About Me

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I am a lot of things, wife, sister, friend, and aunt but most of all I am a grieving mother of a lost baby girl taken too soon.  This blog is my way of venting and surviving.  I'm trying to find my way back to funny, sarcastic, and happy but it's quite a journey.

Friday, September 26, 2014

The very worst Lydia day

    In my previous post "Every day is different" I talked about  good days and bad days.  And that normally I know what kind of day it is from the moment I wake up.  Well, this past Tuesday was the very worst Lydia day I have had to date. 

    My day went to shit the moment I walked into my office. I was sitting at my desk and a very nice co-worker came over to my cube.  He smiled at me while looking at the pictures I have hanging on my cube walls. I knew where this was going but I couldn't react fast enough to change the outcome. He then turned to me and said,"so where are the pics"

    You see, At 6 months pregnant I wasnt really showing yet.  I just looked a little chubbier.  So I didnt tell everyone I worked with about the baby yet.  So when this particular co-worker came and asked for pics I wasn't sure how he knew about the baby so, I wanted to be sure what he was talking about before offering up more information. 

I replied"what pics" cautiously.  He smiled and said "you know the beautiful baby pics"

My heart sank. 

     All I could manage to get out of my mouth at that moment was, "it didn't work out" I still can't bring myself to say outloud that Lydia died.  I don't know who I felt worse for, this caring man who really thought he was doing the right thing by asking to see my babies pic or myself for only having pics of my  angel baby to show him. 

    After what felt like the longest minute of my life, he appologized hugged me and walked away with the very worst look. The look that I hate. The sympathy and sad eyes look that makes me want to vomit. 

 It didn't take long after he left for my world to crumble.  My eyes welled up and I had to run out of my work area.  I hid in the breast feeding room to calm myself down but I couldn't get it together.  I realized I needed to leave.  I needed to go home.  I pulled my boss out of a meeting and let him know what was going on.  He didnt want me to take the train so noticably upset so he drove me home.  I was fine the entire way home until I unlocked my door into my safe place. Home.   It felt like every feeling I had been avoiding the past few weeks had come rushing back.  I couldn't stop the tears and I couldn't leave my couch.  Here it was all over again like it was yesterday.

Lydia's dead. Our baby girl is gone.

Kevin came home early that day.  He has learned the que's of I need you home so quickly that I no longer even have to ask.  He's a good man, that other half of mine. 

You would think that was the end of the worst day ever but, sure enough, it wasn't. 

We have an angel on our front porch that I rubbed some of Lydia's ashes on.  I wanted to make sure that she could always be at home with us.  On this particular day not only did someone ask to see baby pics but this was also the day that Kevin knocked our angel down the front stairs.  She shattered in pieces and Kevin felt horrible. He picked her up and brought her upstairs to me.  All he could say was "I'm sorry, I broke her" I knew he didn't mean to but I couldnt help it.  I started crying again.  This wasn't an ordinary cry, this was a everything in me just burst out sort of cry.  This was the very worst day.  I just needed it to be over. 

I know there will be so many more bad Lydia days in our future but I hope somehow they get easier than this....

Friday, September 19, 2014

Wake me when September ends


Wake me when September ends....
Today is a hard day for my family.  19 Years ago today my mother died.  It’s hard to believe that I have lived longer without her than I did with her.  I was 12 on the September morning that my mother took her last breath.  I was so young and forced to grow up pretty quickly.  I don’t have a ton of memories of my mother that she wasn’t sick during.  I remember shopping A LOT, I remember she liked to go on rides to look at the houses we could never afford, I remember she liked detective shoes and QVC, I remember she was mouthy, Probably where I get it from.  But most of what I remember are things I try to forget.  Like not wanting to go home when my sister was out because I was afraid that I would be the one that found her.  I try to forget her crying when her hair fell out, her throwing up A LOT, how angry she was because she just wasn’t ready, and how her death has separated my family into two. 
Today is hard for a few reasons.  First, for as long as I can remember I believed that everyone has one event that shapes them into the person they are meant to be.  Good or bad.  Mine was bad and happened when I was 12 so I got it out of the way early.   I spent most of my life with this theory.  Thinking that my mother would forever watch over me and I would be spared by anything that was TOO bad.  Well, I was wrong.  Lydia’s death proved how wrong I was.  I laid in my hospital bed waiting to find out if Lydia was alive, I begged my mother to help her.  To save her and make sure that she pulled through.  I’m not sure where my mother was that day but it definitely was not watching over me and my sister Kelly.  She must have been with my other two sisters that day because she left us hanging.  For this reason today is especially hard.  Today is hard because although I will always miss my mother, I am MAD at her.  Where was she? My sisters Kim and Michelle couldn’t have possibly needed her more than I did that day.  My anger towards her is almost as strong as the guilt I feel.  For that reason, today is an especially hard day.  Wake me when September ends….

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

This is who I used to be....

I used to be someone that laughed a lot, was sarcastic, and loved to go out and meet people. I am a story teller.  I think mainly because I have grown up with all women I am a little dramatic by nature.  Sometimes it drives Kevin crazy but over all I think he has always liked the excitement I bring to us because of my dramatic nature.   

But, I am not that person anymore.  I am someone completely different.  WE are completely different. 

WE are now:
Poor Jen and Poor Kevin that lost their baby

When something like this happens you lose who you were.  People seem to continue to treat you like you will break and that you are made of glass.  I constantly have to remind people that treating me like that makes it worse. It makes me feel worse.   I hate the sad eyes and sympathy.  I hate "Poor Jen" I will never regain any part of who I used to be if everyone continues to treat me like I am forever broken.  Yes, I will never be the same person again, Yes I will always feel a hole in my heart, and I may never know "Normal" again but I dont want to be looked at differently for the rest of my life.  I liked who I was.  I liked happy Jen.  I liked being pain in the ass, sarcastic, hang out with the guys, type of Jen....I long for the day that Jen returns.  I hope she returns. 

Edgartown childrens memorial light house

The Museum, as steward of the Edgartown Lighthouse, has created the Children's Memorial to memorialize children who have died. It is believed to be the only one of its kind available for children of all ages everywhere.

Families can have their child's name carved into  cobblestone and placed permanently into the foundation of the lighthouse. The blocks are laid by the shoreline in a pattern echoing the rhythm of the waves, marked by compass points. It is the Museum's hope that the child's name will be seen in the context of eternity.

We chose this as Lydia's final resting place.  We scattered her ashes peacefully in the water, just the two of us.  We sat on the beach and talked about how we loved her and how we would carry on her memory.  This, was a good day! In late spring next year Lydia's brick will be placed and we will return to visit our baby girl. 

 Take a look at our pics below. 

If you are interested in learning more about the light house here is the link:

http://www.marthasvineyardhistory.org/childrenmemorial.php

Saying goodbye is the hardest thing






He grieves in silence


Even though the loss of Lydia is something that Kevin and I share I will say that the grieving process is very different.  When they say men are from Venus and women are from Mars that applies to the way both sexes grieve as well.  I have noticed this first hand.  It is much more socially acceptable for a mother to write and talk about how she misses her baby. 
Men are less verbal than women by nature, my husband is even less verbal than most.  This makes it much more difficult for people to see that he’s hurting too.  Often time’s people will ask him “How is your wife holding up” he always politely responds and moves on with his day.  He quickly mentions it at home to let me know someone was asking about me.  But, when I think about it, I think how much that must suck for him! How very little it seems like people outside of our immediate support system, ask about him.  He is going through the same loss.  Only, he is forced to grieve in silence.
A man who loses a child loses a large part of his dreams. He grieves what could or should have been.  I think fathers of girls daydream about walking their daughter down the aisle and dancing that first dance at the wedding. They think about how they will be forced to play dolls and dress up just to see their little girls smile.  They dream about taking care of their family, and seeing themselves in someone else.  Wiping tears away, and feeling like a hero because of the way their little girl looks at them. 
I try to remember that even though Kevin didn’t carry Lydia in his body that she was just as much a part of him as she was me.  I at least got to feel her grow inside me for 6 months. 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

B is for Baby

                             
Talking is Releasing
Go ahead and mention my child,
The one who died you know.
Don't worry about hurting me further,
The depth of my pain doesn't show.

Don't worry about making me cry.
I'm already crying inside.
Help me to heal by releasing
The tears that I try to hide.

I'm hurt when you just keep silent,
Pretending she didn't exist.
I'd rather you mention my child,
Knowing that she has been missed.

You asked me how I was doing.
I say "pretty good" or "fine."
But healing is something ongoing.
I feel it will take a lifetime.
Elizabeth Dent
             

Friday, September 5, 2014

Back to normal??

For 6 months people kept telling me things would get better when I got back to normal.  When I started my normal routine again. What I wish I said is that "I will never get back to normal" Part of me is gone.  Part of me is broken and will be forever.   What is normal to a grieving parent? It's not normal to have to grieve your child.   I dont even know what my normal is anymore. I dont remember normal.

If you define "normal" by having a routine then yeah, I'm back to work.  Yeah, I take a shower everyday and now I eat more than rabit food.  Yeah, I've gone out with my friends and write posts on facebook, and sometimes I laugh and smile but I am nowhere close to NORMAL.  I will never be normal again.  I will never be the same person again.  I will always be a little more synical and waiting for my world to crumble again.  And like it or not, I will never have a blissful pregnancy.  I will never be carefree while pregant.  I lost my innocence.  I truly envy the women that get that.  Those women that dont get super nervous if they dont feel their babies every minute of every day.  I will never have that again.  That was taken away from me the minute my appendix ruptured.

Often times I feel as though maybe I'm being punished.  Maybe when I found out I was pregnant I wasnt happy enough.  That those first 3 days wondering if we were ready put some kind bad vibe into the world and because of that Lydia was taken from us. That guilt eats at me every day.  There is also another guilt.  The guilt that I feel that I should have questioned the doctors more.  I often lay awake with the shoulda, coulda, woulda's.  But, I cannot change the outcome.  Lydia is still gone.  And we will forever have to live without her.  All of that guilt is what I hope fades.  I can't imagine living through another pregnancy still feeling so much pain from Lydia and having all of the shoulda, coulda, woulda's.   

Every day is different

Every day is different except one thing.....

Every day Lydia is the first thing I think about when I wake up and the last thing I think about before I go to bed.  Some days shes also my everything in between.  Those are the worst days.  On those days I just want to stay in bed.  But I dont.  I wake up, I shower, I try to eat, and remind myself that tomorrow is a new day and....

Every day is different

On good days I only think about her a 100 times instead of a million.  On good days there are no pregnant women, babies, or baby pictures or announcements on facebook.  On good days you get a peaceful date with your husband, one that you dont talk about how sad you are.  A day that you watch a movie and completely forget your life problems.  Those days are rare. 

If something like this happens to you, you learn real quick how to make excuses not to do things or go places. You try not to answer your phone.  You learn the look of sad eyes and sympathy.  You hear the whispers of concerned friends and family.  You learn your triggers and usually know pretty quickly in the morning what kind of day it is going to be but then again....

Every day is different

Sometimes the only thing that goes through my head is having another baby.  What I would call him/her.  What they would be like.  How fun it will be. Will he/she look like me? Or will they look like Kevin.  These, are good days.  These are the days I feel like life will go on.  These are the days I feel semi normal and then, there's tomorrow and...

Every day is different

Tomorrow could be a bad day! Tomorrow someone can try to relate to me and totally not get it, say something completely stupid and make me wonder why I even bother talking to them, Tomorrow I could be walking down the street and run into a day care group pulling their baby carriages down the street, Tomorrow I could see a pregnant women rubbing her pregnant belly, ear to ear with a smile.  Or worse see some teenage girl thats pregnant and doing something stupid because she takes for granted what she is about to have. Tomorrow, could be one of those days I choke back my tears just to leave my house.  Tomorrow, could be a BAD DAY! But who knows...

Every day is different!

Above and beyond


  Some people in our lives have gone above and beyond anything we could have ever expected.  Some, have let us down more than I could have ever imaged.  I am actually thankful for both.  Neither Kevin or I will ever take our friendships or our relationship with eachother for granted again.  We now know the true importance of a good support system.  We know who is there, and who is not.  I know where and with who I want to spend my time with.  And during all of this I have realized that friendships, relationships and family are a lot of work and I should only be putting that  effort into people that deserve it.  People that are there for us when we need them.   People that matter to us. 

This has shown me (As if I didnt know enough before) Kevin is my rock.  Without him, I probably wouldnt have gone through test after test, had tubes put in my stomach to take out the infections, Seen a therapist, or to be honest, made it out of the hospital at all.  I would have given up.  He made me fight.  The thought of causing him anymore pain made  dealing with my pain a little more bearable.  Our marriage is stronger every day because of this bond we have over Lydia.  Don't get me wrong, I wish it were different and that Lydia was here.  But maybe, this bond was her gift to us.  A way to remember that we can over come anything together.  Atleast that's how I want to think of it. 

So many people have shown us what family and friendship is about. Kevin and I got nearly 100 cards and dozens of emails from family and friends and even practical strangers letting us know they care.  I came home from the hospital both times I was admitted, to a house full of flowers and baskets of sweets.  People dropped off dinners, and I once came home from my doctors appointment to my garden completely done over.  People have shown my family more kindness then ever imagineable.  It's easy to be a friend or a good relative when things are going well. It's not so easy sitting by and watching a loved one in pain. 

During a time that your hurting so bad, it's easy to be mad at the world.  To hate everyone and everything.  But for me, it opened my eyes to the people we are surrounded by. People that are there during the good and the bad.  People like my sister Kelly that sat by my side every day and every night reminding me of a what a strong women does when she has to.  My neice, who took the train, after working 8 hours and taking care of a 4 year old every day, to the point where I had to tell her to stay home. My mother in law who was there reminding me what you do for your babies, even when their not babies anymore.  My father in law and step mother in law that stepped in and took care of all the arrangements so that we didnt have to worry. And countless friends and other family members that kept calling to check on us day in and day out.  For all of these people, they know who they are, we are truly greatful.  They all continue to keep us going. 


The point of this post is that even when everything seems to be to much, that you cant go on, look around.  There are people that will teach you things even on the darkest day.  Your support system really has the power to make or break you.  If you find yourself surrounded by people that care, you truly can get through anything.  If you find yourself surrounded by selfishness, then take a double look and maybe its time to reevaluate who you have in your life. That is what I am trying to take away from all of this. 

Our story

 We were going to call her Itty, Bitty, Liddie.  Her real name was Lydia Mae.  She was perfect! It's funny how when you become pregnant your imagination runs wild.  You think about what they will look like, who's personality they will have? What funny things will they do? All of it.  But you never imagine what if they dont make it? What if we lose our child? Atleast that's one thing I didnt imagine. How does anyone get through that? Well, Kevin and I have to.  We lost Lydia when I was 26 weeks pregnant.  It was our worst nightmare and something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy.   

One night after a very normal day I had severe stomach problems, a crazy pain that I had never felt before.   I knew something was off,  my husband and I rushed to the hospital.  After a very long wait they looked me over and  told me it was the flu to go home and rest.   My gut said they were wrong but, what do I know? I had been worried about every little thing the whole pregnancy and it was always nothing.  After all, I'm not a doctor so they must know more than I do. I should have trusted my instinct and my body.  It wasn't the flu.

   I went to bed in hope that when I woke up I would feel better. Not even 4 hours later I woke up in even more pain.  Vomiting and I couldn’t walk.  My husband rushed me back to the hospital.  Along the way we stopped every block so that I could throw up.  We couldnt even make it to our normal hospital.  We stopped at a smaller hospital not far from our house.  Right away they took my symptoms very seriously and put me in an ambulence to our normal hospital.  We waited for what seemed like forever and then went on to do a million tests. I was told that it was my appendix.  It had ruptured 2 days earlier and they needed to do an emergency surgery.  The entire time I was asking if this was safe for the baby and I was assured she would be fine. We went forward with the surgery.   The surgery went well, we were both recovering perfectly.   She was great and still going strong.

I rested pretty easily since I could still feel her moving and doctors were telling me how strong she was.  Now, I feel like they gave me false hope. 

  The next day I was ok for most of the day.  I had some pain and couldnt really move around, but I was told that was all normal. Since everything was going well I told my husband to go home and get some rest, it had been a very long 2 days.  He helped me to the bathroom before he started to pack up and go.  That is where and when our nightmare happened.  I didnt feel any contractions, any kind of labor pain, nothing at all.  It wasnt until I felt her come out of me that I had known anything was going on.  As soon as I realized, I reached down to grab my baby from the toilet, pulling at anything that I could get my hands on in order to get her out.  My husband still remembers my screams and cries from the bathroom that day.  I dont remember much, it's mainly a blur but I remember  in that moment I didnt matter, All I wanted was for Lydia to be ok.  The nurses and doctors poured in, holding me back, lifting me up, and not letting my hands go.   One nurse pushed my head into her chest and held me there so that I could not see all what was happening to myself or to Lydia.   I delivered an almost 2lb baby girl.  They wisked her away as I begged to know if she was breathing. She was alive for 20 minutes.  She was too little and lived in the poison in my body for too long.

I will never forget that day, I will never forget my Itty Bitty Liddy.  How beautiful and perfect she was.  How strong and how much sass and fight she had in her (even if she was only 2lbs)

I decided to blog because I feel I have a lot to say and a lot just sitting around in my head.  I want people to know my story, to know that I had a baby, and that she was real.  Some people call it a miscarriage, to me that is like saying she was never born.  That she was not formed or didnt exist.  That takes away from her 20 minute struggle to breath and my fight to save her. 

I had a baby.  She was beautiful and she was just as much real as any other child.  She just didnt get the opportunity to live for long.  But boy was she a fighter!