Sunday, July 7, 2013

Taking the Plunge

By this time tomorrow, hopefully I will be holding my third child, my second little girl.

A lot of things have happened this past week. We were originally due July 26, with a scheduled c-section for July 16. When I visited the high risk doc for my last U/S this past Monday, he told me my amniotic fluid was too low and that I needed to deliver as soon as I reached term.

So we have a c-section scheduled for 9 am tomorrow. I'm nervous. I'm excited. I'm hopeful. I'm afraid.

We had a good NST today. I'd like to say that reassures me, but I have learned from experience that there's no reassurance until the baby is safely breathing in your arms. Even then, it's a little shaky. The death of one of your children just inevitably changes your view on how fragile life truly is.

I have a completed nursery, a nursery for a girl. I used a few items from G's nursery, and it makes me more happy than pained to look at it. I get momentary catches of panic when I think of the possibility that I'll have to put things away without a baby here. For the first time in two years, I opened the pink tupperware containers that contained my beautiful Georgie's clothes. I washed them, carefully, and they are folded in drawers waiting for a little girl that I pray to God we have the chance to meet.

Please pray, friends. I know that chances are in our favor, but it's hard to feel that when you've known such tragedy. We'll update you all tomorrow!

I never had a chance to post about Davey's first birthday. Here's a pic I just love from the party (I look very large and PG, but my hair is really shiny due to those awesome pregnancy hormones!! Dave looks almost delirious. It was a good day :)

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Right Where I Am: Two Years, Two Months and 28 days

I've never participated in this before. I never felt like how I felt changed much until recently. I'm sitting here in the soft light of the morning, watching birds fly by our birdhouse and grab little bits of seed. Bingley, our big yellow dog, lays a few feet away, snoring like a grizzly bear. My little golden haired beautiful boy is standing at the coffee table, dancing to a Blues Clues episode.

And for a few minutes, I feel peace and contentment.

As short as six months ago, I think I wouldn't have been able to say that.

For over a year after Georgiana died, I woke up and every morning was Groundhog Day. I would painfully open my eyes, and she's dead, she's dead would run over and over in my mind. In the early days, it was so much I thought I would go insane from it. I could hardly pull myself off the pillow. As time went on, it was still there but somehow I pulled myself and dressed myself for work like an automaton, despite the horrible chorus in my head.

These days, I wake up to the sounds of Davey chatting to himself on the monitor. It's the most beautiful sweet sound, and his presence calms me.

Right where I am now, I don't go visit Georgie's grave. It brings back too many horrible memories for me, and usually puts me in a funk that lasts for days. I've just recently gotten to the point that I'm ok with not going, and don't really care too much what anyone else thinks on this. I talk to her everyday in my mind, usually in the quiet moments. Sometimes I ask her what she's doing, if she saw that, if she'll protect her little brother, watch over us. Other days, my mind drifts back to those horrible moments, when the doctor told us she couldn't find a heartbeat, laboring with her in the hospital, standing at the cemetery and wrapping my arms around her tiny coffin, wanting to take it with me and run away from everything. Those moments still flash, but thankfully their hold is not as strong.

People used to tell me that time heals all wounds after she died. No, it doesn't. Those of us who have lost a child know it's a wound that never heals. But it softens, so that I can still enjoy my life and days, something I never thought I'd be able to do again after we lost G. I can notice the birds now, my dog snoring, my son, and say a small prayer of thankfulness in those moments. I never thought I'd make my way out of the heavy fog of grief to be able to enjoy those things again. But I have. It's a whole lot of heaven punctuated by small moments of hell, but I'll take the heaven as much as I can.

Monday, June 17, 2013


I don't even know where to start. I've been away from here for awhile, almost 3 months, I think. I've been reading everyone else's posts and keeping up, and I miss you all! I would love to come to the next rainbow baby convention, though I'm not sure how to drag 2 rainbow babies in tow who are less than 14 months apart.

So much has been happening these last 3 months.

One, I am as big as a house.

Right, right, you say...every pregnant woman says that about herself.

No, really, everyone. I am huge. My face looks like a full moon right now. I feel huge. Let's just put it this way. I'm closer to the hub's weight than I am comfortable with.

But let's get to the important part. For now, this little one looks great, is passing her tests at the high risk doc, is [mostly] passing her NSTs, and for all these things I'm grateful.


That's right. I said her. See...they had said we were having another boy. Then they said they were having a girl.

I cried for probably 10 minutes straight at the doctor's office when they told us. Dave and Davey were with me. Of course my crying made Davey burst into tears.

It's been hard to characterize this pregnancy. With Davey I was so hopeful and yet so afraid at the same time. Lots of near panic attacks. Lots of laying on the bathroom floor in the stall at work, trying to use the Doppler to find a heartbeat. Combine that with a sleepy, chill baby, and I was a wreck most of the time.

This little one is different. They have all been different. I don't spend nearly as much time terrified as I did last time. I think this is for a lot of reasons. One, she moves pretty consistently, not like Davey who would go for 2 hours at a time with one little nudge, sending me in panic to labor and delivery many times. Two, I'm distracted by a one year old right now, a very busy one year old who is on the verge of walking, likes to put everything in his mouth, and is going through major cling-to-mom/separation anxiety right now. Three, I've had a child live, and it just seems to make my perspective different.

Don't get me wrong. I've had my share of PTSD with this child. I've woken up more than I'd like to admit in the middle of the night and pulled out the doppler because I don't feel her moving, convinced it's over. We had a small scare with the placenta a little earlier on. Right after our 28 week U/S, my high risk doc looked at me and casually said, "So, have you had any bleeding?"

"Bleeding?" I said, dumbfounded.

It turns out my placenta was close to my cervix, and he expected me to start bleeding, sort of like a placenta previa situation. That put me on major panic for about 3 weeks, until suddenly, the issue corrected itself.

Also, I have two wonderful and beautiful cousins who reached out to me a couple of months ago and asked me if they could throw me a baby shower.

A. Baby. Shower.

You BLM's out there all know the fear and sadness those words strike in our hearts. My mom told me to just think on it, and not say no right away. So...I did. I thought on it, and prayed on it, and tried to run through in my mind how something like that might go.

And about a week after they asked me, I told them yes.

We had the shower on Saturday. It turned out...lovely. I mostly dreaded it all week, and come Saturday morning, I lay on my bed, with my head on my husband's shoulder, bawling my eyes out and telling him I couldn't go. Also, I was sweating like you couldn't believe, despite the fact that my thermostat said 67 degrees.

He let me cry, and let me talk to him about how sad I was, how it all made me so sad about Georgie's shower, and how I couldn't stop thinking about the little gold shoes that were out on the table at her shower. These were the shoes we buried her in. I just couldn't shake the image or the memory, or the gut wrenching awfulness of it all.

I began to think that I couldn't trust myself to go to this shower and hold my you know what together. After about 20-30 minutes of crying, I mustered up my courage, got dressed, and left with my mother in law with me. I'm not sure if she could tell I had lost it or not, but I didn't say anything and neither did she, thankfully.

I only cried a little while opening some gifts, but it really was a wonderful time. Most importantly of all, my sweet and thoughtful cousins had set up a little table with 4 white frames. The big white frame had a little print in gold and pink that said "I'm the little sister."

The other three white frames had an ultrasound pic of baby girl, a picture of Davey from Easter, and one of the beautiful pictures of Georgie in her christening gown taken at the hospital after she was born.

And I was just so touched that all my children had been included. It made it just perfect.

Not sure if I'll every go to anyone else's shower ever again, but I have told myself to at least consider it, because a shower for me turned out so much better than I could have guessed. I would have missed out if I had just said no, and it was really a day to celebrate a new little girl in our lives, but also remember and honor our other little girl that's no longer here, and any opportunity where many people remember her is oh so special to me.

Other things...I should probably get started on the nursery. I've collected some things, and have completely infringed upon this.  I'm not ashamed to say that I'm basically copying the big elements of her daughter's nursery.

Am also starting to think that I've bit off more than I can chew on that one. Who knew wallpaper was going to be such a pain? But I've already committed and bought two fabulous (more expensive than I wanted) rolls of wallpaper from Anthropologie.

Now it's time to commit and get going on this business. However, I've waited until I'm almost 35 weeks preggo. Not smart. Not smart, folks. I feel a little deflated and haven't even begun yet.

Also, this baby has forced me and Dave to somehow organize the gazillion books we own in this house. That's a good thing. As painful as ripping off a band-aid, but good. We've had to make hard decisions. Letting go of a good book is like letting go of an old friend.

In other news....I need advice from you mamas out there.

1. How am I supposed to handle a one year old and a newborn while recovering from a c-section? Any good advice or advice for good mixed drinks welcome here, as either will probably help.

2. For those of you that cloth diaper, I need deets. Davey has a redness on his bottom that will not go away. I have tried Nystatin, Monistat, Aveeno baths, granola crunchy disposable dipes like Earth's Best and Huggies Pure and Natural, cloth wipes, you name it. I've let him crawl around with no diaper, and he has, I'm not kidding, actually stood himself just so he can pee while standing. What a little man. It was cute, but still nothing is helping. I think I'm going to have to go cloth on the little boy. Need major advice on this.

This girl is supposed to come July 16. I can hardly wait.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Two years

Two years ago today, we lost our sweet Georgie.

Last year, I felt overwhelming fear and panic. I was so convinced something else terrible was going to happen to us, to Davey who was 7 months in the womb.

This year, I feel heavy, sluggish in my grief. I feel the weight of it, but not so much the gripping fear. I've felt so tired from feeling so sad about it all. I think a baby in the grave, baby in my arms and baby in my belly is just too much this year, and my heart has just gone into numb mode. I feel the grief, though, because all I've wanted to do is sleep or sit in the shower and cry. Fortunately, having an almost 10 month old means neither is much of an option right now.

So for today, help me remember our sweet G and light a candle for her second birthday with us tomorrow.

Monday, February 11, 2013

What I've Learned (Part I)

I'm supposed to be studying for the bar right now. I've been studying for 5 weeks solid and I'm experiencing some major burnout.

I've spent the last 15 minutes thinking about the following.

1. I don't like Panera coffee. Not at all. Especially the Hazelnut. This is what happens when I get adventurous.
2. What exactly is a crime of moral turpitude?

I've also been watching a mom and her little boy eating lunch together. I would guess he's 3. He's got this gorgeous strawberry blonde hair, little boy khaki cargoes, and a slightly mischievous look on his face.

It's amazing to me how much more things hit me now that I have Davey. I've been watching them and thinking, I get to do this someday with my little boy. It's almost unbelievable sometimes that I have this little human I get to take care of everyday, who depends on me for everything. What an incredible and life-changing responsibility.

It even gets to the point lately where I tell my husband that nobody better EVER mess with my kid. I think these are mostly the PG hormones talking, and he seriously thinks I'm crazy. Ok, I do sound a little crazy, especially when I'm making these proclamations at 10 pm at night while having a hot flash in bed while he's reading next to me.

I think probably 50 times a day how cute my kid is, and how this beautiful, fun, laughing little child, who is so beyond my wildest dreams, with this perfect round little face and gorgeous smile could be mine. He is somehow SO much cuter than me or my husband, but I see little bits of both of us in him. But he is most definitely his own little person.

How you doin'?

The new thing lately is trying to figure out what will make him laugh. He loves to laugh, but he gets bored easily, and if I try the same thing several times in a row, it really doesn't work.

Last Saturday, I started tapping my fingers on the kitchen table when he was eating. This was so hilarious he was making that sucking-his-breath-in type laugh that nearly had me on the floor, I was laughing so hard at him.

I tried it again the next day.

No go. He just raised his eyebrow at me like, "really, mom?"

I'm perfectly willing to admit as well that my husband is funnier most of the time than I am. I tend to be a little more serious than Dave, and I think Davey picks up on my super neurotic vibes sometimes. So when I try to make him laugh, I get the raised eyebrow more often than not, while Daddy can do the exact same thing and send him rolling.

Which is why last night was so fun for me.

I walked into Davey's room while my husband was getting the bath ready for him. Davey was on his tummy and kept putting his head down on the mattress and popping up to look at me. I finally figured out what he was doing. When he popped his head back up the next time, I cried out "Peeky boo!" This sent him rolling in laughter. We did it another probably 30 times before he got in the bath, and he just laughed harder and harder each time. I was loving it. Then my husband started doing it to him, and Davey just looked at him like "seriously, dad? You're totally interrupting play time with mom right now!"

Every once in a while, mom is funny too!

I've been thinking a lot lately about what I've learned in the last few years since the tragic death of Georgie. None of these are brand new, and are probably spoken by most people who go through such things, but they're still pretty relevatory to me. I'm hoping that by reflecting on these things, I can remember to keep a thankful attitude and not get bogged down in things that really don't matter.

I've learned:

1. I really do love the small moments the most. Coffee on a Saturday morning, petting my dogs, watching my son and husband play with each other. These small things are what I remember. Now that Dave and I have to really watch our budget now that he's in a lower paying job that he loves and we have a baby and another on the way, I don't miss all the going out, dinners, extra stuff that we used to be able to buy all the time. These little moments are my favorite.

2. How excited I am about a life with my son. Every new moment is just enchanting to me, and I consider myself so damn lucky that we have him, and that it didn't take us long to conceive him, especially considering how completely sad and stressed we were at the time. I think I've gone through the worst, but then I think of others, those who can't conceive as easily, who lost their miracle baby that they conceived after years of trying, and it takes my breath away, it's just so heavy.

I've got more, but I've gotta get back to studying. Only 15 days until the exam, so I probably won't say hi again until afterwards. Wish me luck!!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

And then there were 1+1+1= 2 {3}

I feel amazingly blessed lately. My husband and I talk all the time about how you never really know the full meaning of love until you have a child. And we had that when we had our first. But now we can express it as parents. And we have a little boy who is full of such joy, such innocence, such pure wonderful goodness, that my heart has not stopped overflowing since he was born.

I write this post and I look over at him on our Angelcare monitor (I will probably use that until he's 4, I know nobody here judges me) and I look at his beautiful little head full of soft golden hair. He is laying on his side, his chubby little hands clasped in front of him. And I just swell with love for this incredible gift, this little cherub child who dropped out of heaven and is with me every day.

How can we be SO lucky?

And we have a little brother on the way. So (WOW) so unexpected and unplanned, and yet so wanted. We know the greatest loss. We have nothing but sheer joy at the thought of another baby. I have seen two ultrasounds, and this little boy took me and his daddy quite by surprise, but I am thankful for yet another opportunity to parent a child. We are just about 14 weeks. So many things can still go wrong, and there is so far still to go. Still plenty of time for me to spiral into panic meltdowns, multiple times a day.

And I can't help but think that I am now carrying my third baby, and only entertaining the possibility of the second child to bring home. And I linger on the unfairness of it all, and allow myself to feel a little bit of the rage that still sits inside of me, and I feel a momentary chill that my first child is housed in a cemetery. And that is our lives.

I'll take the joy, though, and run with it as much as I can. It's all we can do.

Please pray for your family. This little one is so loved already. God oh God please let him come home with us.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Flesh and Bone

Kind of an odd title for a post, I know. A lot of thoughts have been brewing lately. I know the holidays had a lot to do with it. I floated into the holidays expecting sunshine and roses (after all, we have Davey, right?) and got hit with the grief a little harder than expected.

My birthday is Sunday and I still have the vague sense of not wanting to celebrate. I just wish both my children were with me, and instead every single celebration has a gaping hole, whether I acknowledge it or not.

People kept telling me all Christmas day, "Just wait until NEXT Christmas! Davey will be SO FUN next year!"  All I could think was that meant that this Christmas was supposed to be the Christmas that Georgie was so fun.

Lately I'm really loving rocking my son to sleep. We are in that transition phase where Dave is starting to put him to bed sometimes, but I still have the magic touch when putting him to bed. And those moments are the favorite part of my day, when my son's warm, soft little body is just turned to me and he looks at me in the dark while drifting to sleep. In those moments, there is just nothing but the two of us, and I forget all my worries and minor stresses that plague my mind more than they should. And I marvel that in all my grief, panic and sorrow, my husband and I somehow made this beautiful little human out of our love for each other and the small shred of hope that we clung to desperately. I just marvel at this weight in my arms, this heavy dream of mine, now real and with me.

I love to rock him. It's so quiet, and I just hear my son breathing, slower and deeper as he settles in. I know that his favorite place is mommy's arms. Many nights it all overwhelms me, and the tears fall silently in the dark, as I feel closer to his sister in those moments than all the rest of the time.

There are a lot of parents who have given me a lot of unwanted advice on the rocking, telling me that he'll get too used to it and won't be able to go to sleep on his own. I know that these are parents who have not lost a child, and I suspect that those mothers who are not able to hold all their children may think differently about this.

I will rock him whenever I want because it is a great privilege I've been given. I will rock him until he no longer lets me. These are things I will hold in my heart when he is old enough to rock his own children.