Jul 29, 2007

It Feels...


The conception, short gestation, and loss of my baby - how could so much have happened in such a short time?

My children are home from vacation and my focus has shifted from the selfish of ME to the unselfish of MOM. I'm so glad they are back, I missed them so. But it forces me to forget in my day to day that there was a Michael.

We have decided to put his remains in the shady back garden where the hostas thrive. I will take his remains to be blessed this week and then we'll move on.

I'm thinking of ordering a small stone from Etched in Stone that could be used as a paperweight or garden stone to remember him. Just simple, with his name on it to show that he did live and was loved immensely.

Hubbers had a dream about our boy last week. He was older, not an infant, and looked like our second child - blond and sweet. He told Hubbers that it was okay. I assume this means that our little boy knew he would have had a life of pain in our world and his place in heaven is much better. That he will be loving us always and looking after us as well. That he didn't hurt here, just felt our love for him.

I don't believe this was a dream. I think people can visit us after they die sometimes. I think Michael was visiting Hubbers to help ease his pain. It's a pain he won't show me, although I know he feels it. He wants to be strong for me.

I asked him earlier this week if it still hurt him, too. Not in the same way, he replied. I guess this means that it's not the raw searing pain for him that it is for me, probably some of it being the effect of the loss of hormones. But he did tell me that it still hurt him. So I guess it's a healing thing to see our son and know that it's okay and he's well.

I'm jealous. I wish he had visited me.

Jul 28, 2007

Lots of Questions

It seems that there are so many questions to ask and no one to answer them.

How do I explain how many children I have?
How do I answer "How are you?"
Where do I choose to bury the remains of our son?
What if we move, as we plan to do, what happens to his remains?
Is the garden an okay place to bury a small amount of tissue?
Should I plant pretty flowers around him as he goes back to the earth?
Will it ever not hurt?

Jul 27, 2007

I Tell YOU What's Not Fair...

I felt pretty decent today - I found myself thinking that maybe I'm starting to hit that acceptance phase. I didn't even cry when Hubbers apologized/empathized for not having to make room for another child in our already bursting at the seams house. Nope, didn't even well up.

But when I opened the mail today and found the bill from the Radiologist for the ultrasound to confirm that my son was dead... That was harsh.

Way hard.

It's not fair to have to pay for someone to tell you that your loved one is dead, you know? It irks me that it will cost me $284 for a 7 minute scan to tell me that my son had no heart tones.

I guess I'm still in that mad stage of grief - haven't moved to the acceptance stage yet.

Stages of Grief:

1. Denial/Isolation
2. Anger
3. Bargaining
4. Depression
5. Acceptance

I don't really feel the need to bargain. And the depression? Well, I've been on meds for that since 2001! Yes, I'm being flip. I obviously have SOME depression, since the nights seem so hard.

What do you say when someone calls to see how you are and the standard answer pops to your lips: "Fine". I usually amend that to "Doing Better".

What about when someone asks how many children you have? I have four and three in heaven? One died recently and left the other four here? I have eight? I have four? I'm busy feel bad for the loss of one but the other four are around here somewhere?

Hubbers says that the question implies that the kids are alive and I should just answer with 4.

God willing, we will have that fifth some day. My body works just fine - especially now that I've lost weight. I'm down to as little as I weighed before the conception of my third child - the lowest in a LONG time. The less weight, the easier it is to get pregnant.

I worry - in case you couldn't tell - about the most inane and impertinent things sometimes...

Jul 25, 2007

Asking Why

I wonder why God allows bad things to happen. Yes, we grown sometimes from them, we learn sometimes. But why would God allow my baby to grow for three months before letting him just DIE from some bad chromosome thing? Why let him grow at all in the first place? Why allow me the pleasure of him and then yank it away like a bad no-no?

What in the name of all am I supposed to learn from this?!

I suppose I asked the same things when undergoing infertility treatments for 18 months to conceive our second child. Why? As much as that hurt at the time, God this hurts so much more.

Wanna hear something bad? As sad as I am that my son died before birth, I'm really glad that I never got to know him before death. I'm glad he wasn't here and then died - that it wasn't one of the kids that I'm so attached to that died. I would never have chosen the death of my child, but I'm glad it was one that wasn't here yet. How's that for a black little piece of my soul?

The chance of a second miscarriage after this is essential as low as if we'd never had one. This was at least my second one - the first being an early miscarriage in 1997. I believe I may have had one more early miscarriage in 1999 or 2000, which would make this loss my third. And you know what that means? IF that was my third miscarriage, my chances for another are 50%.

Some days it feels like everything is stacked against you.

Jul 23, 2007

I'm Just... Fine

I had my Dr visit this morning for the "after miscarriage" visit. That was hard. I found myself wanting to run away and not be there. I decided that there should be a soundtrack to my life, so I'd know when the good part was coming around again. I had to watch very pregnant women haul themselves around. I'm not jealous of them, just mad that my baby, my SON! isn't ever going to be here to hold, love, kiss, caress.

Think about all I'm not going to experience with him - no happy birth, no breastfeeding, no sweet smelling baby hair, no kisses, no small bundle in my bed, warm and round. I can't think of all the "bad" things just now - weight gain issues, the pain of early breastfeeding, the trauma of VBAC trials, the sleepless nights...

Since the ultrasound they did in the hospital showed everything clear (which it wasn't, since the placenta fell out in the bathroom at the Army Surplus Warehouse - who's the putz who read THAT u/s?!) but I couldn't report seeing the baby in the remains, she did another scan. All clear. Some tissue remains, but that's normal and will clear out on it's own. I'll bleed for probably 2 weeks, decreasing, and sometime during this next week my cervix will close.

And then? Then the Dr says we can have another baby any time we'd like. Wait one cycle to make sure that the uterus is healed and then hump like monkeys, if we'd care to. I told her that since we're Catholic, we're just going to let God take care of it.

Jul 22, 2007

14 Weeks

I would have been 14 weeks today. Instead, I go for my post miscarriage visit tomorrow.

And I'm angry. I want my baby back. I thought I was feeling better, more at peace. And maybe I am, but mostly I'm just damn mad. He didn't even get a chance.

The steps of grieving:

1. Denial/Isolation
2. Anger
3. Bargaining
4. Depression
5. Acceptance


I've been working on healing. I ordered some jewelry to memorialize my son and help with the hurt. You can visit it at Healing Jewelry - This is a place dedicated to remembering the unborn due to miscarriage, infant loss and so on.

I ordered the following:

A baby tears necklace with the garnet stone instead of this blue one, since he was due January 20th. It came with a beautiful little poem:

Baby Tears

We never heard your first tiny cry,

never wiped the teardrops from your eyes.
And though our hearts grieve, and we are bereft
we carry your teardrops, they are all we have left...
We carry them with us, tucked next to our heart
your memory with us always, we are never apart.

And this footprints charm with the garnet stone, as shown.

This is the back, on which I had engraved, "12 wks"

Here is the poem that arrived with these:

Tiny Footprints on a Mother's Heart

When a baby arrives,
be it for a day, a month, a year or more,
or perhaps only a sweet flickering moment-
the fragile spark of a tender soul
the secret swell of a new pregnancy
the goldfish flutter known to only you-
you are unmistakeningly changed...
the tiny footprints left behind on your heart
bespeak your name as Mother.

These came the same day as the last of the lab results from the miscarriage at the hospital. It was so hard to read that low hCG number on the report. I cried when it arrived, when the jewelry was opened, and when the Certificate of Life arrived from the The Church of the Holy Innocents on the same day... Let's just say it was a hard night.

Nights are the worst.

Jul 21, 2007

Alone for the First Time

It's the first time I've been ALONE since the news of the baby's death. Since the miscarriage on Thursday morning (long story involving a hospital ER visit). Without anyone here.

And so far, I'm okay. The kids are vacationing for a week with the grandparents, sans parents, and Hubbers went to a movie with a buddy. (I didn't feel like seeing Transformers.) I'm home, cleaning up a bit but taking it easy since I'm technically on bedrest for another day, sewing, running laundry. And it's okay.

I feel at peace. A bit saddened but nothing unbearable. The nights are worse than the days. I think of the baby often and feel badly that he will never get to see this world. I know that I really feel bad for me, since he's in a much better place, but he was and is my child.

We will have the remains blessed and will then find a quiet spot to bury him.

Jul 20, 2007

Seeing and Believing

Christine had this picture posted on her blog. If you look closely, you can see a baby in the photo. Can you see it? It's easier to find the feet first. Now I cannot help seeing the baby.

How very softly you tiptoed into our world.
You only stayed a moment, but what an imprint your footsteps have left upon our hearts.
Dorothy Ferguson

Jul 12, 2007

Shrine of The Innocents

Old_T.gif (1379 bytes)he Shrine is dedicated in Memory of the Children Who Have Died Unborn.

Often children who have died before birth have no grave or headstone, and sometimes not even a name. At The Church of The Holy Innocents, we invite you to name your child(ren) and to have the opportunity to have your baby's name inscribed in our "BOOK OF LIFE".

Here, a candle is always lit in their memory. All day long people stop to pray. On the first Monday of every month, our 12:15pm Mass is celebrated in honor of these children and for the comfort of their families.

We pray that you will find peace in knowing that your child(ren) will be remembered at the Shrine and honored by all who pray here.

The shrine also offers Certificates of Life.

The Church of the Holy Innocents

Jul 11, 2007

Hurting, Loss, Sorrow... Healing

It hurts so very, very much, this loss of someone I didn't even know yet. My body is still sharing his space, but he's very much gone. Today is better than the shock of yesterday. I feel more at peace but know there is a long road ahead.

I have post-partum depression quite badly after the birth of my children, starting with #3. I take meds that are so helpful and receive therapy when it's very bad.

When I was so sick after #3 (RooBoo) was born, I was advised to check into the hospital or go be cared for by someone capable. I chose to spend the two weeks it took for my meds to kick in staying with my mother-in-law. She cared for me and all my children while I recovered. After the birth of TheBoy (#4), she came and spent a week with me, helping me settle into my own house.

So now, when the hurting is so bad, when the anxiety is ramping up, when I can't bear to be away from home without nearly going out of my skin, my blessed mother-in-law will have us stay again. She will love and care for me as if I were her own child and not the stranger who married her last son.

We had planned to visit next week already. The kids enjoy spending a week with Gramma and Grampa attending vacation bible school each summer. But this time, we're all staying.

Hubbers. He is hurting, too. I feel such sorrow at his pain, wishing I could ease it. He is here for me, just to hold me, whenever I need. We've spent much of the past two days telling each other of our love, and how it will be okay. He needs to spend some time at Gramma's house, too, soaking up her loving reassurance.

Hubbers and I will heal, in time. There may even be another baby somewhere waiting for us. Whatever comes, our little one will be looking down from heaven, awaiting OUR arrival.

Jul 10, 2007

Life is Fragile

It's a heavy heart that writes this and there is no nice way to say it. Here is is, plain and true.

Our baby died sometime last week. There are no heart tones, no movement. The Dr believes that it was a chromosomal abonormality, since the pregnancy lasted 11 and a half weeks.

Now we wait. Wait for nature to happen. Wait for the grief to subside. Wait to see our baby in heaven.