Friday, May 27, 2011


... as in "give me a"

My daughters school has something every May called "Muffins with Mom."  Of course I had to go.  I wouldn't let my girls feel like Mommy doesn't take an interest in what goes on at their school.  But it was excruciating.  I honestly don't know how I made it through.  I hated seeing the other mom's there.  The little boys at various ages running around being boys.  The little babies in their carriers or being passed around.  And the girls' friends' mom's who won't speak to me.  The ones that do act like nothing even happened.  And when someone asks how you are doing, why is it not acceptable to just say, "You know what?  Horrible.  I am horrible right now because my baby died and I miss him with every fiber of my being.  It sucks.  My life absolutely sucks at the moment.  How are you?"  Meadow told me her teacher wanted to see Holden's picture.  So I walked her to class and showed her teacher the picture of Holden that I have on my cell phone.  It's right after he was born and there's blood on my gown that came out of his nose and he's all bruised up...  It's all I have.  It's not pretty to most people, but he's absolutely beautiful to me.  She took a glance at it and said "oh how precious.  Is he being good for you?"  What?  I said "Didn't Meadow tell you what happened.  He was stillborn, so I guess, yes he's being 'good' for me?"  Whatever the FUCK that means.  As if a six week old baby could be bad?  She got that look of horror that everyone gets when you tell them what happened and said "Oh I didn't realize.  Isn't there, wasn't there, another baby?"  "Yes that would be my sister in law.  She's due in August.  Thanks for reminding me."  Then it was time for kisses and goodbyes and I had to walk clear through the building to the other side to get to my car.

When I got to the car I found I had a text from Lee.  He said that his ex put some kind of post on FB about people getting what's coming to them.  Well she is out of state right now with his 2 and 4 year olds.  We're afraid she might not come back.  I don't know what I will even do if that happens.  I've just been falling in love with those kids over the past 8 months.  If she moves them away, it will be like Lee lost another two children.  He won't get to watch them grow up in front of his eyes, only through pictures.  He won't get to hug and kiss them, only once a year maybe in summers, if he's lucky.  He's already lost so much and if she takes that away from him...  I may snap.  In a very bad way.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

unfair AKA: Right Where I Am: 6 weeks and one day

My Mom has called me every day since Holden was born/died.  Yesterday, like many other days, she started to choke up when she tried to say something.  Then she said, "Nevermind."  She does this a lot.  She doesn't want to cry.  She feels guilty for crying to me when I am the one who had to give birth to a dead baby. I tell her she loves Holden too and she has to grieve too and it's okay to cry.  She says she doesn't want to.  But then she continues with what she was going to say.  "I've been thinking about Holden a lot and it just seems so unfair!  I mean, you take care of yourself, and you do everything right and then you still don't get to take your baby home."

And she's right.  It is unfair.  I've thought this a lot since we lost Holden.  It's NOT FAIR!!  And every time I say it or think it, it makes me feel like a small child.  I actually sound just like Lennon to my own ears.  Lennon, who is her very own person at seven years old.  She makes her own rules and when she finds out that not everyone else will follow them, this is what you hear: IT'S! NOT! FAIR!!!  Well I had my own rules.  I don't know who broke them, but I'd like to do some very violent things to them.  My rules were 1. take care of myself because I'm taking care of my baby too.  2. Give birth to said baby.  3. Take said baby home and love and care for him forever.  I guess when I made my rules I forgot to say I wanted my baby to live.  I wish I had known that I needed to specify.  Again, it's not fair.  Nobody told me.

I guess the reason this bothers me so much is that, for anyone who knows me, they know I hate it when adults act childish.  (Child-like is completely different)  I absolutely abhor petty behavior.  And I know A LOT of people like this.  People who will use any means to get what they want, including the facade of friendship or (the worst) their own children.  I loathe people who act like they are entitled to certain luxuries in life, like playing the Nintendo everyday or having your birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese's or standing around BSing at work all day and expecting a raise.  You know what I mean?  Childish.  And saying "It's not fair" just makes me think of that.  It sounds whiny.  But is expecting your child to be born breathing something we are not all entitled too?   I don't know.  I've thought plenty of times that some people don't deserve to be parents.  Am I one of them?

I expressed this to Lee the other day.  I told him that I don't know what makes me think I could do it.  Between the two of us we already had six kids and Holden is number seven.  What makes me think I can handle taking care of that many young people?  And now I wonder what makes me think I deserve to?  Of course I'm wrong to think all that and that's not how things really are, but hey, that's where I'm at.

And speaking of children, I talk to my daughter's all the time about Holden.  In fact we had another good talk last night.  Lennon says things sometimes that make me take a step back and really look at her.  She told me last night that she wished dreams really did come true because Meadow always dreamed she'd have a baby brother.  Meadow said, "Well we do, we just can't HAVE him."  And to that Lennon replied, " That's what I meant."  A lot of times Lennon seems to go about her day in Lennon-land.  She does what Lennon wants to do and if you don't like it there is Hell to pay (screaming, crying, fits, nasty looks, attitude.)  So when she says something like this, I think, Wow, this little person is growing up and she actually does have an understanding of things outside of Lennon-land.  She's not always childish... and that scares me.

What a paradox we BLMs with living children live in.  Before I wanted my daughter's to stay the perfect little people they are now because I would miss it when they are older.  Yet I absolutely know now that I don't want that.  Having a child who can never become anything other than a newborn is the worst kind of parenting imaginable.  With Meadow and Lennon, I look forward to who they can and will become.  With Holden I will never have that.  And that is SO unfair.

Monday, May 23, 2011

body image

I remember being a teenager and hating my body.  I thought I was fat.  All 130 lbs of me.  Actually I had curves, but when skinny is in, it's preferable to have the body of a twelve year old boy.  I developed early.  I was a C cup in sixth grade.  Girls used to say I stuffed my bra, and boys would grab my chest to "make sure" I didn't.  A friend of mine told me once her adult brother, driving through town with their Dad, spotted me and said "Man, to be 18 again!"  I was 13.

Now I hate my body for different reasons.  It betrayed me.

When I had Meadow, I remember thinking that labor and childbirth were not so bad.  Sure, there were some painful moments, but it was not what they make it out to be on movies and TV.  My mother-in-law at that time told me I'd need to be heavily drugged.  It was the most horrible thing a woman would ever experience and so painful!  I wouldn't be able to handle it.  I did end up getting a small dose of some sort of pain relief and later regretting it.  

Meadow nursed easily.  So easily, in fact, that again, I was taken by surprise.  So many women complain of the engorgement, difficulty getting the baby to latch on, nipple soreness.  I didn't experience a single one of those things.  Meadow was a dream nurser!  Plus I had the added bonus of no period for 10 months after!

Then, when Meadow was about a year old, I was surprised to learn, she'd soon be joined by a brother or sister.  It turned out to be a sister, because we now have Lennon.  I decided this time around to skip the drugs, and go au naturale.  I'm glad I did.  Giving birth is tiring enough, let alone at 3:15 AM, but with drugs on top?  I got to bond with my new baby without the added grogginess.  She didn't nurse as well as Meadow, but she was still a healthy, happy baby and I had minimal soreness and engorgement.

I had such a feeling of accomplishment after I gave birth to both of my girls.  I felt like, Hey I was meant to do this.  My body was made to do this.  My body is a phenomenal baby-maker.  It was too easy.  Get knocked-up, carry the baby around for nine months, complain my way through, and spit out a healthy, squirmy, perfect little version of me.  To have and to hold for the rest of my life.  But Holden....

My pregnancy was... normal.  So normal you couldn't call it anything but.  I had morning sickness all day everyday for the first 4 months.  I caught a couple stomach bugs throughout flu season.  When I started getting big, I had all the typical aches and pains.  I had a glucose test that came back a little high but after another 3 hour glucose, the doc said it was all good.  At 36 weeks I was 1 cm dilated and 50% effaced, Holden's heart rate in the 140s.  At 37 weeks I was 2cm dilated and 50% effaced, Holden's heart rate in the 150s.  I wasn't scared.  I wasn't worried.  I wasn't prepared.  At 38 weeks I was 2.5 cm dilated and 50% effaced.  Holden's heart rate...

Holden's birth was physically easy.  And postpartum, I was physically perfect.  Bleeding was minimal and was over within two weeks. I was up and moving around within an hour. I walked out of the hospital instead of being wheeled out.  My milk came in bountiful enough to feed five babies.  I am already back into my prepregnancy pants 6 weeks later.  So why is my body doing everything perfectly if it couldn't keep my baby alive?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


I guess the stage of grief I'm going through the most right now is anger.  Although I do throw in some denial and bargaining.  But mostly anger.  I'm pissed.  This is not something that should happen to anyone. But why me?  Why the man I love?  Why my little girls?  And mostly, why my son?  My only son, my baby, my Holden?  He was such a perfect little boy.  Perfectly sweet, and precious, and beautiful.
I read people's blogs, and support group posts.  I see how everyone is so supportive and they all come together to hold each other up in their times of sorrow. And I HATE it. I don't belong there.  This isn't my life.  I should be completely oblivious to their plights, nursing my baby on the couch, unshowered, hair a mess, unfed, and tired as hell.  But HAPPY, nursing my baby on the couch.  All damned day long!  I shouldn't be able to clean the house or have dinner ready when Lee gets home. I should be napping all day while Holden sleeps on my chest.  I should be doing mounds and mounds of poopy, pukey laundry.  But I'm not.  I'm sitting here at the stupid computer writing a blog about how bad losing my baby sucks and reading blogs and posts from other people who've gone through the same thing.
Sometimes I hate these people.  Why do they have to exist?  If none of them existed, that would mean that stillbirth never happens and we would still have Holden.  I hate their posts about god and how he needed an angel, our babies are watching over us from heaven, too beautiful for earth, and how god only takes the best.  I hate it.  God is cruel.  A loving god would never do this to anyone.  A loving god would have given him back at the first wail that erupted from my Meadow's throat after I told her that Holden was gone.  He would have taken it back as Lennon lay there sobbing quietly as she lay in my arms the day we found out Holden's heartbeat was gone.  He's not in a better place now.  The best place for my baby is home with his family that loves him.  In his mother's arms, on his Daddy's knee, surrounded by brothers and sisters that will play with him and make him laugh, enveloped in love by aunts, uncles, grandparents, friends.  NOT in a cold grave in the dirt.  That's not a better place.  And if there is a heaven, it could have waited.
God doesn't give you more than you can handle?  Well I don't WANT to handle this!  I don't want to and I shouldn't have to.  I don't want to figure out the budget and see if we can afford Lee's memorial tattoo for Holden.  I don't want to think about how much it's going to cost for gas to get to the cemetery and back.  I don't want to buy any sculptures or necklaces or ornaments to remember Holden by.  I don't want to update my Facebook status with lyrics that explain how sad I am that I miss him.  I don't want to type "stillbirth support" into Google.  I don't want to decide whether I should make a scrapbook or just do a photo album with the 9 (NINE!) pictures I have of my baby.  I don't want to have to keep reminding my daughters that they do, in fact, have a brother.  I don't want to sit on the couch with the love of my life getting drunk 2 weeks after I've given birth and talk about the baby that we couldn't bring home.  I don't want to keep explaining to people that I'm on maternity leave because I DID give birth to a baby and will not go back to work earlier than six weeks.  I don't want to have to figure out what kind of birth control to use so that I can try to make sure I can get pregnant again.
I don't want to get pregnant again!  I want Holden!  I want Lee to get "fixed" and for us to be done!  I WANT HOLDEN!!!!  But I can't have him.  He shouldn't live in my heart.  He should live in my arms.
This is my life right now.