Sunday, April 16, 2006

Easter Sunday

This year is so much easier than last. Easter Sunday was to be the date of our son's baptism last year. We didn't go to church. I have rarely missed Easter Sunday services in my life. But I certainly could not go to witness the welcoming of other perfect little babies into our congregation.

This year was better. Happier. The service took a little different direction, with the inclusion of some dramatics and extraneous singing. The hymns were, as per usual, poorly sung (that brings a certain amount of entertainment to the musical - me). There was a certain amount of humour in the general confusion surrounding communion when the Easter Congregants (where do I go) joined the Regulars (get out of my way, I know what I am doing).

We are not spending time with our family today. I am not really sad about that. Certain siblings have been less than supportive in the last 6 months - basically, if we want to have anything to do with them, we have to call them, we have to drive 2 hours to visit them, we have to bend our lives to suit theirs. So, no bending today. That is a sad reality, but how can we keep chasing after them? I feel like the younger sibling sent out to play with the older - the older really doesn't want younger around, so spends the time between school and dinner trying to shake Little Sibling. Then when Younger complains to mom or dad, Older claims that it isn't true. Normal between a 7 and 12 year old. A sad relationship, when it is between 30 year olds.

We spent some time with other family members on Good Friday. In so many ways, we are just completely out of synch with family members. Parents that still treat you as if you are a child, siblings that have no clue that there are certain comments we don't want to hear. Sigh. It is tiring, more than anything. I can't quite work up the energy to be sad or mad. Just tired of it.

Even our priest, who is a generally empathetic soul, has moments of pure cluelessness. Suggesting that we have time for interest in electronic gadgets due to the fact that we don't have kids (oh, yes, glad we don't have kids - then we wouldn't have time for important things like blogging and that would be horrible). Educating the public is a daunting and exhausting task. I have begun to give that up as hopeless.

After my son died, at least a dozen families shared their experience with a similar loss. Some in empathetic ways, some in horrifying ways. I was irritated with these people. Why hadn't I heard of stillbirth as a common occurrence in our society? All of these people were telling me that it was common. Why did I feel as if it had never destroyed any family but ours, that we were being singled out for this devastation?

I am starting to learn. Society doesn't want to talk about it. It doesn't change. You can't, as an individual, change social mores. People tease you about your childlessness as a matter of course, as a matter of pride. They would be insulted, and believe it rude, if I were to remind them that, in fact, I do have a child (he is just remarkably well behaved in his casket, so you hardly notice him).

If we all banded together and became activists in the way other movements have (gay pride, for example), maybe it would be as socially unacceptable to ignore our dead children as it is to refer to a person as a faggot (my stomach turns as I type that word) or use the n-word in reference to colour. Though the difference between the issues is distinct, it is the activism that inspires me. I just can't do it on my own. I cannot face a table full of laughing, joking people in the work cafeteria and stop them when a hurtful comment is made. I am not strong enough. I wish I were.

What I need is one of my friends - you people - on either shoulder, like avenging angels, with fire in your eyes, giving me the strength to leave a swath of education in my wake.

My temps are all over the place this cycle. I have had 2 days below the coverline, and I think that I am only on 6-8DPO. Implantation? Or have I miscalculated date of ovulation and should I expect my period? Or maybe this one is annovulatory? I am tired of this "trying" business. Would be nice to succeed eventually...


kate said...

((((hugs)))) to you for going to church on Easter Sunday. You are strong -- i myself did not go again, until i had my sub baby to show off. And yes, it is nothing but a total showing off, when you dress your baby in a special Easter dress and parade her at church.

You asked about Nicolas' tree -- it is a weeping pussy willow. I think they are pretty strong, seeing as his is still alive and we put it through much more than any reasonable tree should be put through. I also think some varieties of weeping cherry are fairly strong. The real problem with most weeping things is that they are grafted, so if the top freezes you are sunk. Weeping willow is a North American native, though, so that might be an option for you. Overall I don't know anything about gardening so high north where you are -- Zone 2-4, that is pretty cold! You might check out Kathy Purdy's 'cold climate gardening' blog. Most of MI is zone 5, but actually where we are is zone 6, due to lake effects or something. I have always gardened in zone 6 or 7...much easier than zone 2-4!!!

Re awareness -- yes, i agree. It is very hard to spread awareness though. Though i want to spread awareness (i wear my t-shirt, i try to talk about it!), i will say that i, personally, don't want to be identified as 'that crazy dead baby lady'. And more often than not, it is extremely hard to incorporate Nicolas into any conversation, or to explain to someone why something is a hurtful (or borderline hurtful) comment without going too far. You do not, after all, want people to feel like they should be walking on eggshells around you, or that you will cry at any minute. On the other hand, if you do mention in a casual way that your son was stillborn, people will treat it casually (this has happened to me often) which is also just mind-boggling. So i do not know. I wish there was a good way...but we do the best we can, right?

delphi said...

"that crazy dead baby lady"

That got a laugh from the rabblerouser in the back...I completely agree with your comments.

Thanks for the weeping info. I know weeping caraganas do well here, but they just aren't pretty. I thought it looked like a pussywillow - SO pretty. And perfect for a kid - they always love pussywillows. I will be consulting my local nursery to see if there is a hardy variety, Zone 2ish.

I am now going to send you an email with the pics of my garden.

msfitzita said...

I wish we could all band together and fight the ignorance and fear that surrounds us so that we could talk about our children - and hear other people speak their names too.

I wish it wasn't so hard to teach people how to handle this kind of loss. Mostly I wish we didn't have to teach them at all.


Laura said...

Thanks another beautiful post, Delphi.