Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Who knows where it comes from?

I have to admit that I was secretly patting myself on the back. Looks like I did some great grief-work in the past two years: I was handling the mommy thing really well. And the time I was spending with BB wasn't making me mourn for C. any more than a trip to the grocery store might. Nope, no "re-grieving" for me.

Apparently, it was just delayed. Delayed until the moment when I ran out of clean, fancy sleepers for BB. And I reached into the back of the drawer and pulled out one of the ones I bought for C. Now, BB wears his brother's hand-me-downs every day. No big deal, right? And this sleep is kind of ugly - ugly colours and pattern. I only bought it because it was gender neutral and on sale. I put it on BB. And I started to cry.

As ugly as it is, it is warm and it is snugly. When I pick up BB in it, he cuddles in to my chest. And I didn't get to do that with C. Not once. The sleeper that he never wore.

That was last night. Today, when BB was happily playing with me on couch, I had this overwhelming feeling that C. was jealous and that I shouldn't be playing so happily with BB. And I felt guilty. Then I felt guilty for feeling guilty. I think it is hard enough for a mom to balance her love between two living children - at least you can make some attempt to explain to the older one that you still love him, even though the younger is getting your attention right now. You can't do that when your oldest is dead.

So there you have it. Not so care-free. The emotions that I expected, but thought I had dodged, are there after all. I love BB. I love C. I miss my oldest and feel guilty that I am torn between him and my youngest.

Not much to do about it other than ride it out. It's all more complicated all the time, isn't it?

P.S. For those who have gone on to have a subsequent baby, how do you answer questions about your kids? I am trying to prepare an answer to those questions so that I am not caught off guard when they come.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Ol' Leaky Boobs

Someone smells like milk and I think its me.

Time for a shower?

Now, back to our regularly scheduled book recommendations (see below).

Friday, February 23, 2007

I read when I feed

I hate TV. In a bid to not watch it, I am rediscovering my local library. I am again looking for novel recommendations. I have exhausted the list in the sidebar, as far as my library is concerned. And I am trying to buy fewer books - I am a book addict.

So, the criteria? Good novels. Not really into thrillers or mysteries much. I like British humour. I love a good romance (if not too gaggy, if you know what I mean).

Current items on hold at my library (on your recommendation):

Blinding light
by Theroux, Paul.

Piece of work
by Zigman, Laura.

Wish you were here
by Brown, Rita Mae.


Had a rough few nights there... I think BB may have been hitting a growth spurt. A normally happy baby became fussy and hungry all the time. Last night was much better, with BB sleeping for about 5 1/2 hours. What a relief - I feel like a new person.

BB is gaining really well - about 3/4 lb a week. He is approaching the 11 lb mark. I have a friend whose preemie is 6 months old and 14 lbs. BB will catch up to that quickly!

The weirdest thing is this - when he is fussy, the best way to calm him is by playing loud techno music. Actually, anything with a strong beat. Then we dance to the beat with him, or even rock in the rocking chair, and he will usually fall asleep immediately. What a weird kid!


I went out to buy envelopes and, of course, BB woke up and decided he was ravenously hungry when we were standing in line to pay. When I got to the front of the line, I was a little on edge - he was in full out wailing mode at that point. The check-out girl gushed and asked all the typical questions. Then she said, "So do you just have the one?"

I answered yes. Whenever anyone asks how many I have, I always include C. But, I looked at the semantics of the question this time. I only have BB. I don't have C. - that's the crux of the thing. That's what I grieve for every day. So I was annoyed that I was asked the question (why is it any of her business - yes, yes, she is being "nice" and chatty). But I didn't feel guilty about not mentioning C. Because I don't have him. I had him.

And isn't that the saddest part of it all?

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Off my chest...

Okay, life is great. I am sleep deprived and stupid, but BB is the most wonderful child ever born. So, no real complaints.

I am thinking about a lot of stuff (3 a.m. feedings will do that to you). So I am going to try and get them out of my brain, hopefully quickly while BB sleeps.

Laugh now - I thought that I would be able to do more while BB slept. HA HA HA! I bet every woman fools herself into that. BB is an excellent sleeper - I can't even imagine life with colic.

I just got an email from work. It seems as though my department will be undergoing an audit in the coming months - I won't be there, hooray! However, I noticed that the resumes of the auditors were attached and one was that of a person I went to school with. So, curious, I looked at it. It seems as though I am listed as a reference. No, I was never asked. No, I would not give her a reference, if asked. I am furious.

My anger goes further than this issue. We were once friends. That ended 2 years, one month, and one week ago. When this person heard through the grapevine that C. had died and she decided SHE needed to inform everyone that I went to school with. She sent an email out to a mailing list of people informing them of our "news". The information was incorrect. One of my real friends received it, and sent a correction email, after informing me of what had happened.

This woman sent the email for one reason only - for the GLORY of delivering bad news. She was showing off. It made her look like she was a caring person involved in my life (not true). I have not spoken to her even ONCE since C. was born. Yep - she is a bitch and I hate her. She is not caring or empathetic, she is just a gossip.

This burns at me every time I think of her. I think about all sorts of horrible things to say to her, if I ever am in the same room as her again. I know too much about her past - I am armed with all sorts of horrible knowledge that I could use against her. I don't think that I would be a big enough person to pass up the opportunity of hurting her the way she hurt me. Or at least, trying to hurt her that badly.

Sadly, we were close once. Good thing I won't have to attend this audit.

I find myself sitting feeding in the middle of the night, thinking through all the intimate details of C.'s death and the immediate aftermath. Planning the funeral. What it felt like to push him out. What it felt like to hold him in my arms. It just washes over me.

I don't have the mental energy to devote to my grieving, so it hides around corners and blindsides me. And I essentially missed C's birthday, what with being in labour and all. I don't regret that. Did I mention that BB's umbilical cord was wrapped (loosely, mind you) around his neck? Yeah. Glad we stuck to the plan of early induction. Very glad that the nurses delayed upping the pitocin so that BB was born the day after his brother's birthday. Still, I wish that I had been able to devote my mind and energy to marking that day for C. Though, when that line turned pink in May, we knew that our January was going to be very different. I look forward to BB joining us in next year's celebration of that day.

Things with my mother have improved slightly. There are things in her own life that she is starting to deal with, so the stress is a little less for her. Nonetheless, I have to deal with pussyfooting around her "feelings" all the time. I hurt her all the time, because I am so insensitive. Frankly, my patience for her is wearing thin. I am used to treading softly around her - that has been our relationship for my whole life. However, the more I think about it, the more I think that SHE should be somewhat respectful of the stress and hormones and fear that I have dealt with through this subsequent pregnancy. And she just doesn't get it. She thinks that I should have confided in her, basically since C. died. Reminding myself that she is one of the worst offenders when it comes to telling me that my grief responses are inappropriate and that I should "get over it" or "cut people some slack" when they say hurtful things. Yeah. She has never been and will never be my confidante.

The good news is that she hasn't made any disturbing phone calls recently. The bad news is that I doubt that much more time will pass before that call does come.

I am so late on this Dear Abby thing. I am sure, from reading blogs and message boards, etc. that Ms. Abby understands our point of view. Frankly, if it is okay for people to have photos of their kids in their cubes, then it is okay for ANY of their kids. Policy has to apply equally to all. Living kids okay? Then dead kids okay, too. Besides, the idiot who wrote the letter was obviously totally self-involved, even though she claimed to understand that the woman "felt sad".

Since I didn't write to Abby, I want to congratulate all of you who did.

I hate TV. I watch it while I feed BB. Why? It sucks. So I watched Love Actually the other day on DVD instead. Seen it lately? If no, then rent it. I cried the whole time because there was so much beauty in it.

I have to decide if I am going to my high school reunion. God. It just terrifies me. How many kids do you have? Is this your first? From the 60 other people I graduated with, which feels like about a million years ago. And, frankly, it is still all a popularity contest, isn't it? You can live your life as a normal adult human being when you are living your life, but go back to high school? It's going to be who is successful, who is fat, who is happy, who is gay, etc. There are a few people that I would love to see. But the deadbaby specter that I live with adds a dimension of fear to this decision that I am not sure that I want to face.

We took BB to church today for the first time. He was quite the rock star. The average age of our congregation is probably 70, so all the Oldies are totally enamoured by him. Besides the fact that he is totally amazing.

There were kids there from a local bible college who asked to see him. They asked if he was our first, I said no. They didn't ask the typical follow-up questions, so they didn't get the deadbaby answer they weren't expecting. They don't know how lucky they were to sidestep that one, hey?


So there you have it. All the stuff bouncing in my head. Now, I am thrilled to go deal with some poopie.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

That time of year again?

So the Grammys are on. The Police. Oh my god. Need I really say more? Those of us of a certain age were devastated when they broke up for good. And cling to those reunion performances. IMHO, they were just as good and edgy as they were 25 years ago.

I have a lot to blog about. However, my parents were here all weekend and my husband has been vomiting all day. BB needs to wake, be changed, and eat.

Congrats to Julie!!! I am so late with that :) This round of subsequent pregnancies is just about over, with mostly good results. Thank God for that.

Thanks to those who sent gifts for BB. You know who you are. The gifts we received from fellow Bloggers are pretty precious to us.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007


Today I received a super-cute outfit in the mail from an intern that worked for our company last year. It was hard to have her around last year - she was pregnant and due right around the anniversary of C.'s due date. It made me nauseous to see her walking around all pregnant and glowing and happy, but I think that I did okay in treating her nicely despite her pregnancy.

A long letter accompanied her gift. I didn't get to read it until later this evening. Basically, she was reaching out to me after having lost her twin daughters at 17 weeks. Acardiac twins - Twin A's heart gave out because it couldn't support the needs of both of the babies. She had the ultrasound the same day at BB was born.

I will likely call her tomorrow. She was someone who didn't have a clue - though she did try to be sympathetic about C's death. Now, sadly, she knows.

Why did she have to learn this lesson, too?

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Um... yeah

Public health professionals keep asking me if I feel blue. Or if I have cried at random things. Yes, I understand that they are trying to keep a handle on the possibility of post-partum depression. But, frankly, I had a dead baby 2 years ago. I live in a world where I sometimes feel blue and cry at random things. This is not a hormonal response but a life existence. I've been on my gaurd for depression for two years and I continue with vigilance.

My mother has continued the dysfunctional-relationship saga with a morning phone call. The absurdity of it all strikes me again and again. This time her request is that we "fix things". If we just talk things out. Oh, give me a break. The poor, delusional woman has this image in her mind that we will be the two Lorelei’s if we just sit down for a heart-to-heart. Sadly, in this nice little place where I live called "the REAL world", three-odd decades of dysfunction are not resolved by having one little conversation. I wish that we could sit down and talk out our differences, but the likelihood of that coming to pass is incredibly slim.

Really, what I think she wants is to stop feeling badly. If we could patch this thing up to the point where we can carry on like two people who like each other, maintaining decorum and dignity, we would be in a pretty good place. I hope that we can find that balance and that she is satisfied.

So, because such a phone call is nothing less that traumatic, I spent the remainder of my morning on the phone - first to my husband, then my sister, then husband again, then grief counselor. The people who pick up my pieces after the Dysfunction Patrol strikes again.

Do I have the Baby Blues? Doubt it. Did I feel like bawling all day? Yep. Sometimes checklists at Public Health aren't very helpful in determining the correct diagnosis.