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

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.