Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Memory Box

Mommy has such dear dear friends, without them I dont know where I would be, possibly locked up in a mental ward somewhere. Daddy and sister Addison have been amazing, as well as grandma and grandpa but there is something about a friend, someone who is not obligated by blood or marriage, sticking around through the tough times and offering all they have to give to make my living hell a little bit nicer.

My dear friend Ashley text me yesterday saying she sent out an overnight package, a "gift for you and Dash." I thought "A gift for me and my dead son? What on earth could it be?" It arrived in the mail today, Daddy found it on the front stoop when he arrived home from work. I first opened a beautifully worded letter she had included as well as a card from her mom...such sweet hearts they have. I opened the gift and immediately knew what it was and it was perfect. In "Project 365" I had taken a picture of the cardboard box from the hospital (a formula box no less ugh) that holds all of your things. It depresses me every time I look in there, I feel such immense hurt deep in my heart and every time I close it I feel like I'm suffocating you. Ashley spent a week making a beautiful memory box, filled on the inside and out with thoughts of you. It is something I can look at now and not want to shove into the back of a closet, I can open it and feel like your life radiates from inside. I have no words to describe what a absolutely perfect and heartfelt gift this was, I guess thats the mark of a true friend...they just know. I will work on moving all of your blankies, pictures and papers over into the new box and just know it will help my heart smile again.

I love you Dash, deeper than the seas, higher than the skies, until the end of time.



She included the story I wrote of your birth, now it will never be forgotten <3 style="cursor: pointer; width: 320px; height: 240px;" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_OBYYlcDXwbM/TCqr2CxfnRI/AAAAAAAAEbs/K8B3_Till_I/s320/DSCF6697.JPG" alt="" id="BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5488388040850119954" border="0">

Monday, June 28, 2010

Robbed!

Mommy feels ripped off today, like how we pay for the newspaper but our delivery is often overlooked or like when my health insurance refuses to pay for things. It just makes me so mad, thinking about the minimum respect and courtesy, at the very least, I should be afforded as a human being.

All around me, friends are getting their "happy endings" they have always dreamed of. I feel like I can't even go onto the internet or get together with friends without learning of something that makes me feel totally gypped. A friend of mine who was about 8 weeks behind me in her pregnancy just found out yesterday that she is having the girl she has always wanted. She already has a son and now her family is complete. Many other of my close friends are living the same perfect story. Mommy and Daddys dreams came true too when we learned you were the boy we had hoped for but a week later all those dreams we had dreamed came crashing down. When the ultrasound technician told us "there is no heartbeat anymore" we immediately felt like we had been unjustly robbed of the happiness and family that was rightfully ours. I can't help but feel a twinge of that anger again when I hear of others "happy endings."

I do not wish the loss of a child on anyone, I just wish baby's being born could be put on hold for awhile so I can grieve in peace. The cherry on top of this latest news was that one of her top 3 names for her daughter is what I had wanted to name you if you were a girl and what I had hoped to name a daughter in the future. It's not like I ever told her of the name or like she stole it from me but I do feel robbed. Not only have my hopes and dreams literally been "dashed" but now I dont even have the name I love for a possible future daughter. I know I am overreacting and I know it sounds silly but the littlest most insignificant things hurt so deeply nowadays. I wish I wasn't so fragile but I am.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The first bill...

The first bill from your birth arrived today. It has been 2 months and 1 day since you left my belly, I knew it was coming but wish I would have been prepared. The bill is from the pathology lab which was supposed to run the tests we requested on your placenta, umbilical cord and on mommys blood. We found out about a month ago that they "unfortunately" made an error and the correct tests were not done. Would the test have given us answer to our whys? Maybe. But now we will never know because someone who doesn't take their job seriously or is completely incompetent was put in charge of our lab work and they screwed it up. We only had one shot, one small window for the tests and it is long gone.
There are so many things about our experience that make me so angry inside. I hold onto them as more fuel to my grief fire. Things I would have wished for other than never having to go through laboring with my dead son would be:
-Compassionate nurses
-One nurse assigned to me on each shift who knew my situation
-A competent social worker who wouldn't have just handed us a packet on grief resources and told us "you will have more kids someday and you'll move on"
-Offers of bereavement services from the hospital. Instead of this, we had to nag the nurses to get in touch with the appropriate resources.
-A different delivering doctor. One that would have not treated you like a specimen but like the son you were to us. One that would not have blinked an eye when asked to sign your death certificate, then we could have had you cremated immediately, instead you sat in the morgue for over a week because of one signature that the doctor was too lazy to do.

These are just a few of the situations that still anger and hurt me so deeply. But I do want to acknowledge the "diamonds in the rough" that made the process somewhat bearable. My night nurse Judy who checked in on me and sat to listen to me cry and talk. She is the one who took you to the nursery to get your foot and hand prints done and who wrapped you up in a nice warm blanket just your size. She was our guardian angel. Also, the funeral home who was willing to do everything possible to obtain our delivering doctors signature so they could proceed with the cremation. They called us daily with updates and explained everything to us just like we were family. For them I am so grateful.

There will always be those who treat their job as just that, a job. But there are those few special people who are willing to go out of their way, above and beyond to make anothers nightmare more bearable and for these kind hearted people I am so grateful.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Fathers Day

Mommy and Daddy have been very sad the past few days baby. Not that we aren't always sad nowadays but there has been a lingering and overwhelming sense of dread and emptiness which has been hard to deal with, especially with Fathers Day yesterday. I wasn't sure how I should honor you on your daddy's special day but wanted to do something meaningful. Daddy isn't a big jewelry wearer, it took him months to get used to wearing his wedding band but he has commented quite a bit on the two memorial necklaces I had made in your memory. I went to one of my favorite little stores, "Things Remembered" and picked out a dog tag style necklace and had it engraved with your name, date of birth and angel wings. It came in a beautiful silver presentation box which I had engraved with "Daddy." It all turned out beautifully and I looked forward to giving it to daddy for you. As soon as daddy realized what it was, he got very quiet, very sad and just placed it back in the box. I was not expecting this reaction at all as he had been in good spirits earlier. I guess just like me, there are certain things that trigger that sadness and helplessness of losing you. It can come out of nowhere and hit you like a ton of bricks; one of the worst feelings ever. I feel like I ruined Daddy's day, that he was trying so hard to put on a happy face and I had to go and stick your death in his face. I feel so horrible inside, maybe I should have waited, maybe I should have warned him what it was? Mommy screwed up. I so wish we didn't even have to think of such things, that you were safely in my belly giving daddy Fathers Day kicks. We miss you baby and special days make the pain that much more deep.


The smaller of the two dog tags has April 22, 2010 engraved on one side and angel wings on the other.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Just What I Needed

I had lunch with a dear friend today who I have known for about 4 years now. We had been in the habit of meeting for weekly lunches and catching up and the last time I saw her was right before you died. She has called me multiple times since that day and I just haven't had the guts or steady nerves to answer. Finally, we made a lunch date for today and it was so wonderful to see her. We talked around you for quite some time and then she suddenly she looked at my neck and asked "Is that the necklace you got in memory Dash?" Oh my gosh! She said your name! She acknowledged you were a person and loved and wanted, that you were real. I was taken aback as most people do not refer to you by your name, hell most people want to avoid the subject all together. I could have cried and jumped for joy when she actually spoke of you, my son. She admitted that she had no idea what to say to me today, whether to ask questions or completely avoid the subject all together. I so appreciate her honesty and the courage it took her to admit to me that she was clueless as how to approach me. That is what I truly need from all people in my life, for them to come to me and say something to the effect of "I dont know what to say to you or if I should say anything at all but I am so sorry about the loss of your son Dash and I am here if you ever want to talk." Don't try to "fix" it or tell me that you understand how I feel because you cant and you dont.
I also received an email from a friend today that said she saw this quote and immediately thought of me...
"What we have once enjoyed we can never lose. All that we love becomes a part of us."
I enjoyed every second with you and you are a part of me forever Dash.
Love,
Mommy

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Forgetting

I feel like day to day I cant count on any emotion, I go from feeling numb to complete devastation and then onto a calm sense of peace as the days pass by and I wonder if there will ever be a time where I can "accept" that I lost you and begin to live again. I feel like the days are slipping out of my fingers and I feel guilty and angry that I am starting to "forget." I was writing a story the other day and trying to recall your birth weight and height and I drew a complete blank. I just dissolved to tears, what horrible mother forgets that 8 weeks after her baby dies? I dug to the bottom of your memory box to find your name card and came upon your things. Blankets and a teddy bear that actually touched you, have traces of you still. It hurts. Every day that I live is another day further from the last time I held you and sang you lullabies, gave you kisses on your toes and marveled at how perfect you were. Words are failing me tonight, I cant seem to put my thoughts into comprehensible sentences but I know that I'm feeling guilty and lonely and wanting to hold you.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Letter from a friend

I received an email from a friend last night. It brought tears to my eyes to hear someone talk about me with such love when right now I feel like I am really hard to love...

"Sorry it has taken me so long to write you. Truthfully I still don't know what to say or how to say it. It seems there's never a "right" thing to say when someone is grieving, and loss in any way is something I am not good at. I am however very compassionate so there are a few things I do want to say (because I'm sure no one has said them already lol). My eyes fill with tears when you post pictures or comments about missing Dash. Not just because of the hurt or sadness, but because of the amount of love you convey towards him. You are so strong and such a wonderful mother to both of your children that I catch myself not focussing on the "off" days I have with Payton but treasuring them. Addison and Dash are so lucky to be able to call you their Mom and Alex lucky to call you his wife. You are truly amazing and although you may not feel it sometimes that makes you even more amazing. I think and pray for your family everyday and every night that you get what you're searching for and what you deserve. If you ever need a few hours, a day, or an evening free I would be honored and pleased to have Addison hang out with us. That offer also stands if you and Addison ever want to get out and about as well. I don't expect a response, as that is definitely not the purpose of this. I just wanted you to know that you are thought about and well loved by more people than you realize!"

What wonderful friends I have baby. I only wish we all could have loved you up for years to come.

I received my "cremains pendant" in the mail today and it is beautiful. When we first lost you, I had thought about doing something with your cremains and a friend of mine sent me a site that makes keepsake cremains jewelry. What a wonderful and comforting idea to carry a part of you around with me in a beautiful necklace! It came with a "kit" to transfer some of your ashes from your urn to the pendant and I was very anxious about doing it. It may sound weird but I didnt want to "spill" or "lose" any part of you but with shaky hands I managed to fill my beautiful pendant and look forward to wearing it around my neck. I firmly believe that energy never dies, it just regenerates in different forms. I will now carry your beautiful energy and smile with me every day, thank you so much for being my baby.



I highly recommend this site to anyone who may be interested in purchasing "cremains jewelry":
http://www.ashestoashes.com/

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Footprints

I wish I had your footprints baby. Our nurse tried so hard to get your tiny little prints but just couldn't and didn't want to hurt you. We do have little imprints in clay of your feet and hands that our nurse was so sweet as to do for us but it just isn't the same. I have your sisters big strong footprints and only smudges of yours. I saw a mommy at the pool today with tiny baby footprints on her own foot, I can only imagine that she is an angel mommy too.
I am trying to come up with a tattoo to memorialize and remember you by but haven't come up with anything that is perfect yet, nothing that feels "right." All of my tattoos have a deep personal meaning to me and I want yours to be just as special my Dash. I love you my son. See you in my dreams?

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Photographic grief and healing

One of the ways i have been dealing with my grief is by joining an online community of other mommy's who have lost their babies too. Although it is heartbreaking and depressing at times, it also provides me an outlet for my sadness, anger, confusion and anxiety and gives your daddy an emotional break. I don't want to overwhelm him as he too has profound sadness that he needs to be allowed to heal from.
Through this network of mamas I have discovered many wonderful ways of memorializing you, like the pictures that I have posted on the side of your blog. There is a mommy in my group who lost her daughter around the same time I lost you. Juts like you, her heart stopped beating and she is now an angel baby. Her mommy decided to do a project called "Project 365." A one year photographic journey through grief and healing, each day one picture is taken and records the emotions felt at that time. Thinking about a year from now, I don't know where I will be but I know I will still miss you terribly. I want to make sure I remember this time as best as I can for though it may hurt, I am surely to grow and I don't want to overlook those triumphs. My very own "Project 365" started yesterday and will have a special tab at the top of your blog. I miss you little one.


6/7/10 Dash's beautiful urn basking in the warmth of the afternoon sunlight...


6/8/10 Countless hours spent staring at the ceiling and searching for answers

Monday, June 7, 2010

The old me

I really miss my "old" life, the one I had before I was told that your heart had stopped beating. I miss being carefree and feeling like the luckiest mommy alive. I dont think I ever took you or the blessing of your sister Addison for granted yet you were taken away from me. I believe with all of my heart that things "happen for a reason" so why then did God take you from me? I loved you, I wanted you and I did everything I could to protect you, yet you are gone. I so badly want to hold you my little man, to see you smile at me and hear you giggle. I try not to ask God this question but every so often it creeps into my thoughts "Why me?" I did everything right but lost you. What sort of lesson is this supposed to be teaching me? No matter how great the lesson though, I would rather have you in my arms, you to kiss and love and hold forever. My baby, my Dash I love you deeper than the oceans and brighter than the stars.



Your urn basking in the warmth of the afternoon sunlight <3

I'm ok

Mommy is very blessed with wonderful people in her life. They all tell me how strong I am and how I have inspired them but really I feel like they are the strong ones for being present in this time of grief for me and for their prayers of hope and healing.
Sister Addison had a birthday party of a friend on Saturday. We went as a family, the first big event we've been to since we lost you. I cannot even put into words how painful it was to see all of my pregnant friends (and by all I mean 75% of the women there)it hurt to know that their happiness was something I used to have too. After greeting everyone, your daddy finally said to me "Why are you telling everyone you're good? It's ok to tell them the truth." Why dont I tell them the truth? Because then I will be that fragile and unsteady mother, the one who may loose it at any momemnt. This was a bithday party, a happy event, it's not my place to wallow in self pity. I may be grieving but I am not selfish, although sometimes I want to be. Truthfully, I do tell close friends when I am not doing ok or when the pain of losing you is really hurting but for "casual friends" I don't feel comfortable admitting how much it kills me that you died, how much I cry every day and how miserable I am. Not only would I be putting myself on a limb to someone who may not know how to react or may say something to really hurt me, I just dont feel like it would do much good. My coined answer to the question "How are you doing" is now "I'm ok."

Sunday, June 6, 2010

please dont forget

Wise words from a fellow baby lost mommy...
"i am not scared that i will forget. i am scared that everyone else will forget..."

This is exactly how I feel. Maybe that is why I have this burning need to talk about you whenever I can, to remind people that you were alive and loved and wanted. That no child will ever replace you as long as the sun shines and the moon rises in the night. I love you my sweet pea <3

Friday, June 4, 2010

"Great News"

Great. One of my friends just announced on Facebook that she and her fiance are expecting in December. These are the moments that I lose all hope of ever feeling happiness again. Others around me are so full of joy and I'm just empty.

Birth

Today was a hard day for mommy. Well what else is new right? I found out I was expecting you about 3 months after one of my closest friends Ashley discovered she was expecting her third son in June. What fun we thought! We made great plans for you and Ryker growing up together,playing together and how fun and special it would be to have you both so close in age. Ryker was born yesterday, healthy and strong. I couldn't help but burst out in tears with joy for Ashley but sadness for myself, my empty womb and the fact that whenever I see Ryker I will think about how you should be just 2 steps behind him.
In the midst of my tears and grief I felt it was only right to visit Ashley in the hospital and to meet her little miracle. I went to Target this morning to pick out a few special things for baby. She had mentioned that she needed newborn diapers so I picked her up a jumbo pack of swaddlers, my favorite. I didn't realize it right away but our cashier was a young, blonde and bubbley woman about 8 months pregnant. The diapers were the last thing she rang up, she looked at me and your sister Addison, down at my belly then back at me. I was praying that she wouldn't say anything. Unfortunately she asked enthusiastically "Oh! Do you have a newborn at home?!?" It took all my strength not to burst into tears and have a massive meltdown right there in the checkout line. I simply told her "No, my friend just had a baby," and I left it at that. I couldn't get out of the store fast enough, it hurt so bad to hear those words. I should have you, I should be buying diapers in anticipation of your arrival but instead I cry every night and look at your urn and pictures of the day you were born. It just seems so cruel, sometimes I wish I could wear a shirt that says "My baby died and my life is pretty much shit right now. Please don't say anything that might upset me."
I dropped Addison off at home with daddy, children arent allowed in the hospital unless they are the brother or sister of the newborn. Brother or Sister of the Newborn...Signs saying that were everywhere once I got to the hospital, I just wanted to tear them down and shout from the rooftops that Addison was supposed to be a big sister, my son is supposed to be here with ME! I was let into the OB department, I walked past all of the L&D rooms and tears welled in my eyes, from there on I just kept my head down until I found Ashley's room. I knocked and walked in to find her snuggling with Ryker. It took a lot of energy to keep my composure but I was able to give her a big hug and congratulations. I wasn't sure how I would feel about seeing and holding baby Ryker but once he was in my arms I never wanted to let him go. It was so wonderful to feel life again, something so innocent and beautiful that was sent straight from God. I felt like he was the closest thing to heaven that I have held since the last time I kissed you goodbye. I asked him if he knew you and gave you a big hug for me before he was born into this world, I think he did.
My heart does break knowing that you boys would have been so close but having the opportunity to help in raising and loving another little boy that was planned for and so dearly loved just as you were, it makes my heart happy.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I will carry you

There were photographs i wanted to take
Things i wanted to show you
Sing sweet lullabies wipe your teary eyes
Who could love you like this?people say that i am brave but i`m not
Truth is i`m barely hanging on
But there`s a greater story
Written long before me
Because he loves you like this

So i will carry you
While your heart beats here
Long beyond the empty cradle
Through the coming years
I will carry you
All my life
And i will praise the one who`s chosen me
To carry you

Such a short time
Such a long road
All this madness
But i know
That the silence
Has brought me to his voice
And he says

I`ve shown her photographs of time beginning
Walked her through the parted seas
Angel lullabies no more teary eyes
Who could love her like this?

I will carry you
While your heart beats here
Long beyond the empty cradle
Through the coming years
I will carry you
All your life
And i will praise the one who`s chosen me
To carry you

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Shared pain

So many times I feel so alone in all this, like no one will ever understand what pain my heart feels. The reality is that there is a whole network of baby lost mommys who have been there and have lost babies too. All have their own story and the saddest part is knowing that each involves a little baby just like you who never experienced life on earth or felt the warmth of the sun on their skin. I hurt knowing that all of these other mothers hurt just as I do and we all have lost a piece of who we are the day we lost our babies.
I dont want you to think that you are what makes mommy sad. I just miss you and wish that I could have had more time with you, taught you to throw a ball and see you off to your first day of school. Most of the memories I have of you are of the sad days in which we learned you had died and the even harder ones that have followed. Knowing that you are watching over me and your daddy makes my heart smile though. Each day I try to remember something happy about you, my little man. Your life was a gift to us and I am so thankful that God trusted us with you for those 17 weeks we had together.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

What I Hate The Most

I wrote an email to your daddy 2 weeks after we lost you expressing all the things that tear me apart with regards to losing you. I was looking back at it just now and some things have gotten less hard while others are just as hard if not worse...


I hate that I still catch myself rubbing my belly sometimes.

I hate that everyone I seem to know is pregnant and due around Dash's due date.

I hate that I am getting baby shower invitations in the mail for friends babies when I should be sending out invites for MY baby.

I hate that I still hope this is all just a bad dream.

I hate that I catch myself still thinking he "kicked" then I realize he's gone.

I hate that people move on but I feel I never will.

I hate the awkward smiles and hugs from people who dont know what to say or do.

I hate knowing that everyone feels like they have to walk on eggshells around me.

I hate that I feel ok one day and am completely debilitated the next.

I hate that I'm bleeding.

I hate that it's only been 2 weeks and I feel like I'm already starting to forget his face.

I hate that I couldn't protect him.

I hate that my husband lost his son, I feel responsible.

I hate that we finally told everyone of our pregnancy and not more than 3 weeks later he died.

I hate that the Dr who delivered him seemed to have no feelings.

I hate that no one can make it all better.

I hate that my daughter sees me cry.

I hate that it's all about how I am doing when it's our whole family grieving.

I hate that I want to be pregnant again and at the same time never want to be pregnant again.

I hate that my heart will never feel whole again.

I hate that in future pregnancy I wont rest easy until I have a healthy baby in my arms.

I hate when people say "I know how you feel!"

I hate that I dont have my baby to hold and love and nurse and grow with.


Now, almost 5 weeks after your birth, I have a few more things to add to the list...

I hate hearing my pregnant friends complain about how tired, sick, whatever they are. I would take that any day over life without you.

I hate that we will never know what happened to you.

I hate that me going out and smiling=other people thinking everything is fine now. Things are FAR from fine.

I hate that part of the reason we bought our minivan was to have enough room for you. Your seat still sits empty.

I hate that every week that goes by I am one day further from the last time I saw you and one day closer to your due date.

I hate that you aren't here with me.


I love you Dash, so much.