Wednesday, April 27, 2011

They say absence makes the heart grow fonder...

     Well, I say bullshit.  In 8 months my heart hasn't grown fonder.  Instead the hole in my heart feels as though its gotten larger.  Some days I can't feel the ache as much as others, but it is always there.  I can't believe its been 8 months;  8 long months since I last held my daughter and stared into her beautiful face; 8 months since I experienced the best feeling in the world immediately followed by the worst.  Eight long months since she died and I had to say goodbye.
     My heart will never be whole again.  I've come to accept that fact and it sucks.  I can't imagine how multiple loss momma's feel.  Recently, yet another BLM lost her rainbow.  I cried when I read her blog.  Its just not fair.  People say there is a reason for everything, but I say bullshit again.  Somethings happen for no reason.  Why is it that women have to say goodbye to their children?  Its not the natural order of life; its just not right.  Melissa, I'm so sorry you lost baby JJ.  You deserve so much happiness, I wish I could give it to you.  Know that you and you family are in my thoughts.

Dear Addie B,
     It's your 8 month birthday...what can I say that I haven't said so many times before.  I think about you all the time.  I wonder what you would be like today.  I wonder what you would be doing.  I miss you so much...I can't say that enough.  I dreamed about you again last night.  Makes me miss you even more, but I love those dreams.  I wish they were real life.  I can't believe you'll be a year old in just 4 months...doesn't seem right.  Well, this whole situation isn't right.  I should be writing letters to you that will be stowed away until your wedding day.  Instead, I write letters for me.  Letters that I can read when I want to reminisce.  Its just not fair.
     I love you so very much little girl.  I wish you were here.
Lots of love,

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

A small victory and feelings of defeat...

   What a weekend!  I don't think I stopped moving until I went to bed Sunday night.  I have so many blogs to read its not funny!  But I'll catch up eventually.  Saturday was as full of outdoor work as possible.  We've gotten a lot of rain lately, so everything is soggy, but Saturday gave us a bit of a break.  Haven't gotten to finish Addie's perennial garden yet, but soon, hopefully!  I need to plant the bulbs soon so they will bloom this year.  Sunday my husband and I went to his sister's house for Easter.  She lives about 3 hours away so we couldn't stay too long.  I finally, officially introduced myself to my newest nephew, who is 2 months old today.  That was my hold Nick, and I did.  Without tears!  I'm so glad I did because what a cutie!  And my husband, who is such a natural I must say, held him as well.  Made my heart ache to see how well he did with Nick.  Come on rainbow baby, you need to make an appearance in the form of a positive test very soon!  Here's a few pics:

Sweet Nicholas Xavier meets Aunt Mary for the first time

Such a natural...

Sleepy Nick

The look on my hubby's face just breaks my heart.
 When will it be our turn?
 I have to say, it was nice to hold a baby in my arms.  I hope, one day soon, to hold my own child like this.

    Monday brought a return to work.  I really hate Mondays.  They are so busy, and yesterday was no exception.  I guess I should explain what I do.  I am a supervisor for a call center that takes calls for a large national cemetery.  We are pretty new, started from the ground up, to help the cemetery with its call volume.  Yesterday, a coworker, who happened to be a friend long before we started working together, had a rough call.  She had an upset caller who wanted reassurance from someone that their issue would be taken seriously.  Well, the call had to deal with a child who had died.  Normally, I can separate my emotions from my job.  But not today.  The minute she told me about the call my heart started pounding, tears filled my eyes and I couldn't talk.   My friend, not thinking about what she had said until after she said it.  I took a deep breath and said, "I'm sorry, but I can't take this call."  She immediately started apologizing, knowing she had upset me.  I quickly asked her to try another supervisor directly at the cemetery and hung up the phone.  I had to walk away...I got myself under control pretty quickly, but I was upset at myself for not being able to take over that call.  And, I was upset because I knew it had upset her too.  She didn't do it on purpose, she just didn't think about it.  It wasn't her fault at all.  I've tried very hard to remain professional, regardless of what I face.  This isn't the first instance that I have had to deal with a child that has died...I had a call today about a stillborn and I was fine.  I don't know what it was about this just got to me, caught me off guard.  After I was under control, I went back to my desk and called her.  She was in tears on the phone and I felt so bad.  I want people to realize that I don't expect them to remember everything, I don't want them to feel that they have to walk on eggshells around me, because they don't.  I felt I had failed my friend that day by not being able to do my job.  But, I can say this...first time in almost 6 months that I've had an issue at work.  That's pretty darn good odds.  But, I've come to expect that it will happen, and there's not a damn thing I can do to stop it.

Friday, April 22, 2011

My first blog award...and a much needed visit.

     So, I was astonished to receive a Stylish Blogger award from New Year Mum.  I started this blog as a way to express my feelings.  I never thought it would reach so many people, or that I would have "met" so many wonderful mommas!  So, thank you for the award! 

    As a recipient of this award, I am expected to participate in a few "rules" which I do not mind at all.  So, here they are:

1.  Link back to the person who gave you the award.
          I began reading New Year Mum's blog not long after I began my own.  I was inspired by her story of Gabrielle and her journey both before and after the loss of her daughter.  She is one of the most generous BLM's I have met.  If you haven't, take a moment and swing by her blog, A Year On...Our New Beginning (hopefully) to read more about her.

2.  Tell 7 things about yourself.
**I married my best friend.  We've been through so much crap together, our life should be a soap opera!  His loyalty has never waivered and for that, I am thankful.
**My passion lies in cooking and photography.  If I could, I would own a bakery/photo studio business.   Don't ask me how that would work because I have no idea...its just a dream!
**We LOVE to travel.  We often take long car rides just because.  Of course with gas being so expensive, we haven't done a trip recently, but I hope that changes soon. 
**Loving to travel and loving photography, its not a surprise that I love to scrapbook.  I just wish I had more time to do it.  I am about 4 vacations behind on doing books.  Oops.  I'll catch up one day.
**As much as I miss her, the best day of my life is still meeting my daughter for the first time.  Yes, it is also the worst day of my life, but I will never forget that sweet face.  My mom pointed out, no too long ago, that she was definitely my kid...she even had my crooked pinkies.  Only a grammy would notice those things.  I love those crooked little pinkies!  And I miss them so much!

**I was born in California, and will always be a southern Cali girl, but my heart is here in the East Coast.  I hate snow, but my life is here and always will be.
**My friends and family mean the world to me.  I don't know where I would be without them. 

3.  Award other bloggers.  So the Stylish Blogger award is supposed to be given to 10-15 blogs that I feel deserve the award.  I will try not to repeat the award, since New Year Mum and I read many of the same, but I'm sure I will duplicate a few.  Simply because I feel these women deserve this award, just like New Year Mum did.  So, here are the winners I've chosen:

**Melissa from Laken's Bears
**Deanna from Forever Our Angel
**Franchesca from Small Bird Studios and My Heart Song
**Rhiannon from For the Love of Harper
**Molly from Everything Ebach
**Missy from Mommy's Sunshine
**Tabatha from Savanna's Wings
**Tiffany from The Broken Road

I think that's 15.  Oops, that's 16.  Oh well.  Each of these women deserve so much more than just a blog award.  I feel as though I know each one, and they know me as well.  many of these women have started projects to benefit baby lost families.  Wonderful women, sad that we had to meet this way.

4.  Notify the winners.  Which I will do soon!

Thank you again to everyone who takes the time to read my blog.  You all deserve this award!


     Now, as my title hints at, I recently visited with 2 very good friends.  These friends are the same women I was pregnant with last summer.  The 3 of us shared so much last year; advice, baby clothes, hopes, everything for our children.  They are some of my closest friends.  Since leaving my old job, I haven't gotten a chance to see them much.  Over the past few weeks I have gotten to spend time with each of them separately.  And, their babies.  I love those kids...I know Addie would have been great friends with both of them, just like I am with their mommys.  It hurt a little to be around them without Addie there, but I relished spending time with them.  I have been in such a funk took some time with Aaron yesterday to pull me out of it.  I'm still kind of down, but, really, who can resist this face (I hope his momma doesn't mind I posted this...I'll ask her soon!).
And the same goes for Miss Layla when I saw her and her mommy a few weeks ago.  Sometimes you just can't help but smile.  I'm so glad these women have stuck by me.  There have been many people who don't talk to me anymore, some of my family included.  But I'm lucky to have wonderful people in my life, like Dianna and Jessica, and a few others.  I know I'm not the easiest person to be around...but my friends had a choice to stay or go.  I now know who my true friends are.  Thank you.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Thanks Melissa

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Hope Found and Lost...Small Miracles Blog Hop

***Please be warned, this may not be an uplifting post.  If you are not having a good day, please don't continue reading.  I don't want to make a bad day worse.***

     From the very beginning, she was my small miracle.  I don't share this very often, but it took us a very long time to concieve her.  We had stopped using any kind of birth control about 3 years prior to getting pregnant.  I didn't want to face the fact that there might be a reason we hadn't gotten pregnant yet.  I didn't want to have to go through fertility testing and treatments.  I began to wonder if we were meant to be parents.  Hope came in the form of a positive pregnancy test on January 5, 2010.  I never realized just how much I wanted to be a mom until I found out I was pregnant with her.  I knew I wanted to have children, but I didn't know how much until that moment.  And so began our journey.  There were so many questions this pregnancy answered.  After my car accident, the doctors weren't sure if I would be able to carry to term or give birth.  The injuries I sustained were enough to make doctors question my ability, but they did not warn me against it.  Hope continued to build throughout my pregnancy.  I learned that I could handle exercise and the extra weight.  I learned that I could handle labor...I learned that I could handle a c-section.  But, I also learned how quickly hope could be lost. 

     In the blink of an eye, any hope she had given me was ripped away.  Now my mind is filled with so many questions.  Were we even meant to be parents?  Will I be able to get pregnant again?  Should we even try?  If we do, what if we lose another baby?  What if the baby has to be born early?  Are we prepared to deal with this?  Can I handle the stress of a pregnancy after loss?  There are so many questions weighing on my mind.  Where did my hope go? 

     Along this journey, I have found little glimmers.  Every time I see a butterfly, I think of her.  Every time I work on her garden, I feel as though she is there with me.  Every time I hug her blanket, I feel close to her.  But hope has been hard to find.  Recently, I feel as though I am going back to my life just after I lost her.  The sadness has been overwhelming some days.  I can't think of anything in particular that has caused this relapse.  Maybe its Mother's Day looming on the horizon.  I was looking forward to my first Mother's Day; the possibility of finding a gorgeous piece of Mom jewelry that shows all of our birthstones together; hugging my chubby (yes, I'm sure she would be chubby) daughter and being thankful that she was here with me; finally feeling like a "grown up" by being a mom.  I don't know.  I wish I knew what was causing this funk lately.

     But, the imortant thing is that these glimmers do exist.  Not only those, but also the glimmers that exist with in my husband and my family.  As gloomy as I may be, they try.... They may not be successful, but they try.  And I am so thankful for that.  I know these posts are supposed to be uplifting, but sometimes hope is so hard to find.  Yet, miracles do exist and she, IS, mine small miracle.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

My Happy list...and the first butterfly of the season.

   Its that time again...yeah I know, I'm a day late...oops.  But, you'll see why in my list!

1.  Boater's license.  P and I spent all day yesterday at a boater's safety course and have earned our boater's license.  Yeah, I know...big deal.  But it is for us.  My family spends pretty much all summer out on the Potomac River.  We all have campers and land (or memberships to private clubs on the river), plus some of us have boats.  Unfortunately, licenses are required for people who were born after 1972.  So we finally fulfilled that requirement.  Now, we just need to buy a boat.  In the mean time, my mom and aunt and uncle all have a boat.  It was a long day, but well worth it.  Means a lot of fun this coming summer

2.  Addie's butterfly release.  If you haven't visited Triplet Butterfly Wings, please do.  Rachel raises and releases monarch butterflies in memory of your child.  The is a project she created in memory of her triplets who were born too early and passed away.  These are pictures from Addie's release.

3.  Handmade Scrapbook tag.  Thank you to Sarita at One Perfect Rose for offering to make scrapbook tags for BLMs.  She is offering them for free for the Easter holiday.  I opened mine a few days ago and have to say it brightened my day.  It wasn't the greatest day to begin with, so the tag certainly helped cheer me up.  Thank you so much Sarita, it is beautiful...perfect for Addie!

4.  My team for the March of Dimes.  We are almost to our goal and its wonderful!  I'm so happy so many people have joined my team.  Its wonderful to have so much support.  Addie's memory continues to live on.  Here are the team tshirts I've designed.

5.  Addie's garden.  I added some more flowers to the annuals garden today.  And we started building the raised bed for her perennial garden.  It should be finished soon.  :)

6.  Last, but certainly not least, is my little family.  I don't know what I would do without my husband.  Probably stay in a funk all day.  He tries his best to cheer me up, but knows when I just need to be left alone.  And, there is nothing like the unconditional love from a dog.  I love both these boys, more than my own life.  Here's a few pics from this week.

So that's my happy list.  Again, its very simple but keeps me going.  And, now, as the title says, I did see the first butterfly of the season.  We have a butterfly bush in our back yard.  I had been weeding my flower bed and turned my head to see a solitary butterfly sitting on the bush.  She fluttered her wings and took off, landing next to my hand.  She stayed for a moment, then took off again, flying around the dog, teasing him, making him chase her.  She then flew away.  I have to say, this little butterfly brought tears to my eyes.  As crazy as it sounds, I cried when I saw her.  I think I'm going nuts.  But I'm glad she came to visit.  I just wish she would have stayed longer.  I'm sure we'll see her again.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

One year ago...

Wow, I just realized that it was one year ago yesterday that we found out Addie was a girl!  I remember anxiously waiting for the ultrasound tech to finish taking her measurements and tell us the sex, but Addie wasn't cooperating.  She was so active at this point.  Very much a squirmy little baby.  The ultrasound tech said she thought she knew what the baby was but wanted to wait for the doctor to confirm it.  So, when Dr McCoy came in, she ran the probe over my belly, making sure everything was looking okay and then shut the machine off.  She handed me a towel and turned to ask us if we had any questions.  P said "Yes, what about the sex?"  Dr McCoy had looked confused and said, "What about it...are you not able to have..." and trailed off.  She kind of paused and then said "Oh, you mean the sex of the baby!  Oops, sorry!  Its a girl!"

I remember feeling ecstatic.  I didn't really care what we were having, as long as it was healthy, but I was happy the baby was a girl.  I thought she was a boy...I was SURE of it, boy was I wrong.  She turned out to be one of the most beautiful little girls I have ever seen in my entire life.  And, if my dreams are any indication of what she would look like today, she would be a stunner.  In my dreams I picture a little girl with curly strawberry blond hair, bright blue eyes and a dimple in her left cheek.  Miss you sweet girl!

A poem for all the BLDs...and especially my own husband.

I came across this poem on another blog.  Have to say it is beautiful.  It describes my husband perfectly.  Shell posted it on her blog.  Thanks for sharing Shell.

~~ A poem for Fathers ~~

It must be very difficult
To be a man in grief,
Since "men don't cry"
and "men are strong"
No tears can bring relief.

It must be very difficult
To stand up to the test,
And field the calls and visitors
So she can get some rest.

They always ask if she's all right
And what she's going through.
But seldom take his hand and ask,
"My friend, but how are you?"

He hears her crying in the night
And thinks his heart will break.
He dries her tears and comforts her,
But "stays strong" for her sake.

It must be very difficult
To start each day anew.
And try to be so very brave-
He lost his baby too.

by Eileen Knight Hagemeister

He has been my rock through everything.  He has stood by my side through it all, never wavering.  I am lucky to have such a strong man in my life...but his strength is at what cost?  I wonder how much he keeps from me, afraid he will hurt me if he talks to me about it.  Despite the many times I've told him I want him to talk to me about how he feels, I wonder how often he files his emotions away.  How will the stress of a new baby weigh on him when it happens.  How does the stress of trying to conceive again affect him on top of everything else?  I wonder....


Rain fits my mood today...or maybe my mood is just enhanced by the rain.  Its hard to be happy when its so dreary outside.  Just makes me miss her more.  I dreamed about her last night.  Its been awhile since I dreamed of her so it was nice to see her little face.  I've actually missed those dreams.  As much as it hurts to see her, I still look forward to it.  I still wish I could touch her though.  Well, if I'm wishing for things, I might as well wish for her to be HERE and not just in my dreams.  But, I digress....My dreams are always the same, but she is always different.  She was wearing a purple dress, one very similar to something I saw in Toys R Us a few weeks ago.  I had wanted to buy it then, but didn't have a reason too.  Its so funny what my mind does.  But it was nice to see her face.  I hope she likes her gardens!

I am going to try to cheer up.  Hopefully the rain will stop soon.  It amazes me how much the weather can affect my emotions.  Especially now...

Sunday, April 10, 2011

A garden of memories

Many of you know I have been working on gardens to memorialize Miss Addie.  Well, I got a good start on one today.  I still need some more purple, though!  Here's a few pics:

Lavender African daisy

Yellow dahlias that Daddy picked out.

African daisy

Garden for my sweet little girl.  Miss you Addie B!

This garden is strictly for annuals and will change every year.  The other garden will be full of perennials, most of which attract butterflies.  I'm very excited to have gotten such a good start today!  Yay for gorgeous weather!  The only thing that would make this better...having Addie next to me as I was digging in the dirt.  Missing you always baby girl!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Its that time again...Happy list Saturday

     Thank goodness for Natasha.  I'm so glad she came up with this because it forces us to look for the positive.  Some days I find it very difficult...others not so much.  Thankfully, this week has been easier than most.  So, here goes:

1.  Spring is here!  We had our first over 80 day and I loved it!  I have always been a warm weather girl...I think it's the California blood in me (I'm originally from San Diego).

2.  Working on Addie's garden.  Along with the warm weather comes digging in the dirt.  Here's a sneak peek!

We took out all the old plants and rocky soil.

Hubs filling the garden with fresh compost/soil

Its filled and ready to be planted!

Beatiful skies  :)

3.  I am now the proud new owner of a Nikon D3100 DSLR camera.  I upgraded from my 5 year old D40x which I loved.  I'm looking forward to the beautiful weather and flowers of spring so I can get lots of practice.

4.  My husband.  As always, this man makes me happier than anyone I've ever met.  He puts in a full day of work then comes home to do more digging and landscaping.  He knows I have a lot of limitations since the accident and he does this without complaint.  He just hates it when I take his picture (see below), but he's learning to deal with it.

The look on his face says it all...  :)
 So, that's my list for the week!  I really am thankful that this was a good week.  It has been so hard for me to deal with my sadness.  I am a naturally happy person, not the type to mope around, so the grief after losing Addie has been a very eye opening experience.  Like many of us BLMs, I've had to learn how to breathe again; how to live again; how to smile again.  This list really has forced me to look for the positive in my life...and I'm so thankful I have some!

     Have a wonderful week everyone!
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