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My second child and our first daughter, Camille, died and was born on June, 30 2011 when I was full term at 38 weeks pregnant. I gave birth to my rainbow baby, a second daughter, on August 31, 2012. This is me trying to figure out how to be a mother to my living son and daughter and function in society after our tragic loss.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Birthday Parties and Other Crap Events

My friend's son turned 3. I went to her house early this morning and helped get everything ready for the party. Transported everything to the park and set up. Some moms I have never met were there. The "do you JUST have one child?" question came up. Yes, just the one. "Oh because I thought you had two?" really lady can you JUST drop it because I don't have just the one, I have two, but I don't know you, and I don't feel like crying at 10am in the morning right before about 40 people show up to this fantastic shit parade that I am trying to be joyous about participating in. Did I happen to mention that I really don't cuss very often in real life, but in blog land, well, it is just how I feel. A bunch of moms club moms and kids show up and I get some people who will talk with me. It is so hard to interact, I feel really distracted, edgy, skittish. Other women avoid me, I'm the lady whose baby died you know, it might be catching. Others just don't know~the new moms that have joined since Camille died. I also feel shitty because I haven't written thank you cards for any food or monetary support we got. I feel guilty about that....Because I am GOOD AT GUILT.

One of the moms had her baby last weekend, she, who was the last of our little pregnancy group to give birth, shows up with her new daughter. Yay for alive babies~right? NOPE. I gave her a hug and asked how she was feeling and said how her daughter looked like her husband. I'll give you one WILD guess if she asked about me. I didn't talk to her the rest of the morning. I was exhausted after the party. Kai said he had a great time...Sometimes I want to look at him and say "you know I'm taking one for the team little" but I don't, I just say "I'm so glad you had a good day buddy"

It doesn't help that I am super hormonal and grief stricken simultaneously...Does midol make a pill for that: bloating, headache, heartache, cramps, general malaise, dead baby, fixer upper pill? I had my first period on the 9th of this month. I bought OPK sticks, but I don't really need them because I can feel when I am ovulating. I had sex, I was hopeful. That was 9 days ago, today I started bleeding. I didn't think you could get your period 9 days after you ovulated. So I am cranky, sad, tired, pissed off. I started crying tonight, openly in front of my husband and he says "sometimes it seems like you want people to say something and then you don't want them to either" So WHAT if I am crazy, SOMETIMES I just need him to say "yeah, fuck all those alive babies" and "All those ladies are bitches" but he won't, that's not him. But I don't feel supported. I told him I need him to get angry with me or sad and he said being angry is a waste of energy and he won't do it. FINE but let me be angry, don't judge me for being PISSED that my DAUGHTER DIED! It's bad enough that I feel alone in this without feeling even more alone because the one person (husband who also has a dead daughter) doesn't seem to get it either. Even if it isn't logical...my feelings are VALID.
A friend of mine had her son at 26 weeks pregnant. He just came off the ventilator in the NICU. I sure do hope that he keeps being alive for her, because even though he has a long struggle ahead of him, he is alive. Something I never got to see in my daughter. It baffles me that my daughter could randomly die at full term and a baby can be alive at 26 weeks. This world puzzles me.

16 comments:

  1. Wow. Again, this could have been written by me a few months ago, except that i would not have been brave enough to go talk to the new mom. Cannot believe she didnt ask about you. In my book, that equals shit list for life for her. I would never speak to her again. But, dont listen to me bc i am not forgiving in my grief haha! Its one of thise passes ive decided to give myself. :) Geez, i just want to give u a big hug. You are not alone. I promise.

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  2. It still baffles me as well. Of course I am thrilled when any premmie baby defies the odds and makes it. That is the outcome we all want. But my 8 pound almost 41 week baby died. In utero. With nothing wrong with her. It is just all kinds of wrong.
    Thinking of you and precious baby Camille.
    xo

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  3. Argh, birthday parties bring me undone. I've cried at the few that the kids have been to since Joseph died because I'm thinking of all the birthdays that he's never going to get. I think you're incredible to be there and participate and HELP with your friend setting up. And I totally get feeling distracted, skittish and edgy...ditto to all of that, seriously, ditto.
    I'm finding the more time goes on, the less social I've become. If I'm at the shopping centre (mall) I'm hoping and praying that I don't bump into anyone I know, because it's just all too fucking hard and exhausting.
    And that woman who didn't ask how you were? Cow!
    And your husband not getting sad/angry with you and sharing in the grief, I get that too. Sometimes I get tired of compensating that 'men' grieve differently and just want him to be outraged. I've just received (yesterday) the book When Men Grieve - Why Men Grieve Differently & How You Can Help. I want to understand why, but I don't want to help, I just want him to express it the way that I do because the alternative (reality) is that it makes me feel even more alone in it. Sorry, hijacked your post here.
    I just want to say I get it, I get it all and it sucks - all of it.
    I just wish Camille was with you and you weren't experiencing this. And I wish for conception for you soon. x

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  4. You're incredibly brave to have gone to a party like that... I'm still no good with any sort of celebration or social gathering. In fact, this weekend, one of my husband's old friends is getting married. We declined the invite ages ago, but my husband has now changed his mind and he's going... without me. I feel like I'm letting him down, but I just can't slap on a smile and pretend to be happy for a whole day and night. It's hard to see joy being dished out to everyone else, just not for us...
    I'm sorry that things did not work out this month, but I'll keep my fingers crossed for sometime very soon.

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  5. Hi, I've been reading, I'm so sorry about your baby girl. The parties are hard, as are healthy pregnant ladies as are healthy babies. As is the period that comes when we are trying again. I lost a little girl in the third trimester from a cord accident in June 2009. Three days before that day, my nephew Kai was born, he is a gift and also a constant reminder of what could have been for us. It gets lighter, not as difficult to face these situations. I am now pregnant almost 2.5 years later and hoping like crazy we have a baby come home in December. Just know you are not alone and screw people who treat you like the "lady whose baby died, like they might catch it..." I think being strong for your little boy is a very healthy thing, as is feeling a little bit crazy and tired after these kinds of parties, I know I did for sure. The children who are here with us are a great reminder to keep living through it all, after all they need us to still be Mama.

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  6. For you:

    :yeah, fuck all those alive babies and those ladies are bitches!!!!"

    I don't swear much but I totally know why you want to hear that

    Anytime you want to hear it again let me know.

    <3 Paula

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  7. I feel the same way about premie babies--I'm glad a 26 weeker can make it, but why not my baby at 34 weeks? Why couldn't we have gotten to her in time?

    As for short luteal phases after ovulating, I've had them for the last several months. I've read that it can be the result of lower progesterone levels, and low progesterone can be caused by stress and anxiety. Go figure! They say that taking a B6 vitamin can help, but I'm also going to the doctor Monday and asking about a progesterone supplement. I've been told by another doctor that your body takes up to a year to readjust and get hormones back in line after giving birth. I know grief complicates everything, but I wish it didn't have to complicate getting pregnant again.

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  8. I had to reread my comment it sounds so harsh. But it is all apart of this process, this anger, this raw gut wrenching pain that tears us up inside and makes us want to claw at something.

    So to add to my comment because like I said it sounds to harsh even though it isn't meant that way.

    This is what I want to hear so I am saying it to you: It is okay to cry, to scream, to rock back and forth in a little ball. It is okay to wish your baby is alive and feel guilty and want an alternate universe where pigs fly and babies don't die (I think i am going to write about that one). It is okay to say to Kai, Mommy needs a sad moment but if you can just be patient I will be okay and we can start to play again. It is okay to want to stay in bed all day and feel resentful that you can't because you are still alive and have responsiblities. It is okay to hate your body for failing to do what you want it to do but it is okay to love your body also for letting you be a mother and knowing love like nothing you will else you will ever experience. And it is okay to forgive yourself for wanting another baby.

    These are the things I want to hear. I wish I was closer, I would bring over a basket of goodies to eat and a bunch of pottery. We would throw vases, bowls and plates to the ground until none was left and we felt better for the moment. We would scream at the sky and tell all those other people, screw you for not knowing what to say or at least not trying. And we would say screw you for not saying anything all.


    Paula <3

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  9. Paula's right. Not only is it okay, but it happens. We become angry and there is no stopping a raging mama. So rather than beat ourselves up for grieving the wrong way, accept that this has brought out the ugly in us and be selfish when you need to. God knows I need to be that way a lot. And like Molly, I'd be dropping that chick from my list STAT. Who doesn't ask how you're doing with such recent birthing experience? Screw her. She'll never understand you and she'll never support you. It's obvious.

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  10. I remember so well those early weeks and how difficult it was when random people asked about my loss AND when they didn't. I was crying either way but I always still preferred when people at least asked about our son or about how we were holding up.
    It is ok to be angry right now. Camille is gone and that is outrageous. Be full of rage and sadness. Your feelings are valid and one day you may find that the rage and anger have started to lift a little. But for now you just need to feel how you feel.
    Hugs to you.

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  11. Thank you all so much. I can not even begin to tell you how much your love, and comments, support from afar really really help me. I know that is why we are all here. Thank goodness for that. Thank you, thank you.

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  12. Oh my goodness, how could that lady not ask how you were? Some people are so damn clueless.

    I remember going through a stage of pure rage in June, three months after Elizabeth died and just after our miscarriage. I would scream and cry for hours. My husband practically had to restrain me from kicking a smug-looking pregnant lady in the shins one day. He didn't understand the anger either, and that was really frustrating. I felt like he judged me sometimes.

    I'm so sorry :( Be angry! You have good reason.

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  13. I don't think I'll even stop questioning why other babies can live at 26, 28, 30 weeks and Drew couldn't live at 37.5 weeks. It isn't fair and it just doesn't make sense. One day, I hope I can know the answer--and it better be a darn good one!!

    Sending you positive thoughts for a good and stress free weekend :)

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  14. I will never, ever understand how people can just look you in the face and NOT ask. Not even mention your baby. Not even an I'm SORRY. Damn.

    Meanwhile, I think you're super brave for going to the party, for asking after your friend and her baby, for just showing up. Good on you--but be gentle with yourself, too. If you decide sometimes to stay home, do it. If people don't understand, fuck 'em.

    Sending you lots of love, friend.
    xo

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  15. I totally hear you. When I came back from maternity leave many people just asked about my daughter. They didn't ask about my son who had just died or how I was doing. Everyone who simply focused on her is on my own personal sh*t list for life. We're a package deal - I have a daughter, but I also have a son. I so get it. (hugs)

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  16. Ugh.. I remember the awesomeness of the 8 day luteal phase around the 2nd or 3rd months after Cullen died. That when crazy Leslie took over.. completely. I wish I had better words of support other than I know how it feels. Over a year later my journey has been a nearly epic roller coaster.. and somehow I am still buckled in though I haven't a clue as to when the wheels will stop spinning.
    I read in another post that you are hetero for Factor V.. if you ever want to chat blood disorders just let me know. It's my soap box these days... ;o)

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