Sunday, July 31, 2011


I actually had the best Sunday today that I've had in months.

Last Sunday was not the best. Dave and I went out to Georgiana's grave for the first time since her funeral. Georgie is buried in babyland, which is a smaller part of a bigger Catholic cemetery in OKC. I was very upset when I saw the state of babyland. Maybe I didn't notice it at the funeral. All things told, I wasn't noticing much at her funeral except her, me, Dave.

Back to babyland. The grass is dry, there are hardly any plants, or trees, and it's just...ugly. I'm not sure right now what I'm going to do about it, but I'm going to do something to make it much better. Not just for me and my baby girl, but for all the parents who have had to bury their sweet children there.

Onto today.

This weekend, our good friend Nick is in town. We went to mass today, had lunch, and then went and hung out at my parents' house. We played board games with my brothers and sisters, swam, and had a great dinner. It was a good day.

Do some of you notice though, that even on a good day, it's still not good anymore? I still feel so...tired, so worn down, so so sad, all the time. Even when I'm laughing, it sits there at the back of my mind.

Even good days feel bad most of the time, but I guess I'll take what I can get, which is better than four months ago. But there is a part of this, at my core, deep within, that doesn't get better, that feels the same that it did the second I learned my daughter had passed away. I don't know if this goes away. There are moments when it just all feels like too much.

But I keep on keeping on, because that's what you do, right?

Thursday, July 21, 2011

4 Months

Yesterday marked four months. I was a swirl of emotions all day yesterday and today, but keeping it together and plugging along for moving's sake. We are in a very small 2 bedroom apartment for the time being, but it fits us well and it's cozy. The buildings themselves have a Section 8 feel about them, but I'm not complaining.

By Friday of last week, we were getting the h*ll out of dodge (and by dodge, I mean Colorado Springs). I feel an amazing sense of relief to leave that house and not have to look at that hospital anymore.

I reflected yesterday, as I have every month on the 20th, about her funeral. There are many memories, snapshots if you will, from that day, that I can hardly bear to remember. Closing the lid to her coffin with Dave, having to walk away from her gravesite (willing myself) and realizing I would never again see her on this earth.

It is better being here in Oklahoma City. I am around my family, this is a new yet familiar place, and I am starting many new things. Changing environments can be very good. The ever-present sadness remains, and I spend many moments of the day just repeating to myself that this life does not last forever. It's so hard sometimes.

A sweet mama whom I do not know lost her little girl Ellianna a few days ago. Please pray for her family. They have been on my mind a lot, as I remember the raw hell of the first few days and weeks.

Love and prayers to all of you. Love, most of all, to my sweet Georgie. I miss you so much, baby girl.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The Dog Ate It


Today has been exhausting. We are moving in three days. The movers came to pack up today. They actually did a really great job and were very helpful, and for a small tip, we were able to get them to pack up a lot of stuff that we're taking with us (versus going with the movers to temporary storage) (bonus!).

Tensions have been high. I've been very tired. I feel like a 90 year old trapped in a 30 year old's body. At one point today, I just gave up, I pray that God has no more "big ones" for me.

It's hard to put moving into words. I think it would be great if there were a book that didn't just deal with loss and stillbirth, but also had the following chapters: (1) moving and stillbirth; (2) grocery shopping and stillbirth; (3) job change and stillbirth. On and on...

The point is, Georgiana and her passing affects all of it. I am actually looking forward to moving to OKC, but she has just changed my whole view on...well...everything.

You all are probably wondering about the title of this post.

So...when we went to our first SHARE (pregnancy and infant loss support group) meeting, it wasn't even three weeks after Georgie had passed away. We called SHARE, and they were having a meeting the next day. When we got there, they gave us a memory book, flowers, and about six grief books.

Our dog Bingley (the goldendoodle) destroyed all six books.

I had the books sitting on one of our kitchen chairs because we had our last meeting tonight in Colorado Springs. I was going to bring the books back to the SHARE library. When we got home from church the other night (it had been storming so we left the dogs inside), Bing had apparently had such a panic attack without us (he's a little high-strung) that he tore all six books off the chair and chewed them all up.

Picture it...we get home...I realize pieces of grief books are all over the floor (Silent Grief, Empty Cradle Broken Heart, They Were Stillborn, When Men Grieve).


Me: "Great. We have ruined the pregnancy loss books. Good thing we're moving because we'd probably never be invited back to SHARE."

Dave: "Well, they're just chewed around the edges.  We can return them. It'll be ok."

(insert wifely glare from me)

Me: "We cannot return them like this. We have to buy new ones."

Of course our dog had to destroy the few things in our downstairs that do not belong to us.  And grief books to boot.

To say our life is messy now doesn't even begin to describe, but I think this situation encapsulates the whole thing perfectly.

Back to moving...

Saturday, July 9, 2011


Ugh. I hate moving.

I hated moving before. Now I really hate it.

And I have no energy for it.

Dave and I cleaned our closets out today, trying to get ready for the movers to come next week. We probably cleared about 9 trashbags full of clothes we were throwing away. Sad, right? Wow. I can't believe he and I even have that many clothes together.

Of course, I ran across lots of the clothes I wore while pregnant with Georgie. I had a small laundry hamper in the corner of my closet that had a lot of the dresses I wore in the third trimester. One was a really sweet little navy dress with red roses on it. Another was a random strappy dress, blue and white, that I wore just three days before she died, for St. Patrick's Day.

Needless to say, I felt about 90 years old after cleaning the closet out. A year ago, I would have bounced into another project right away. Today, I finished, rolled into bed, and cried.

This doesn't even include the feeling of dread I have about packing up her nursery. I just can't stand it.

One of the hard things about "dealing with everything well" is that everyone thinks I'm doing ok. Well, I'm not. I'm able to work, and clean up (most of the time), and talk to people, etc...I look "normal," most days.

But inside, I am still raw. Everything hurts. Breathing hurts a lot of the time. Sometimes it's one minute at a time. Sleep is good when I get it, not often. Mornings are a nightmare, repeated every day.

Everyone thinks I'm doing great. My counselor, who specializes in late term pregnancy loss and postpartum, says I am doing better than any woman she's ever seen who has dealt with a stillbirth. I just don't know how to take that. Does that mean I'm better at hiding it than others? That I am better at putting on a normal face?

Well, whatever it looks like from the outside, inside it mostly feels impossible. I told Dave maybe I should just collapse in a crying heap in the corner and rock myself back and forth. Then people will treat me how I feel, not how they think I feel based on how I act.

This post was supposed to be about moving. Then it turned into a rant. Oh well.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Hairy Quatter

I thought that post title might get some of you.

For those of you who don't know, Dave and I have two sweet doggies as part of our family.

Quatro is on the left, the black and white one. He is a Havanese that my family gave me nearly 5 years ago. He is quite a well-traveled doggie. He has lived in Oklahoma, Wash, D.C., Hawaii, now Colorado and soon back to Oklahoma. He knew Georgie very well, once getting kicked by her so hard he hopped off the couch in surprise. He also would not leave my side the entire day she died, trailing me around the house so much so that I remember commenting about it to Dave. He knew. He has known since, and has been even sweeter than he ever has been, which is hard to do.

Our little (now 50 lbs, not so little I guess) goldendoodle is Bingley. He has a lot of connection to Georgie. God gave us both him and Georgiana last July. They also both get their names from Pride and Prejudice, my husband's (yes, my husband's) favorite book. Bingley is just like his namesake, sweet and cheery.

More on Bingley in a later post.

On to the story for today and the title of this post. Dave and I were in bed talking this morning about the final upcoming Harry Potter movie, which I am actually excited about.

Dave pets Quatro and says, "Maybe we should call him Hairy Quatter." Quatro, you see, has many nicknames: Quatter, Quatty, Quatty-bear, Quatty-pig, it goes on and on...we're silly people.

I laugh a little in response.

Dave just keeps on going.

"Hairy Quatter and the Sorcerer's Bone."

"Hairy Quatter and the Chamber of Treats."

"Hairy Quatter and the Half-Poodle Prince." (reference to Bingley, who is half Golden/half Poodle)

"Hairy Quatter and the Doggley Hallows."

"Hairy Quatter and the Order of the Kleenex." (Quatro has an obsession with Kleenex and likes to run under the bed with them to his "cave of treasures," as we call it)

I don't know why, but by the end of this I was laughing so hard I was wheezing. You know, that kind of laughing where you're laughing so hard you're not even making a sound? Other than my daily soul-crushing open my eyes moment, it was a great way to start the morning.

I have a funny husband. Even funnier doggies. A good family. I am thankful for these moments, and thankful that I still have the capacity to laugh like this, even after all the awfulness we've been dealt.

Love and hugs to all of you.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th of July!

This is one of the most complicated 4ths of July I have ever experienced, and hopefully will experience.

This 4th of July marks our last 4th of July on active duty. Dave and I both separate from the AF this month. This was a plan we already had, but was somewhat accelerated by the untimely death of our firstborn.

Dave and I have both deployed--he was in Baghdad, I was in Afghanistan. We were separated for nearly two years during our marriage because of our military service. I'm proud to have served, but glad the time is coming to an end.

I look forward to beginning a new chapter. We're moving to Oklahoma in about a week and a half.

I thought today that we never did have a 4th of July with Georgiana. We conceived her sometime after the 4th of July, and by this year she has been gone a little over three months. I know she would have grown up loving this holiday. I had many plans for her, and unfortunately our plans are vastly different than they should have been.

We spent the 4th going to lunch, going to see Cars 2 (do not recommend, we were baffled by the plot) and then coming home and continuing our movie spree with Independence Day. We grilled and I made a salad.

All in all, today was immeasurably sad, but I also had some moments of peace. I am glad for those when they come, and I cling to them and am grateful to them for what they are.

I am missing my little girl today. I looked forward to a life of telling her about how mommy and daddy served in the military, about a life of teaching her the patriotism that I was taught.  I also have moments of looking forward to my future life, though always missing my baby girl who should be here.

Happy 4th to all of you!