Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving Message

Received this from my Mother In Law this morning.  Beautiful message in an unlikely place.  Sending much love to all of my BLMs, family and friends this Thanksgiving morning.  I am so very thankful for all of your love and support.  

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Resentful & Thankful

As many of my friends who read this in real life know, I have just returned from two amazing weekend trips.  Chris went on his annual hunting trip out west, so I made plans to get away, too.  As you know from my last post, the first weekend I went to NYC with my Mom.  This past weekend, I went to visit a good friend in Chicago who is no stranger to grief as her mother just passed away last year from a rare cancer.  It was so therapeutic to be around my Mom and a good friend, both who seem to understand my grief.  Good to be with people who I feel totally comfortable talking about Harper with.  I am not worried that speaking her name will make them uncomfortable and I am not embarrassed to cry in front of them.  It was healing to grieve with them.

The timing turned out to be just right because I really don't think that I would have done very well being away from my husband, dogs, and home for so long before now.  Surprisingly, I didn't cry as much as I normally do and it was nice to have other things to focus on besides me.  As nice as the distractions were, after not seeing my husband for 10 days, I was so READY to be home with him -- back to our safe place.  Back home with each other and our girl.

So, here we are -- the day before Thanksgiving and the day before Harper's 5 month angelversary.  Needless to say, I as much as I try, I am not feeling very thankful.  I know I have so many things to be thankful for but nonetheless, I am feeling resentful and sad today.

I resent the ugly turn my life has taken.  I know we all talk about being changed from our loss experience and trying to live a better life.  And I do.  I really try to stay positive.  But still, I am resentful.  I resent my body for rejecting my baby and I resent that damned infection.  I resent that my innocence and naivety have been taken away from me for any future pregnancies.  I resent that I don't have a newborn to care for.  I resent that I have a nursery that she will never come home to and a nursery that I can't bear the thought of taking apart.  I resent the people who tell me "it was God's plan" or that "everything happens for a reason"-- those who say stupid things and have no idea in hell what it's like to live with the pain of losing a child.  I resent the anguish that is so unrelenting at times that it can knock you sideways.  I resent the people who seem to have it so easy.  I resent that my daughter is dead and that no matter what happens in my life, no matter what happy things may come, she will never be coming back to me.  I resent that I will never know Harper in this lifetime.  I resent the wounds on my heart that will never fully heal and the part of my soul that will be forever missing because she isn't here with me.

I am trying to accept this new life but it is so hard to let go and just accept.  I am still stuck on "how unfair my life is" and "why did this happened to us" or "why did their baby live and mind didn't".  I saw baby with red hair and big blue eyes who made eye contact with me in the grocery store the other day and just lost it, right there in the middle of the soup isle.  Babies with red hair have been my biggest trigger lately and maybe they always will be.  Acceptance is not coming very easily and I am not sure if I will ever fully accept this new life without her.

Of all the things that I mentioned above that I resent, I am not in any way resentful of my pregnancy with Harper or do I resent her.  I would go through all of the pain again if I had to; if this is the only way I was meant to be her Mother.  I am not resentful of the six glorious months that we had together before her life ended on that tragic day.  Those were the best six months of our lives -- so happy and so full of hope for our little one.  I couldn't wait to meet her face to face and when I did, it surely wasn't as I had planned it but I am thankful to have been blessed with her in my life.

Today I am thankful for my sweet girl, the little one who made me her Mommy.  My sweet Harper who has taught me so much about unconditional love and a bond that transcends the boundary of life and death.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I ((heart)) New York!

I just returned from a fabulous trip to New York City with my Mom.  We crammed a lot into 3 days but had a blast!  We did and saw so much.  

Ground Zero was first on our list.  Seeing the aftermath of 9/11 was a surreal experience; it reminded me that there is so much tragedy and sadness in the world.  There are so many people who are mourning the loss of someone.  I tend to live in my own grief bubble sometimes.  I get so consumed with own grief and it is easy to forget  that I am not the only one who has suffered and lost so much.

After the solemn visit to Ground Zero it was on to more upbeat things.  Macy's was next on the list and what an experience that was!  It was like walking into a party as we crossed the threshold; the music was pumping and people were all a buzz.  Just walking into that store would make anyone smile...I think my Mom and I both danced through the doors :)  We stopped at FAO Schwartz and a few street side markets; took a stroll in central park; ate fabulous food; went to the Top of The Rock (Rockefeller Center); visited the Today Show; witnessed the magic of The Radio City Rockettes and the talents of Broadway; and ate more great food!   It was truly a weekend of a lifetime and I felt so lucky to be experiencing that with my Mom.  I felt great all weekend - like I had taken a drink from the cup of life and had snuck away from my old companion, grief.  I had a few sad moments here and there but for the most part, I was up.

New York wouldn't be New York without Broadway and we were lucky enough to see two shows;   Promises, Promises and Wicked. 

Both of the shows were amazing!!

The song For Good from Wicked has been mentioned on many other BLM blogs and now I know why. It comes at the end of the performance and as I listened to it the tears just rolled down my face.  Here are the particular lyrics that stuck out for me.  

"...It well may be
That we will never meet again
In this lifetime
So let me say before we part
So much of me 
Is made of what I learned from you
You'll be with me
Like a handprint on my heart
And now whatever way our stories end
I know you have re-written mine..." 


...Who can say if I've been 
Changed for the better?
I do believe I have been
Changed for the better
And because I knew you...
I have been changed for good."

Pretty powerful lyrics, if you ask me. I have been truly changed because of my sweet girl and she will always be with me "like a handprint on my heart".  I love that line because it is exactly how I feel.  She lives on within me - safe, loved and remembered.  I have been forever changed because I knew her.  I see life differently now.  I don't want to take anything for granted because I know how things can change before you even have a chance to blink.  I understand all too well the frailty of life, it is a precious gift. 

The trip away was just what I needed.  It was nice to get away from my reality and to be thrust into such a lively environment with so much distraction.  It was another step in a positive direction, another step in the healing process.  I realize that tomorrow I may be pulled back under water but for now I am up and loving New York!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Harper's Cousin, Noah...

I have been a little MIA from blog land lately.  I have just had a lot to process and have been feeling very overwhelmed as of late.  I want to start by announcing that I have won my very first giveaway from the lovely Vera Kate at My Insides, Out. She will be making a beautiful lap quilt with Harper's name on it with the color scheme of my choosing.  I can't wait to see it as I know it will be gorgeous!  She's a talented one, that VK.

Another announcement:  My little brother and his girlfriend welcomed their son, Noah Ryland, on November 2nd... an election day baby!  He made quite the entrance into the world being that he was in the "sunny side up" presentation (face up) making his mama push for 2.5 hours with no progression.  They decided to section her and Noah finally arrived and everyone is doing well :)

As I have learned, in the land of the baby lost, it is one step forward and two steps back.  I knew Noah's birthday was coming and I knew it would be hard but I had no idea how hard.  The wind has been knocked out of me once again and I wish all it took was a portable oxygen tank to re-inflate my lungs.  Don't get me wrong and I guess this is where blogging can get hairy.  I don't want to censor myself here.  This blog is my outlet to express my feelings out in the open as a way for me to deal with them.  It is never my intention to hurt anyone's feelings.

With that being said, I am happy for them, truly.  But as happy as I am for them and our families, I am still sad for me and Chris.  I am jealous, yes, jealous.  I am back at why?  Why did this happen to us?  What did we do to deserve this fate?  I know the simple answer: life isn't fair and that there was nothing we could've done, but still I wonder.   I wanted that to be us welcoming Harper.  I wanted the happy celebration as our our longed for, sweet one made her way into the world.  We didn't get to enjoy all of the festivities-all of the visits, the passing the baby around and the congratulations.   I am heartbroken that we don't get to experience the things that they are experiencing right now with Noah-first smiles, feedings, sweet snuggles...the precious beginnings of a life.

All of my struggling is not because I don't love Noah or because I am not happy he is here.  I do and I am but it's bittersweet for me.  Noah's due date was exactly four weeks after Harper's which is what makes this all so much harder.  I know that every milestone from him taking his first steps to high school graduation will remind me of what she would have been doing.  I hope that in time this will get easier but for now it's heartrending.   Harper and her cousin, Noah, were supposed to grow up together but instead she will be watching over him as she watches over all of us.

I miss my baby girl so much and I wish she were here to meet her new cousin. <3

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Infant Loss On The Today Show

I stumbled across this you tube clip at Jessica's blog. It is from an episode of the Today show in Australia-kudos to them for showing a segment on infant loss. They talk about Lily Allen's stillborn son and also the process of grief and surviving infant loss. Both women interviewed have experienced the loss of a baby and have beautifully articulated the overwhelming feelings that a woman experiences when she loses her son or daughter.

Monday, November 1, 2010


It's finally here, November.  I am not usually one to wish time away, actually quite the contrary.  But the latter half of this year has sucked - plain and simple - and I am just really ready to keep flipping the months on the calendar until 2011 gets here.  I realize that as more days pass the further away I get from the day I last held Harper and that is hard on my heart.  It is hard accepting that I will never hold her again physically.  It is hard accepting that all of my wishing and praying and crying won't bring my sweet baby back.  But like I said a few posts ago, I have to quit letting these thoughts consume and define me.  So, as time marches on and I feel saddened by the distance of time since her birth, I am also feeling a lot better.  And let me tell ya, after the last four months, feeling better feels good.  Notice I use the word better, it's not great but hey, it is a start.

The holiday season is officially here.  Halloween has come and gone and now the Christmas festivities will be in full swing.  I have always loved the fun and merriment of the season but this year I have pretty much decided to boycott all of the superfluous nonsense that comes along with the real reason we celebrate Christmas.  I will not be making a list and checking it twice and I won't be decorating our home.  If you take a look in our attic you will see that I am quite the holiday decorator so this is a pretty big deal for me.  I have always loved this time of year and I couldn't wait to have children to make the season magical for.  Since Harper died I feel there is no point.  If anyone asks me what I want for Christmas I will tell them to make a donation to the March of Dimes in Harper's name.  That would make me happy.  I guess I feel a little a bit like a scrooge but that's ok.  In my minds eye Christmas was supposed to look a lot different this year.

Christmas will come and go as it always does and our new year will come.  I really hope that 2011 will be a good year, full of hope and happy times, we definitely are in need of one.