds are not great listeners, especially when they are excited. Especially when they are with friends who also like to run. So when we are at the zoo, and it's spring break, and there are 900 other people surrounding us, and no one seems to care if their children are within arms reach, or even within their line of eyesight- I freak out a little. I want to know where my daughter is. I want to know that she's safe. I want to make sure that no one can sneak away with her if I turn my head. I think a crowded day at the zoo would be an ideal place for a kidnapping. Is that crazy? Yes. Is it true? Hell yes. So if I freak out when my daughter, my baby, my world, runs off- let it be. She is mine. She is my responsibility and my joy. I've lost a child already, and although you don't think it's the same thing, and I know it's not the same thing- I am overprotective. I am overbearing. I am a little bit wild when it comes to keeping my girl by my side. Let it be. I will relax when I am at home and she is safely sitting next to me watching Tangled for the 20th time. But do not tell me that I am a bad mom for my choices. Do not act as if my choice to protect my baby is infringing on your fun.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I'm not a good single mom. I don't know how people do it alone. Mike's only gone for a couple of days, and I just want to stay in bed and sleep.
I guess there are several factors at work here. My anxiety is bordering on depression. This is the worst I have felt in over a year. If I hadn't promised Sophia the zoo today, I would have stayed in bed. Or on the couch, so I could pretend I was watching her. Even the drive to the zoo was exhausting for me. I felt like hiding from the sky itself. Once we got there, I perked up enough to watch her run and play, and to laugh with her, and to protect her from the attacking turkeys. I think as long as I have something to focus on, I don't get too strangled by myself. Being at work for 11 hours keeps me busy enough that I can't think about how much I hate working full time. But as soon as I leave, I want to crawl into a hole and never go back. Sophia asked me if I live at work now. She cries if it's Mike's turn to put her to bed. She asks me to snuggle her 10x a day (But can only sit still for about 2 minutes of snuggle time.) She hates it, too. And when I'm home, I'm tired. I'm cranky. I'm sad.
So last night I decided it wasn't working for me anymore. I pulled out my Celexa and I took 1/2 a dose. I'll work my way up again. I want to sleep at night. I want to spend time with my family without being distracted by my crazy. I want to enjoy spring and summer without being exhausted by life.
Like I said, I know that a variety of things helped to bury me this week. Mike's uncle Howie passed away and Sophia and I couldn't make it to the funeral. Even being thousands of miles away, I can feel the loss. I am grieving for his wife, and his kids, and his grandkids. I am at a loss for words at how desperate they must feel. He was a good man, and he will be missed.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Kelly Clarkson Sober (video)

I heard this song 3 months after we lost her. I had just found out we were going to have Sophia. I knew it would either save me or kill me. "Been a long road since those hands I left my tears in. But I know it's never really over."
March 22, 2007 was the third day of Spring. It was my due date with Charlotte. It was the night I instead went to dinner with my friends, the first time other than the funeral (and the casket-purchasing trip) that I had gone out of the house.
Tonight I turned on my iPod so I could use it while I walked on the treadmill. I decided to revisit my old playlists (I don't use my iPod much anymore.) Of course I decided I had to listen to some of Charlotte's songs. Her playlist is called "My Little Star". These are her songs.

1. Charlotte Sometimes- The Cure 2. Thinking about You- Norah Jones 3. Somewhere Over The Rainbow- Isreal Kamakawiwo'ole 4. 1,000 Oceans- Tori Amos 5. Love You Lately- Daniel Powter 6. Hear You Me- Jimmy Eat World 7. Starlight- Muse 8. Hello, I Love You- The Doors 9. Slipped Away- Avril Lavigne 10. Sober- Kelly Clarkson 11. I Don't Wanna Talk About It- Indigo Girls 12. I Grieve- Pete Gabriel 13. Overkill- Colin Hay (acoustic version) 14. God Only Knows- The Beach Boys 15. One Sweet Day- Mariah Carey+ Boyz II Men 17. Fireflies- Faith Hill 18. Better Together- Jack Johnson 19. Sexyback- Justin Timberlake 20. Brown Eyed Girl-Van Morrison 21. The Prayer- Josh Groban and Charlotte Church 22. Playboy Mommy- Tori Amos 23. Maps- The Yeah Yeah Yeahs 24. Far Away- Nickelback 25. Who You'd Be Today- Kenny Chesney 26. Angel Mine- Cowboy Junkies 27. Adia- Sarah McLachlan 28. Move Along- The All-American Rejects 29. For Good (from Wicked)

Obviously, there are a couple of strange choices. But they all have a story, or an obvious meaning. I don't know if I've ever told anyone the story behind Starlight. You'd think it's clear, but there is a story. I just don't want to talk about it tonight. One of the darker days of After. And one of the few I remember clearly.

Today I noticed a purple crocus in my front yard. I don't know how long it's been there. I don't remember it being there last year. It's droopy and sad because it snowed again last night. But it's there.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

For her last two birthdays, I have rebounded quickly from the tower of anguish that the memory of losing Charlotte brought. This year it's lingering. Very sneakily, it attacks me when I don't expect it. A song, a street name, the picture of a little girl on one of Sophia's books. For the first time, an old episode of Sex And The City made me cringe whenever "Charlotte's" name was said. I feel as though I am stuck in a hole. It's not deep, but it's dark and filled with anger. I climb out but keep tripping into it again.
I will admit that I have spent a lot of this year being very angry. And I know that some of the reason behind it is that I am not taking my anxiety pills, but the rest of it is that I am just letting myself be angry. The unfortunate thing is that I have no idea why I am so angry. It seems to be centered at the wind. I don't know where it came from or where it's going next.
Today I was thinking about the nurses that helped us with Charlotte. I have their names written down somewhere, and sometimes I think about sending a letter to them. They were amazing. The one I thought of today lived close to us. She tried to describe where she lived (it was about 4 blocks away but that's all I remember). She was trying to make small talk and if I remember right, I did a pretty good job of responding. I don't know what brought her to mind, but I wonder if she went home that night and held her children extra close. Sometimes I wonder about the delivery nurse, who cried when Charlotte was delivered. She bathed her for us, and she wept for our daughter. I remember wondering if she would get in trouble for that, if her bosses would think it was "unprofessional", but it was the most human thing in the world, and I was so thankful that she showed us how she felt.
I'm glad that Spring is soon. Daylight Savings has me feeling a little bit lighter. The sunshine helps, but it's not enough. I have to keep looking for something to help me feel more sane.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

My Charlotte,
For four years now, I have been writing you letters on your birthday. I have been trudging through the week of your birth, and trudging through the snow to your headstone. For four years, I have been listening for your voice, and I have been looking for you in every single dream I have.
I have known since the beginning (which was also the end) that this year would be the hardest. Even before you were born, I pictured you as my four year old daughter. With curly brown pigtails, with big blue eyes. I pictured you in denim overalls and a sneaky smile. I know you would have been mischievous and sweet. I know you would have been my best friend. What makes this even harder is that your sister is all of those things. She is more than I could have asked for, and I wonder why I am so lucky to have her. But then I think, I could have used more luck. I could have used a little more help in that department.
I have spent the last 4 years going over every single detail of my time with you. When I slipped on the ice at work, and the ultrasound said you were just fine. The classes your daddy and I took to get ready for you to come. The day we knew you weren't coming home. I have spent the last 4 years being ashamed at how I handled your birth. How stoic I was, and how cold I must have seemed. I wish I could go back to that day and I would let your grandparents hold you, I would have shared you. But I was so selfish and afraid.
Every year that goes by, you seem to get further away. We are traveling in different directions, and my biggest fear is that when I reach my destination, you wont be where I am. It will be my punishment for not knowing you were in trouble. For not saving you when I had the chance. I fear that I will spend forever tumbling around without you. But the last four years seem like close to forever. How many more years will I have before I forget the way you smelled, and how soft your skin was? How many more times will I be able to remember the way you kicked and danced in my belly, before that is taken from me as well?
On your fourth birthday, I cannot find the words for how much I miss you. For how much I need to see your face and hear your voice. I wish you were here so I could kiss you goodnight and whisper my prayers in your ear. I wish that I could have just five minutes with you, to hold your hand and listen to you say my name. Happy Birthday, my love. Never forget that mommy and daddy love you. Never stop looking down on your family, because we will never stop looking up for you.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Is it the medicine I took for my pulled muscle? Or is it the knowledge that tomorrow is the 4 year anniversary of the day my daughter died? I feel numb. I feel hollow and weak. I cannot concentrate on anything.
Four years ago today I was completely clueless. I didn't know that babies could die before they even had a chance to take a breath. That my body was not a safe place for my daughter. That by the next day, I would be in the hospital, numb with shock. Being pumped full of drugs that would help me to deliver my baby, whose eyes I would never see, whose cry I would never hear. Four years ago today, I had a vision of my future that will never come true. Of children running around outside. My children, happy and unaware of loss. I have no doubt that I will see my Sophia running and happy for many years. But someday she will learn that she has a sister. That what mommy has told her is true. How is that fair? How will we explain to her that her big sister isn't here to play with her, to protect her.
Four years ago today my world still made sense. Since then, not much does.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

I am a stay at home mom. That's what I do. When people ask what I do, I say I'm a mom. It's my job. I also go to a craft store a few days a week and make a little bit of money, but it's just what I do to make money- it's not "what I do."
I don't know why that explanation is insulting for people. It has nothing to do with them. I waited my entire life to stay home with my kids. So why is it so hard for people to understand that that is what I want to continue to do?
I was offered a promotion at work. It is going to allow me to make a (very) little more money every month, but it is also going to take me away from my family more. I am thankful for the opportunity, and I am thankful to have a secure job that will give us a little bit of peace of mind with Mike's layoff coming up. But I am also a little sad about it. I know that I will get used to the change, and even enjoy it when our savings (that we don't have any of at this point) allows us to go see the ocean this summer (which is the plan, but not set in stone because we have tend to have bad luck with plans.)
This month has not been as awful as February usually is, but going into this next week, with Laura's birthday, and Charlotte's birthday.. I'm feeling the weight of it all. I can only hope it passes without incident and March brings an easy and early spring.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

I'm drinking wine and writing poetry for the first time in years. Maybe I can compile it, finally. Maybe I will write my book.
I hate that the infinite sadness starts in January. When I should be happily planning Sophia's party (she wants a pink party and she is getting a pink party. I cannot believe she is going to be 3. She is picking out her own parties and decorations and telling me what she wants at her party. She is singing Happy Birthday to herself while pounding the keys of her piano. I am so blessed.) I guess this is the new normal. Like "they" said 4 years ago. A new normal.

Monday, January 10, 2011

My husband doesn't have cancer anymore.
That's the official word from his oncologist. We went to the hospital today and they removed his portacath. Other than check ups, he's done.
I think I'm still stunned by the news. I really expected bad news. The doctor had to tell us 3 or 4 times before we believed him.
I feel like I should have more to say, but it's just not coming tonight. It's been a long day (at the hospital) and some snarky bitches have undone my good mood. Maybe because I'm tired. Maybe because now that Mike's clear I'm an easy target again. Either way, I have been reduced to exhausted tears and worry. I know that part of my mood has to do with my amazing friend being in the hospital because of the nasty flu. I want nothing more right now than to fly to Philadelphia and keep her company. I guess I feel like running away.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

I feel like shit today. I want to run away.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Here we go again.
I wonder whose idea it was to tell the world that a new year meant we got to start fresh? It's just a date on a calender.
But maybe I'm feeling extra bitter right now because we're waiting on the results from Mike's CT. Waiting to see if he still has cancer.
Mike and I discussed babies last week. Because yes, people ask me all the time if we're going to have more. When we're going to try. Blah blah blah. Add to that the fact that some people close to us are having more, and are doing it now.. Well, the pressure's on.
So I told Mike that it makes me angry that no one else has to stop and think about their decision. No one else has to wonder if their child's father will be around in 5 years so watch their kids start school. No one else wonders if their baby will even survive to see their birth day. And I know these things make me sound selfish and whiney, and no, I do not wish these things on anyone, ever. But it's not okay that no one seems to understand where we are coming from. It makes me even more lonely. And unsure. And yes, angry.