A Part of My Soul Left the Day Your Heart Stopped Beating....

Jun 13, 2010

It's Finally Hit Me...

I just spent a few moments browsing some blogs of other women who have lost babies. One of the things they all have in common that I can not even imagine is they all had stillborn children.

My baby was only 10 weeks old.

But I've realized what that unusual feeling I hold inside is from...I have nothing of my baby. It's like an emptiness that will never be filled. No, pictures, no lock of hair, no hand/feet prints, no birth certificate and most importantly - no final resting place. The only thing I have of his/her brief life is a couple ultrasound pictures and even in those he/she is just a blob because he/she was measuring 2 weeks behind.

That's my biggest fear, guilt...my biggest problem with this loss. My baby does not have a final resting spot. There is not a place I can go to feel close to him/her. There is not a place I can go to be with him/her...to cry...to talk to etc....Nothing.

After reading one precious mother's story of her daughter's burrial it hit me so hard and I literally cried harder than I think I have these past 3 months. My baby was reveiwed by a labratory and then discarded with the hazardous materials at the hospital. That literally breaks my heart...it hurts my heart and makes me feel like I just had him/her thrown out with the trash.

I know there was nothing I could do about that, but still that's my inner deamon and I have to trust God. I know my baby is with God and what little body he/she had here with me is useless with God in Heaven. Selfish on my part, but I would have given him/her a resting spot if I could have.

I HATE this!

I should be relaxing - enjoying one more day of work until school starts back in August but my life has become utter chaos. I feel so tense, angry and frustrated all the time. So much so, I feel like my insides are shaking sometimes. I know it's stress and anxiety but as much as I loathe this feeling I just can't seem to shake it off.

Because of all this, my GERD/Acid Reflux has been quite horrible lately. I just want to scream or cry, but when I do I only feel better for a short while. I can't put my finger on all the stress but I believe it is a collaboration of many things:

1. All the excuse me "crap" I have to do at the end of each school year to close out.
2. Not knowing if I will be in 1st grade again next year or moved up to either 2nd or 3rd grade.
3. Hubby may be without a job come June 30th. We're not sure yet what is going on there if he will be able to stay or if they will lay him off. (Big stress there I know)
4. Master's classes are finally taking its toll on me. Only this one and one more/internship left, but I'm tired and want my life back...hey I sounded like Tony Hayward from BP just then didn't I?
5. POTTY TRAINING! This has got to be the hardest thing I have EVER done. Even labor and delivery was a breeze compared to this. My darling child has little to no interest in potty training (she's 3). We went through 5 pairs of "big girl panties" and shorts yesterday from Noon until about 4pm. She tells me after she's gone that she needs to go potty...great! I guess with that one I'll just let it go until she's more ready. I was hoping to stop buying diapers for a while since hubby's job is up in the air..that would save A LOT of money each month..regular diapers/pull ups/nighttime diapers = about $100/month.

Calgon..PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE..take me away!

Jun 4, 2010

Not Ready Yet!!

People/friends keep asking me (at different times of course) when are we going to try again for another baby. It makes me feel uncomfortable for people to ask me that..even my best friends. I guess in a way it makes me feel guilty about thinking about another baby when I still miss this one.

I just tell them...oh we will, eventually. Even today my mother-in-law's first question to me when I mentioned I was on a "crazy chocolate fix" was "Are you pregnant?"....NO! NO, NO, NO, NO!!! I AM NOT! I finally told her and a best friend that I just wasn't ready yet. I told them both the earliest it would be for me to begin trying or thinking about it would be August/September! Just let me be and please quit trying to "force" a pregnancy on me when I'm still in such turmoil and anxiety over the last.

May 30, 2010

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!

We had a wonderful family day today. My husband and his brother repaired our backdoor replacing the door frame and a few boards that needed replacing because of water bouncing up on them when it rains. Hallie had a play date with her buddy Addyson and two of her cousins - Bailey and Ian.

Hallie was out by 7pm which is a bit unusual since she usually stays up until 10pm or later. Jason grilled us hamburgers and even sat down and watched one of my favorite "Brat Pack" movies - Pretty In Pink. Jason couldn't believe his eyes when he saw "Duckie" (He likes John Cryer on Two and a Half Men).

It was a busy day but a great day!

Finally, let's all remember those veterans who have served our country and have died.

May 26, 2010

Busy Time of the Year & Stress

I feel like I'm going at a very fast pace. I teach and it's the end of the year. Lots of paperwork, assessments, things to do to close out the year. Add to that a 3 year old, a husband who is looking a new job because his company may be closing its doors, a dog in heat who has all but ruined my carpet and new bedspread, trying to finish my Masters degree (I graduate in December)I feel worn out.

Yet I constantly feel a little anxiety in me that is beginning to get on my nerves! I feel like I need to relax and I don't know how. Everything I try doesn't work. Hot baths, reading, exercising...nothing. I feel like I just want to scream. I have cried out, I have pleaded with God to help me not be nervous/anxious and to help me overcome my anger and short fuse as of late. That is the only thing that has come close to making me feel better but, I can't cry out at work or in other places I may be. My acid reflux is acting up horribly because of the stress. I'm not sleeping well. I almost drift off to sleep and then I shoot straight up in bed almost wide awake. It even makes me feel weird for a bit.

Any suggestions would be helpful. The only time I do feel somewhat "normal" is when I go home to visit my parents and I'm most grateful when I'm able to do that.

May 22, 2010

Hallie's Birthday

Today is my little girl's third bithday! It's a happy day! I am a little sad knowing that Ava/Callen will never celebrate Hallie's bithday with her or celebrate his/her own with us, but I know Ava/Callen's looking down and enjoying the day with us, sending his/her love to his/her big sister!

May 18, 2010

Ava Elizabeth/William Callen

A few nights after I found out I had lost the baby while in deep, constant thought I became really disturbed that my baby didn't have a name. I have no clue if the baby was a boy or a girl so what do I do??

I decided right then that the baby needed a name, an identity, something other than fetus or miscarriage or "the baby". I had recently had a converstion with a really close friend who informed me of the miscarriages she had that I never knew about. I found out she had given birth to a stillborn daughter. I asked her did she ever name her and her response was, "No."

It was then that I knew I had to name my deceased child. Otherwise I felt he/she would be "lost" forever. I had liked a few names and hadn't decided on anything yet seeing I was only 10 weeks along. However, sitting there that night the first 2 names that popped in my mind were names that I had never considered. I felt it was God's way of helping me choose the right names.

I chose Ava Elizabeth for a girl and William Callen for a boy. My Great Grandmother was Clara Elizabeth. My maternal Grandfather was William Walter and my paternal Grandfather was Lonnie Calvin. I think it was a combination for the two and it was given to me almost instantly. So, my little girl (if that's what the baby was) would have been Ava. If it had been a boy he would have been called Callen.

My gut instinct says girl, but again - I will not know until I meet him/her in Heaven. One other person I can't wait to meet for the first time when I get to Heaven is my sister/brother that was lost to a miscarriage in 1984. I know between Grandparents, Great Aunts, Great Uncles, Aunts, Uncles, sibling and family friends who are already in God's presence my baby is in wonderful hands and just waiting for me to arrive one day.

Mother's Day 2010

Mother's Day was somewhat bittersweet for me this year. Although I was happy to spend it with my almost 3 year old, I was very sad to not have my baby in my womb. The week leading up to Mother's Day 3 people I know gave birth to their babies. I was so happy they all were healthy and safe, but I missed my baby.

This is the time I would have been finding out if it were a boy or a girl. I will always have those what if questions. I will never have any answers until I arrive in Heaven.

Of all the relationships I've had in the past where I thought I had my heart broken...I was wrong... I now know what true heartbreak really is.

Angel Baby Stephenson - February 22, 2010

I had a healthy pregnancy that ended with a C-section in May 2007. My little girl is now going on 3 years old. My husband and I decided to try to add to our family so in December we began trying to have another baby. We got pregnant with no trouble. I found out in mid January I was pregnant. I took my first positive test on January 14th. I went the following week to my doctor and they confirmed my pregnancy.

With this pregnancy I experienced symptoms I did not have with my first pregnancy. With my first pregnancy I had no morning sickness. With this one I felt sick constantly but only vomited twice (same day). My acid reflux was HORRIBLE even while on Nexium. With my first pregnancy it never bothered me. I had no appetite and my stomach hurt almost constantly.

I went to get my first ultrasound on February 15th. I had to go alone because my husband couldn't go because of work. I saw my baby's heartbeat even though I had to lie completely still and hold my breathe. It was 166 bpm. However, as soon as I saw the screen I knew something wasn't right. I was supposed to be 8 weeks 3 days along but I was only measuring 6 weeks 3 days along. I got my first ultrasound with my first child around the same time and I knew how big the baby should have been. My doctor tried to assure me that everything was fine, there was a good, strong heartbeat that maybe I just ovulated late. I knew that wasn't the case. My time frame of my LMP and my first positive test proved that theory wrong. For days I just felt like I would miscarry and hoped my baby would "stick with me".

On that following Saturday - February 20th I went to the bathroom and saw a slight brown discharge once. I was worried but I tried to not let it worry me too much because people do spot sometimes in the first trimester and this was so little I thought maybe my eyes were tricking me. The next night I had strong stomach pains but figured I just needed to go to the bathroom since I had been slightly constipated.

I got up the next morning and went to work. I felt fine, no pain, nothing. About 10am I went to the bathroom. As soon as I went to use the bathroom I saw the dark spotting. I knew it was over. All I could say was No, No, No. I called my doctor's office and they had me come right in. My husband had called earlier and let me know he was home sick in the bed with a virus. I had to go alone back to my doctor's office. When I got there my doctor checked and saw that there was some "old blood" and took me back to get another ultrasound. She felt that since I had not had any cramping and no red blood that everything would be ok.

We got in there and there was no heartbeat. She searched for 10-15 minutes. I was surprisingly ok. I guess I willed myself not to cry. My doctor was very compassionate and I believe she was more upset at the time than I was. I waited to cry until I got into my car. I then called my husband and then my mother. I went by Walmart to pick up the prescriptions my doctor had written for me incase I finished miscarrying at home. Then I went to my school and made sub-plans for the rest of the week (it was only Monday).

I stayed at home the rest of the week waiting to see if I finished miscarrying naturally. I did not so I went on Thursday, February 25th for my D & C. I was unsure of what was going to happen but I knew I would be ok. Others had told me it was nothing to be afraid of. I prayed silently and felt God's comfort. They used anesthesia to put me out to where I slept. I have a vague memory of a dream I had during the procedure where I was playing with a brown haired child in a place surrounded by white light. As I woke up I found I was sobbing worse than I had the previous few days. Everyone kept asking if I was ok. I assured them I was, recovered and went home.

On Sunday I went to church and felt like everyone was just staring at me. I felt the same when I returned to work the next day on Monday. I found I had rather people tell me they were sorry and me cry some than see me, make eye contact and not speak. If I've learned anything through this I know I will always tell others who go through this how sorry I am for what they are experiencing. I honestly felt like a freak when people wouldn't speak. I know they were unsure what to say, but that's the lesson I am taking from my personal experience.

To this day I think of my baby several times a day. I still cry some, not like the first few weeks though. I have felt alone through this process. I don't blame my husband for not being able to go with me for all the ultrasounds. I do feel he was "removed" from this whole process. I feel to him the baby was never "real" because he never saw or heard the heartbeat. I finally explained to him to imagine how he felt when we saw our daughter Hallie's heartbeat the first time. I told him I felt that same way with this baby too. Then for him to imagine not having Hallie here in our lives. I think he got the point.