Well, I'm back. I'm doing ok-with a minor breakdown on Sunday night. We went to see the fireworks with our good friends, and I just got so sad. I just kept thinking that Sophie and Aiden would never get to be sitting in my lap, wearing their glowsticks, jumping at the big booms. Everything that includes joy somehow makes me sad, too.
BUT here's how my week went!!
Monday night we drove home to my mom's. Drove around the town I grew up in. It's so weird to see the house where I grew up (my parents got divorced when I was in college and I never got to go back in my house) and where my grandparents lived.
Tuesday we had lunch with a college friend and dinner with my mom and her husband. Wednesday we drove to Milwaukee to see my sister and then at night had dinner with high school friends. Thursday we stayed home for the windshield on our car to be replaced (grrrr) and then at night we saw my group of friends from college. They are hilarious-and they totally cheered me up. We met up at this bar in a small town, and my friend Dan-who you'd just have to know to totally understand-was like-you guys, did you see across the street?
Well, there was an old time photo studio there-so we forked out the money and got to do a "saloon" scene. It was actually really fun!!! We stayed out late catching up. A picture to tide you over:
Then Friday we went to the Illinois Train Museum. My husband is obsessed with trains!!! It actually was fun-but after a while, all the trains started to look alike to me. Look how big and old some of them were!!!
We hung out with my nephew Friday night and Saturday night and then we came back Sunday morning. Sunday I went to see a play in the afternoon and at night we had the fireworks. Now we are back and have 91 cents in our checking account (don't worry, we get paid tomorrow!)!!!
Oh, and we went to the gym today...yep. 25 minutes of run/walking and 25 minutes of lifting. Saw a few too many photos of myself this weekend!
I've been away this week-catching up with friends, doing "normal" things, seeing my family. It is an act. I feel like I was speeding, going as fast as I could-only to have it build, build, build. I just know when we get back that I am going to have a total. breakdown.
I can't believe I have two dead babies.
I can't believe the emptiness of this summer-but the anxiety I feel to go back to work. I can't believe that for the rest of my life, I will be living with my angels by my side-up in Heaven, when they should be here.
I can't believe that in a span of 8 hours, I had to tell doctors it was ok to take my sweet babies off life support TWICE. I can't believe I watched them take their little last gasps for air, while I held on to them for dear life. That they weighed almost 2 pounds and looked like Brian but had my nose. That they had little fuzzy heads with hair.
That it's been 11 weeks tomorrow.
I can't believe I was almost there. Almost a mother to babies on earth.
I feel like I am falling apart at the seams most times. I hate that people don't understand me anymore. I hate when people wish me "Have a nice summer." You have to be kidding me.
We are selling our house because of the demons! Not because of something to do, but because of the room that used to be a nursery and because each night when I go to bed I relive my water breaking, knowing that all my hopes and dreams were flooding out of me with my waters.
I need a release-blogging is mine.
I'm sorry you have to read this.
I will post another one when I'm feeling better about the things we did this week.
So, it seems that if I write something on my blog, it will come true, since I was just at the gas station and the attendant asked me, "When are you due?"
Ah, the ever popular question. I wanted to scream at her. "UNLESS SOMEONE IS SO PREGNANT THAT THEY ARE WADDLING AROUND AND YOU CAN TELL THEIR BELLY IS SO HARD IT COULD CUT GLASS PLEASE NEVER EVER ASK A WOMAN IF SHE IS PREGNANT."
Instead, I said. "I just delivered."
Thought maybe I would dodge that bullet.
"What did you have?"
Shit. I don't want to be here anymore. I started to shake. Spit something out, ran to my car and starting sobbing hysterically.
I am just fat, lady. Seriously. Just fat.
But, so I'm thinking since I wrote that just yesterday I was worried about that happening and sure enough, it did...
"I am worried that we shouldn't go to my mom's for a week because that will be the time someone puts an offer on the house."
*just to be clear, I'm not worried at all, but hey, you never know!
Ok, so here is our "patio garden." I've been so excited about this thing and it is actually really working! And today, oh today, I started screaming because I actually saw broccoli in the broccoli! I don't know if shows up in the pictures, but seriously-I was like, ok, this looks broccoli-ish, but I see no broccoli anywhere. Then today! Bam! Broccoli!!!
Ok, another thing I've been meaning to post is some of the gifts we've gotten in memory of our sweet babies.
So, we received a gift card to buy some flowers:
a beautiful statue of one boy and one girl angel :)
I love this saying: "Those we have held in our arms for a little while we hold in our hearts forever" garden stones, one says "hope" and one says "wish" a beautiful lavendar plant I also got a mini rose-bush which I am trying desperately to keep alive!!! and a beautiful heart memory necklace, and the aiden and sophie bracelet, which I LOVE and have posted pictures of earlier.
* i feel that i am cursed because this morning I woke up to find that someone has stolen the for sale sign from our yard. now, there are a million for sale signs around that did not get stolen. so, again, in the spirit of WHY DID MY BABIES HAVE TO DIE, I somehow can relate this to OF ALL THE FREAKING YARD SIGNS WHY DID THEY TAKE MINE then I realize that relating those two things together is obviously psychotic and unnecessary but at the same time feels valid
*i just realized that as much as I wanted to, I'm automatically putting some punctuation here and there into these sentences without realizing
*I am addicted to a little computer game called the sims did you know your character can get pregnant? AND all you have to do is push a little button that says, "try for baby" and seriously, 4 hours later sims time she starts barfing and her belly starts to grow. I want that button.
*today i went to the eye doctor and he is very creepy. he started out the conversation by asking, "so, do you have any seasonal allergies?" and asked why my eyes were so puffy and my contacts were so beaten up, I mentioned the crying, he kept pushing, I said we had a rough few months, he said, "is it anything that can be fixed?"
cue psychotic laughter inside and my actual answer, "no. not at all."
but he keeps pushing
"just family stuff?"
you could say that.
so i say it because he is making me and not letting me get away with it.
my twins died
oh, that is so sad, he says
yes, yes it is
*I went to the mall to try to find something for my husband for father's day. this year will be a double whammy for him because he just lost his dad and he's in the whole i'm a father but not a father kind of thing so I go to things remembered to get a keychain with aiden and sophie's name and the man asks so i tell him and he says, "that sucks so bad. you gave them beautiful names" and then takes off a chunk of the price
can i ask why the random just barely older than a teenager mall kiosk worker knows all the right things to say and a woman who has had babies and lived a whole life can muster up "oh."
I know, I know, I know. It just takes people off guard. no hate from me
*i am constantly worried that someone out will ask me when i'm due because i still kinda look pregnant
*i should stop now even though there is more that i think i want to say but i have forgotten!!!
It's so amazing the road that your emotions can take while you are grieving. The end of this week was awful for me-I was looking at the months ahead, terrified, mad that this summer wouldn't be what it was supposed to be, angry and upset that they rejected the offer me made on the new house, angry with some of my friends for ignoring me (kate, this is not you!!! :)).
Thursday night I told Brian I thought we should paint the nursery back to white-the "dancing green" color made me so sad, and even if we are still in this house when we have another baby, I will be picking a whole new theme for the nursery. So we went and got paint and dove right in. It feels so good to do physical labor. The hurt of it is good! Then on Friday, we decided to take the day and do our favorite things-but we didn't have a place for the doggie so we were limited to 8 hours. So, we hopped on the interstate, went to the SWAP, stopped at a bookstore, went to Ho-chunk for a little while, and then came right back. I was still sad, even after our favorite things, but it was getting better. Then came the phone call-we had as showing scheduled for our house! Woot! We were so excited. So we cleaned the house and got all ready. Saturday morning we went to look at more houses, had a picnic lunch overlooking the mississippi river, did yardwork, washed the cars, grilled out a lovely dinner (first corn on the cob of the summer!) and went for a really long walk. I felt myself healing. Today we had another open house (only 2 people, though, not as great as last week-but it only takes one!!!) and I'm settling in to play my new sims game :)
Today I feel hope. Today I feel joy. I feel renewed in the fact that it is summer, so tomorrow Brian doesn't have to get up and leave for work with me left behind here. That anxiety is washed away.
We have an appt together with the grief counselor this week, a doggie haircut, an oil change, and an eye doctor. We need to get groceries, we need to send some birthday cards.
We are keeping up with life. It is SO not the same, but we are keeping up. We are finding joy.
It is such a swing back and forth-from so, so low to doing ok, to remembering that we love each other and that someday it won't hurt this much.
I've been meaning to do this for a while now. I want to make a list of all the happy things that I remember from being pregnant so that it keeps its meaning and I don't forget :)
-feeling so sick in Jamaica and thinking all the food was terrible!!!
-getting home super late at night-thinking I shouldn't take that pregnancy test because I would be so crabby at school-I was used to getting negatives. Instead, I took it, it came up as pregnant right away, and I went running into Brain's bathroom to show him.....totally naked!!!! :) I was all ready to take a shower when I changed my mind
-telling just a few people at school
-having Bobbi eye up my stomach before I told anyone
-giving my mom and brian's mom the present revealing that we were pregnant at Christmas
-finding out it was twins!!! listening to brian jump straight to how expensive high school would be to have two kids at once!
-all the jokes people would say about twins
-how donna in the office would call me "little mama"
-having a dinner at the olive garden, having all the moms that I know share tips with me-realizing that everybody doesn't actually wake their newborn up to feed them!
-lying in bed reading pregnancy books
-getting the email every week telling me how old the baby was and comparing its size to a fruit :)
-the day we passed the first trimester and miscarriage was now just a tiny chance
-the little presents we would get
-finding out it was one boy and one girl and that they were perfect and healthy
-picking out the nursery furniture
-watching brian put the cribs together
-sitting in the glider in the nursery, reading books to the babies and listening to music
-buying a mini van!
-having my mom call me every week to tell me what she had bought for the babies
-sharing the ultrasound pictures
-calling mary kay to tell her and having her scream into the phone!
-spending my whole prep time looking at babycenter.com
-morning sickness (not a great thing, but now I'm happy for it)
-a group of my 8th graders doing a skit about brian and me-and the girl who played me had a huge pillow in her stomach!
-shopping for maternity clothes
-visiting the baby section in Target every single time we were there
-registering for the baby showers with my mom, going out to lunch and talking about the babies
-lying in bed, feeling them kick
-the first time Brian got to feel them kick from the outside
-hearing their super fast heartbeats
-going to the library to get baby books and knowing the librarian who checked me out and she had to try to not comment on it as we hadn't told anyone about it yet!
-catching the eye of people in stores, having them smile at me
-parking the special "for mommies" parking stall
-joking with my students about how crabby I was!
-falling asleep so early
-having people open doors for me
-feeling so special that we were having twins
-setting up daycare for them
-just feeling so excited and waiting for them to get here!
I feel like never leaving the house because all I see is pregnant people and little babies.
And if I stay in and just look at the internet, all I see is pregnant people and little babies.
I tried reading. I got the new Harlan Coben book, because I thought it would for sure be safe. Sure enough, the lady he's trying to save lost a child when she was little and it turns out she might actually be alive.
Pretty sure my babies are not alive.
Pretty sure it's been too long now-I'm not going to just wake up from a bad dream.
So. I know that this makes the people that are actually at work groan and say, "Um, try being there" but I SO SO SO need this school to be over. I can't take the days home alone anymore. I have to stay here because we have no extra money, and I just have all day to grieve-which it's great that I have that chance, but I just need my husband.
At the exact same time, this school being over is so sickening and heartbreaking because it really means that this is over. The pregnancy is over. Now, I know what you're thinking...Hello, your pregnancy has been over for 8 weeks...but it's about milestones. From the day I found out I was pregnant with twins, I thought over and over about the last day of this school year. How happy I would be-I'd be done with work for 6 months, and when I came back again, I'd be a mommy!!! I thought about coming in in the summer with the babies for everyone to dote over (is that a real word?). I knew I'd be miserable, too-huge and uncomfortable. I envisioned myself teaching from a stool, laughing with the kids about my waddle and why I was too tired to be my normal self. Obviously, none of that happened, and it's likely that it never, ever will.
I'm beginning to HATE this house. The stupid room that used to be the nursery kind of haunts me. We have two gliders that still didn't sell on craigslist in with the twin bed that we bought to make a mini "guest room" for the people staying the night to help out or visit the babies. I drive around in the minivan we bought.
We didn't get the house that we wanted. The people seem to be really shady. Apparently on Sunday when we had our open house, the owners came through to make their own decisions about OUR house. So they rejected our offer and their realtor told our realtor that they thought our house was overpriced. Um, ok? And they also thought we lied about when our house was built. SERIOUSLY? There is documentation of that kind of stuff. It was builty in 2003 and they think it was built in 1991. HAHAHAHAHA. Hilarious. We were the first people to live here and we have done SO many improvements to this house. So we should have been leaving for France on Monday but we canceled it to concentrate on this house, and yeah. Because of a difference of 2,000 bucks and some jerky people, 3 months of NOTHING planned (when it should have been THE most life-changing summer) stares me in the face. Pretty daunting, I tell you.
So now we don't know what to do. I just sat and cried and cried and cried today. I know some people reading this might worry about how dark and deep it is and if Im' ok-but honestly, I can't sugar coat. It's got to be impossible to imagine the anger and the jealousy that I'd feel when I'm typically not like that. Trust me, I hate it, too. I hate the anger that I feel. I certainly don't like the jealousy. The longing that I feel when I go out and EVERYwhere I go I see pregnant women and little babies in strollers.
I just had a really, really bad day. And those days seem a million times worse when you're already in such a bad place, ya know?
It is amazing how my life has changed but stayed the same. I marvel at how I make it through a day, I smile, I laugh, and then at night I am left with me and my thoughts. The thoughts of my sweet, sweet babies.
I think often of what it would be like now-if they were still safely inside of me, where they should be. How the nursery would be all ready and we would be here, waiting, talking each day about what we'll do first, where we'll go someday on vacation. It's sort of taken away our right to dream. It feels so weird now to say, "When we have kids...." because we used to do that all the time, and now it's like, well, we did have kids....but they're not here. So do you say "When we have more kids..."??? I mean, it's just another one of those things.
Thursday I met with some of my amazing friends. They gave me the most beautiful statue-it's two angels, one boy and one girl. I absolutely love it. I'll post a picture of it soon. It makes me feel SO happy that other people recognize the babies and that they miss them, too, and that they're looking out for me. I always leave them on a high note.
I also found out that my best friend from work is finally getting her baby from Ethiopia. I am SO happy for them. At the same time, I think of what it could have been. We would have had maternity leave at the same time. We could have gone together to Target, all 3 kids tucked in my new mini-van that I'm bitter that we have. My friends deserves this more than anyone I know-I'm not jealous of her. Not in the way that I'm jealous of pregnant people that I don't know. Or the crazy people on TV that have 22 kids.
We went to look at houses yesterday morning. I was so excited-this is really the only thing I've got going on right now. It's something for B and I to work on, to look forward to, to organize. We went to one house that was for sale by owner, so they were there. I walk in, and this lady is 8 months pregnant. I think I can handle it. We walk in the basement, and there it is. The nursery, completely furnished and decked out, just waiting for a brand new baby.
I started crying and had to leave the house. I was so embarrassed. Just like that, my good day is ruined. I am empty, defeated. I feel as though nothing I do is ok, nothing will ever be the same. I hate this.
Then we went to visit my grandpa in the hospital. He has two 100 % blockages in his heart, with a prior open heart surgery about 6 years ago. I am terrified. Friday night, his roomate at the hospital died while my grandpa was in the room. He had to lay there, listening to this man while his heart stopped. While, according to my grandpa, they administered CPR several times although he had his little "Do not resuscitate" purple bracelet on. The worst part for me is, I cannot pray for my grandpa. This hurts me. I cannot pray because I don't think praying works. It is because I have a warped view of prayer right now. I know I will get past it. But I am so jaded. This hurts.
This morning we had an open house to try to sell the current house we were in. It was really fun. B and I, working together, like we always do. We make such a great team. We would make such great parents. We were walking through the store today, and there was a bin of $5 little plastic tugboats. His eyes lit up. "I would've loved this when I was a kid!" I laughed, because he totally would buy this now if he thought he could get away with it. One of my favorite things to do with my husband (yes, we are 30 years old) is for him to pull out all his legos, and I grab my coloring books and huge box of 96 crayons. We put on music and sit in the basement in silence, playing like we are little kids. So innocent. This is too hard to do now. We've had to grow up too fast. We've had to plan a funeral and we have our children in tiny little ceramic urns. We are tired, and weathered.
Contrary to the title of this blog, I am a mother. I gave birth to boy/girl fraternal twins who died shortly thereafter due to exreme prematurity and infection after a premature rupture of membranes. I am blogging my way through this journey that I wish I didn't have to take.