Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas In Heaven

Merry Christmas sweet Clarence.
Hopefully all of our angels are celebrating Christmas in Heaven together.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A Quick Photo


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Our Son

Clarence's baby brother, Dell Richard, entered this world on December 10th @ 1:07am. He weighed just 6lbs 6oz and was 19 1/2 inches long. As soon as I get some pictures on the computer I will proudly share.
What a sweet blessing we have this Christmas. Clarence was really looking out for us. His brother is perfect in every way, just as he was. His big sister, Kensington, just adores him, as does Brenden his older half brother.
Thank you Clarence. There will always being a space for you in our family, but having Dell it now feels more complete. I believe that is because of you. I love you!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Please Lend Your Support

I have unfortunately recently met a new mommy to an angel named Ben. Her heart is aching and she could use some of our love and support. Please stop on over and visit her here.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Wish You Were Here

A year ago today my sweet boy Clarence William entered this world silent. The tiniest of angels, he arrived @ 5:24 am only 10.2 ounces and 10 inches long. Happy Birthday sweet boy. You have changed our lives forever! We love and miss you everyday!

Friday, November 13, 2009

36 weeks 5 days

That's how far along I was when I gave birth to Kensington.
I will be 36 week and 5 days pregnant with this baby on November 28th... the day, last year, my sweet boy Clarence came into this world without a sound. Kind of ironic I think. It has me worried.
Please let this baby stay put in my womb longer than that. This seems to be the only thing I can think about lately. I want November 28th for Clarence. I want November for Clarence.
Please let December be for this baby.
PLEASE

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Bittersweet

Tonight I am trying to get some things ready for the new baby on the way. In doing this I ran across a few things that were purchased for Clarence. A little preemie outfit that my mother bought, when we didn't know what to expect when he was delivered and I didn't want him to be naked. As tiny as it is it would've completely engulf him. A blanket my mother bought just weeks before he died. A little bib that says "I'm The Little Brother" on it and has dinosaurs, part of my first and only purchase for my son.
I've thought about it and thought about it. What to do with this stuff. Up until now it has been neatly tucked away with other mementos of his. Tonight, with the help of Chad, I decided it would be OK to put them in the wash with this baby's clothes. Chad says he thinks it would be OK with Clarence for his little brother to have these things.
Isn't that what big brothers do anyhow? Hand down their clothes and toys and friendship to their little brothers? This will be the one and only time Clarence is able to do that. It will bring a smile to my mouth and a tear to my eye every time I see this little baby wearing that bib or sleeper, or snuggling that blanket. I'll be sad that he is gone, but also so happy he is here. A part of our family still and always.
So bittersweet.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Retracing Time

This time last year. That is a phrase I hear in my head a lot lately. Everyday seems to have a memory attached to it from my pregnancy with Clarence. My husband's birthday for example. We went to the same restaurant as last year. Of course I couldn't help but think about "this time last year" when we followed dinner with a trip to the costume store for Halloween. How when I stood up out of the car, I had my biggest gush of blood yet. I had to walk to the bathroom in Target, trying to act and walk normal, while blood was pouring out of me. Then I had to try and act normal while my stepson tried to pick out a Halloween costume.
Thanksgiving is fast approaching. I have no idea how I want to spend it this year. It was on Thanksgiving day last year that I tried for hours to find my baby's heartbeat on the Doppler. I had to sit through the dinner, trying to be OK, wondering if my baby was dead. I am terrified what feelings will be stirred this year when I sit @ the table to eat my turkey. Do I want my family around? Or will that just make it more like "this time last year"? Maybe it should just be Chad, I and the kids? Or will that feel too empty? Maybe we should go to a friends? The offer has been put out there.
On top of all of this, as of this Friday my husband is without a job. Cut backs @ work. Sure he has some irons in the fire as far as other opportunities. Sure he gets a severance package. That doesn't stop me from stressing out over it all. Could the timing be any worse? Not that it is ever a good time to lose a job. But seriously? I am trying so hard to enjoy this pregnancy, as it may be my last, but feeling tired and stressed all the time doesn't help. I want to make these last weeks with my daughter special... she won't be my only (live) child for much longer. I feel like this baby is gonna come before I am ready. I wish I could turn back the clock some. I feel like I am in a pit and keep trying to dig my way out, only to have the dirt keep falling back down to cover me. I'm scratching for the surface trying to be a healthy, happy, functional adult.... but I usually end up feeling knocked down and like a child.
It's hard. Enjoy this pregnancy, be happy for my daughter, deal with the stress of life, struggle with my depression... and still take time to remember "this time last year". Take time to mourn the pregnancy and the son that I lost.
Sometimes I want to give in and just let the dirt win.

Monday, October 19, 2009

30 Weeks Pregnant

Just wanted to share some pictures we took last week. I actually had my hair and makeup done and was wearing something other than a t-shirt and yoga pants so we figured we'd take advantage!





Tuesday, October 13, 2009

October 15th

Any other Mother that has lost a baby will probably already know this. In case someone is reading who hasn't lost a baby and wants to remember these little lives that have touched us so much, please light a candle on October 15th @ 7pm.

Lost

I lost my cat. Wednesday evening we let her out for a bit...and I completely forgot about her. My husband assumed I brought her in when he locked up for the night. She normally hangs out in the basement most of the day and comes out @ night. So when I didn't see her on Thursday, I didn't think anything of it. Then Thursday night we were out celebrating our anniversary. We were gone most of Saturday and out of town Sunday and Monday. This morning I asked Chad if he had seen the cat recently. He said "No" and that is when it hit me. What kind of person loses their cat and doesn't realize it for a week! I am so upset and don't know what to do. The last time we let her out and didn't bring her in until late she was attacked by either a raccoon or another cat. Now it has been a whole week! She is 12 and has her front paws declawed. I just picture her lying dead somewhere. I picture her sitting on our porch wondering why no one would let her in. I picture her @ the Humane Society being euthanized.
What kind of person am I? She was my very first baby and I LOST her. Just put her outside one night and never let her back in. I feel so ashamed and so guilty and mostly so so so sorry. I pray maybe by some miracle someone kept her and is giving her the kind of attention she deserves. My poor, poor Dottie

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Honest Scrap

Thank you Leila's mommy for nominating me! Sorry it has taken me so long to post this!



Here are the rules:


1. Choose a minimum of 7 blogs who you find brilliant in content or design.


2. Show the 7 winners’ names and links on your blog, and leave a comment (on their blog) informing them that they have won the Honest Scrap award.


3. Tell us 7 honest things about yourself.


These are the blogs I am nominating. I'm sure some of you may have been nominated before. If so, it must be a compliment!









Seven honest things about me. Hmm... This may be tough.
1. I have 2 dogs and a cat that I feel don't get nearly enough attention since my daughter was born. I feel tremendously guilty for this. I try to remind myself that they are loved, sheltered, fed and happy and that there are many animals out there that aren't.
2. I often call my daughter just "Kensi" in public b/c I love her full name so much (Kensington) and I am afraid someone will hear it and use it someday. It is a very unique name and I don't want it to become the next "Emma". As if I could single-handedly prevent that! LOL
3. My daughter eats breakfast in front of the TV every morning. It allows Mommy time to wake up... and surf the net.
4. I struggled with infertility. I have PCOS. Kensington came as a "Christmas Miracle" while we were on a break waiting to start injectibles. I got a surprise call from the nurse not to take the first injection that night b/c I was pregnant. Her estimated conception date? Christmas Eve or Christmas Day!
5. I often feel guilty that my struggle with PCOS has been mild compared to so many wonderful women I know. My problem is corrected by treating the underlying problem of insulin resistance, for others it is not so easy. My heart breaks for these women. Many of them close friends.
6. I am pretty boring I think. I love to read, watch TV. I do better in small groups of people. Actually one on one. I kinda sink into the background in bigger groups of people.
7. I have ADD. I get very overwhelmed @ times and have no idea how to organize myself. Consequently, if I have a ton of stuff that needs to be done...well.... I either flip out or nothing gets done at all. I'm one of those people that start to clean in one room (kitchen) and go to return something somewhere else (bedroom) and then start cleaning that room...until I find something that belongs somewhere else! LOL! I am getting better. I have recognized ways to "talk" myself out of being so overwhelmed, but it is definitely a continuing struggle.
Well, there you go. Seven honest scraps about me. I guess I did them more like "confessions". I would love it if when you do your "Honest Scrap" you leave me a link in one of my comments so I can read yours too. No pressure. Have fun. Take your time. I look forward to learning little tidbits about everyone!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Unexpected Suprise

I am currently 27 weeks pregnant. Officially in the 3rd trimester. We went to the MFM for an u/s on Monday and got some great pictures. This first one made me a little sad. This pose is the same way we last saw our Clarence on u/s. His feet up above his head, comfortable for him I guess. And when we went to the hospital the next day and learned his heart had stopped beating....well, he was still in that position. Seeing this baby like that tugged on my heart strings a bit, as I am sure you can imagine.Love the little foot print.
And this looks to me to be a strong soccer leg! No wonder I feel those strong kicks!



But the best picture? This one here. I didn't even know they could do a 3D u/s there. The u/s tech. just said, lets see if we can get some 3D pics and before I could reply (I have never had a desire for one b/c I feel it is like peeking @ your presents before Christmas) she had the first picture up! Needless to say, I was very suprised and VERY happy we got it. AND it was free! I think he is rather handsome. How 'bout you?





Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Shit

I had an eye exam today. I love the doctor I go to see. He is very friendly and is always happy to talk about his grand kids and asks many questions about my family. I almost made it though the appointment without mentioning Clarence. In the end though, as he was comparing my exam from today to last year, he must have saw where he made a note that I had been pregnant. He kinda stumbled for a minute and then seem confused. And then, God love him, he said "Did you lose one?" Plain and simple, not awkward, not apologetic, just matter of fact. He wasn't afraid of "reminding me" or "hurting my feelings". Maybe that would make some people mad that he asked so nonchalant like that. But it was OK with me. Others would have stumbled, been confused and then ignored the "elephant in the room". He didn't. We even talked about my pregnancy hormones. He made the comment (b/c we were talking about the meds I take) that the child bearing years wreck havoc on your hormones but once you are done having kids they seem to level out and you get some relief. "That shit does go away" he said. I had to laugh. My "shit" has been with me long before pregnancy, but I pray he is right and that it has just been exacerbated these last few years. I would love for my "shit" to go away or @ the very least even out and tame down! I bet Chad would be happy with that too ;)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Why?

How does this happen? How is this fair? My heart is breaking for this couple right now, as they mourn the loss of yet another child. A third child. A son named Jet. I don't even know them, but my heart feels so much pain. Thinking of you, Mirne and Craig, and keeping you and your sweet children in my prayers.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

9 Months & A Birthday

As of the 28th it has been nine months since we said goodbye to our sweet boy. I made a mental note of it @ the beginning of the week, that the day was approaching. It wasn't until I crawled into bed on the evening of the 28th that I realized what day it was. It had been a horribly emotional day. Overwhelmed, stressed, on edge and just worn out. A lot of that had to do with my daughters birthday party coming up the next day. And then that brought about another thought. At Kensi's party last year I was newly pregnant with Clarence and we hadn't told our friends and family yet. It was so exciting b/c after the cake and ice cream we changed her into an outfit that said "I'm the Big sister" and waited for everyone to notice. What sweet memories. I look back @ those pictures from her party, when he was safely snuggled inside of me and smile. Then I want to cry. Because that was the innocent me. The innocent us. So unaware of the storm ahead of us. That just in a few months our world would split down the middle and we would go tumbling through the crack.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Emotional Mess

I have been an emotional mess this pregnancy. Not necessarily for the reasons you would think. Not about losing Clarence. Not about being scared to lose this baby. At least not overwhelmingly so. Just sad, tired and ..... I don't know what else. Maybe subconsciously it is about Clarence and fear? I don't know. I just wish it would get better. I wanna enjoy these last months of Mommy hood with my daughter as an only (live) child.

Monday, August 10, 2009

I Don't Know What To Say

To my babylost momma friends,
I read your blogs. They move me and make me think. They help me understand some of my own feelings that I can't quite put my finger on. Most of the time I don't know what to say in your comments. That bothers me. I start to write a comment and I feel it sounds superficial, so I will erase it. But I want you all to know I am there reading and supporting you. Maybe I should just write "I was here"?
I don't want you to think I am not here. That I am not listening. I am.
I just don't know what to say always.....
All my love,
Alisha

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Clarence's Teddy Bear

Here is a picture of my DD Kensington hold the Teddy Bear the hospital gave to Clarence.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

20w1d

Or read that as 20 weeks 1 day. That is how pregnant I was when we lost Clarence and that is how pregnant I am today.
We had our anatomy scan yesterday. Everything was just wonderful. Healthy and thriving, moving and posing. So different from our 20 week with Clarence. I mean he appeared to be thriving and growing just fine. Some of his measurements were a week or a few days behind, which is totally normal. But he wasn't active @ all. But because he had a strong HB, there was really no concern.
We found out we are having a boy! I think Clarence had a little something to do with that. What a little angel he is. I was worried how I would feel about another son. I am absolutely happy though....and nervous! I only know about little baby girls so far. A boy will be a whole new adventure.
A bitter sweet u/s yesterday. And a bitter sweet day today. I think Clarence was up there working his magic today to help his Mommy through the day. He's made sure his little brother in my womb has been making his presence known to Mommy all day with little kicks and thumps! What a glorious feeling.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

July 31st

I can't believe it, but it has been a year already. Not since Clarence died and was born, but since he first came into our lives. We didn't yet know it but this day in 2008 (or shortly before or after) a very special thing happened. A sperm and an egg came together and the miracle of life began. Kinda embarrassing to write about his conception...but that is the REAL beginning of his life, right? A little secret taking root in Mommy's womb.... What a beautiful day!
And what a difference that life would make.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Adorable

Someone new read my blog. They told me that my son was "adorable". How wonderful that felt to have someone say that. Someone who isn't family, isn't a "member" of this terrible club. I hardly know her in fact. That single sentence made me so happy. A lot of people don't have the courage to speak so freely. I made sure to tell her how much I truly appreciated that. I too think he is adorable!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Some Good & Some Bad

It's been awhile. I hadn't realized how long. Everything here is going well. Perfect really. Maybe I shouldn't have said that? I am 18 weeks today. I am thinking of Clarence a lot lately as I am quickly approaching the point in this pregnancy that we lost him. I was exactly 20 weeks when I got my last u/s with him. And I will be exactly 20 weeks for my next u/s with this one. This time we will be celebrating, hopefully, good, glorious news. With Clarence we received the news that there may have been further complications on the way. They suspected a Velamentous Cord Insertion, or VCI. It was never actually confirmed though b/c he passed away the next day.
I wonder if it hurt? Him dying, I mean. Did he just fall asleep and slip away? This baby is always so active when we listen with the Doppler. Clarence really wasn't. So I wonder if he was weak from all the bleeding I was experiencing. These are thoughts that are fresh to me. They have just recently occurred. I really hope he didn't suffer. Someone told me that the only thing he ever new was his mommas warmth and the coziness of my womb. I had never thought of it like that. I had always thought of it as I had failed him. It's a new way to see things I guess. It certainly is true.
Why, why, why? I still wonder why. And while I wish things were different, then I wouldn't have this sweet baby I am carrying now. I mean if Clarence had come early, maybe...but not likely. It's a weird feeling knowing the baby in your womb would not be here if the one you yearned for hadn't died. How ironic is that?
Sorry this post is just a bunch of rambling. I came on here thinking I had nothing much to say. guess I should do that more often?

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

It's Here!!

It came today! The Doppler of course. 156 bpm! I LOVE that galloping sound. *sigh* Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Big Step

We just placed our order yesterday to rent a fetal heart doppler. We had one with both Kensington and Clarence and used it daily...sometimes twice a day. I have put it off for quite some time with this pregnancy. Terrified to get it too soon and flip out and be terrified if we couldn't find the heart beat. I think part of me was putting it off too b/c of the last time we tried to listen @ home with a doppler. It was the day we learned that Clarence had died. We spent HOURS trying to find it before calling the doctor. Terrified of what I already knew was true. It's kinda of funny. Well not really, but...up until we called the doctor that day Chad was convinced we just couldn't find the heart beat, but that the baby was still alive. Just hiding somewhere or something. I was convinced the opposite. He was gone. After talking to the doctor and being told to go to L&D it switched. I felt relief, that in just a short while I would be reassured that everything was indeed OK and that Chad was right, he was just in a hard spot to hear. (Even though we had dopplered every single inch of my torso and my back, hoping for something) And once we were on the way to the hospital it became more "real" to Chad and he "knew" it wasn't going to be good news.
So, will I be scared to death to use the doppler for the first time when it arrives on my door step? Hell yes. Absolutely. I have even decided we can't listen for this baby's heart beat while I am laying in our bed, b/c that is what we used to do with Clarence. I would lay in bed and read and when I was ready to go to sleep I would call Chad up and we would listen before I turned in for the night. We listened in other areas of the house as well, but most frequently there. And of course being that on Thanksgiving Day my house was full of family...well that is were Chad and I were when we were struggling to find it that last time. A picture so clear in my mind. To imagine that day again the fear comes storming back. The sick feeling in my gut, the pounding in my chest, the shaking and anxiety. The bile in my throat. I certainly never wish to relive that again.
So, we will avoid listening in the bedroom.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

What Do You Think?

My "baby" is 22 months old. Exactly. She was 15 months old when Clarence died. She never really understood or knew that mommy was pregnant.
I have a picture of Clarence out in our room. I don't "hide" him from her. We speak of him and don't censor ourselves. Do you think that is healthy? Is that OK for her? I don't ever want to hide the fact that she has a baby brother up in Heaven.
I don't go out of my way to "show" her Clarence either. I have picked up his picture on occasion and pointed to him and said to her "baby". She has picked up his teddy bear I have next to his picture and I have let her play with it telling her it is Clarence's bear. I figure if he is spoken of naturally, that one day it will be natural for her to ask about him. Or that she will grow up knowing about him already.
What do you think?

Monday, June 22, 2009

Hey there

I have many posts twirling in my head as I lie in bed @ night. I will try my darnedest to get them in print! We just returned from vacation. I have a ton of catching up to do. Just wanted you all to know I am still here reading and supporting you. And that I appreciate your continued support as well.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A Trip To The Beach

I got a chance to get out of town for a little girls "weekend". We went to VA Beach.So of course while I was there, I had to test out writing Clarence's name in the sand.
And here is one for Clarence and his angel friend Casey. There was something very peaceful and calming that came over me while doing this.
It made me smile.



Wednesday, June 3, 2009

So Scared

I have an OB appt in the morning. They will check for the HB with a Doppler. We all know what happened the last time I had a baby in my belly and we checked for the HB with a Doppler. I am nervous as shit. Even though this pregnancy is going so well. Even though I have had no bleeding. Still....what if? I hope I sleep tonight.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

It's Been 6 Months

I would love to say it doesn't feel like it. Like it feels like just yesterday. But it doesn't. It almost feels like it happened in an alternate reality. It feels so surreal that I (Me, Alisha) was pregnant with a perfect little boy that just died in my womb. Died. I have a child that was born dead. It feels so far away. So far away. He was born (dead of course) on November, 28th. His heart stopped beating sometime on November 27th. So I have had this morbid thought in my head about how his tombstone would read? "Born 11/28/08, Died 11/27/08"? Or 11/28/08 -11/27/08? Weird isn't it?
Back to my original thought though. He just feels so far away. Further than 6 months. Further than....I don't know what. He is only going to get further and further.
In the weeks following his death, I would cry myself to sleep @ night. Sometimes clutching the teddy bear or blanket they gave him in the hospital. Always smelling him before going to bed. Taking in the aroma of the little gowns and hats that he wore.
I still haven't (and @ this point probably won't) washed them. It has been awhile since I have opened the Ziploc baggy and breathed them in. A smell that is so sweet and so sad @ the same time. I don't know what I will do when the smell fades away. It will just be another part of him further away from me.
Today I reread a post on a forum I am a member of. It was posted by my husband to inform my dear friends that our little boy had passed. My eyes swelled with tears and the tears spilled over. I know on some level I think of him everyday. Whether it be specifically him, or maybe the memory of how terrifying the pregnancy was and how more terrifying it makes THIS pregnancy. It was nice to take a moment today and really think of him and what occurred on this day 6 months ago.
So please, if you will. Take a moment and think of my sweet Clarence today. And I will smile in appreciation of how many people this little life touched.
Thank you for all your love and support.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Trying To Make Peace

My husband had a dream the other night.
When I was pregnant with Kensington, he dreamed I was pregnant with a girl and he was right. When I was pregnant with Clarence, he dreamed I was pregnant with a boy and he was right. So when he originally told me the other day that he dreamed that we were gonna have a boy this time, I figured "OK, boy it is". But further inquiry, (because let's face it, guys tend to be sparse on the details) revealed that he actually dreamed we had a little boy and he saw him as a toddler. So now I wonder if he was dreaming of the child I am carrying now or if his dream was really of Clarence and what might have been? I'd like to think his dream was of Clarence. Maybe Clarence was visiting his Daddy in his dream. Isn't that a beautiful thought? I hope that he chooses to visit me in my dreams someday. Right now though, I don't think my heart could handle it.
The wheels have been turning now and I have been trying to assess how I'd feel if indeed Tweet is a boy. Honestly? I am terrified of that. I want the experience of raising a son. I do. But somehow I feel.... I don't know. I mean he wouldn't be Clarence. That is an awful lot for another little boy to follow. I mean in my heart I know I would love him and wouldn't change a thing.... but right now it just seems like it would be so much easier if Tweet was a girl. I need to reconcile this feeling. I need to make peace with the idea that this baby could very well be a boy. And that that is OK. I need to figure this out. I don't want to be disappointed to be carrying a son. I want to be happy. I want to be @ peace with whatever God has planned for our family. I don't know how to do that. But I am working on it.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Look what the Easter Bunny brought us!

This is what we got on Easter Sunday this year. Clarence is gonna be a big brother!!Meet our wittle Easter Tweet!
These were taken yesterday 5/5/09.The HB measured 148 bpm. We are due 12/22!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Silent

I have been silent here lately. I just don't really have anything new to say or share I guess. Do I still think of Clarence? Of course. Do I still ache and hurt from his death. Yes! Everyday. But I am also finding more joy in my life everyday too. I am enjoying my daughter and watching how fast she is growing right before my eyes. I am trying to be a better homemaker and keep up with things. I am trying to get out more with Kensington.
So I may continue to be silent for awhile. It is nice to just BE. To try not to analyze so much and to just take life as it comes. That is what I am working on.
I'll still be around though....

Monday, April 20, 2009

A Day About Clarence

April 16th was a day all About Clarence. I posted in Kensington's blog about what we did.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Thank you

Does Anyone Know?
Does anyone know what today should be?
Anyone else or is it only me?
Does anyone know how great today would have been, If you would have come now, instead of then.
It seems people forget; to them it is just another day.
But for me, I just can't think of it that way.
My heart aches and I can't stop the tears.
I keep on wishing that you were still here.
Others just don't understand why, today, I mourn.
Today is a special day; the day you should have been born.
~ Author~
Heather Will
I am so blessed and lucky to be able to say the answer to this question is yes. I have had so many people reach out to me to day with kind words and gestures. Here is just one example. Thank you Barbara.
The poem above is another. Thank you Lesley for finding it and having the courage to share it with me. There are no words to describe how much it means to me. Thank you!

It's Finally Here

Today's the day. April 16th, Clarence's estimated due date. How different things could have been. I am not sad today though. At least not yet. Just grateful for my little man and the time I had with him. He forever changed me...for the better. I love you little guy!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

I Cried

I cried as I spoke to him. For the first time in awhile I shed tears for him tonight. I told him I loved him and that I was proud of him. So proud of him and happy he was a little boy. That he was perfect. I'm sure I have told him this before. In the days and weeks following his death, I am sure I spoke to him. But I don't remember it.
I will forever be haunted by the disappointment I felt when I found out I was having a little boy. I can not tell you enough how much that hurts my heart. I never want Clarence to think he wasn't good enough. He was perfect, from his head to his toes. I loved every inch of him. He was a fighter. The odds were against him. He struggled to grow and thrive while his lifeline, my placenta, bled and bled. While my body let him down... He fought.
I felt him kick for the first time when I was 15 weeks along. A big thump. There was no denying it. And I thought to myself that it was a sign. We had a fighter growing in there.
I am so thankful for his strength to fight. I am so glad I got to hold my baby boy. Tiny as ever, but still a baby. Ten fingers, ten toes, a perfect button nose. He hung on and he fought so his mommy would have a chance to hold him and see him fully formed. Perfectly formed. I am sure he would've held on longer if he could have. But his little body put up a long fight and needed to rest.
It's OK Clarence. I am proud of you.

I Don't Feel Like It

I have stuff to say. I just really don't feel like it. Hopefully I will soon.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Under The Tree

There is a wonderful special place for us Babylost Mamas to meet. Under The Tree was created by Carly. The same lovely lady who created To Write Their Names In The Sand. It was created as a place for us all to gather together and talk of our lost babies. To share what is in our hearts. To bring us all together and meet other mamas and bring new readers to their blogs. I am honored to be able to participate in this. Today will be my first meeting.









Do you have a special place in your home for your baby/ies? What is it like? Do you have any rituals that you perform in memory of your baby/ies?
I do have a little place set up in our bedroom. It is on the little dressing table that goes with our bedroom set. Here I have a framed poem "The Broken Chain" that Chad's parents got us in memory of Clarence. It has an engraved brass plate @ the bottom with Clarence's full name and date of birth. Next to that is a little glass angel Chad's mother got me for Christmas. Then I have a wooden memory box a wonderful friend and Cyster sent me to hold little mementos of Clarence dear. A molding of his foot print taken by the nurses and the teddy bear that was snuggled with him when they brought him to us in his basket. The picture you see, you will recognize @ the top of my blog. This was taken by me and is my most precious possession. Here he looks like a sweet little angel to me. Snuggled and cozy and sleeping. Peaceful. I am so thankful for this beautiful picture of my son. If I was left with only the photos the hospital staff took, I would be so disappointed. They tried so hard and were just wonderful. However, the photo's were either cold and unnatural, or extremely blurry from the poor quality of the disposable camera.

If you believe in an afterlife, do you receive signs from your baby/ies? Have you ever felt their presence? Do you find them in nature? Do they visit you in your dreams?


Something about this angel touches me. I can't quite explain it. Maybe because it is so tiny and perfect like he was? I almost feel like this angel was made with the very purpose to represent him. The blue gown, the stone so close to his birthstone, Topaz. The fact that it came from a virtual stranger, just so I would know that he was being thought of. That he would not be forgotten.
It hangs in my rear view mirror. And I am not gonna lie. I feel him with me when I am near it.
As I drive with Kensington to and from play dates or on errands, I glance back @ her in the rear view mirror. Talking to her or singing with her or even checking to see if she has fallen asleep. And when I do, I catch a glimpse of this tiny little angel dangling from the mirror and I feel him there. He is with us on our outings. Waiting in the car to hear of our adventures when we return. Giggling along as I sing out loud and dance in the car, trying to make Kensi laugh and dance with me. He is there. And I am so so grateful for that.
Do you have a special poem, song, prayer or quote in memory of your baby/ies?
The answer to this question is relatively new. Every time I visited Carly's blog I heard this beautiful song. It just grabbed my heart and made it hum. It brought tears to my eyes and made my soul and arms ache with emptiness. It is the song you hear playing now as you come to this blog. After returning to Carly's page over and over and having it touch me every time I finally figured out how to add it to my page. It is "Family" by Dar Williams. Someone I had never heard of. If you haven't heard it already, take a listen.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Ignorance Is Bliss, Right?

The other day I came across a beautiful blog called "Stepping Stones" by Emily. She wrote a post entitled "Lightening Strikes" that really struck (no pun intended) me. I was in awe of the actual statistics. According to AmericanPregnancy.org there are 6 million pregnancies every year throughout the United States. Out of those 6 million pregnancies approximately 2 million don't survive. That is 1/3 of all pregnancies!!

Then why don't we hear more about it? I mean yes, we do hear how common miscarriages are and how many women have a miscarriage and don't even realize they were pregnant. Their period was just a few days late. Please don't misunderstand me. I am not talking light of miscarriage. It is devastating in it's own right. Any pregnancy loss is a tragedy. Any pregnancy loss is painful. The potential for that child to be brought into this world will never again be. That is earth shattering no matter how far along you are in your pregnancy. Days, weeks or months. But what about all the stillbirths? Cord accidents? You rarely hear about them until you or someone close to you has been through it. I've been told what happened to Clarence was a "fluke". I have been told it is like being hit by lightening and the chances of it happening twice are minuscule. However everywhere I turn I hear of more babies dying. I spoke with a friend yesterday on Facebook who told me her cousin just lost her baby @ 38 weeks pregnant. The heartbeat wasn't there. Apparently a cord accident. It was wrapped around her neck. A "fluke". God I hate that word.

Since the death of Clarence there are people everywhere just coming out of the woodwork to tell me about this person that had a stillborn or that person who had preterm labor and lost their baby. It seems so common... yet it is never spoken of. Why aren't we told by our OB's the true statistics about pregnancy? That there truly is NO guarantee? It isn't over until the fat lady sings so to speak. Until you bring home a healthy, squealing, squirming baby in your arms.... Well you just may end up being one of those statistics.

I suppose there are many reasons they don't tell you. Can you imagine the slew of panicky pregnant women? They already have do deal with the ones who are no longer blissfully ignorant about the odds. I'm guessing they don't want to add to the hysteria they already have to deal with. Let those other lucky ladies remain blissfully ignorant. I am envious of them. I will never have that again. I loved being pregnant and can't wait to be again. But it will never be the same as it was with my daughter. I am so grateful for my wonderful pregnancy with her. My blissfully ignorant pregnancy....

Thursday, March 19, 2009

My Friend Barbara




I have made some wonderful friends here through this blog. Barbara recently reprised her love of making jewelry. It warms my heart beyond belief to picture her tirelessly and lovingly pounding letters into the metal to spell the names of our dear lost babies. Thousands of miles away we are. Yet, I will forever feel close to her and wear her work close to my heart. Thank you Barbara and congratulations on your store Tiny Moments Of Pure Joy.
P.S. Do you see Clarence's name? It is up in the top right hand corner. Beautiful, don't ya think?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

That Should Be Me

So today was a beautiful day. We were grilling outside when my neighbor came out with her daughter who is about 9 months old. I went inside to grab something and heard my husband ask her if she was pregnant. I'm thinking "What?!" Then came her answer. Yes she was 5 months pregnant. My stomach hit the floor. My heart sank. "That should be me" I thought. That was my dream. Two children so close together in age. It was hard enough dealing with PCOS trying to get pregnant the first time. The second came pretty easy and I was so grateful for that. Then I lost him. Now my dream of 2 children under 2 years apart is gone. I can't get that back. Can't get Clarence back. I feel like fate just slapped me in the face. The rational part of me knows it is not her fault. I want to be happy for her. From the outside it looks so easy for others. I can't help but wonder what I did to deserve the harder road. For all I know she doesn't have the "perfect" life that I imagine she does. I know you can't judge a book by it's cover. I don't care about her "perfect" life. I just want her perfect fertility and perfect pregnancy.

I am green with envy. Bright leprechaun green. Fitting for St. Patrick's day, huh?

Friday, March 13, 2009

Missing you

Mommy's heart is aching today sweet Clarence. I am missing you. It hurts so. I love you sweet baby boy.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Solution

I posted last month about my toe nail polish chipping away. It was polish that I had on since I was pregnant with Clarence and I was afraid for it to totally chip away. With the warmer weather this weekend I started to realize just how bad my feet looked and how much I needed to do something about it. I just couldn't bring myself to take off the polish though. So instead, I painted over it. It felt strangely liberating. Now I am not constantly looking down @ my toes and wondering what I am gonna do when it all comes off. And I didn't have to make the decision to take it off, wipe him away. It was the perfect solution I think.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Life Of Clarence Part III



Beautiful pictures of my baby boy @ 13 weeks.














This is me @ 15 weeks pregnant. So anxious to document my growing belly. These were my first belly shots for this pregnancy.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

The Only Grandson


I've been waiting for it. I knew it would happen one day. I didn't know how I would react. I think I handled it with dignity...and I hope I made everyone think twice about what was just said. It felt surreal to have it said. My husband fell right into the trap too. I am hurt by that. Pissed almost.




So I only have one nephew. I have teased him before with the statement "Tyler, you are my favorite nephew". The rebuttal always is, as expected "I'm your ONLY nephew Aunt Alisha!"




So, I know where the statement was coming from. I surely know where it was headed.




Chad (my husband), Kensi, Brenden, I and mother and father in law all piled into our van to go to dinner last night. As we were backing out of the driveway my father in law said "Brenden, you are my favorite grandson".




"His only grandson" was the reply from my husband.




"No he's not" I said.




"Yes, he is" said Chad. He looked at me confused.




"His only LIVING grandson" I said.




"Oh, right"




And that was it. Nothing else was said.




I sat in the passenger seat wanting to scream looking @ the little angle dangling from my rear view mirror. A tiny little Clarence purchased for me by a virtual stranger. Just to let me know that he is remembered. Never forgotten.




"He's right here!" I wanted to yell. "Right here!!! How can you possibly forget about him when he is right here!? Just because he isn't alive doesn't mean that he doesn't count. He counts damn it. He counts!"




But I remained silent. I know it was unintentional. It still hurt though.




A similar thing happened when my family went "home" to visit my parents a few weeks ago. My mother had a picture of Clarence up on her bureau in her dining room. She also had a picture of her and my father with Clarence and on of me and my husband with Clarence. She made the comment that she had showed my uncle those pictures a few days ago and he said that she might not want to have those up when I came to visit. That it might hurt my feelings or make me sad. Really!!!???? He couldn't have been further from the truth.




Why does everyone want to ignore the "elephant in the room"? Clarence is very real. He did exist. He did live. He can not just be forgotten or brushed under the rug. You are not sparing me my feelings by not mentioning him. What you are doing is sparing your own feelings. You use the excuse that you are sparing mine. When in actuality you don't want to deal with the difficult feelings it brings up for you to mention his name. Lets get that straight people. No more freaking excuses. Own up already. Listen to what I am saying. Ignorance is bliss for only so long. Then it is just stupidity and selfishness.




A lot more came out just now than I intended to type.




I feel good.




Monday, March 2, 2009

Sad

I am sad today. That is it really. Nothing else.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

3 Months

The title really says it all. Today is 3 months to the day of giving birth to my sleeping Clarence. I don't know how I feel today. It's ONLY been 3 months? It feels like an eternity. It has ALREADY been three months? It feels like just yesterday. Those are the two extremes I go between. Today it is the "it feels like any eternity". I feel that way most of the time now I think. It feels so distant and surreal.
I spoke to an ex co-worker on the phone yesterday. She lost her daughter in her 23rd week to preterm labor. This was about 6 years ago. She was born breathing and lived a very short time. She was telling me how @ that particular hospital @ that particular time they didn't do anything for a baby born before 24 weeks. They couldn't I guess. So she had to hold her daughter and watch her die and they could do nothing to save or help her. I can't imagine that torment. I mean she was DAYS away from 24 weeks!! In the end though, she feels that maybe it was best it wasn't her decision to decided if to do something and how much to do. Seriously. Where do you draw that line? She feels now that maybe it was best left up to God. Still though, it is heart wrenching. My immediate thought is "I can't imagine that feeling of utter helplessness." I recognize now though that I have experienced that. I realize that although her situation was completely different from mine it was also the same. My helplessness just came@ a different point. I know some of you in DBL have experienced what she has and my heart just breaks for you.
It was helpful to talk with her though. To be able to discuss with someone IRL all of the feelings that go along with losing your baby was very validating. To hear those emotions in someone else's voice was moving. I don't know why I waited so long to call her. I guess I just had to be ready. She was sweet and understood it had to happen in my own time. So she offered a card and her number and waited. I clung to her card and number like a life line. I panicked when I thought I didn't know where it was. I am forever grateful to her for reaching out to me like that.
And on that note, I am so grateful to all of you who reach out to me through commenting on this blog. I love to read your blogs and will try to do better in the future about leaving comments on yours. I am realizing that even if someone doesn't know what to say, just to see them write "I am sorry" or "Hugs" lets me know that they empathize with me and that they are here, reading along. I am not alone.
Thank you, thank you , thank you.

Friday, February 27, 2009

I Will Never

I will never get to rock my baby to sleep.

I will never get to whisper I love you into his ear and have him hear me.

I will never hear my sweet baby's cry....or his laughter.

I will never get to give my baby his first bath.

I will never get to breast feed my baby.

I will never get to see him crawl or take his first steps.

I will never hear him say "mommy".

I will never brush his hair or clip his nails.

I will never be able to give my baby a massage.

I will never be able to buy those cute little boy clothes I see when I go shopping.

I will never see his eyes.

I will never feel his hand grasp my finger.

I will never see him open a Christmas gift.

I will never sing him "Happy Birthday".

I will never watch him hunt for Easter eggs.

I will never teach him to ride a bike.

I will never send him off for his first day of school.

There will always be someone missing from our family photos.

There will always be someone missing from our dinner table.

There is a piece of my heart that is gone.



Forever.



Fuck.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Window To My Soul


I was browsing DBL when I came across this blog entry by Niobe. I thought it was a really neat idea and I wanted to join in the fun. So here it is. These are my eyes. Well, one of them @ least. I'm not sure what color my eyes are. Is that funny? I've always said Blue. They have Gold around the pupil and sometimes look Green depending on what I wear. So does that make them Hazel? Hmmm.... What do you think?
*Edit to add* I have dry eyes so excuse the "hung over" appearance. They are always bloodshot! lol

Monday, February 23, 2009

Frozen

I can't pray. I just can't do it. I don't go to church, never have. I have always prayed though. I prayed all through my pregnancy with Clarence. Every single night. I want to. The words won't come. My lips are frozen.



I wonder if He listens anyhow.





He doesn't seem to.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

To Dream Or Not To Dream?

Why don't I dream of you? I want to. I think? What does it mean that my subconscious won't let me see you in my dreams? Why won't you visit me? I want so badly to see you. To have a glimpse of what life would be like with you here. Or will that destroy me? Maybe I don't want to dream of you. I feel like I should though. I should be dreaming of you. So why aren't I? Where are you?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Knocked Down Naive

I debated p0sting this here. This is supposed to be a blog about Clarence and my life without him. But that is just it. This is my life, without him. Anything that happens to me now and forever for the rest of eternity is "Life Without Clarence", right? I mean, it is not like he is ever coming back.

So here it is. I got a BFP the other day. My first cycle since Clarence's death. My OB had told me to wait 2 or 3 cycles before TTC again so that my body would have time to heal and there would be less chance of a miscarriage with a future pregnancy. There is some debate in the medical community about if this is really necessary. When we went to meet with the perinatologist to discuss the pathology report from my placenta and the possible causes of Clarence's death this very subject came up. He thought that once my body had it's first cycle that was the go ahead to try again. So I chose to believe what I WANTED to hear. As far as I was concerned we were cleared to try again. I also chose to believe that nothing bad could happen again. Or, I'm not sure I so much chose to believe it as the other words of advice just went in one ear and out the next. Selective memory you might say. I mean, God and fate wouldn't be so cruel, right? Especially since I have a beautiful little girl already, proof that my body was capable of doing this all the way. The right way. So I went into this BFP completely optimistic and astounded @ how blessed I was to be pregnant again so quickly. Jokes began flying between me and my husband again about his super sperm. It is funny how the mind works, isn't it? How could I so quickly forget all the bad I had recently been through?

I woke up the morning of my first OB appointment and decided it would be a wonderful idea to take a pregnancy test. I was so eager to see those two beautiful pink lines again. No sooner had I finished peeing on the stick that I suddenly thought "what if it is negative?" Oh crap! Of course it would be positive, right? I already began to feel sick to my stomach. Three minutes passed and sure enough the line was barely there. I mean BARELY there. Great. I know. I know. It doesn't matter how dark the line is. A line is a line is a line is a line. Right. I know. But I also knew the feeling in the pit of my stomach. I knew it was over. Great. Lovely. Perfect. Now I had to sit and wait for the next 3 hours until my OB appointment.

At the OB the test came back negative and as I was talking to the midwife she looked down @ it again and started to see a line. Knocked down....given hope. They used my urine to dip another test. I got dressed (no sense in doing a PAP and first prenatal exam if I wasn't pregnant, right?) and met the midwife outside of the room by the lab. The 2ND test was negative. Knocked down. Whoosh! Kicked in the gut. This couldn't be happening. "This is supposed to be easy for you now after what you have been through" the midwife said. They drew some blood to do a beta test for pregnancy. I wouldn't get the results until the next day. For the second time in a row I left that OB office in despair. I am really starting to not like that place. Understatement. I HATE it. Liza, the midwife, promised to call in the morning with the results.

At this point I am thinking it was a chemical pregnancy. It suddenly smacks me in the face what I had conveniently chosen to forget. The OB said to wait 2 or 3 cycles for this very reason. You would think after losing Clarence I wouldn't be of the "this can't happen to me" mindset anymore. I learned one of the most humbling, horrifying lessons in just how invicible I wasn't. Instead, I had slipped right back into the mentality that I was. Damn!

Liza called the next morning and my beta came back @ 5. On the fence she said. I asked if she thought it could be a chemical pregnancy and she said she wasn't even thinking that yet, that hopefully it was still just too early. She wanted to repeat the beta the next day to check for doubling. Given hope. I rolled over in bed and attempted to go back to sleep. After tossing and turning for a little while I decided to get up. Knocked down. There was no longer any question. The bright red blood was evidence enough. Doubled over. Humbled again.

I should have stayed in bed with hope just a little bit longer. Damn.

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Life Of Clarence - Part II

This first picture is from my 8 week ultrasound. This is the day that it was first time we heard our baby's heart beat. It was the most beautiful sound in the world. It was also the day that it was discovered that I had a Subchorionic Hematoma. The baby was doing great though and I was assured that 9 times out of 10 these hematomas heal and cause no troubles. Getting out of the car @ home I stood up and had my first bleed. It was small and I attributed to the fact that I had just had a trans vaginal ultrasound and things were sensitive up there. If only it had been that simple.

These next ultrasound pictures were taken @ an ER in Charleston, West Virginia when I was about 10 1/2 weeks pregnant. We had been in town for my husbands high school reunion. After attending the reunion we went on a "date" to see the movie "A Righteous Kill". About half way through the film, I switched position in my chair and the flood gates released. A huge hemorrhage. We immediately left and went to the ER. After several LONG hours there we were able to see our baby and he was doing wonderfully. We had a little fighter! They saw the hematoma on the monitor and assured me that it would most likely resolve itself. So off we went, traumatized, but happy and proudly showed off our new pictures of our precious little one.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Chipping...I Mean Slipping...Away




So you are probably wondering why I posted a picture of my feet on my blog. Weird, I know. I was in the shower today and as I was shaving my legs, something hit me. I have not painted my toe nails since Clarence died. Yes, I know. That's a little obvious. You are thinking what is wrong with this chic? What that also means is that the polish on my toes has been there since I was pregnant with him. I remember when I painted them even. It was the weekend of my husbands class reunion. That night was the night I had my first hemorrhage. Because of this, because Clarence was still alive in me when I painted my toes, I can't bring myself to remove it. It is like it represents a part of him, a part of my pregnancy, my time with him...and I don't want to let it go. It doesn't make any sense at all. However, it makes perfect sense to me. It is like a little piece of him is chipping away every day, getting further and further from my memory. Sometimes he feels like a dream. If this crummy chipped polish represents all I have left of him, what will I have when it is gone?

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Support Group

I didn't go. It meets once a month for 2 hours. I went last month and it was very helpful. I didn't feel like I needed to go this month. But yet, I feel guilty. Like this means I am forgetting him or something. I don't know. Now I feel awful and guilty for feeling so "OK" lately. I don't even know what else to write.....

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Please Forgive Me

I wanted to apologize to my body. I called you broken. But you did an amazing thing this past week. You ovulated! Something so many women take for granted. I shouldn't have given up my confidence in you. I should be more patient with you. For that I am sorry. Thanks for working like you are supposed to! And lets not forget my beautiful daughter that you grew and nurtured for 9 months in my womb and 13 months outside of my womb. I hope you can forgive me. Truce?

Friday, January 30, 2009

The Life Of Clarence - Part I

I wanted to take you on the short journey of the life of my son, starting with finding out I was pregnant with my little guy. Below is a picture of the charting I was doing to see if I was ovulating and when. It was a long cycle and I was getting very discouraged and didn't think it was gonna happen. Then one night Chad and I were feeling romantic. As luck would have it I ovulated the next day and conceived Clarence. Of course we wouldn't know that for a little while longer though. About 6 or 7 days after I ovulated I started to bleed. I was devastated. Not only was I not pregnant, but my period came way too early....or so I thought! The very next day, the bleeding tapered off and then was non existent. I began to suspect the the bleeding was what is called "implantation bleeding". I was cautiously excited! Finally when I was 10 days past ovulation and about 3 days after the implantation spotting I decided to take a HPT. The very faintest of lines appeared. I was shocked. I couldn't believe it. Chad returned home from a short walk with the kids and I called him upstairs to make sure I wasn't seeing things. I wasn't!! Here is a picture of that pregnancy test taken on 8/4/2008.
We were so excited. I think Chad was more shocked actually than anything. We told a select few people and decided that we would surprise the rest @ Kensington's first birthday party later that month.

Just a few short days before her party I started to have brown spotting. I felt sick to my stomach with worry. I had had spotting all through out the first trimester with Kensington, but that doesn't harden you to the fact that it is scary. I called the OB the first thing the next morning and they quickly scheduled me in for an ultra sound. You can imagine our relief when we saw the tiny blob below just flickering away! I was only 6 weeks pregnant and already there was a very strong heartbeat. I was in love.





Thursday, January 29, 2009

Evidence

So just a little bit ago I ran across 3 + pregnancy tests I had taken when I was pregnant with Clarence. The first was "the one" that told us we were expecting. The last 2 were taken in the few days following just to make sure I hadn't been dreaming. I started to throw them away. But I couldn't bring myself to do it. They are evidence that he existed. I can't part with them. They will go into the memory box I plan on making. Now I just need to remember to pick one up. I have a feeling there won't be one perfect enough to hold anything of his though....

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Broken

Why can't my body just work like it is supposed too?! It won't even do the most basic of female things. I hate being broken.

Shame On Me

I can't believe it has been 2 months since Clarence was born to Heaven. It snowed a ton today. Someone told me that when it snowed it was the angel babies playing on the clouds in Heaven. Or something to that affect. It is a nice thought. What do our babies look like in Heaven? Do they look like they did on Earth? It is hard for me to picture him any way other than "sleeping". How sad that I will never see his smile. Or his eyes. I will never hear his cry or his laughter. I will never know what he looks like doing anything other than sleeping. And even then I don't truly know what that looks like either. Because if he had been sleeping his little chest would've been rising and falling. That's what a mother looks for when she watches her baby sleep.

I feel angry. I feel cheated. I feel sad. I feel .... numb mostly. The whole experience of being pregnant and giving birth to my dead son feels so surreal. Sometimes I have to remind myself that it happened to me.

I haven't pulled out his little gowns and hats to look at in awhile. They smell like him and the hospital. It is a smell I both adore and despise. His gowns have blood and fluid stains on them. So do his hats. Part of me wants to wash one set and save the other set just how it is in hope to keep his smell forever. But then I don't know which one to wash. The first set he was in that is the most soiled? Or the last set, that isn't nearly as cute. So I do nothing. They sit up in my room in a Ziploc bag and a box we got from the hospital. They sit along with all the other mementos from the hospital. I need to get a nice big box to put all of these mementos in and the little things that we had bought for him while I was pregnant. Funny how I conveniently forget to do that whenever I am out. Something else I keep "forgetting" to do is to look for an urn. I don't even know where you buy one. Can you look online? Do these things make me a terrible mother?

I miss my baby boy, even though I never really knew him. Every time I hear of someone that has children close together I get upset. Or if someone with a child around Kensi's age is pregnant, I am jealous. That is supposed to be me. My children were supposed to be born 20 months apart from each other. Instead my son only lived for 20 weeks inside my womb. I don't live a very structured life. We are not on a tight day to day schedule. Bedtime is about the only routine that we keep. I don't make many plans for the future. The one plan I did make, to have my children close in age, was taken away. I felt so blessed and so lucky to find out I was pregnant with Clarence after only 3 months of trying. Some women with PCOS try years. I knew how lucky I was. I feel like fate took one look at me and decided I didn't deserve to be so happy. Like it wanted to wipe that smug look off of my face as I made jokes about my husbands "super sperm". I feel so humbled by this whole experience. Knocked to the ground and kicked in the gut several times over. Like I am being taunted and laughed at. "Oh your life is finally going the way you have always dreamed? Oh you are finally to the part you have wished for since you were a little girl. The part where you get to have a family?" I feel like the rug was jerked from underneath me, all my dreams stolen. What did I do to deserve this? What did I do to deserve to have a dead baby? I loved that little guy. I wanted to keep him safe. I couldn't do that. I feel like my body has failed me. I failed him. And I don't know why. I will never know why. Why did my placenta not develop properly? Why? Why? Why? Shame on me for thinking I was invincible. Shame on me for thinking I deserved the happiness I had.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Courage To Heal

So my husband and I have decided to start trying to conceive again this month. A friend told me that a friend of a friend of a friend had mentioned to her something about hoping that I didn't become obsessed with TTC again, as she knew so many other women who had after having a loss. Apparently she thought this was sad or unhealthy. It was obvious to me that she was passing judgement. So, of course, I have been paranoid ever since about what one would think if/when they learned we were trying again so soon. What I have realized upon pondering this is that trying to have another baby is part of the healing process for me. And not just for me. For a lot of women that have experienced losses. It is in almost every book that I have read. It is "normal" (there is that word again), human and HEALTHY to have the desire to be pregnant again. Unless we decided not to have more children, the next phase of my healing can't come without TTC again. Pregnancy, as much as I have loved it in the past, has now become the enemy. One of my biggest fears. The biggest fear outside of losing my husband or children. In order to conquer that fear I need to face it head on. Don't get me wrong here. I am not delusional. Nowhere in my mind do I think, not even for a second, that if I have a successful term pregnancy with a healthy live baby that I am suddenly gonna be healed. I know that is not true. However, I am certain that it will be a fundamental part of the process. Conquering this fear and coming out OK on the other side with my dream in my arms, that will be the vessel that gets me to the "other side", to the next stage of my healing. And notice that I said "my healing". Because it is mine, not yours. Mine to figure out, not yours to judge. TTC again, wanting to expand our family and having the courage to take the plunge is one of the most crucial steps in this healing process for me. One that can't be skipped. One that can't just be put off because I am worried what others might think. I will not be ashamed. I will not hide it. Unfortunately, it took someone telling me how strong and courageous I was to try again for me to realize it. I didn't see it that way. I thought others would think I was weak. But what is weak is caring about what others think. Especially if they have never lost a child. So to that friend of a friend of a friend...I am gonna become obsessed with having another child. I want to expand my family. And anyone who really knows me, knows that I would be obsessed with TTC even without having lost Clarence. That is just me. When I do something, I do it full out. Shame on you for passing judgement on me!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Do You Own These Shoes Too? They Suck.

"A Pair of Shoes"
I am wearing a pair of shoes.
They are ugly shoes.
Uncomfortable shoes.
I hate my shoes.
Each day I wear them, and each day I wish I had another pair.
Some days my shoes hurt so bad that I do not think I can take another step.
Yet, I continue to wear them.
I get funny looks wearing these shoes.
They are looks of sympathy.
I can tell in others eyes that they are glad they are my shoes and not theirs.
They never talk about my shoes.
To learn how awful my shoes are might make them uncomfortable.
To truly understand these shoes you must walk in them.
But, once you put them on, you can never take them off.
I now realize that I am not the only one who wears these shoes.
There are many pairs in this world.
Some woman are like me and ache daily as they try and walk in them.
Some have learned how to walk in them so they don't hurt quite as much.
Some have worn the shoes so long that days will go by before they think about how much they hurt.
No woman deserves to wear these shoes.
Yet, because of these shoes I am a stronger woman.
These shoes have given me the strength to face anything.
They have made me who I am.
I will forever walk in the shoes of a woman who has lost a child.
~Author unknown~

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Is This The End, Or A New Beginning?

I just haven't felt much like posting. IDK why b/c I am happy (or content at least) with the appointment we had on Tuesday to discuss the pathology report with the Perinatologist. I just haven't felt like writing about it. Not even on SC or in my journal. I guess because it makes everything so final? Like putting a period at the end of the sentence? Or finishing a chapter of a book? IDK. I know the "book" will continue and this last chapter will always be with me. Clarence will always be with me ....but for some reason I have been hesitating to turn the page.

The Doctor that I met with was wonderful. He is the partner of the guy that I saw while pregnant with Clarence.(Remember the one I never liked?) He was so quick to the point, no personality and not a conversationalist at all. He did nothing to calm my worries. Well his partner, Dr. M is the complete opposite. Like night and day. We first sat in his office and he wanted me to sit down and tell my version of things. To see where I was coming from and how I felt about things. He listened so intently. We even talked about PCOS and my treatment for it. It just showed me that he was in no hurry and that we had his full attention for however long we needed it. He decided it would be good to run some tests to make sure I didn't have a clotting disorder or an auto immune disease. He ordered about 8 different tests and they seriously took like 12 vials of blood! He suspects all will come back normal b/c I have already had one normal healthy pregnancy that resulted in a live birth to a healthy child. That actually would be a great thing for the tests to come back normal, b/c then it is most likely a fluke and chances are it won't happen again. But he did tell me the things he was testing for were all things that we could do stuff about to prevent another loss. So after discussing that he stated that he thinks based on my description of the pregnancy, all the hemorrhages I had and my medical charts that the pregnancy was "doomed" from the beginning. Starting with the week 6 spotting. He thinks it was a problem with the placenta. For some reason it didn't develop properly. And essentially he thinks Clarence "out grew" the placenta. He just got to be too big for the placenta to support him anymore b/c it wasn't properly developed. There wasn't enough blood and oxygen to circulate to him. And his sweet little body could survive no longer. Nothing that I did would've caused it. It just happened. He took his time and answered all my questions. I didn't feel rushed or silly for anything I asked. He even said I could call or email him if I thought of any other questions after we left the office. He explained that the Velamentous Cord Insertion that they had suspected at my last ultra sound wasn't at all likely to be the cause of death. He said that they are rarely cause for concern and they definitely don't cause complications like sudden death. So that is it. I feel better. I was so worried the appointment wouldn't go well and I would come home a mess. I do still want to ask if there is a way to make sure the placenta is developing correctly next time around. I may email him that question. Though, even if it wasn't developing properly I am not sure there is anything that could be done.

From here we move forward. End the chapter and start a new one. I think we are ready. I know that another child could NEVER take Clarence's place. But I truly believe it will help in the healing process. Because life goes on...even when you want it to stand still. So I will hold Clarence in my heart. I will think of him everyday. I do already. How could I not?

Monday, January 19, 2009

Blessed

Someone made this for me and it is just so beautiful I wanted to share. It reminded me of how wonderful my life truly is. I am very blessed. (For those of you who don't know me, I have a step son, Brenden that is 9 years old, and a beautiful 17 month old daughter who is the light of my life!)
Photobucket

Saturday, January 17, 2009

A Righteous Kill

That is the movie that my husband and I were watching when I had my first hemorrhage. We were about half way through the movie. We rented it tonight and watched it. It was a really good movie. But in the back of my mind I kept trying to pin point exactly when I started bleeding. I have an idea, but couldn't remember exactly. Then as I was watching the rest of the movie I was thinking, this was playing while I was sitting in that ER waiting room. It was just weird.

Every once in awhile we will go somewhere I haven't been since I was pregnant. I always remember "the last time I was here I was pregnant". Just before Christmas we went to dinner @ a Japanese steak house. It was the same restaurant we went to for Chad's birthday. That day I had had my biggest hemorrhage yet. So of course when we went there around Christmas it was kinda hard. I couldn't stop thinking about how the last time I had been there my baby had been with me. To make matters worse we were seated at a table with 2 very pregnant women. They were sisters or sisters-in-law I think. And the entire time they talked about their pregnancies. Ultra Sounds, finding out the gender, yada, yada, yada. Needless to say, I had to excuse myself to the restroom several times.

Today we went to Chuck E Cheese and took Kensington. This time I was able to think back and say the last time I was there, Kensington was still in my belly. It was August 20, 2007. We had just had maternity and family pictures down @ Kiddie Kandids. I was 36w1d pregnant. We went to Chuck E Cheese to celebrate Brenden's birthday. Almost exactly 4days later I was holding my precious baby girl for the first time! That memory brought a smile to my face. It was nice to be able to associate the thought "the last time I was here" with something happy.

It has been a very hard few days. I was already feeling a little blue, but I blamed that on AF. Then it was exacerbated last night by me finding out that my OB's office had the pathology report for so long and did not call me. I can't let that go without saying something. So now I just have to figure out how I go about that. Something to worry about that I shouldn't have to. That and the looming appt we have this Tuesday to discuss the pathology findings with the Perinatologist. Which I am sure we will get no answers. So why bother going, right? Well I am hoping the doctor I sit with is empathetic and can at least offer us some possible scenarios of what may have happened. And calm my fears and guilt that it wasn't something I did to cause his death. Ex: a med I took, the butter I ate, not eating enough.... I will be a nervous wreck come Tuesday.