"You get what you pay for, but I just had no intention of living this way." -Counting Crows

Why We're Here...

My husband David and I delivered a stillborn Baby Boy that we loved, and wanted. Our first and only son, Logan, had Down Syndrome. Our daughter's smile is a little light in the darkness. She turned one year old three days after our sweet Logan tip-toed away on January 24, 2009. After 2 1/2 years we found out we were having another baby, whom we affectionatly called Rudy. Just shy of 6 weeks we found out Rudy was Ectopic. Rudy was surgically removed on May 26, 2011 delivering another blow to our already broken hearts.


Wondering, and forever altered.

So.


I have to be honest. Recently a few people IRL have found my blog. It makes me feel weird. I'm a pretty private closed off person IRL and I keep my cards close to my heart. So having every raw emotion splashed across the pages of this blog to be read, picked apart, misunderstood and judged by people I see on a regualr basis...well, its awkward. I'm trying to just deal with it. This is my safe place. This is where I come to work through the horror that is having a child die before his first breath was ever taken. But I still feel weird. I don't like being that transparent. I don't like feeling that vulnerable to people I know IRL. Especially people who can not begin to fathom where I've been.

But. I'm trying to deal with it. I'm trying to get past the awkwardness so that I can feel safe and comfortable here again.


Anyway...


I never thought a year and a half ago that I would ever be in the place that I am today. Hopefully that offers encouragement to others who may just be starting out. It does get easier to live with, in time. I don't have nearly the amount of bad days that I used to. Now they're not so much bad days as bad moments. I still don't like hearing his name called out randomly, like at the Zoo today. There's just something about that. I'm hanging out, oblivious, most likely not thinking of Logan and I hear his name called and its like being slammed in the face with it again. Some people think that this would desensitize me, but I'm sorry...it does not. Not anymore than hearing my husbands name called, not any more than hearing my living child's name called. The name Logan is special for me, almost sacred. I'll never get used to hearing it called out randomly. Songs do it to me too. There are just way too many songs out there that fit how I feel. Walking this evening I had one loop through my Shuffle. Creed. Don't Stop Dancing. The very beginning of the song is this:

"At times life is wicked and I just can't see the light. A silver lining sometimes isn't enough to make some wrongs seem right. Whatever life brings I've been through everything and now I'm on my knees. But I know I must go on. Although I hurt, I must be strong. Because inside I know that many feel this way."

Anyhow, you can read the rest of the lyrics here if you want. The song tried to kill me. And like some sadist I replayed the song like four times! I'm hormonal this week. Driving back from the zoo this morning I started crying. Why? Get this. Because I started to think about if I died, that my daughter wouldn't remember me (she's just shy of 3). She wouldn't know the enormous amount of love I have for her. She'd grow up wondering about me, who I was, if I loved her. It crushed me to think of it. I don't know what my problem was. I just chalked it up to hormones. they're never rational anyhow.

I miss Logan. I miss the dream of the life we planned on. I miss the innocence of not knowing about this side of reality. I miss the thought of having my two kids, the days I had planned for us. I've come to realize that even should I choose to go on and have another child, Logan will always be missing. He should be here even after baby number three (coyly referred to as Rudy these days). It should be Aubrey, Logan and Rudy. Three. Or Four. But it never will be. He will always be missing. Its a hard thing to grasp for myself. I don't expect anyone IRL to ever get a handle on that either. You know. You're supposed to move on. Have more kids. Forget it happened. I guess. I dunno. Doesn't seem possible. I think the reality of it is that the parents of these dead children just stifle and lock away thier thoughts, memories and dreams of these "secret" babies so that the outside world won't label them as weird or crazy. Not able to cope, get over, move on. If Logan would've died at the age of five I highly doubt the outsiders would feel that way, much less have the audacity to even suggest perhaps its time to move on. But because he was a baby...because we didn't have "real" memories with him...because he didn't really have a life...we should move on. What about the memories we do have? The memories of him kicking? The memories of the sound of his heart beat? The memories of his dead body craddled in my arms? What do we do with those memories? How do we get over those? Move past them?

Logan would've been 17 months now. A month older than Aubrey would have been when he should've been born. I struggle with the fact that I can not imagine what my life would be like with a 2 year 10 month old and a 17 month old, especially one with Down Syndrome. I had no problem imagining it before Logan died...but now its just weird. I try. But I don't see it anymore, not even with Rudy. I see Aubrey with children about his age and it rips open a gash in my heart that is a fraction from being unbearable. I try to not think that she is lonely. I try to not think that she will most likely grow up to feel ambivalent, maybe curious at best, about the little boy who was her brother. This little boy that I have so much love for, she will not. I have lots of brothers. And I can not for one second imagine what my life would've been like, who I would have been, if any one of those boys never was.

These days that's what I struggle with the most. Wondering what life would've been like. Wondering what I would've been like. Wondering what Aubrey would've been like had she grown up with a brother. Wondering what we would all be like if Logan had been given the chance to have a life here on earth. Wondering, and never knowing. Forever altered, and yet not knowing to what extent or just how.

I miss that tiny life. I still have so many tears for that little boy.

::: ::: :::

On a different note I am proud to announce that I have lost the thirteen pounds of depression weight that I put on after Logan died. In fact, I've lost another pound more than that. The day that I surpassed my pre-pregnancy weight I cried. Those blasted pounds were just another reminder. I hated those 13 pounds more than any of the other ones. Put on because I just couldn't cope with what happened to me. Put on because I wanted to feel joy, comfort...anything other than what I was. Put on because I didn't care anymore. They were the hardest freakin' 13lbs a person could loose. It took me a year and nine months to get more than 3 pounds to budge. But I finally did, and though I have another 45lbs to go to my goal weight, I feel like a new person not having those 13lbs on me anymore. I blog about my struggles with weightloss in the face of depression, toddlerhood and life at my blog The Fatty Cake Girls Club if you'd like to wander on over and gawk at me there too.

Getting it together

There are times when things are really bleak. Then there are times like now where things feel like maybe, just maybe we're all getting back to "normal" and life is moving forward and I'm ok with it. Its a nice relief. Its hard to be sad. It takes a lot out of me when I get depressed, and I don't like who I am. Nor do I recognize myself.

I recently decided to really buckle down and loose all of my weight. Not just "some weight". I feel like I have reasons enough to motivate me, and keep me motivated. I won't go into them all because their the same reasons as everyone else (I'm tired of how I feel/look, my kids, my spouse, etc). But recently it came to my attention that should we ever decide to have another child, I need to give that child the best possible chance to start life with. Being overweight doesn't give them the best possible chances (gestational diabetes for starters). So, if I'm ever to have another child, my first priority is to loose these 50lbs and get my butt in shape, the right way. The healthy way. Because not only does The Muffin and the Husband deserve that, and me too, btw, but so does the little sprout I'm hoping for, my little Rutabaga (my dh decided to name our next child this, just in case, because we are so tired of hearing Logan's name on a regular basis. Especially since when we picked it out it wasn't even in the top 100, and last year it was in the top 5!!). All future reference to this child will be known as Rooty! LOL! Ok, not seriously. Not that the nickname might not stick, poor kid, but we promise to only name our children normal names. :)

Anyhow, so I'm on day 8 of the most successful diet stint I've ever been on. 8 days of eating on target and burning the amount I should (thanks to Apex's BodyBugg). I have a separate blog for that (http://thefattycakegirlsclub.blogspot.com) where I blather on about my diet excursions. You can join me over there if you'd like to gawk at me and see how terribly I have struggled in the face of depression and emotional eating for the past year and a half, and how I plan to only kick butt from this point forward! It ought to be real interesting!

I'd love to know if there are any of you fellow BLM's (or dad's for that matter) who blog about trying to loose weight post traumatic event. Let me know, I'll come follow you there!

We'll I'm off to make Potstickers for lunch. Keeping strong. Not caving in to the brownies that I really want to eat (even if I have to first bake them). Not caving into the soda I want SO BAD, or the Mochas! Feeling confident that I can get through this!! I mean hey, I survived the death of a baby...anything after this is cake right?? Mmm...cake!

Waves & Stages...There and back again.

Grief comes in waves and stages. We all know that. I've been there, and back again.

If nothing else has been proven in the past year and a half, this has; I am hypersensitive to everything these days. It doesn't take much to make me blue anymore. My mom used to say that things rolled off me like water on a ducks back. These days I absorb it. I store it up in little bottles and stick them on a shelf. I collect sorrow and grief in all its forms anymore.

This has been one crappy week. My emotions have been spun tight, unraveled and tangled together, only to be sifted through each night while I lay awake and obsess on things that can not be, things that might be, and things that are. Lately it is making me physically ill again. Between the mess of thinking and hoping and being so sure that I was pregnant, only to start my cycle...my house sitting stagnant on a stagnant market, with teasers dangling and nothing coming to fruition...to finally finding a new home for my dog, only to be saddled with so much guilt and sorrow over the decision that I can not sleep, and am trying to drown my sorrows in food to which point it actually hurts...and then reinforcing the issues I have with myself and my complete lack of ability to stick to my diet.

They say not to do anything major for a year after the loss of a baby. Don't move, don't quit your job, don't get a new pet...or get rid of one. Right around the time I got pregnant with Logan I started getting very disillusioned with my dog. When Logan died...well, she took the brunt of it. Some people turn to their pets for comfort. For me, Kaida was just one more thing I couldn't deal with. She stressed me out on a level I couldn't handle and I begged my husband to let me get rid of her. It took a year and a half to find a new home for Kaida, well past the "recommended" time frame, home that I thought was good enough for her. I didn't want to place her in a home where she wouldn't get anymore love or attention than we were giving her. This past Friday I found such a home. Its perfect really. Its everything we hoped for. And now that she is gone I find myself feeling as though I failed her. She counted on me to love her and give her a good home, and I let her down. I broke my husbands heart in the process. I took away my daughters puppy. I did it because I didn't think I could cope, and now I feel like a whiny selfish bitch. I keep trying to remind myself that its for the best. In the long run it will be better for everyone. Kaida deserved a home where she would get the attention she so craved and deserved. She is a great dog. She is sweet as can be, and the problem laid with me. I couldn't be the "mommy" she needed, and damn it if that doesn't ring deep into my soul on a level I can barely comprehend. But here I am once again feeling as though I failed my baby. The guilt has crept into my belly and is sitting there like a stone. I failed. Again.

Logan's death changed everything. I'm just beginning to really see this, how deeply it all runs. Just how much has changed. Things I never considered, things that are still being revealed to me. It scares me. This event that I couldn't control, couldn't stop, couldn't prevent, couldn't fix will hold a power over me that I will not ever be able to reconcile. It makes me feel broken. A deep down sort of broken. Irreparable. Scared. Sad.

Will I never be me again? Will I forever feel like the shell of the woman I was?

How I pictured my son.

I guess I'm breaking some horrible law or rule or code by posting a picture of some random kid. But I did it. The thing is this little boy is exactly the same age Logan would've been. 15 months or so about now. And, I always pictured Logan looking just like this. Blonde straight hair, blue eyes. Bruiser looking sorts dude. It made me sad. This whole week just sort of sucks. Then I got to see them play together! Because honestly I just needed one more dagger!
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

I guess its happy at the park.

What a difference a year makes. This month marks a year since we had this willow planted at the park near our home in memory of Logan. It was such a scrawny tree last year, but this summer it practically exploded. I guess its happy here at the park.
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

I'm trying to resume life as if Logan dying didn't change EVERYTHING. But it did.

So. I thought I was pregnant. Sigh. For the first time in about ten months my cycle was 3 days late. I took a test after I was one day late and it was negative, but the test had expired months ago, so I thought maybe it was just too old. I woke up this morning and I just knew I had to be pregnant. Three days is a lot late for me. And I won't lie, I was excited. I was scared too, but the hope and excitement over shadowed the fear. A few hours later I started. Of course I did. Not yesterday when I was still wondering, but today...after I had convinced myself it must be true.

The thing is, we aren't "trying". David isn't ready yet. Sigh. So he was scared, or nervous or whatever. And I think this morning when I passed the news on that I wasn't pregnant he tried to not cheer. But he certainly didn't sound disappointed or sad. I was very sad. I cried and it was weird and awkward, and I quickly hung up. Its hard to be on such extreme opposites on this issue.

I'm trying to be patient. I'm trying to be understanding. I'm trying to not loose hope. I'm trying to not see the future flying at me with the speed of a freight train and the big fat age thing haunting me. I'm trying to shut up that scary voice that says by the time he is ready...I'll be too old and the chances of DS so high it would be stupid to risk it. I'm trying to keep a clear head about the whole thing and be positive and I am trying, I swear I am trying, to be content with what I have now. It just wasn't supposed to be like this. And I'm trying to resume life as if Logan dying didn't change EVERYTHING. But it did. And sometimes that reality is really hard on me.

And today these cycle hormones are my nemesis. And today I am sad all over again for the ones that may never be, because of the one who was...and then so quickly wasn't. And all over again I hate what happened to us. I hate that I am here. I hate that Logan died and I hate that it changed everything and I never got a say in the matter.

Just for laughs

I saw this at the mall today and had to laugh. It also made me think of Aunt Becky over at Mommy Needs a Vodka!
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

The Dead Baby Club: Welcoming our new coauthors

The Dead Baby Club: Welcoming our new coauthors: I am pleased to announce the addition of three new coauthors to the DBC blog team. Please welcome Elaine, Amanda and Jess to the DBC Blog team!

Stepping stone

I saw this stepping stone while at the farmers market. I've never seen this little poem and I thought it was so pretty that I would share it.
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

A hilarious post!

Angie over at Still Life with Circles posted this little movie! It is so hilarious! Go check it out. No one gets dead baby humor like a fellow DBM in the trenches!

My marriage

Brittany contacted me on Facebook and asked me how the tragedy of Logan’s death affected my marriage. This is what I came up with.


Prior to Logan's death my husband and I had a solid relationship of about 13 years or so. We also had a daughter a year prior to Logan's death, which I think changes things considerably. With out those two things in play, I can not say how our marriage would have fared. My husband has ventured so far as to say that had Logan been our first baby, he doesn't think I would still be around. Though I played with the idea of escaping, and though yes, having a baby living at home to help me "snap out of it" and focus on my responsibilities to raising her kept me intact at home, I think I yearned for the companionship of someone who knew what the heartbreak felt like. I doubt that I would have wandered far, or for very long since the safest most comforting place I found was in my husbands arms. They say “Misery loves company”, and David knew my brand of misery, and we could wallow in it together, and often did in those early days. But now, a year and a half later, I look back and I think that the biggest changes for my marriage were two things. First and foremost I became terrified of loosing my husband (and daughter) either through him leaving me or their death. Know one ever said that “this” would leave one feeling rational and sane. But I was terrified (and I still struggle with this) that God was gonna swoop down and take them too! Or Karma, or the Devil or just plain old fate! But that they were going to be snatched from me, and that in turn I would die of sheer misery and broken heartedness. On my more sane days I tended to cling to change number two. That change being that if my marriage could survive something so gut wrenchingly terrible and come out on the other side still in love with each other, still able to cling to each other, still able to look to the other for comfort…well then, we could survive absolutely anything. I remember a nurse saying something to me when I was in labor with Logan (whom I already knew was dead) to the gist of, “This is the worse thing that could ever happen to you, and you’ve already done it!” And I remember thinking at the time it was an odd thing for her to have said, but I so agreed with her. Because after all nothing could ever be worse than this, right? Well 18 months of time between the horror and now have taught me that no, in fact it is not the worse thing that could ever happen. Far worse things could have happened, and could still happen. But at the time I needed to hear that, and I held on to that with every ounce of energy I had in me. And somewhere along the line it became my mantra for my marriage. Nothing can happen in this marriage now that we can not survive, together. Because nothing, not even infidelity, will destroy me the way that my son’s death did, and if that didn’t destroy my marriage…well then nothing can.


However, communication is the key, in my unprofessional opinion anyhow. David and I don’t “talk” much. David’s not much of a “sit and share” kind of guy, and I tend to monopolize conversations. However, very soon after Logan died I started blogging, and I told David that if he wanted to know how I was feeling he should read my blogs. And if you’ve ready my early posts you’d know that I didn’t hold anything back, and I was about as bare as I could get. We never talked about my blog posts, but he knew where I was, that I wasn’t crazy, that others felt the same way…and that perhaps the way he was feeling might be like I was and that he wasn’t crazy either. Every now and again I’ll ask “How are you DOING?” Not really code or anything, but he knows what I mean. And he also tries to own up to his feelings as much as he can at the time. Most of the time I just accept it for what it is and know that however I am feeling, he is feeling whatever it is he is feeling. And early on I knew that I wasn’t okay and he wasn’t okay and that was okay too. Eventually we’d be okay, or we’d get help. I think we’re okay these days, for the most part. We grieved differently and tried to accept each others differences. In the end I think we’re surviving, since I think it’s a daily process, and though we’ve come out on the other side changed and with many a scars, we’re still mostly okay. We’re trying to find our new normal. We’re trying to live with the shadow that is Logan, trying to carry on life not as though he didn’t exist but as though his existence was something special meant for only the two of us to have enjoyed, even if for such a short time.

I guess in all reality I don’t really know how Logan’s death affected my marriage. I also don’t know how it affected me as a parent. Do I treat my daughter differently because I lost a son and maybe I value her life just a little more than I would have? Is the crazed fear for her life because I lost a child, or is every parent crazed out of their mind with fear when it comes to thier kids? Maybe I’m a little more tolerant to my husband’s flaws than I was before. Maybe I think he’s an extra special dad because I witnessed what he went through, and how he stood up, knocked the dirt off and picked up his daughter when I know he would have rather curled up in a ball and died. Maybe seeing my husband hold his dead son in his arms with tears streaming down his face, and not an ounce of shame for those tears, offered me a deeper connection with him. Because no matter what else goes down in our lives, and no matter who else comes and goes, we will always have that day that only the two of us will know on the level that we know it. Because no one else will hear that someone’s baby weighed 1lb 7oz, or hear the name Logan, or see a blond haired blue eyed boy, or see a child with Downs and look at me with eyes that will reflect the tremendous pain and knowledge that his will hold. Maybe he’s my war buddy. We witnessed it together, we trudged through it together, we survived it together and we came out on the other side…together. Knowing that makes everything else seem so insignificant in its light. Together we created life, and if went perfect. Then we created life and it all went wrong. We saw both ends of the spectrum together. We have our own sadistic horrible jokes that no one else would ever get. We have our shared sorrow, our shared delight. We have a life that we have built together that, though at times has been south of Hell, its our common ground, its what kept us together when grief and depression tried to rip us apart. Knowing now that not even the worse possible thing that could have happened could tear us apart, what is there left for us to conquer? If our marriage goes south at this point, well then, I guess it will be because we quit trying to survive the little things.

And I hope I never quit trying to survive.

Nightmares and things that won't go away!

So, just as a preliminary statement to the dream I'm about to tell you about: Logan was induced and delivered vaginally. I've never had any major belly surgery (other than gull bladder removal) or C-Section.

Last night I had a dream, nightmare, whatever. I don't remember much but the gist of it was this; I was in a warehouse like place with a bunch of my family and we were cleaning it up and organizing (insert real life preparing to move drama here). There was chatter going on about surgeries and I made some flippant, off handed remark about "try having your belly ripped open and your uterus yanked out!" to which it slowly dawned on me that I had had a hysterectomy. I started to freak out and scream at my mother (who was spaced out and not paying attention, so I repeated myself several times) "Mom! Mom! Did they take out my uterus?? Did they take my uterus!!!??" No one was listening to me, and I was freaking! Then I woke up, with that horrible sensation that your dream was real and it takes a moment for your brain to go "Oh wait a minute! That wasn't real, I still have a uterus...I think...don't I?...oh, yeah."

Why did I dream that messed up scenario? I guess it just goes to show you what your mind really thinks. My belly was ripped open and my baby and future babies were taken from me. YANKED! TAKEN! Sigh, and there it is again. Things that just won't go away. Feeling and thoughts that just won't leave me alone.

My grandmother died two weeks ago. Thanks. Yeah, it sucked. She had Alzheimer's and it was horrible and yes she's "better off where she is" (as if that's good enough, not to mention hauntingly familiar) but it still sucked big time. The biggest thing I couldn't get out of my head that seemed to want to play in a torturous loop over and over again was the fact that I had gone through this horrible incident with Logan and was not able to go to her. I wasn't able to talk to her about it, because she just wasn't there. David thought perhaps that wasn't such a bad thing, maybe she wouldn't have responded the way I desperately would've wanted her too, since so many didn't. But I couldn't shake it. And I hated it and I felt resentful. But the other interesting thing I noticed was that the grief didn't mean a whole lot. And I realized that I have become accustomed to grief, even comfortable in grief that to add more grief didn't really rock the boat. I felt more or less like "why not" and "lump it on, I can handle it, I've been doing this grief thing long enough to be a pro!" It was a weird sensation, and other than the initial news and then at the funeral itself, I didn't cry. I just set the grief down next to Logan's, and found a strange comfort in the familiarity of it all.

Past the final milestone, and closing a chapter

Seems like I have so much to always say on here, but lately I just don't "feel it". Almost like I'm moving past this part in my life where I need to dwell and talk it out. These past few months I feel mostly like...I dunno. Like it happened, it sucked, I can't change it, it still makes me sad...but...there is a whole other side to life. Things that make me happy. Things that make me smile. Things that aren't necessarily more important, but more...I dunno, current? I'm worrying about selling my house, about getting my dog a new home, about my daughter growing up extremely fast. More important? I don't know, but certainly more urgent for my attention.

The other day, a man that works very closely with my husband, his wife went into labor at 24 weeks. Their baby was born alive, and then tragically died 20 hours later. David thought this was "worse" than what we went through. I get what he meant, not that any loss is better or worse than the other, but that their situation seemed like one giant tease after another. She'd been having trouble for some time, her water broke weeks ago. But every time something happened, it seemed like there was hope. Its sad. Its sad because babies dying are sad, but its sad because I know where that woman and her family are right now. Its sad because the pain is so horrific, and nothing, absolutely nothing, makes it better. I am sad for them. I am sad for the journey they are starting down. I'm sad that nothing can stop it, and no one can help. I'm sad that they will have this life long hurt, this gapping hole in their lives where their son should have been.

I finally got Logan's ashes squared away. He is in a teal heart shaped pewter urn, sewn into an Alpaca Fur Teddy Bear (made from stillborn Alpacas), sitting in a plastic case, in what would have been his bedroom. I'm not crazy about him being in a room other than mine, but it was at the request of David, and I feel like the man should get some say so in all of this. Anyhow, the whole process sucked. The funeral home on the corner near our home transferred his ashes and supplied the urn. I had to go in and pick it out, there aren't words for that horror. Then a friend of ours added a zipper to the bear so we could put the urn inside. We had that done right around what should have been his first birthday. I'm relieved to have that chapter of this journey closed finally.

The final milestone. Logan's "birthday" came and went. We didn't celebrate. Its hard to celebrate a day that never happened, to try and guess that he would have been born at a specific time. I don't remember the day being much of anything. It was the day after my FIL's 60th birthday, and celebrating that day was tough. Knowing that we would have been celebrating both of their birthdays together. Knowing what a first birthday is like. That was tough. But it wasn't this monster gut wrenching day that I thought was headed my way. It was more or less just like any other day, just one in which I thought of Logan far more often.

So, here we are getting ready to hit the 18 month mark at the end of this month. It seems impossible that its gone so fast, especially the last 6 months. It seems so unrealistic, this life I am living that does not include my son. That I ever had a son, if even only for a wisp of a second. When I let myself think about it, think about him, it still makes me sick to my stomach, insanely sad, and confused on a level I can't even begin to comprehend, much less put into words. So I guess for self preservation purposes, I try not to think about what happened to my family. I try to dwell on the now, and the future. I hope for more children. I hope for a day where I can write in this blog and not cry. I hope for a look of peace on my husbands face. I hope for a time when this pain is gone, and not something that I have to daily push aside and try to ignore. I hope for contentment with the living child that I have, and not to forever feel robbed. I hope that my house sells, my dog finds a new home and that we may have a fresh start as a family and move forward carrying our precious son in our hearts, but leaving the horrible memories of his death behind us. That's where I am mostly these days, focused on being hopeful and having faith in a happy life I know I am destined to have.

But I still cry, and I still miss my son in every breath I take.

Making THAT call...

Ugh. So, I called the funeral home today. David and I decided (or at least I think we decided) to buy an Alpaca Fur Teddy Bear from the local Alpaca farm and place a heart shaped urn inside of it. The bears are made using the fur from stillborn Alpacas. We found out about it last spring and ever since its been a thought for Logan's ashes. So, I went out online to find a heart shaped urn today. Which was full of sunshine and rainbows! ARGH!!! This sucks!! Even 16+ months later!! It makes me feel all jittery and like I'm gonna puke! Anyhow... The website specified that it would hold up to 4 cubic inches of cremains. Sigh. Seriously? So they want me to measure it?? No. That's how I ended up on the phone with the funeral home. I made an appointment for Thursday morning. I'm taking the ashes in for them to look at, and a print out of the urn. They'll be able to know. Plus, they'll put his ashes in the urn for me...for free. Which is nice. He thought they might even have a heart shaped urn. Anyhow. So. Fun stuff. Now I'll try to remain calm until Thursday. As if. David wants to go along with me to pick out the bear. I thought that was nice. I just haven't been sure how much is me pushing him to be a part, and how much he really wants to be a part of. But he did tell me that he wants to go pick out the bear. So, maybe we'll do that Thursday evening. When we recently opened this can of worms back up I had wanted to have this done before Mother's Day. But that's this weekend. And now I'm not so sure how much of that I want to try to cope with ON Mother's Day, since I have a living daughter who I'm supposed to celebrate with and try to put aside the ugliness. Anyhow, his due date, or what should have been his first birthday is May 19th. So, I think I'll have it done before then. One more chapter to close. Hopefully it will give us some added closure or something. I can't believe its take us so long to deal with this. I just couldn't ever bring my self to purposefully tear the scab off. But that's all this process really is anyhow. Picking at scabs. As soon as it starts to heal over, it gets ripped off again!

What is it about birthdays?

Yesterday was my 33rd birthday. The thing is, I wasn't all that keen on celebrating. The night before I cried like a dork. Cause I'm not old or anything, right? Well, that's what everyone keeps telling me. That doesn't change the facts that two years ago was old enough. And here I am, even older. Man, time just slips away and leaves me feeling like I am grasping at empty air. So yesterday was weird. The Muffin was at grandma's, so I spent most of the morning chasing away stray tears that threatened to ruin the rare occasion of make-up that I vainly applied for my license picture. Go ahead and laugh, but I want my drivers license picture to not look stupid, and I went to get it renewed yesterday. I also went to a funeral. That's fun birthday stuff. Oddly enough though it seemed appropriate and didn't bother me. I didn't know the person anyhow, so it made it easier to go. That evening David took me to Carrabba's, my favorite place. That was great. Then I watched The Timetraveler's Wife (which is full of dead baby stuff FYI). It was a pleasant enough day, except that all day I felt the nagging urge to go sit by my sons tree. Its weird that I feel more of a pull to that tree than I do to the box of ashes sitting in my room.


Yes. Logan is still sitting in that horrid box that they shipped him to me in about a year ago. Sad I know. David and I talked about that fact today. I told him that I wanted to have Logan in an Urn before Mother's Day. He suggested that we pick up an Alpaca Fur Bear from the local Alpaca farm. The bears are made from stillborn Alpaca fur, so when I first learned that last summer I was immediately drawn to them. The current plan is to get a bear and put Logan's ashes into a heart shaped urn and have the urn sewn into the bear. I'm liking this idea. I think I might go buy the bear this week.


So here's the morbid question of the year...for those of you who had your child's ashes returned to you, (and keeping in mind that Logan was 1lb7oz) about how much ash is there? I've yet to bring myself to look at the actual ashes, and I really have no idea how much is in there. I'm afraid to look. But I don't want there to be extra ash for the urn. I don't want them to throw him away. I'd rather put the extra in a small vile or something. So, I'm hoping some of you can give me a heads up.


Logan's tree is looking so nice. It survived the winter and has nice, new, feathery leaves on it. I am so happy about that, and my heart swells every time I drive by it.


Anyhow, what is it about birthdays and holidays that I hate so much? I just don't want to celebrate. I don't want to acknowledge the passing of time. I don't want to smile and pretend I don't feel the gaping hole. I'm not sure why I feel the hole more on those days, but I do. My birthday was no exception. Mother's Day ought to be a real joy too. It would be easier if people would let me be. I get tired of people telling me to do something nice, to make sure I celebrate and have a good time. I don't want to. I just don't. Its not the guilt. I think its just that I'm sad, I notice the absence and I just don't want to pretend that I don't.


Driving home the other day I was struck by the wonderment of what life would have been like right at that moment. Driving home from playgroup, two child seats in the back. A two year old on the right, an eleven month old on the left. He was sleeping, my daughter yakking about "mo cycles" and "ruffs". I saw it plain as day. I don't do that much. Part of it made me smile, but most of it just feels achy.


A friend of mine asked my mother how many grandkids she had the other day. My mom said four. I couldn't help but notice that she didn't say five. Not that she should have. I tell people I have one child, most of the time. But I noticed. That was the part that bothered me. I noticed. And David noticed too.


The night before my birthday, while I was allowing myself to wallow in self pity and cry for my broken heart, I kept hearing this thought echoing in my head...


"I will never be normal again!"


And I know it to be true. I will never be able to celebrate my birthday, Mother's Day or any other holiday without always, always, always thinking about what should've been, what's missing. There will never be a time where Logan's absence isn't a shadow on my heart and in my mind. I will never escape the knowledge that I should have this little boy, but I don't. And I will always think about it. And I will never feel like I did before.


Misfitzita had a birthday this week too. She turned forty, and said "I'm not a girl anymore. The 30s beat that out of me. Soundly." and I couldn't help but to relate. I spent my twenties growing up. I got my career, bought a house, got married, built a home, became a wife and at 29 got pregnant with my first child, a daughter. At 31 my son died. And from that point on I have felt like my thirties will always be defined by this huge event. I will spend my thirties mourning for a life that I perfectly planned...and watched blow up in my face. My thirties were my baby making years, that's the way it was planned. This fact makes me angry too. Its like starting off the new year bad (which by the way is exactly what happened!!), it just sets the tone for the rest of the year. So, my thirties aren't looking so great, and I really don't feel like celebrating.

Flowers for Logan

My husband and I took our daughter to the park this evening to play. This is the same park where we had Logan's tree planted. When we walked over to Logan's tree we were greeted by these:

Someone planted flowers at the base of my sons tree!!

I called everyone I know who knows where Logan's tree is and no one had a clue who did it. The city didn't do it because there are not flowers at the bases of any of the other memorial trees. So we're assuming a stranger honored our son with these flowers.

I can't even explain the overwhelming feelings I have. Some random person planting flowers for my baby. My sweet baby was thought of by someone other than us. Someone went out of their way to plant flowers for my son!! I'm overwhelmed. I'm so grateful. I may have to go put a sign up to thank them!!!

::: ::: :::
I also saw this written inside of a tube slide on the toddler playscape a few minutes later, and it made me smile. I'm starting to get more of a kick about seeing his name like this than I used to. It used to take my breath away, now it makes me chuckle.

A new Logan on Earth

So, I have a "friend" that I made through my diet blog (we're "friends" on Facebook and talk a few times a week now). We're not real in depth intimate friends or anything, but we swap crazy mommy stories and because of how my child loss has affected my weight, she knows that I had a stillborn son last year. I've never gone into a whole lot of detail on that blog about Logan. Anyhow, she just had a little boy yesterday.

She named him Logan.

Of course she did.

I can't help it. That was the first thing I thought when I heard his name. Thankfully it was after I gushed about how happy I was that her baby was born healthy. But here's the thing, I doubt she even knows my sons name was Logan. I've only ever mentioned his name once on my diet blog and that was back in January. Who's to say she even read that post? Its sprinkled here and there on FB, but anyone who's on FB knows how easy it is to overlook a status update or photo post. So no, I don't think she got the name from me. I mean, Logan was one of the most popular names last year. But that's just the thing now isn't it? Coincidence. Everything is just one big coincidence. Sometimes I feel that way, and sometimes I feel like the universe is out to get me. To constantly send me stupid, but horribly painful, reminders on a regular basis. Little coincidences here and there. It wears on me.

So, obviously I'm happy for her and blah-blah-blah. But the thing is, she talks about her kids a lot. I mean, who doesn't? So now I have this anxiety over the fact that I know I am going to hear his name on a regular basis. Logan did this, Logan did that, Logan rolled over today, smiled, said momma...all of those things that my Logan didn't do. And each one will be one more reminder.

It makes me feel guilty, petty, selfish and weird for thinking this way. Its like his name became sacred after he died. I hear Aubrey's name on occasion, and though I try really hard not to be a snob about it (since I prided myself in picking a lesser known name) and most of the time I feel giggly about meeting another little girl named Aubrey. But with Logan, well it was almost like I felt like no one else had a right to such a precious name. Like Jesus. Ok, not like Jesus, but you get the point. The name is usually not used (ok, at least not so much here in the US) and I think that is out of reverence and respect. The name is sacred now. I don't know, I just feel very...what's the word...territorial about it maybe? And I know my Logan isn't the only stillborn named Logan. In fact I know there is at least one other blog here with a baby named Logan who died. But see with her, I feel more of a kinship than a copyright infringement.

Everything is weird now. I can't even be cool about my friends new baby because of a stupid name. And I find myself thinking that if I have another pregnancy, I'll name that baby something really unknown (though not weird, I'm not into names like Apple or Jermagesty or anything)...just so that I won't have to hear it or see it with out me going to look for it. I think that's a lot of this too. I wasn't prepared. I didn't know she had planned to name him Logan.

And just in case you are wondering if I'm some huge egotistical insensitive jerk, I didn't say anything to her about it, and I won't. This is her happy time and I'm going to let her enjoy it and not be brought down by some weird coincidence she fell into with some crazy lady she met on a blog. And I'm sure eventually she'll hear my son's name, and maybe she won't think a thing about it, or maybe she will. Either way I'm trying to be positive and look at it like there is a new Logan here on this earth and I'm going to be lucky enough to be able to bare witness to his life. And maybe, just maybe it will help to fill in that gap just a teeny bit. Maybe.

Fourteen months later and I'm tired of explaining.

It's almost April. APRIL! Don't get me wrong, I'm ready for Spring and the inevitable Summer (please hurry!!) but when I take a step back and look...I just can't believe it. Fourteen months have passed since Logan died. His first birthday would have been knocking on the door in May. Fourteen months. Feels like a lifetime, feels like yesterday, feels like someone else's life. And I mean, I'm better...right? These last fourteen months have been documented here in this blog and this blog is nothing else if not proof to what life was like and is like now. And though I know that I must have survived, and I must've gotten through it...I don't know how, and I don't know when it happened. I mean, I guess I'm not really through it yet. I think that will take a lifetime. But here I am. I wake up, I live what my life is now, I enjoy my daughter (among other things) and for the most part...I'm okay. There are moments, days, even several days at times when things are ugly and tough and I want to pack it all in and head for the hills. And when those times hit, they hit hard and fast. The part that I really feel like I have a hard time coping with is the "outsiders". People who just can't fathom what a wrecking ball loosing a baby can be. How it just seems to hang around forever and change everything about you. How you view the world, other parents, your own parents, your friends, your self... Its all changed. And the "outsiders"...well, I guess its just that it doesn't occur to them, the fact that everything is different. That I'm different. My mother comment something about me not being this bubbly person anymore. I mean, what do you say to that? Duh? It seems appropriate enough. But I guess its not her fault. She had five kids, not one complication. She has her own "tragedies and hurts" that I guess make her feel like she can connect with me on some level, but I don't see the similarities. I guess that's a fault I have to work on. I dunno. How can I be this bubbly person anymore? Though I can not relate, and this is probably a very insensitive comparison, I kind of feel like maybe its similar to what happens to people who have been in the middle of a war. They go in naive and ignorant to the horrors, they come out very changed, shell shocked and very aware that life isn't all sunshine and rainbows and that no, life doesn't always get better. And no one can get that unless they were there too. I just get tired of defending myself (or feeling defensive, I don't know how much active defending I've been doing) or trying to explain myself. She said that I should go out and celebrate my birthday, do something really special this year since I've been through a lot. In theory this sounds great. But in reality, I don't want to celebrate. The coming of my birthday (or any holiday or milestone for that matter) is just a reminder of the time that has passed. One more [insert event] further from my son's life. One more event that he isn't present for. One more event where I can't overlook the enormous elephant in the room, the fact that he was planned on, and isn't present. I can't help it. Believe me, if I could escape those thoughts I gladly would. I'd love to have an event go down where the thought of his absence wasn't bouncing around in my head like a Mexican Jumping Bean. Its tiresome to remember, and exhausting trying not to. I can't win. But my birthday, my 33rd birthday, is one more year (2 in total, if you were counting like I was) since the "bad egg" was brought to life. And if there was a bad egg two years ago...well then, how many are there now? And another birthday means I'm that much older. If I was old at 31... If I expired two years ago... If time was up then... Well, where does that leave me now? I just don't want another birthday. I don't want this time to keep trudging past, pulling me further and further away from the reality that Logan used to be. Those feelings are fading. I have to almost fight to remember what it was like while I was pregnant with Logan, especially since I took it all for granted. You know, because well, my baby won't die. The memory of his precious little face is starting to blur around the edges now... And I don't remember him looking the way he did in those photos, so they don't help. He's starting to feel like a vague dream these days, and I hate that because the ugly memories are still crystal clear. How I felt being wheeled down the hall from the uber-OB's office to the birthing room, like everyone was staring at me, like they all knew. Sitting there knowing that I had a dead baby inside of my body, but not fully grasping it because I could still feel him. Sitting there feeling a baby inside of my stomach who was dead. Being wheeled by some stranger while my husband walked a few steps behind...just out of reach when I was screaming inside and never felt a stronger desire to hide behind him as I felt in those few hours. Wondering how his face looked, what he felt. Was he crying too? Was he as devastated and dazed as I was? The memory of being in that bathroom in my birthing room where I was supposed to be changing (I think) and all I did was stand in the furthest spot from the door I could get in and cry and cry and cry. The sheer terror of what birthing a dead baby was going to be like. The terror that I knew would come the next day when I would wake up and it would really hit me. The annoyance I had of having to communicate with the outside world, to let my family know what was happening to us, when I didn't even want to admit it to myself. The horror I felt as his lifeless tiny body slid out of me onto the table while my husband watched in horror...and no one caught him. The way it felt when they handed him to me and I made the sad joke "it's a boy!" because hey, that's what they're supposed to say when a baby is born. I remember that horrible walk to our car just a few hours later. The longest walk I've ever taken. I remember those moments, those feelings, like they just happened. But Logan...his actual little face, the way he felt, his little life...its fading, and it scares me. And how fair is that anyhow? Isn't it bad enough that I lost him, can't I have the sweet memories remain and those horrible ugly ones fade? Is it that I hang onto those memories tighter because they felt more tangible, more real?

I'm tired of this roll. The one of a dead baby mom. The one who can't watch a stupid movie or TV show with out thinking things like "well at least he's alive" or see another parent trying to parent with out thinking that they're taking their kids for granted, that they don't love them enough. Its an exhausting way to be. And I wish I didn't yearn for the days "before". I wish I could just accept this role my life has taken on and live it to its fullest. I feel whinny and selfish and like I'm refusing to let go. Like this role defines who I am now, and with out it that I wouldn't know how to be anymore. But I can't. I can't think of myself as Heather, mother of one. Because I can't let it go. I have pictures. I have memories. It was real. For six months I was Heather, mother of two. And that reality is too much for me to overlook and go back to being Heather, mother of one. But no one outside of this circle sees me as Heather, mother of two. And I get funny looks to comments that I make that seem perfectly coherent to me, but obviously must fall into that crazy lady realm. Like people want to say "No, no Heather. You're mistaken. You have one child." and anymore its just easier to agree, to not try to explain it to people. Like this Sunday, being Easter and all. This would have been Logan's first Easter. Logan would be almost eleven months, maybe walking by now. Maybe Logan would have been able to hunt for eggs next to his big sister. There would be two Easter Baskets on the table. Two children on the bunny's lap. A family of four in all of the pictures. How many of the "outsiders" are thinking about this stuff? Who do you think actually thought to themselves that Logan will be missing, that Logan should have been here to experience this with us? And come Sunday I'm sure there will be a moment when I look distant, lost, or sad and someone will notice and someone will mention it...and they will have never thought it would have had something to do with a baby that never quite made it to this life. And how would I explain it to them? How fourteen months later it still feels like a ton of bricks slamming into me every time I stroll down that lane? How after fourteen months, well, I'm just not quite over it yet. And if I did chance an explanation... Well how could it possibly be that I'm still mourning? There must be something wrong with me. Because its not normal right? People die, we move on. That's the way its supposed to be. That's the way it is most of the time when someone dies. But not when a baby dies. Not when the story ends before it was ever written. It all leads back to that same old feeling, I shouldn't be doing this, any of it. So, its too hard to explain. Its easier to just smile and shrug it off like that person was imaging something ridiculous. Its easier to let people think that you "got over it" and "moved on" and that you're still okay in the head and that it wasn't that big of a deal and that it didn't really change you. It's just easier that way, and these days, I'm all about doing what's easiest.

You know, I asked a question over on The Dead Baby Club Blog about how loosing a baby has affected your relationship with your parents (go add your own thoughts if you'd like). A few people commented on how its affected other relationships, and I've been thinking a lot about my husband. Not so much about how its affected us as a couple, because I think its still too early to know for sure, but how its affected him as a person. I know the ways that I've changed, ways that others can't even begin to understand, even ways that I may not even be noticing. But what about David? David's different. Not good or bad, just different. I can't quite explain it, or even single anything out in particular, but the question has gotten me to obsessing about him. How he's doing, how he's coping...is he coping? What he thinks about, what he feels about it. For the most part I splash myself out across these pages with out a whole lot of editing. He reads my blog (Hi babe!) he knows how I feel, who I've become, what I fear. But most men are so private. Men don't like to talk about their feelings. Especially my man. Its left me feeling like I wish it was mandatory for men to blog after something like this occurs. I wonder how many times I was off my rocker and David read my blog and was like "oh, I get why she's acting that way!". I don't have that. I mean, we used to talk about it, in the beginning. He used to be real up front about what was going on with him, but that's gone by the way side now. I ask on occasion how he is, but for the most part I get the same generic answer. I don't want to fix it, I don't know how. I just want to know where he's at. From what I've tried to figure out, he's about six months behind me in the grieving process. Like he took the first six months to keep me from going over the edge, and then took time to start his grieving. But its hard for me to remember where I was six months ago. I don't know. I just don't know what to say to him anymore with out sounding like a broken record, or like I'm prying or something. And no one wants to talk when they're having a bad day, and I don't want to bring it up on a good day and make it bad. It leaves me feeling lost about the whole thing. And I just want to know where he is, and where I am, so that we can try to work together and try to figure this mess out. Life was complicated enough beforehand, now its even more complicated and weird. And I can't help but have this nagging feeling that something isn't right, when deep down I know that its that damn elephant again.

I feel like I could talk for hours tonight. I have a lot racing around in my head, but I've so very tired and well...the Muffin doesn't like to sleep till noon the way I desire too. Hopefully I'll be able to fall asleep with out laying there staring into the darkness obsessing about things I can't change and fearing the ones I can.

Manic feelings

I'm not sleeping again, and I feel manic. Or more like a maniac. Either way, its exhausting. I'm tired, and I lay in bed and stare into the darkness and I obsess. I obsess about my family and the crap storm I feel like I am in the middle of there. I obsess about my marriage and my husband and I feel like something is wrong there and I can't put my finger on it. I obsess about myself and why I feel unloved, and why I feel worthless and why I don't feel like there is any hope...and it hit me tonight, maybe I'm not over the depression. Aren't those key signs of depression? And I know its somehow related to my cycle. I mean all women get moody just before the start of it, but am I just fooling myself during the two good weeks that I'm OK, and then when my hormones flux I find myself in another extreme? Its messed up, and it makes me weary. Weary of everything around me. The phone rings and I'm nervous who's calling. The mail arrives with no return address and I'm leery about opening it (since my step-mother has an affinity for sending me horrible letters and trying to disguise them with no return address, sending from a different state and changing her hand writing...yeah, I'm surrounded by crazy). I've even started dreading opening my email, because there's always something in there to deal with. I just don't want to deal with anything anymore. Its making me feel panicky. I'm starting to feel trapped and that makes me feel like I have to run and hide...except that I can't, because I really am trapped. Where am I going to go? I am a wife, a mother. I need my daughter near me. I need to be near the reassurance that is my husband, his steady and constant rhythm. Remember the good old days when if you wanted to remove yourself from the world you just unplugged your phone?? Now if you did that people would call your cell, then text you, then Facebook you, then email you...there's no escape. And how do you tell your family to leave you alone with out everyone taking it personal? Its just that I guess people have always been able to lean on me, and I've always propped them up with out much complaint, but I can't anymore. I don't want to. I want someone to ask me how I'm doing, and not because I'm some circus side show or a car wreck that makes people just HAVE to look, to stand witness to the horror, or because its a juicy tidbit of gossip, but because someone really does give a crap about how I am. And not just "someone" but the people in my life who are "supposed" to love me, who are "supposed" to care. And no one ever asks. Worse yet, I get the feeling its because people just expect that its been long enough. And no, I don't want to talk to them about Logan. I just wish they'd get a clue and stop pestering me with their mundane crap. Like all I do is sit around bored waiting for someone to saddle me with their problems. Really I just spend most of my energy trying to figure out how to avoid just that.

I cut off my Dad, step-mother and sister almost a year ago. My step-mother recently sent me two nasty letters. Illustrating, once again, that they never really got how impacted I was from Logan's death, not to mention the impact that they have had on my life as well. A subject, as I have stated before, that there are not enough words in all the worlds languages to explain that topic. But the thing is, it eats at me. Not my step-mom. She's worthless and evil and I can happily live out the rest of my days on this earth with out every having contact with her again. But my dad (and even my sister)...I just don't get it. How can you have such little love for your own child? How can a father neglect, abandon and take advantage of his children for years and years? I just don't get it. I can't fathom treating my daughter with such neglect and indifference. But the reason I cut them off is because I couldn't take anymore hurt. And in the year since I cut him off he's tried to contact me three times, the last one being in September. And, ironically, its not that I want him to actually contact me because I am so done with that. I can't take it anymore. But the fact that he put up so little of a fight for his daughter... Its just one more thing.

I'm tired of feeling obsessive. I'm tired of these extreme highs and lows and feeling manic. I'm tired of me being up when David is down and vice versa. I'm tired of feeling out of control and I just want some peace in my life. Some steady rhythm. I want to feel like these uphill steps that I'm taking are actually taking me uphill, instead of feeling like for every 2 steps forward I take 3 steps back, and not loosing an weight while doing it mind you. Its an exhausting way to live and it has worn me down again. It affects my very personality. It affects our marriage, how I mother my daughter and how I look at myself as a person. I don't like this person, and I'm too worn out to do anything about it.
I've been thinking a lot about Logan the last few days. Nothing has really prompted it, and it isn't making me weepy or anything, but he sits in the corner of my mind demanding attention at the most bazaar times! Every baby I see, every pregnant woman, every blond headed little boy. Each one of them jumping up and waving their arms at me, and I notice them. And I think of him.
Logan would be about 10 months old these days. No longer a tiny baby. Eating solids, sitting up, crawling and maybe even walking by now, well on his way to crazy toddlerhood. Sigh. Maybe its hormones. I think about having more children on a regular basis. I'm ready now. Well, ideally, come October I'd like to give it another shot. It has a lot to do with dates. I'd rather not get pregnant at the same time, deliver around Jan or May. I want a totally new experience. Anyhow, I just feel like I've been kicking around at my memories like one does with the moss.
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

Wanted, a new rock to hide under.

I spend most of my time wishing I could hide. Wish I could disappear, be someone other than who I am, or somewhere other than where I am. But the thing is that life went on. I didn't get to sit around and lick my wounds for eternity, which is what I really wanted. Most days are good days. Most days I smile and have fun and enjoy life the way it is now. But I always have the nagging desire to run away. Responsibility keeps me here, and logic. Well, and David. I'd sure miss him. I'd take my daughter with me of course, which would be cruel to the both of them I know. But I want to start over. I want to be able to live in a world where ugly things don't keep hunting me down. Its not rational or possible, I'm not claiming it to be so. But I usually feel the shadows come creeping up behind me. The most mundane things start to overwhelm me, I become overly sensitive and I just want to sit in a corner with my hands over my ears and cry "la, la, la" as loudly as I can so that I don't hear anything else. How can I be expected to deal with anything outside of the overwhelming gunk in my own brain? I want to sit on the couch, watch a movie and fade away. I want the outside world to go away, to leave me be. I feel so attacked lately. Like people think I'm too happy, so they do there best to get inside my head and poke around, dig up bones, scratch at the scabs. I don't agree with being an addict, I know better, but I understand it now. I understand that intense and overwhelming desire to hide your mind, to numb it up and soothe the aches.

Its been weird around here lately. I can't explain it. I just feel it. The shadow that looms in the room day in and day out. The distance in Davids eyes. Almost like the both of us walk around with our hands pushed out in front of us, keeping everything at bay, even each other. I'm too tired to deal with it, to confront it. I know what it is, and I can't muster up the strength to banish it. And should I? Shouldn't grief run its course when it sees fit? Shouldn't David be allowed to go through whatever it is he's going through with out me pestering him and prodding at him. Its what I want. I want to be left alone, to deal with myself as I see fit...when I'm ready to do that. Its hard when you are feeling so much ugliness inside and the one person you would go to for relief is also feeling that ugliness. We are useless to each other.

I just want to be left alone. I don't want to deal with anyone else's problems, or insecurities. I don't even want to hear about them. I know that's selfish and weird. I know it is. But I just want to run screaming when I'm confronted with it. All it makes me do is cry. Cry from frustration, cry from sorrow, cry from feeling hopeless and helpless. Cry just cause. And I hate to cry, which adds to it. It gives me a headache.

I just want to go away for a few months. Hawaii would be nice. Just the three of us, and disappear from all of the crap that is in my life. I just don't ever feel like I got a chance to get away and deal with me and what I needed.

The new look

Well I'm finally finished with the new look here. I hope it all is easy to see and navigate. If you notice any issues please don't hesitate to let me know. Thanks.

My latest obsession

You know what "they" say...

So, this is my latest obsession or project or whatever you want to call it. And thanks to Emily, I've been able to stay pretty occupied lately. This is a name sculpture I made for my daughter.

When I made it I was just bored and didn't have a real plan in mind. But then it turned out pretty nice, so I thought why not whore myself out?? It gives me a creative outlet, and a few extra bucks...to help pay for my other creative outlets! :)

This one is probably my favorite. I did this one at Emily's request also. You can see all of the latest ones I've done on my scrapping blog here, or you can go see them in my Etsy store here. I thought they all turned out pretty cool and thought I would brag a bit. ;) Hope ya'll don't mind!

Oh, and about the mess that is this blog...I'll get working on cleaning it up ASAP! Sorry.

Most days I am smiling, genuine smiles.

A fellow DBM and I were emailing and she said this:


"I often look at you and how hurt you still are and wonder what's wrong with me. Why do I feel pretty okay at 9 months and you're still so hurt at a year?"


The thing is, Logan's blog is where I sift through the intense stuff. I don't use this blog, just to blog about my everyday life and goings on. I have tried to keep it exclusively about the muck I am trying to sort through that is wrapped around Logan. I noticed recently myself, the folks who read Logan's blog don't get to see the times that are good, the days that are happy and filled with laughter. Part of that is unfortunate because it does give the impression that I am still neck deep in depression. I am not. I think that I came out of the deep depression at around 10 months. I had weeks where I would feel great, and then I'd have a few rough days or a week, and then I would surface again. Most of the time, these days, I'm angry at the people around me for their stupidity. A lot of this stems from unresolved issues I had long before Logan. I think about Logan everyday, but it is a very rare thing for me to cry over (maybe once a month, maybe). I struggle also with the fact that David is so far from having another baby, which in turn makes me feel like I am grieving the other children I always planned on. I find too that my grief cycles on about the same wave as my menses, meaning hormones are playing a major role in that. Not that I am trying to minimize my grief, but I think that I come across a whole lot more sad in my blog than I do in real life...if for no other reason than because I don't blog about the sunshine. The point is, no matter where others may be in their grief, its probably all normal, I am normal. Everyone grieves differently, and at different lengths and degrees. Sometimes I read other stories, mom's who seem to be coping better than I am and I wonder. Sometimes I read stories about mother's who see far more filled with sorrow who's child has been dead far longer and I think to myself that I don't feel nearly that sad, what's wrong with me?? So you see? I think that it depends on the person. And I also think it depends on the time. Grief comes in waves. A mom may be feeling great now, and in three months feeling devastated. Maybe not. The point is no one should feel weird at all. Perhaps some find more comfort from the Lord and that gives them a peace many can't get a grip on. I've thought about that. Maybe if I could let my anger go, maybe I could find peace and comfort in Christ again. I don't know. But I do know this. So many of us try to over think this whole grief thing, and I think its just best to let it be and it will take care of itself. For months I wondered if I needed a shrink, if I needed pills. Now I see that I just needed time. Within 6 weeks I was questioning my sorrow. SIX WEEKS! I laugh at that now. Six weeks was a blink in the cycle of grief. I was just in a hurry to get it over with. These days I let it be and when I am at a high point I try to enjoy it, and when I am at a low point I take it for what its worth and know that I will cycle right back out of it, because that's what I've done for the past 13 months now.

But life the way it is now is bearable, most days. Most of the time I find myself going about life the way I used to, perhaps a little more intense and a little more sensitive than I used to be, but I don't walk around dusting and sobbing. I enjoy my old hobbies, my old shows. I enjoy my friends, have made new friends and go out and enjoy their company. I enjoy my daughter, my husband...not the dog. I still can't find it in me to tolerate the dog (who incidentally puked on the floor this morning because she doesn't know how to moderate her water intake!!). I'm not nearly as angry in general, or as angry with God as I was even a few months ago. I'm even contemplating returning to church again. I've started to look at Logan's death as horribly unfortunate for me, not personal (most of the time), and not some horrid act of God so much as it happens sometimes, and sadly it happened to us. Not that there aren't moments where I fall back into the mindset that God is punishing me, has it out for me, or abandoned me..because I am human and I still have those thoughts on occasion. For the most part these days are filled with laughter and life, new plans and hopes for the future. Instead of bad days or weeks, I have bad moments. Logan being dead makes me sad. Its just a fact, not one that will likely ever change. I can't believe that at 80 I won't still feel sadness for my son. But it doesn't rule my life anymore. It doesn't trump every thought that I have, every event that takes place. I think I have learned to try to accept it instead of fighting it off and trying to understand it. Sometimes really crappy things happen to people. Guess it was my turn. It could have been so much worse, and for that I am thankful that it was not. I believe that certain things will always tug at my heart. But I am long past breakdowns. I am long past feeling the urge to have my eyeballs floating in vodka because I just don't want to feel the sadness anymore. Yesterday I even decided that I was going to move Logan's box of ashes. Which means I have to touch the box. Open the box. Remove the inner box. I haven't touched that box since the day it arrived so many months ago. And I surprised myself by realizing that the reason I wanted to move the box from sitting askew on the top of my very dusty armoir was because I was tired of seeing a box sit up there. I've decided, for now, to place him in the hat box on the stand near my bed. The hat box is empty anyhow. I couldn't bring myself to put him in the armoir or in the closet, but I thought this was a huge step for me. So, at some point today, the box will be moved. And I can say with almost all certainty that it will not make me cry. Almost. Being that close may affect me, but the thought of it does not. I guess I can't be sure.

So no, the year mark was not some magic date that set me free. In fact, I went into a real funk for a few weeks around that time. I will say that I do notice that every month I feel a little less sad, a little less depressed, a little more hopeful and normal again. And here at 13 months I can say with out a doubt that I will survive. My life will go on. I will find as much happiness again as one could hope for. I know it now because I feel it, and not because some one assured me it would be so.

However I will continue to have bad days here and there, how could I not? I will always need a safe place where I can come and sort through the struggles I face being a DBM. And I will use this blog to do just that. I just wanted to share with everyone that though it may seem like I am really struggling on a daily basis, in fact I am not. Most days I am smiling, genuine smiles and feeling real deep down satisfaction and happiness. But, I think, my memory of Logan will always hang around like a shadow. I'll find better ways to work around it, through it and with it, but I believe it will remain. How could it now? He was my son.

Crap! Where'd I put that armor!!

I've been feeling very attacked lately. By people who are close to me. People who ought to know better, be softer, love me more, catch me, take a bullet...you know, those people. But lately those are the ones I want to run from, hide from, close myself off from. I "see them coming" and my first instinct is to flinch, put my hands up, protect myself. It seems off to me, when I sit and I think about it. It makes me bitter. It makes me hateful and angry. And again I feel myself withdrawing, turning in, turning away. And I start to feel like I let my guard down, didn't put my armor on. Its my fault really. I have always kept everyone at an arms length, don't get too close, don't know too much. I don't feel comfortable in intimacy. I often recoil and shrink back when people touch me, I don't like it. I feel a sense of insincerity about it all. Like a snake coiling around its prey whilst singing a pretty song. I haven't always been that way. Its something I've picked up as an adult. But years upon years of feeling kicked around, stepped on and beaten down by the ones who are supposed to protect you will leave one feeling very defensive, skittish and distant. When Logan died I wanted to disappear. I wanted to fade away. I didn't want to die. I didn't want that kind of attention. I just wanted to not be noticed as I faded. I wanted to be left alone. And because I was so raw and angry early on, I was able to shut down and ignore and run and not many thought too much of it. These days I feel like that is not possible anymore. Like I am being sought out intentionally. Called to reconcile, called to state my case, defend myself, account for the behavior that is found unacceptable by people who can't fathom. And these days I feel like I am frantic in my search for where I stashed my armor. When I started to let the defenses down, when I started to "fade in" and people thought it ok to share their view of me, with me. I need that sign back. I need a T-Shirt, maybe even my baseball bat again.

And all of that leaves me feeling like all I've managed in my adult life is to let people down. My mother cries for a relationship with a fictitious daughter. I say fictitious because I will never be, could never be, the daughter she so desires. It leaves me feeling not good enough and alienated. My father, humph! There are not enough words in all the languages of the world for that mess... But it has left me asking why? And it has left me feeling ugly, shoved aside, overlooked, abandoned and so many other feelings that I don't even know the words for. [think scene from Hope Floats where her daddy drives away and leaves her screaming in the drive] My stepmother likes to remind me. Likes to send me hateful letters that make me feel as though I am to blame. Likes to make me feel as though I am the delusional one, the childish one, the selfish hateful one. The same woman who hasn't spoken to me in almost two years. The same woman who didn't acknowledge my son's death and chose, instead, to scream hateful things at me from the background, through the phone. This leaves me feeling like my head may start spinning, fangs may be produced and horns will shoot forth from my skull all while a demon-like guttural scream rises up from the depths of the darkest parts of my soul. And in the midst of such things I feel repulsive and disgusting to my beloved. Which leaves me feeling unsexy, undesired and gross. Not what a woman wants to feel, not to mention the affects it has on our intimacy.

Now I feel as though I have come full circle. I feel like I am back to feeling like I was better off locked away. And I yearn for the permission to fade away. I yearn for the acknowledgment that its normal, expected and okay to run and hide from the real world when I find it so difficult to accept my new reality. One that will always have one child less than should be present. And regardless of how many people, in their numerous ways, try to convince me that because they know loss and pain that they understand mine, when I can not begin to think they do. I do not try for a moment to understand what it would be like to loose a spouse, a parent or to have had cancer. I can not comprehend the pain of wanting to bear children and not having my body cooperate and get pregnant in the first place. I do not understand the pain of infertility because I have not been infertile. Those are different pains, different losses, ones I can not comprehend. But I hear it all the time. Loss is loss, pain is pain, and I say it myself. But the reality is that divorce and rejection are different realities then parenting a dead baby. Having your parents die, or your spouse is not the same has having a child die, nor is having a child die the same as a parent or spouse passing. I can not explain it. I do not try to put them in the same category. Its like saying the love for your child is like that of the love for your spouse. I can not try to reason with people that no, my loss is not the same as their loss. I am stymied as to why people want so desperately to find that common ground with me. Why people want to say to me "I've known loss and pain in my life also, so I understand." No! No, you don't understand. You may understand that I'm in pain, that I'm sad. But you can not possibly begin to understand the sadness that comes with loosing a child, anymore than I can understand the pain of divorce. I don't pretend to understand. I don't yearn to get on that level with those who do. My first thought is always, "Wow, that really sucks! I can't imagine." I don't know, maybe that makes me a cold person. But for me to sit here and say that I understand the pain of having my child die from cancer at 5 years old, after I've had a chance to get to know this child, their personalities and have made countless memories with them is misleading and grandstanding. I do not know that pain. I only know mine. I only know the pain of having what I understood to be a healthy and uncomplicated pregnancy for six oblivious months that turned into a stillborn little boy who died from complications with Down Syndrome. And I can not assume to know what it is to have a child with Down Syndrome, mine died before I ever got to know him. Another DBM blogger (and I am so sorry I can not remember who it was) compared the understanding of the pain of a baby dying with someone who tried to assume that they could understand based on the fact that their child almost died something in the form of this: "It would be like looking over the edge of the cliff at the churning murky waters and imagining what it would be like to drown. I don't imagine what it is like, I know what it is like." Thinking of how you would feel in that situation is so far from the reality of what it is that it becomes and insult, at least to me, for people to tell me that they understand...because they have known pain? I sprained my back once, but I can not fathom how it would feel to break it. I have been burned, but I can not fathom what it is to be on fire. I have been dumped by boyfriends in the past, but I can not begin to fathom the pain and rejection that comes with divorce. I just wish people would stop trying to understand and spend more time listening, nodding and admitting that they have no idea what I am going through, how I must feel, or this kind of pain. So much more pain could be avoided, I could stop feeling like I need to cower in the corner and protect my already damaged heart from those who love me. I didn't just loose a baby. When Logan died, everything that is ever connected with a child, with a person, died also. My hopes and dreams for him. The plans I made as a mother with a 16 month old and a newborn. The thoughts I had of my son and his daddy fishing, playing ball, building Lego castles. The thoughts I had of my daughter being a big sister, of my son being the first grandson to my mother, the first nephew to my brothers. The day dreams of my son learning and growing beside his grandfather. Thoughts of him as he grew, the person he would become, the life he would lead. The idea that there was this little man who I was in charge of forming and shaping and molding into a loving man, husband and father. That maybe I could somehow get retributions for the hole that my father put in my chest by helping to mold this young man into a great man. Do people think about those things when they tell me they understand? And not just say they understand but actually try to argue and convince me that they really do understand. Do they know that each and every time I see my husband holding a little boy, talking to a little boy or even looking, himself, at a little boy that my heart shatters again and again? That my heart shatters for the pain that is my husbands. Pain that I feel responsible for. Pain for not being able to understand what it is like for him, as a man, to have lost his son, and all of the hopes, thoughts and dreams that he possessed? Do not fool yourselves into thinking that you understand. Though pain and sorrow may be comprehensible to many, the pain and sorrow of loosing a child is beyond the understanding of anyone who has not walked this lonely heartbreaking path.

The problem with me though, maybe I'm being too judgy. I leave little room for others to make mistakes and hold people to the same standards of which I try to hold myself and I know that is a serious fault that I have. I know that, mostly, people are trying to find their own way, that they are sad and confused also. There is little else in this world that is more confusing and heartbreaking than the death of a baby. I understand that people falter because of this. And for the general population I will usually let it slide. People say stupid things when they are nervous. Anyone who knows me in person knows that I am the queen of this fault. I suffer from foot in mouth disease. My issue is more personal. My issue stems from holding to those standards the people who love me. Love me. I am aghast that anyone would want to argue about my sorrow with me, much less those who are supposed to love me. I can not help but to be judgy of those people. I did not realize that I was so judgy until recently. I've always been boastful about the way that I am not in denial of who I am, the faults that I have. Up until a few days ago no one would dare call me judgy (probably because they're afraid of being attacked). My new friend called me judgy one day. The thing is, I actually like her more because of it. I am so tired of fluff. I'm tired of asking people how I look only to hear that I look fine when I know that I have toilet paper stuck to my shoe and lipstick on my teeth. Why is it that people find it so hard to be honest? The fear of rejection perhaps. If I tell you what I really think, will you still like me? Anyhow, my new friend (coincidentally, a fellow mom in the pits) has right to think me a stalker, since I behave more like an obsessed school girl than anything (much to my husbands amusement). The thing is, she has a confidence in me that those who truly know me, wouldn't bother with. Its nice to be with someone who is so full of optimism for you that hasn't been tainted by years of recognition. She is my consolation prize. Don't get me wrong, knowing that I wouldn't have met her acquaintance had Logan survived, the circumstances of our friendship does not make me begrudge the gift that I see it as. Its refreshing to be with someone who is such an intrigue, who seems so mysterious and brilliant, someone who seems enthusiastic about life even in the wake of losing her own children. Its comforting to have someone in your corner who's foundation holds similar stones as your own foundation, and yet their structure is so completely different you find your self staring in awe. If I were asked about the good that has come from Logan's death, it would be making a new friend. A normal, not loony friend. Be advised though, it is not wise of you to point that out for me. I do well in finding what little good I can in the death of my son and I will be damned if someone else points it out for me.

This post was really long. I didn't realize I had so much pent up inside these days. I try to empty the "bottle" often so that I don't explode. However, lately I find more comfort in denying that I am being affected. It is easier to not deal with all of the crap that I feel pushing down on me than it is to stand up and call it out. It is easier to not admit when someone hurts you, than to show them your cards. My mother said that I keep my cards close to my heart. Isn't that the golden rule? Never let them see you sweat? Never let them see you cry? Don't wear your heart on your sleeve for someone to come along and knock off. Its easier that way. At this point in my life, I have enough going on with out trying to wade through the muddled mess that is the psychobabble and ignorant bible thumping that seems to want to come my way on a fairly regular basis.

Now, get off your lazy bum and help me find that armor. I know its around here somewhere...

Courage at the keyboard

Maybe its the year mark. Maybe people feel like enough time has passed now and that they should be granted the freedom to speak their mind, regardless of how it rips open my (very shoddily patched up) broken heart. Maybe people are just that thoughtless. Maybe people find courage at their keyboard the way so many find it in a bottle. I do not know.


I do know this...


It has been a year (almost 13 months to be exact). And no, enough time has not passed for comments such as:


"...not let the loss of Logan be wasted, a missed lesson & understanding, in vain. There's a reason, and God wanted you to find Him in it! God...the Author of life."


There's no point into going into the rest of the argument, and I am not taking this opportunity to bash the person who wrote this, or their beliefs. I will clarify that I do not believe that my anger at God (mind you, not for my son's death, but because he was created using a bad egg knowing full well his demise) will cause the loss of my son to be a waste. I do not believe that God allowed/caused/didn't prevent my sons demise because he wanted to teach me a lesson or understanding, thus I am not sure how his death would be in vain. In vain of what exactly? I do not believe that there is a reason, and I do not believe that God was using this to prompt me to "find" him, and since he is all knowing...he would've known this and that it would have been a waste of time.

The point here is, more or less, a big fat WTF?? I am grappling with the understanding as to why some find it their duty to explain God's mission. Why they are the self appointed ambassador's of his great wisdom. I know that so many turn to faith in the midst of their grief, and I think that it is a wonderful thing...for them. I wish I had the sort of faith that prompted me to run to God for comfort. But I don't. And I really am struggling with why there are so many people out there who are so quick to condemn and shame grieving people when those who are grieving falter in their faith, blame God and are honest in their anger. I could have worn a mask of false faith. I could have pretended to "run to God" or "give it to the Lord" as so many have suggested. I didn't. I have been up front and honest about my lack of faith, anger and questioning of faith. And yes I scoff and roll my eyes at the simple idiocy so many paint God into. I believe and accept the basic principles of Christianity, I just question its ambassadors and their self important need to "comfort" those who are ear deep in a pain that so few can begin to fathom.


Someone said the following to me once. It helps to feel like there are believers out there who aren't all gung-ho trying to argue God's case for him and accept that grief can not be argued out of. I found the words to be profound, and felt like for once an outsider might have actually gotten it.

People really upset me when they don't have enough knowledge to explain things, and they try to make up crappy excuses as to why God "does" something. Who says God "does" everything? And really? Do we have God all figured out to know Him so well as to know what He's thinking and if He's blessing somebody to say these "words of comfort"? People shouldn't preach and try to say something if they don't know enough of what they're talking about. It sours everything, it's NOT the order in which things are supposed to be handled. I'm sorry that you have become the receiver of this kind of treatment, that would get real old, real fast. I am sure, they were talking out of frustration in the argument and not even thinking about everything they were saying, using God to prove that they are right. That you shouldn't be mad at them for what they said, since it was of God. Sure, they believe in and love God, and in their heart they have the faith to put certain situations in His hands. But that's them, and it's a childlike faith. Which of course we are supposed to
have. But for heavens sake, there is a lack of wisdom in trying to win over one who is heart-broken in the middle of an argument and for the benefit of sticking up for God. Sometimes I wish I could get that through people's heads. God doesn't need us to "stick up" for Him. He'll deal with things in His own time and in His own way. WE need to quit getting in the way.


Anyhow...

I have been feeling very attacked lately, on several fronts. And I don't get it. The only thing I can conclude is that the general population must think I am "milkin' it" and that after thirteen months I should be well on my way to creating that replacement baby, forgiving God, and moving on. And in my own ways I am. Life is much different for me now than it was even 6 months ago, three months ago. But I still feel the pulsating emptiness that is my son's spot every waking moment of my life. The thing is, I haven't asked for anything from anyone. And all I've really desired in this whole mess is to be left alone by those who can't find it in their selfishness to step aside and let me be. Why is it that I feel like it is expected of me to comfort them? Especially when I never asked comfort of them, only space, and a request that has been denied time and again. I don't know, maybe its selfish of me to not have the time, space or desire to handle or care of the (what I now feel to be) mundane idiocy of those around me. When Logan died it became very apparent to me that I had to use every ounce of energy and strength I possessed to not fall off of the deep end, and I stopped caring how that affected anyone else. And, call me selfish if you will but, I still do not have the strength, desire or will to tolerate or empathize with the drama and chaos of the lives of those around me. Its like I feel as though I am using all of my available resources to keep it all together, to hold myself intact so that I do not explode into a million pieces of sorrow and disappear into the inviting depths of my despair. And if I let one of those resources slip, then all will be lost. The hardest part is that so often the majority of the insult has come directly from those closest to me. Those I depended on to hold on to me, prop me up, save me. This is where I feel the most let down. The few people who should be on my side, are the ones attacking. And the ones on my side, the ones who ended up being the ones who truly held me up, they are all complete strangers. Strangers who relate and "get it" because they've felt this pain, they've stuck around to say "Hey, its ok. You're normal, this is all normal. You'll survive, I did." It adds a new dimension to my pain. Its become so obvious to me why so many become reclusive and alienate themselves after a great loss. I feel that I can only handle so much. I feel as though I am skittish of that final straw. It makes me angry and loathsome and gives me the desire to lash out at people who must feel as though they are being thoughtful and well meaning. It leaves me confused, flabbergasted and appalled. It leaves me just a little sadder than I already was. A little more frightened. A little more fragile, and a whole lot more likely to close myself off from a world that wants to injur my heart further.

Sparrow Farm Creations Memorial Prints

Songs for Logan


Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones
 
Home | Logan's Story | Contact Heather

Copyright © 2009 It only hurts when I breathe! |Designed by Templatemo |Converted to blogger by BloggerThemes.Net