Sunday, July 20, 2008

The fighter

As it turns out little Lily is a fighter.
She arrived early Friday morning, pink and screaming.
She has been doing better than expected and will have her first (of many) surgery on Tuesday.
Her Mom and Dad are hanging in there too.
Please keep sending those good thoughts her way.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Baby Lily

Baby Lily is coming today, if she's not already here.
Baby Lily has a serious heart defect.
Baby Lily will have to have major heart surgery within hours of her birth.

Please send some love, and strength and HOPE to Baby Lily and her Mom & Dad, for the road that lies ahead.

Friday, July 11, 2008

6 x 6 : July 2008

1 | How would you describe your relationship to fear before and after the loss of your baby?
Before losing Tess and Oliver I was ignorant to what true fear feels like. Lying in a hospital bed hoping, praying (to anyone that would listen) and waiting. Wanting so much to believe what everyone was saying to me :: be strong :: pray :: these babies are meant to be Heather, everything is going be ok :: And then they came. Silently. Even though moments before they were tumbling inside of me. They were gone forever.
Now there are times when fear grips me at the most unexpected moment. I can visualize the worst happening again, though in a different way. Even while I hope the worst has already happened. I fear the other shoe dropping again. Once you've been in the 1%, the unlucky side of one percent, 99% will never ever feel safe. Fear.

2 | Is your lost baby/are your babies present in your life? In what way?
Two small stars tattooed on my wrist where my pulse can be felt. Little hearts beating within my own. They are also alive in my living daughter's laughter and smile. Mostly a happy feeling though lying underneath that pure happiness is a longing to hear and see in triplicate.

3 | Tell us about something said or done after your loss that left you feeling nurtured or supported.
So many wonderful words and actions. One that stands out was a coworker who came into my office on my first day back to work. He just came into my office with a small, quietly sincere smile and kind of shrugged his shoulders. There was nothing to say to make it all better. It is still amazing to me that this nothing meant everything. I felt completely understood. My pain acknowledged perfectly.

4 | Tell us about something said or done after your loss that left you feeling marginalized or misunderstood.
One. A friend compared the loss of my children to the loss of a parent in trying to explain away extremely hurtful actions and words. While I cannot imagine what it will feel like to lose either my mother or my father I do know that one day I will. I do not look forward to this day but I hope it happens in this order, them and then me, because no parent should ever know the pain of losing a child. I would give anything for a memory of what my babies' voices sounded like, what their smiles looked like, what their hugs felt like. Losing a parent vs. losing a child. Apples and oranges. My (ex)friend. Apples and oranges.
Two. Husband of (ex)friend above, 10 weeks after the birth of his child as well as 10 weeks after the death of my own. (This is an excerpt of a long email. Not that I'm making excuses.) "You can hang on to what you've lost, or hang on to what you have but the reality of it is, it's been difficult having friends be so negative during out happiest moment." No further explanation needed.

5 | What's taken you a long time to do again? How did it feel, if you have?
To let go. To stop asking "why?" and/or second guessing everything that happened in regards to Tess & Oliver dying. I haven't stopped yet. I'm not sure that day will ever fully come. Thankfully the once constant conversation in my head has softened to mostly background noise, though there are still moments where the signal comes through loud and clear.

6 | How would you describe yourself as a partner before, and after?
Before :: Strong. Constant. Present. Loving.
Immediately after :: Weak. Needy. Distracted. Lost. Unreachable. Unpredictable.
As the days, weeks, months and years have passed :: Circles and waves of, Awareness. Strength. Weakness. Love. Disconnection.

6 x 6 : May 2008

1 | In a word, how would you characterize yourself before your loss, and then after?
Hard to remember the before. After :: wary, on-guard.

2 | How do you feel around pregnant women?
Uncomfortable. Worried for them.

3 | How do you answer the 'how many children' question?
Whenever this question is asked I go through many answers in my head in the .2 seconds before responding.
I have two babies that died at birth, and one living.
One living angel and two not.
She is my third child but the only one living.

I'm batting a thousand with this answer "One."

4 | How did you explain what happened to your lost baby to your living children? Or, if this was your first pregnancy, will you tell future children about your first?
We will tell Davis about her brother and sister when she is old enough to understand. Hopefully by then I will understand too.

5 | What would another pregnancy mean to you, and how would you get through it—or are you done with babymaking?
Another pregnancy meant hope. And brought much fear and anxiety. Luckily we made it to (almost) term and had a big healthy baby girl at 35.5 weeks. I desperately want more children but fear that the road ahead with another ivf and 20 weeks of bed rest would, one, be unfair to my friends and family, and two, not work anyway.

6 | Imagine being able to step back in time and whisper into the ear of your past self the day after your baby died. What would you say?
Don't forget to breathe.

How can you mend a broken heart?

You can't. Ever. Or at least not get it back to what it was before.

The wonderful amazing Glow In The Woods a place of love and support and sharing. Tears, Laughter, & Snark. Much needed in the world of babylost mamas. I despise the fact there are so many of us, but am thankful to live during a time that allows us to connect so easily. I've been reading since day one, hate to admit I'm lurker. I have even written my 6 by 6 but never posted them. I cannot explain the reasons why, even to myself.

Been up since 3:30. Maybe it's the sleeplessness that is making me move on it. But right after posting this, I'll be hitting publish.