Who would he have been?

When Sam was a newborn it was easy to imagine the clock had been reset.  It was easy to look at him and think that the past year had been a dream and that Noah was a tiny, healthy baby.  

Now Sam is almost 5 months.  He is a happy wiggly baby.  I have no idea what Noah would have been like at this age.  He is always a tiny baby to me, even though had he lived he would be 17 months.  The same age Owen was when we moved here.  He would be approaching the age Owen was during my pregnancy with Noah.  
I will always wonder who he would have been.  
  

Those that mind don’t matter?

It’s been a rough few days.  Yesterday was a year and a half since Noah was stillborn.  And I ran into hurt and judgment in an unexpected place.   

I have walked a fine line of being open about what exactly happened, but I have been afraid to be too open.  Yesterday underlined why.  You never know who will share your story.  And who will twist it to fit their own world view.  

I was blindsided yesterday at a birthday party.  A friend of the mom’s and I started chatting.  As soon as she heard my name she told me that while we’ve never met, she has prayed for me.  I was immediately wary.  What had she heard?  Who had told her, and why?  It turned out I was wary for good reason.  She works for the local crisis pregnancy center.  Aka anti-choice organization.  She invited me to their “post-abortion support group.”  She told me that while the situation was different, lots of people come who regret heir choice.  

I don’t.  We made a decision.  Noah was loved, wanted, and dying.  More brain damage was occurring all the time.  He could not ever breathe on his own, and his condition was getting worse, and their was no treatment available.  So we induced labor.  Removed him from the life support of my body. 

And yet this woman, whose name I don’t even remember, has sent me into a tailspin.  My nerves are frayed.  Why do I care about this random woman?  

I think it’s that she represents so many.  I know that.  I have friends who have been so supportive that I have never shared with.  Because I imagine a reaction like this.  

I fought to stay pregnant for months.  I fought to give birth to him in the way that felt right.  I fight every day for his memory.  For recognition from friends and family that I have three sons, not two.  I am tired of fighting.  This is not a fight I am up for.  This is not a fight that I feel I can win.  It is too entrenched.  

  

I wish Dr Seuss was right.  But in this, there are people who mind, and they do matter.  Friends, potential hiring committees, parents of future students, this is something that matters to many.  It feels like a hopeless uphill battle.  And I don’t have the strength for it.  

Those that mind don’t matter? Don’t 

It’s been a rough few days.  Yesterday was a year and a half since Noah was stillborn.  And I ran into hurt and judgment in an unexpected place.   

I have walked a fine line of being open about what exactly happened, but I have been afraid to be too open.  Yesterday underlined why.  You never know who will share your story.  And who will twist it to fit their own world view.  

I was blindsided yesterday at a birthday party.  A friend of the mom’s and I started chatting.  As soon as she heard my name she told me that while we’ve never met, she has prayed for me.  I was immediately wary.  What had she heard?  Who had told her, and why?  It turned out I was wary for good reason.  She works for the local crisis pregnancy center.  Aka anti-choice organization.  She invited me to their “post-abortion support group.”  She told me that while the situation was different, lots of people come who regret heir choice.  

I don’t.  We made a decision.  Noah was loved, wanted, and dying.  More brain damage was occurring all the time.  He could not ever breathe on his own, and his condition was getting worse, and their was no treatment available.  So we induced labor.  Removed him from the life support of my body. 

And yet this woman, whose name I don’t even remember, has sent me into a tailspin.  My nerves are frayed.  Why do I care about this random woman?  

I think it’s that she represents so many.  I know that.  I have friends who have been so supportive that I have never shared with.  Because I imagine a reaction like this.  

I fought to stay pregnant for months.  I fought to give birth to him in the way that felt right.  I fight every day for his memory.  For recognition from friends and family that I have three sons, not two.  I am tired of fighting.  This is not a fight I am up for.  This is not a fight that I feel I can win.  It is too entrenched.  

  

I wish Dr Seuss was right.  But in this, there are people who mind, and they do matter.  Friends, potential hiring committees, parents of future students, this is something that matters to many.  It feels like a hopeless uphill battle.  And I don’t have the strength for it.  

1 year later

quick update: we are still here and everyone is doing fine.  Quick picture at the bottom. 

This month has been harder than I thought.  Easter threw me for a loop.  Last easter, the day before we left for my mom’s I got this.    

 

(Having some issues, but it should show a positive opk.  If not I’ll fix it later.)  

And it led to a surprise IUI, a BFP, extremely low betas, and eventual loss.   

With the quirk of moving holidays, that surprise IUI was actually a year ago today.  But it was easter weekend that hit me with the tailspin of what ifs and should-have-beens.  

I have Sam.  And he is amazing, and wonderful, and already a better sleeper than his oldest brother is even now.  

But I still miss Noah and all of the babies we’ve lost.  I still cry when I think of them.  And cry even more when people thoughtlessly refer to Sam as our 2nd.  He may be the second child to live, but I still ache for all of our others.  They count too.  

  

the world keeps turning

Today, the first of the babies due the same week as Noah turned one.  She’s the daughter of a dear friend.  They call her their sunshine baby, and it makes me nervous, as if they are tempting fate.  I’m sure they are just unaware of the meaning of sunshine baby in the loss community, but it still gets me every time.  

So the first of Noah’s “peers” is now one year old.  And Sam is one week old.  



The world keeps turning.  

Rambling : almost 35 weeks

Rambling: a lot of stuff is coming up right now.

I saw a whole bunch of tandem nursing pictures in a breast feeding group and it makes me sad. We would almost certainly have tandem nursed had Noah lived. He and Owen would have been only 2.5 years apart. Owen mostly self weaned this fall. He asks occasionally, but I have to say no because it sets off contractions too much the few times I have let him. And that was before everything got so much worse (contraction wise) in the last month. So I guess who knows if we would have, because handed are that would have happened at the end with any pregnancy. It just makes me sad to think that I can’t do something that I always wanted/planned on. Because my body has failed me so often.

Also Spiritbaby Come Home just had a test come back high risk for spina bifida. Thankfully everything looks good for them so far. But it got me thinking about Noah more. If his condition hadn’t been fatal. Imagining what it would have been like for the last year to have a child with high medical needs. He would be almost one now if he had stayed in close to term. We are moving into the territory where he wouldn’t be a baby anymore.

Bethany at Losing Lucy and Finding Hope told me recently that the second due date was harder than she expected. It hit me that I hadn’t thought about it too much yet. It is coming up fast. Just 10 days after Sam’s due date. I don’t know what we will do. Dan won’t have time off to take, and Sam will be (hopefully) somewhere around a month old or less. It all just hurts.

Things are going well with Sam, though I am on modified bed rest for at least 2 more weeks. Crazy to think that at that point he could come out. Owen has been having tantrums but also doing a lot of processing. He pretend played that he was pregnant and having babies today for a long time. And some of them he said died. Because that’s what he knows. It’s so hard to know what to say when he does that. He was in near tears the first time telling me that his baby died. And I don’t know how to help him. We are just trying to take things one day at a time. Tomorrow I will be 35 weeks. A milestone I never thought I would reach. I feel so unprepared. But on the other hand, oh how I want him out, and here, and breathing.

I’m almost done with the blanket I’ve been working on. A rainbow for our rainbow baby.

2015/01/img_3149.jpg

No one remembers but me

January 10th 2015.

The due date for the baby we lost in May. We found out I was pregnant on Monday, and had lost him by Sunday. But I still know that he should be here.

With Noah everyone thought about his due date. That he should have been there. Today, 32w6d pregnant with our Rainbow, I don’t think anyone remembers but me.

2015/01/img_3090.jpg

Getting close

Tomorrow I will be 32 weeks. I am terrified.

I haven’t talked about it much, but with Owen, I started having contractions at 33w1d and he was born by urgent cesarean at 33w5d. He spent 18 days in the NICU. I had no warning signs a head of time. Just thinking about all of it makes my heart race. I was diagnosed with PTSD from it, and have never really dealt with it. I just moved away from most of my triggers.

But now, being at almost that gestation again, I am terrified. I have been getting progesterone shots weekly since 16w. And I get cervical length checks every other week. This whole time, it has been holding great.

Normal is around 4cm, and they worry around 2cm. At 16w I was at 3.5cm. When I started progesterone shots it slowly went up as my contractions slowed until I was at a whopping 5cm,, where it has stayed.

Until 2 weeks ago. At 30w it was suddenly down to 4.5cm. Still in a really good range, but as the first time it shortened, warning bells went off. I’m not due for another check until next week. But they did a quick abdominal ultrasound measurement at 31w. Not as accurate, but a quick check. It was 3.5cm. Again, still good, but lower again by quite a bit.

Terrifying.

I have my next check Tuesday. I’m really afraid it will be shorter again. I’m afraid I am going to end up on bed rest and/or delivering early. I want to make it to 37w. Any spare thoughts you have would be appreciated.

And on the other hand it seems silly to worry about. Even if he came now, at 32w I know that chances are he would be ok. Alive. And isn’t that what we pray for?

Bump and 3d ultrasound picture below

.
.
.
.
.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/d78/59148157/files/2015/01/img_3065.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/d78/59148157/files/2015/01/img_3058.jpg

No news is good news

I know things have been really quiet here. There has been a lot going on for me locally. Lots of loss in my local community and I have been trying to help out how I can here, and trying to get ready for the holidays and for Sam.

I’ve stepped back a lot online right now, not just here, but my online presence in general, where I was very, very active just a few months ago.

Part of it may be that I’m holding my breath – waiting for the shoe to drop. I now know all the ways thing can go wrong. And I go back and forth between the occasional excitement and belief that Sam could arrive safely, and sure that disaster will strike at any moment.

I’m ostrich-ing myself a little. I remember how raw everything was at the holidays last year. I try not to let myself go to that dark place. And not being as involved online is part of that right now. My emotional energy is low, and it is tied up a lot locally. I’m involved in a local support group, and there have been two late term losses in the last few months. I also have some very close friends dealing with repeat loss and infertility. I do think of many of you, and appreciate those who check in. I’m sorry I don’t post/comment more. I also worry about being a negative to those struggling right now, while things with Sam are going so well at the moment.

I will say that trying not to go to the dark place doesn’t mean forgetting our road. I still think of Noah all the time and am working to include him in our holidays. It’s so hard to do anything that feels like enough. One small way was this ornament I bought on etsy. My whole family. <3

IMG_2893.JPG