About Me

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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.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

It's Unfortunate I'm An Asshole

I had a particularly angry day last week. Usually the waves of anger I feel last for a few hours. This day it just hung on and made my heart a black and twisty place. I also noticed that my feelings haven't really subsided over the past week. You see I am having a difficult time being happy for people. It could be a recent pregnancy announcement, finding out the sex of their baby in the direction of their preference, a new job or promotion etc...

 When I hear the "good news" my first thought is "FUCK" or "Of Course". I was examining these feelings. I wasn't jealous....For goodness sakes I just gave birth 6 weeks ago to my beautiful rainbow baby girl. Everything is good right? So what were these nasty feelings I was having?
I realized I WAS jealous, not of the object, the event or outcome...what I realized was, I was jealous of the "feeling" of having things working out, of the feeling that you deserved good luck, or that working hard toward something results in success. I am jealous of the naivety of bliss and joy without consequence. Jealous that things work out for other people just not me.

I can say "I'm happy for you" and mean it because in a parallel universe where my daughter didn't die and things work out for good people, I am happy for them. But my twisty black heart pulls me down sometimes. I don't always like who I've become since Camille died. At once more compassionate and then also a bitter bitch.

Everyone who has had a child die knows the fallout of losing friends. Something that has been hard for me lately is even losing friendships with people who were initially very supportive after Camille's death.Is it me? Am I just not good friend material? I've always been a really loyal friend, I was once witty and fun to be around. If people just hung around long enough they would see there are pieces of that person who struggles to surfaces like blades of grass in a cracked sidewalk. It feels almost extra painful when people who had proven themselves as the type to stick around end up abandoning you as well. Like my grief just isn't going away and they can't deal with it anymore. I don't have a choice I have to live it daily. It doesn't just go away after a year or after a rainbow baby because my dear daughter is still dead. I've been having a lot of flashbacks lately. Sleep deprivation and holding a gorgeous living child in my arms I think fuels the missing. The late nights with no sleep although for a good reason this year takes me back to my sleepless desperate nights last year.

Here is my angry song...I play it to and from therapy visits and anytime I'm pissed off.. Enjoy haha!

Brandi Carlile- My Song

Everything I do surrounds these pieces of my life
That often change or maybe I've changed
And sometimes seeming happy can be self destructive
Even when you're sane or only insane
But don't bother waking me today

I'm so young I know I've been bitter, I've been jaded, I'm alone
Every day I'll bite my tongue
If you only knew my mind was full of razors
That cuts you like a word if only sung
But this is my song, it is my song

Now, I live every day like there'll never be a last one
Till they're gone and they're gone
And I'm too proud to beg for your attention
And your friendship and your time
So you can come and get it from now on

Here I am, I'm so young I know I've been bitter, I've been jaded, I'm alone
Every day I'll bite my tongue If you only knew my mind was full of razors
That cuts you like a word if only sung
This is my song, it's my song
And it's you, it is you

Here I am, I'm so young I know I've been bitter, I've been jaded, I'm alone
Every day I'll bite my tongue If you only knew my mind was full of razors
I'm not sure I can take it, I'm nothing strong to hold to
I'll wait to only hate you, my mind is full of razors
That cuts you like a word if only sung
But this is my song 


  1. *wipes away many tears*
    I feel like you are writting all of the activity in my head. I sat on my bed today and cried today away. My friendships have broken down, friends who told me at the start that I could never burn them out....... They're now distant, they feel I should be coping better, it's been a year I should be pulling things together.
    I feel like I am the failure, I didn't keep my baby alive and I can't even maintain a friendship. does everyone else "do grief" better than me? It feels sad because these friends all feel like a connection to my baby, losing them is like losing a precious keepsake of him. What happens if I make new friends (how do I make new friends?), they will only know about my baby via my story and not because they were there through the pregnancy and then when we lost him.
    I grieve so enormously for my son but I also grieve for my lost friends and I grieve for my old life, when my baby was alive and things were amazing.
    Thank you for this post Renel.

    1. So glad you found me and other mamas who blog. It is just so hard all these feelings. Who we are after our child dies is a crazy mishmash. I'm glad I'm not alone. Thank you for that

  2. Neither you or Sarah are the failures, but I know exactly what you mean.I felt that way for years, then I would write about it and make it a thousand times worse. My friendships, the people who were there, broke down at or right after a year. Right after Thomas was born. Someone actually told me they were waiting for the timing to be right to tell me how much they didn't want my friendship.

    But I agree, after the new baby, there is so much remembering what you missed, milestones never passed. It is terribly hard. Then you add hormones to the mix and it is like the cocktail from hell.

    Sending you love. Both of you. I have made some new friends since the others have fallen away, and it has been a relief to be taken for who I am now, rather than seen through the eyes of tragedy and disappointment and failure at not being who I was before (not sure that made sense). And I share Lucia when the time is right, since it is no longer a compulsion to speak her name. But you are both amazing women. You have gone through a spiritual, emotional and physical devastation, you are now rebuilding. I think we need to release those people to welcome the people who can truly help our hearts and souls move to another level. Not people who want us to go back to who we were before. Those people don't exist. Thank goodness.

    Love you, Renel and Sarah. xo

  3. Sleep deprevation is helping screw with those emotions big time, but yeah, it all comes back, huh. I struggled with all of that plus anxiety for the first six months after Kellan (lol he isn't six months quite yet--in other words, still struggling, but it seems to be a bit lighter). I lost so many friends prior to K that I haven't noticed a trend of losing any post rainbow. But those twisty drk thoughts--totally have them. And totally hate them. But at least we recognize them--isn't that usually the first step, admitting the problem?

  4. Asshole? Far from it... If that's the case - Im the scum of the earth.

    I often think of how terrible my thoughts and feelings have become. A constant track of "lucky fucking you...just wait until YOUR baby dies...let's how happy you are THEN!". And I try to convince myself that I truly mean these ppl no ill will, or harm...but that evil dark place begs to differ.

    "Would it be the worst thing in the world if everyone I know all of a sudden had a run of bad luck? A tragedy or two strike...? I'll appreciate their good fortune and joyous announcements THEN...I promise..."

    It's an ugly world...and I remember feeling these things on a petty level before baby loss. But I matured out of them. I grew into this wonderful young lady that was honestly and genuinely happy to bare witness to other peoples wonderful lives. Now.. Sheesh, NOW. Don't dare broadcast joy within a hundred foot radius unless its my own.

    I think being a selfish asshole is ok. You're probably amount the prettiest of them out there. :).

    But really, I don't think you're selfish, or an asshole. I think you're amazing.

    1. Thank you for your kind words. I'm so glad I'm not alone. So so glad

  5. I once had a friend comment about how jealous she was at how quickly I lost all the baby weight. Had my son lived, it would have been a harmless comment and I would have laughed awkwardly and shrugged it off. Instead all I could think was "well if your son dies, chances are you won't want to eat much and you'll be in a depression that just sheds the pounds too" ... Because what would have been harmless comments in another life are now cruel reminders of everything that is missing.

    I'm still working at the bitterness and jealousy. I wish I could be genuinely happy for my friends' good news or good fortune.... And I can't always. Even good and loyal friends. So people I don't like that much?! When they have good things happen to them (which of course they ALWAYS do), I really turn twisty and dark and bitter and it's tough. Over two years out and it's still so tough.

    1. Thank you for this Caroline. It really helped me.

  6. Sad, angry, bitter...just a few emotions that still rule my life. Everything in life now has a different meaning since experiencing what we have. Every thing has a flip side. We can smile at our living children when something great is happening, but inside our heart is crying because there is a toddler missing. I have a feeling that this will never ever fade, but maybe we become a little better of tuning it out and focusing on what is and not what should have been. Maybe if we are lucky we can once again be genuinely happy for others as well, but I agree with you that right now that seems like a long shot.

    My husband made a comment to me about how we have to try to find a way to make me happy again...are you kidding me??? I know he meant well, but it seems like that is the million dollar question since losing Logan. How do we become genuinely happy with ourselves let alone others. Hate that this is our life and people who have not walked in our shoes have no idea what we go through on a daily basis.

    I think you are exactly how you should be and sleep deprivation and hormones are probably not helping things either. I guess like everything else we just have to roll along this rollercoaster adjusting as we go.

    Hope all is well with you and your beautiful family.

    1. Yes let me know if you find a way to be really happy again. Snark.

  7. Oh I needed to read this tonight. Feeling a little less alone now. Thanks Renel. xoxo

  8. Renel,

    I've just recently started following your blog. I lost my son 28 weeks ago at 28 weeks gestation. Thank you for this post. I have felt like this for weeks now. A co-worker of mine, who has been extremely supportive, told me about 4 weeks ago that after 4 years of infertility she and her husband were pregnant. I think she's at 18 weeks now. I've tried so hard to be happy for her and supportive, but I can't, I just plain can't. I am jealous of her. She wasn't supposed to be able to have kids and now she is and chances that everything will turn out okay are probably pretty good for her. Each day I find myself growing more and more distant from her. The more her belly grows, the more I can no longer relate to her or appreciate her support. On Oct. 6 she got me a card of support, it has been 6 months since losing my son, Alfy. She was the only one (besides my husband). Yet, I can barely look at her or hold a conversation with her. I feel like an awful person most days. Our co-workers I'm sure notice and NO ONE will talk about her pregnancy in front of me, which makes me feel worse. Why do so many good things happen to other people? Why did good fortune find them and not me?

    Anyways, thank you for sharing. I find that I think I am a cold, heartless bitch some days, most days. I have an extreme amount of compassion for some, but absolutely none for others. It's been a lonely road to navigate. I don't know anyone else who has experiences this so reading blogs of others has been my support system.

    Thank you so much for sharing. Also feeling a little less alone.

    1. I am so sorry you don't have your son. It is so hard, this life without our baby. I'm glad you have found blogs. It has been incredibly supportive for me. Keep reading, commenting writing. We will help eachother in our grief.

  9. These thoughts that brew in our heads are all so alike. I don't really mean ill will but I want someone that isn't me to understand too, shit just doesn't always work out!! Awesome that this is your first baby but I'm still going to tell you about my first daughter that died even if it freaks you out in your beautiful, happy, naive pregnancy - because bad shit sometimes happens to good people.

    Renel, your not alone, we're all here thinking the same things!!

    Love and thoughts, di

  10. Yes. A million times over. This is why I can't be on Facebook. Because I can't always be happy for people. This is why I didn't want one if my best friends to attend the remembrance walk with us. Because she's being her boy who was born two months before Eliza and lived. It still hurts and I'm still angry.

  11. "If people just hung around long enough they would see there are pieces of that person who struggles to surfaces like blades of grass in a cracked sidewalk."

    So true.

    Friendships are crazy. I essentially abandoned many of my friendships right after Nathaniel. I couldn't bear to look in their eyes and see other people's range of emotions. If only they were sad, too, for losing Nathaniel, but they also were showing the signs of pity for witnessing the train wreck of my life. I couldn't bear it. I look back sometimes and miss those friendships, but the truth is that I can't go back. I'm giving myself five years. Five years and maybe those relationships will be ready to engage anew. And maybe not.

    I don't have a new baby, so I can't speak to that particular blend in the turmoil. But I do know that when I'm exhausted or when I'm hormonal, the grief flares intensely, and is uncomfortable and sometimes unbearable. And I know that having a new baby is exhausting and wicked hormonal.

    Take good care of yourself <3

  12. My inner demons judge everyone - "SERIOUSLY!?! - THEY get to be parents to a handful of healthy happy live children, and we lose our precious first son??!!"

    Births are especially weird... I feel anxious the whole way through a pregnancy, they when everything turns out ok in the end, I always feel a split second of relief followed by a more lingering feeling of disappointment - why does every one else get their happy ending? Just not us?

    And even the non-baby related stuff - "X just got a great bargain on a gorgeous new house!" "Y got his promotion!" "Z just won the lottery!" I usually have a smile plastered on my face whilst inside my eyes are rolling and I'm secretly seething at why some people get to have pure, simple joy... Just not us.

  13. I'm an asshole, too.

    How is it possible that I'm still jealous and B is healthy and wonderful and 8 months old? Because I'm jealous of everything surrounding their lives that I don't have and will never have again. Sure, I'm jealous they get to keep their babies, but also the rest of themselves that didn't have to change.

    I'm different and I don't like myself much anymore. :/ You're not alone!

    1. Ha- assholes unite!
      Yes. Really I just wanted to be able to have kept Camille.

  14. As you know, I've been in that black and twisty place, too. "At once more compassionate and then also a bitter bitch." Yes, I often feel like that.

    Our occasional feelings of anger, jealousy, and bitterness really are normal. Please be gentle with yourself. xo

  15. I can relate to so much of what you have said. That feeling of having finally asked for too much patience or acceptance from friends, even from those I thought would always be there. Friendships are on my mind a lot right now as I approach Max's first birthday. All of those 'this time last year' thoughts, when I was a different person - when I was the 'me' that my friends recognised, instead of the 'me' I am now. You're not an asshole. Or else you are, and then I am too! We've lost the ability to believe in good luck and fate. That's all.


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