"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.

Death Barged In

I came across a recommendation for this poem while reading a post on Glow In The Woods this evening. I couldn't have said this better! I thought it was such a poignant way of describing this monster known as grief!

Death Barged In
by Kathleen Sheeder Bonanno

In his Russian greatcoat
slamming open the door
with an unpardonable bang,
and he has been here ever since.

He changes everything,
rearranges the furniture,
his hand hovers by the phone;
he will answer now, he says;
he will be the answer.

Tonight he sits down to dinner
at the head of the table as we eat, mute;
later, he climbs into bed between us.

Even as I sit here, he stands behind me
clamping two colossal hands on my shoulders
and bends down and whispers to my neck,
From now on, you write about me.

From Slamming Open the Door by Kathleen Sheedar Bonanno. Copyright © 2009 by Kathleen Sheedar Bonanno.

You can find the original posting on Poetry.org by clicking here.

Thousands (a poem for my children)


Without their smiles, I will die with a thousand pleas and asking why. The sorrow that has come our way with the toll it takes and the price we pay. For the thousandth day that looms so near, our lives now ruled with mostly fear. These tears that don’t seem quite enough with trinkets to honor that are mostly fluff. Grief changes you in unknown ways. I’ve a patched up heart with seams that fray. Do I recognize you there in the mirror? Do I know the one who calls me “Dear”? This hole, this chasm, this missing piece; will consume me, I know, there’ll be no release. So a thousand days later. Oh, how much has changed! Our once perfect life has been rearranged. These children of ours, ashes now left behind, the others try hard to push from their minds. For who wants to remember a sorrow so deep, and the thousands of tears the parents still weep? They linger here still, amidst us, you know; these tiny lives with their big shadows. Dead before they ever were born. Is it not still my right should I choose to mourn? A thousand days or a thousand years, all I’ve left are uncountable tears. For who am I now, but the grief that I bear and the shattered bits of a life that’s unfair?

Written by H. Westphal

Well, at least something is growing.

2 years ago this week we planted this tree in honor of our sweet Logan. Its growing beautifully and I couldn't be more pleased with the tree. It also happens to be our 9 year wedding anniversary today, though we've been together for sixteen years. Odd how time goes zooming past. When Logan died each day seemed like an eternity, but as I look back on these last 2 years and 8 months I feel how fast they have also gone. I'm relieved to be past the gut wrenching pain that crippled me. The dull ache I feel these days is almost a comfort for me. The ache means he was real.
As I laid in bed last night I thought about just how awesome my life really is, except... It makes me sad, wondering about the life we almost had, the absolute perfection. Every day it occurs to me more and more just how lucky I am to have such a perfect living daughter. She's my little miracle, the exception. And with the clearance to start trying for baby number 4 looms off in next week, I find my self anxious and scared and already mourning the children I fear that may never come to fruition. As if mourning dead children wasn't difficult enough to figure out, learning to mourn for children that may never be is odd.
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In Good Company, a stolen post.

I read an excellent post today on She Brings Joy about being in Good Company when it comes to loss and the people in the Bible. I have often talked and posted about my struggles with my faith in Christ since the death of my son. And many are left with the impression that I no longer believe. And try as I may to convince people that I do still believe in God, just a different version than most people are familiar with, most people either come at me with verses that make no sense and have no bearing on my situation (therefor arguing God's case and or trying to defend Him, as if He needs their defense), or they dismiss me for being ignorant in the Word (which I freely admit to). The point is, "Anger is not disbelief." And though I freely admit to my anger towards God I know that he will meet me where I am, and work on me with what I have to offer. God can take my anger the same any parent can deal with the anger of a toddler. He takes it in stride, he understands it. He created the emotion.

I have no shame in my anger with God.

And now there is proof!

Trolling blogland today I came across a link on Beauty from Ashes to an article published on Yahoo! about the higher risk of death among parents of stillbirth and neonatal deaths with in the first ten years of their child's death. I copied it below for your edification:

From Yahoo! News (that's a link to the original article)

Parents who lose a new baby run a high risk themselves of dying prematurely,
according to a British study published on Thursday.

Investigators delved
into a random sample of national death registrations for the years 1971 to

They compared deaths among parents who had been bereaved in the
first year of a child's life or whose child had been stillborn, against deaths
among parents whose baby had survived beyond the first year.

parents were between two and four times likelier to die or become widowed in the
first 10 years of the child's death compared with non-bereaved counterparts.

Mothers in particular were at threat.

Bereaved mothers in England
and Wales were four times likelier to die prematurely, and bereaved mothers in
Scotland six times likelier, than women whose child had survived beyond the
first year of life.

The risk for mothers lessened slightly over time,
but was still significant -- 50 percent higher -- after 25 years. After 35
years, it was 20 percent higher.

The reasons for the mortality are
unclear because the data do not give the details.

The authors speculate
there could be a link with alcohol abuse among bereaved parents, and suicide,
too, may be a factor.

Alternatively, stillbirth and infant deaths could
be more common among parents who themselves are in poor health.

research, headed by Mairi Harper of the University of York in northern England,
appears in the specialist journal BMJ Supportive and Palliative Care.


So, there you have it. As if being the parent of a dead baby wasn't bad enough, now we have to fear our own premature deaths! Sigh.

Tears and tears and more tears!

Two years and seven months later one might think that I'd have moved on, gotten over, healed...

And maybe its being in the wake of the stillbirth of my friends son that has brought everything back up front and center. Remembering things I forced myself to forget. Watching her pain is a kin to what it must've been like watching me from afar. Seeing her sorrow and grief reminds me of the sorrow and grief I had for so long, the sorrow that remains still. Knowing what's ahead of her, the horrors she will encounter that she has no clue are coming her way.

Yesterday, in preparation for our garage sale, my husband asked me to go through the baby stuff we saved from my living daughter. Sigh. It was just bad timing. This past week and a half was already filled with sorrow. Sorrow for what I have lost, sorrow or another dead baby, sorrow for the life my friend has watched go up in smoke. I tackled the chore with a margarita in hand (since my DD was at G'ma's) and forced myself to look through the baby paraphernalia, stone faced, detached and under the guise that it didn't matter anymore. Logan was a boy, Rudy a question mark (but I've worked it into my head somehow that he must've been a boy also), so ridding my home of baby girl clothes shouldn't bother me. It didn't mean I wasn't going to have another baby (my DH assured me!), it just meant that the new baby would get his or her own clothing. Like I'd ever be able to put a new baby in the few outfits that I bought specifically for Logan anyhow. I did ok, saving the last 3 bags of "neutral" clothing that I put aside before Logan died for last. There was one bag of all boy clothing, and in that bag were four very special little outfits that I bought for Logan just before he died.

I kept those.

They hang in the closet in the empty spare room...the room we dubbed "the baby room" in our new home because that is where we put all of the baby stuff when we moved in. In the end I kept very few things. A few really special dresses of my dd, Logan's clothes, and some other odds and ends. About a tenth of what was there. I did not cry. I sat there and I stared a lot. I listened to an audio book to help keep my mind busy.

Unfortunately it took me catching my brand new grill on fire and destroying it at dinner time to bring me to tears. And cry I did! I cried loudly and with everything in me. I cried for my grill, for Logan, for Rudy, for my friend and her baby, for babies everywhere, for the ghosts that haunt me, for the loss of future children...I cried and I cried and I cried.

I guess I needed to.

Sparrow Farm Creations Memorial Prints

Songs for Logan

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