Friday, December 30, 2011
My year, as a whole:
Take care of Avery
Try to honor the memory of the twins
Start a new job
That's really it. My family members are here and healthy, and so my year can seem to be summed up much more quickly than the past two or three.
I am so grateful, and as I face 2012, I feel very glad to be me, to be who I am.
I am in a place now where I can control my emotions better, mostly. Oh, don't get me wrong, grief still jumps out from around the corner and punches me hard in the face, and it's always kind of there, lurking about, waiting for you to take a misstep. But, I can handle it better most of the time. I have coping mechanisms, and I have my support.
My support is you. Every time I have to reflect on what I am grateful for, it's this community. We all know-what WOULD we have done without it? What would I have done? Where would I be? I know it has given me this strength. This strength to say, yes, I still suck at pregnancy announcments and baby showers, and the word "twin" in all its forms, even when in reference to a bed (psycho, yo!), but I am stronger. I have my scars and I have my beautiful babies whom I will spend the rest of this year, and next year, and my life remembering.
I wish they were here. I wish all of your beautiful babies were here, too. But thank you for spending this year with me, in whatever capacity that you did.
Peace to you for this New Year. xoxo
Sunday, November 13, 2011
I just had a talk with one of my best friends, someone who I met in blogland but has transferred into my real life, although we don't live near each other. Anyway, I called to ask her how you know when you are actually depressed.
Like, how do you know when you are supposed to ask for help, or get put on drugs, or whatever? How do you know when it stops being "situational" and starts being plain old depression?
I don't want to go on medication. I don't want to go see my doctor. I don't want to go back to the shrink.
I'm doing my job. I'm loving on Avery. My house is spotless and I'm paying my bills and sending out birthday cards to my annoying relatives at the right times.
I'm not sleeping too much (in fact, hardly at all if we're going to analyze that) or laying on the couch ignoring my family like they do in those commercials.
A lot of times, I feel happy. Avery makes me laugh so hard sometimes I cry of happiness. She is hysterical, that girl. She makes the funniest faces and talks in her own little language and knocks over the kids at daycare to steal their snacks.
I think I love my new job, the 4th graders, and I'm much less stressed at work. I have the nicest class in the history of the universe.
But then, I still cry. And I still get so MAD because I watch Avery do something and wonder why Sophie and Aiden didn't get to do it. I get so hurt when I watch people with their twins.
Today is the 13th. 31 months since they lived and died. We went out for ice cream. We've gone out for ice cream on the 13th or 14th every single month since they were born.
Today I thought, we should stop. We should stop this. We can't eat ice cream every month for the rest of our lives.
But maybe we could.
I went to see the musical Jekyll and Hyde this week.
Sometimes I feel like that-like I am two separate, complete people. One woman, who is so happy, so blessed, so lucky.
One who is so sad. So unfortunate. So judged. So sad. In such despair.
There's more than "just" the twins. There's my father, who is absent from my life. Who was so horrible to me an my family. Who is always trying to get back in. Who lays on the guilt. Who is mentally ill.
There's the fact that my father in law died of cancer right before we got pregnant with the twins.
There's the fact that his wife and daughter are depressed and have their own mental illnesses, who add so much to the guilt I feel all the time.
There's the fact that my husband and I are doing very well, but we are so stressed and I feel a little disconnected from him.
There's the fact that I think I want to have another baby, but I feel absolutely CRAZY for even wanting to try that.
I feel like I can never be truly happy.
But that I'm not really depressed.
I wish my mom lived closer. I wish my family wanted to be around Avery. She's so amazing. I wish they knew how important it was to me to remember my babies.
You can tell me. If you think I should be past this. If you think I should go talk to my doctor. Because I really don't know. I really don't know when I'm supposed to say, ok, lady, you need to get it together. You're too sad. You're just too sad.
I wish someone would tell me.
I just wish it were all different.
But I love Avery so much, so I can't wish it was too different anymore.
Ugh. Two different people. Two different lives. Two different universes.
Friday, November 4, 2011
The other day I told the hubs I should really figure out what will be on our holiday cards and get them ordered. Then, I remembered the blog promotion they did last year and searched to see if I could find it, and I did!
You all should use Shutterfly this year. It's inexpensive, fast, and it makes GREAT gifts. It's so easy, and I love how they deliver right to your house instead of visiting the store with the nasty germ covered photo machines and having to go out in the cold, snowy weather to pick them up!
The other reason I love them is because they just have more choices. My sister married into a family that is Jewish, so I like to send cards with "Happy Holidays" or ones that even say Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah, Kwanzaa, etc. So I get more options with shutterfly as well.
Here are some links for you to check out:
· Christmas cards http://www.shutterfly.com/
· greeting cards http://www.shutterfly.com/
· invitations to http://www.shutterfly.com/
· photo mugs http://www.shutterfly.com/
· photo cards http://www.shutterfly.com/
As soon as I get our holiday cards done, I'll post back so you can see a picture of it. Last year I did a top ten list of what we did that year and it was an AMAZING way for me to mention Aiden and Sophie without feeling like I'd be judged.Share yours with me, too! And check out the blog promotion! It's rad.
Thursday, October 13, 2011
I think I can't breathe.
At my elementary school, there is a set of twins. They have severe disabilities. One has a walker and the other is in a wheelchair. They are both non-verbal. I used to wonder how that happened. Now I wonder...what if? What if they were here? What if they had made it?
The wondering makes my head hurt so bad that I want to crawl in a hole. Baby announcements lately are getting to me. I'm back in a bad place. Jealousy, Bitterness. I have Avery and I am SO blessed and so lucky.
But I miss them.
It's not fair.
Sunday, September 18, 2011
I am having a writing block. I've had a really rough time lately, but it just seems so....redundant. So already talked about. :(
I'm still reading, whenever I have a spare second I try-but I just haven't been able to feel out what I want to say.
Thank you all for everything :)
Monday, August 22, 2011
I'm starting a new job here in about a week-still teaching, but elementary school, which is SO different from a middle school specialty class. It has opened up some wounds for me, unfortunately.
I guess, to start with is the fact that I am working with a whole new building. A whole new group of people to get to know.
I have realized in the last few weeks that I really like to protect myself. I shy very much away from situations in which there are people who I don't know-people who don't know my story. I tense up when I am with strangers, even if it's in the grocery store.
Being in a new place, with all new people has brought out some of my worst fears. I find myself much more emotional than normal. I don't seem to be very confident.
This lack of confidence is spreading into everywhere (along with fatigue and a LOT of work due to new job). It's really hard to be a baby loss mom and express the difficulties of parenting (I'm not saying that so you feel bad for me-it's so that you know I'm sensitive to you all out there who may not yet or may not ever be blessed with a living child). Mainly because I know that I should just be happy to have Avery here. I know that I should just suck it up and keep going, which most of the time I do. But it's been so hard to be a full-time worker plus mom plus wife plus start a new job plus have Avery randomly start biting and hitting me and keep it together. (please know that I do still know how very, very lucky I am to HAVE a job and a husband and a living on earth daugther).
I feel like I'm failing at everything. I'm bickering with my husband. I'm unhealthy. I'm tired. I'm not into playing with Avery like I should be. I may have made a giant mistake with this job change. I'm forgetting dates with my friends and birthdays.
My pcos is very out of control lately. I haven't had a period since March and the hormones are making me break out, I'm oily from head to toe, I'm cranky and tired, I'm bloating and gaining weight even though sometimes I'm hardly eating. I can't get a doctor appt until November. I'm worried about my thyroid for different reasons.
All in all, I don't have it together right now.
And today, I met with the other two teachers on my team. One is a twin, and I swear to you (even though one of them for sure knows my story) I sat there for 10 minutes while they talked about twins and all things about them. How fun it would be to have them, how fun it is to be one, how their grandma/boyfriend/cousin/uncle is a twin, how hard it would be at bedtime, ETC ETC ETC until I wanted to RUN RUN away.
I left there thinking that I will NEVER by normal. I will never hear the word "twin" without wanting mine back. I will never be able to idly chat about twins without screaming on the inside "MINE SHOULD BE HERE".
I may never be able to talk about pregnancy without that little voice in my head going off, "Well, if it gets here alive. If you're a lucky one." "Are you sure you should buy a crib when you're only 5 weeks pregnant?"
I've got to get it together. Put one foot in front of the other. I need a plan.
Thursday, July 21, 2011
And reaching out. Scrambling to find help.
I reached for my computer. When Brian went back to work, I laid in bed, searching. I would google "I lost my babies." "What to do when your baby dies." "I lost my twins."
Infant mortality, pprom, prematurity, grief, losing a baby, losing twins....
The list goes on and on.
Some of the things I found made me angry. At one point, I remember finding a site with dead baby jokes.
But then, I found a blog. I started reading, and never stopped. The internet became my home, my support system. It became a safe place I could go to tell my feelings to others who understood, who didn't judge, who knew I was ok, but was in the deepest, darkest place possible.
I can honestly say that I don't know what would have happened had I not found my little internet community. Had I not made connections with people from all around the world who shared my hurt, and also shared my hope.
I was so lucky to be able to take a trip recently and meet in person some of the beautiful, beautiful women I have shared this journey with.
Brian had a conference for work across the country, and one of my very best blog friends is from there, but it's a huge state-so I just asked her if she lived close to where we'd be. Long story shot, a freeway closing turned a "maybe lunch" into 3 full days of Avery and I staying at her (gorgeous) house! THEN, another gorgeous friend drove hours to visit us and the next day we went just a short way to see one more friend who is on bedrest now with her pregnancy.
It was so healing for me, so easy, so fun, to be around these women. They have become more than just strangers on the internet to me. They are my friends :)
The coolest thing is that 3 of us all lost babies within a month of each other---and all had our next babies within a month of each other! They all just turned one :) They had SO much fun playing together.
Here are Avery and Nora, Bree's daughter (Bree from Baby Butterfly Ella)
Nora, Gigi, and Avery. Gigi is Tina's daughter (Living Without Sophia and Ellie)
Gigi, Nora, Avery
At Rachel's BEAUTIFUL backyard (Three Butterflies and a Monkey)
Bree, Nora, Avery, me, Tina, and Gigi
Nora, Avery, and Gigi in the FABULOUS bikinis Tina brought for all the girls :)
Nora and Avery meeting for the first time :)
Avery & me, Rachel and Monkey, and Bree and Nora
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Wednesday, July 6, 2011
I realized that I put tons (really, I overshare) of pics of her on face.book but never really any on here.
So, here she is, my one year old little babe:
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Sometimes, I wish that I could escape from all of this. Lately I have been desperate to avoid it all-the grief, the knowing, the sadness.
I think I maybe understand why some people ran from me when I lost the babies. Why when something terrible happens, sometimes people flee.
Because right now, I want to. I want to plug my ears and close my eyes and yell
"NANANANANANANANANANANANANA I CAN'T HEAR YOU" like I did when I was a kid and I didn't want to hear what my mom was telling me.
I don't want to admit that babies can die.
I don't want to be the first person that someone tells when it happens to someone they know.
I don't want to be the person people think of when someone they know needs support.
I DON'T WANT TO KNOW.
I want to run, run and hide. Pretend it never happened.
I am ashamed to admit that. But sometimes, I want to pretend it never happened. What if Avery was my first born? What if I stop talking about them-my family would get right on board with that-trust me. They are forced to remember them, by me.
I might need a blog break. Maybe there are times when this actually is not good for me? I feel safe here, though. On days like today, when I can't stop crying, and my heart feels like it's busting through my chest and like a 1,ooo pound man is sitting on top of me making it hard for me to breathe, this is where I go. It's my safe place.
But then I check the LFCA, and I read about another loss, and I get so PISSED OFF (sorry for the language, yo, but I will admit I have a potty mouth in real life) and I forget how the anger part of grief can rip through you.
And the stupid "WHY WHY WHY" starts all over again. And really, for being unlucky, I'm pretty damn lucky. So why should I even start this-I should just be happy. Happy that I have Avery. Happy that I have what I have. Greedy for wanting more.
And then I want to run away.
But, of course, we all know that running away doesn't help. Grief knows no boundaries, no limits. It follows you wherever you are, wherever you go.
Saturday, June 18, 2011
Around the same time, I decided I wanted to sell our house. I don't know what came over me, but I HAD to sell it. I talked Brian into it. I'm not sure he thought it was the right time at all-but when your wife is sobbing hysterically all day long every day, I think you do whatever she wants. So we contacted a realtor.
I hate thinking of that day. The twins' nursery was still set up. Right before he came, I panicked because I just didn't know what to do about it. So on top of one of the cribs I put the book "Empty Cradle, Broken Hearts" that I had just finished reading. He, of course, didn't notice it and looked at me funny and said, "Are you guys planning on having kids someday, or what?"
Anyway, it was a terrible summer from then on out. My husband worried that the house would sell quickly (BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA-14 months later, is that quick? LOL) and so we canceled our trip and lost a lot of money. Then we waited. And waited. We had no showings. No phonecalls, nothing.
I think if there was anytime that I was depressed in this whole debacle, it was that summer. People expected me to be "over it" and couldn't understand why I didn't want to hang out. I went out once for the fourth of July, and I will never forget sitting in the dark, sobbing while the Fireworks went off and listening to the children squeal with delight. Sophie and Aiden would never squeal at a firework-that's all I can think.
I know that most people get very reflective around New Year's, because it is the end of the calendar year. For me, it's the end of the school year, since I was a teacher. Right now I am thinking back to last summer-that anticipation of Avery's arrival, the desperation that she arrive safely, the waiting-and then the rest of it a haze of sleep deprivation and snuggles.
This summer is so different. It's just so....different. Having Avery here is like a dream. The littles things make me so happy-walking with her outside, putting her in a kiddy pool-but then later, after she goes to bed, I sit here and I think. I let my mind wander...
And I know I shouldn't.
The wondering is not very good for me.
I just feel like my brain goes round and round. It never seems to end on anything, or when it does, something else comes along and jumbles up my thoughts.
When I get like this, the only thing I can think of to do is come here and blog, but I feel like mostly everything I say isn't making any sense anymore. This is backed up by the low number of comments and new readers, I'd say :) I just am in a weird place.
Summer. When they should have gotten here. When I should have had TWO tiny infants, oh, man, how many times can I think this?
I get so stuck in the should have...could have...
I feel like a broken record.
Sunday, June 12, 2011
He was alone, it a white rocking chair, just sitting. Looking. Thinking.
He must have been out there for at least a few hours. He looked so peaceful.
I guess I don't know if he was, or not, but just watching him, eve n for a second made me envious.
I wasn't envious of his free time, or the fact that he looked peaceful or happy, or that he had a very nice house.
I was envious of the fact that he can be alone with his thoughts.
After all this time, I can't do it. Driving in the car alone is never a good thing for me. Letting my mind wander is just dangerous. If I'm at home and the baby is asleep, I have to be online. I swear, sometimes I sit and I click aimlessly on the internet. I go to face.book and hit refresh, refresh, refresh. I still can't seem to concentrate as well as I need to read a book. I used to be an avid reader, but the books I can read now have to be mindless-flimsy. Not substantial.
This man, as he rocked on his porch, looking out-I wondered what he was thinking about. I wondered if there was someone he was missing.
I hope that I can do that, someday. Be alone again. Be comfortable again. Be comfortable with myself. Trust my thoughts.
Saturday, June 4, 2011
The bad: the memories of them are fading. The details are starting to get a little fuzzy. I can't quite remember those exact moments in the correct order as I used to when I would lay in bed at night and relive each one instead of sleeping. Sometimes, I could almost pretend that it had never happened.
The middle: Grief. Will it ever go away? I don't think so. It's almost as if it's just lying there, waiting, and will get angry and attack every so often.
I think someone said it really well-life can still be good-but never quite as good as it should be.
Monday, May 23, 2011
So, now it seems like it's not as alarming to me when it goes off. I mean, I still move pretty quickly into her room, but in my brain I say "AH! Don't wake the baby up, dumb alarm." This is most often.
But last night, her alarm went off and I looked at the video monitor, and she was laying right in the middle of the mattress and her eyes were open. Why are her eyes open, I thought?
Oh, because she's dead. She died. I knew she'd die. Tonight, she died. I knew it. I knew I couldn't keep her. Look at her eyes. I was literally paralyzed. My husband got up, while I laid there thinking She died. She died.
Then she sat up and started to cry.
And I hate myself.
I truly do hate the way I think. Why am I expecting her to die? Why? What if I somehow allow something bad to happen because I think it will.
If I'm honest, I still have scary thoughts. Sometimes, I'll still come around a corner at the top of my stairs and envision myself dropping the baby accidentally. Or I'll wobble on the stairs as I'm holding her and am terrified that we'll both tumble down. Those happened much more frequently when she was a tiny baby, but it still happens. I worry she'll bump her head, and die. How will I let her be a kid?
She fell the other day. She's pulling herself up now and she let go with one of her hands and hit her mouth on the corner of her play table. Her lip got puffy and fat and there was a little blood and she actually, sadly, chipped a little bit off her front tooth. It's barely noticeable but of course I know it's there.
Lately I've been spending a lot of time feeling sad. And I've been struggling with little things in life that are bogging me down.
I'm having some dental problems. I have to have my second back molar extracted next week and I'm worried about that. When this tooth started to hurt (its one I had a root canal on ten years ago, so I knew instantly I'd lose it) I broke down crying. I kept telling my husband, "I can't do it. I can't do it. I'm so tired of having to be strong and do it."
I mean, hello? It's a tooth. Most people I think would be annoyed with it. I'm in tears, screaming. I'm just so tired of having to be STRONG about things. I'm so tired of being AMAZING when I'm not. I'm tired of having to avoid situations and things and feeling guilty when I'm sad and feeling guilty when I'm not.
The grief cycle for me is on an upswing-I'm not sure if its the time of year, or what. Could I be depressed? Maybe. I'm still functioning, it's just...hard. Sad.
So freaking sad, this whole thing.
Sunday, May 8, 2011
I don't exactly know when it happened.
But, you know when something good (or bad) happens, you want to pick up your phone and tell someone right away? Or you want to get online and send an e-mail. Or a text.
Well, slowly...the people that I want to tell right away are not my "normal" friends. They're not the friends that I've had since high school or college, or even the ones I've made at my job here.
It's my friends that I have never even met. It's the friends that e-mail me to check on me. Call me to tell me they're thinking of me.
Some of the people I've met in bloggy land are some of the kindest, most thoughtful people I have ever known. And, I'd go out and say that I don't think it's losing a baby that necessarily made them that way. I mean, I know it humbles you, changes you, changes your perspective on life. But some of the words and support that I have gotten from all of you has changed me.
Then there's the fact that I have so much in common with a lot of you. I mean, Angie, who else can I chat with for hours at a time about early 90s rap music?
And I talk to Jen about reality tv, and Tina about teaching and Courtney about...well, you get the picture. I just genuinely LIKE them as people.
This summer, I am going to meet a bloggy friend in person (Bree from Baby Butterfly Ella-do you know her? She's fabulous). I guess you would consider her my bloggy bestie. :) My husband has a conference for work near where she lives and Avery and I are going to go along for the trip since the hotel is paid for and A flies for free. I'm so excited! Bree and I lost our first children within a month of each other, got pregnant with our rainbows within in a month of each other, and they are just two months apart in age.
So, people lately have asked what I'll do while Brian is at the conference, and so, I started to tell a few people that I was going to meet up with someone. I feel like...I don't know. I feel like I met a boyfriend using match.com and I have to fess up to my family about it! LOL. I don't know why I even worry about it. But the truth is-I feel SUCH a disconnect from my friends here. I still see them, hang out with them. But I don't feel like I can trust them. I don't feel like I can trust them with what I ACTUALLY feel. This grief is so diffrent. The thoughts in my head are so different. It's so amazing to have people that just get it. That I don't have to explain myself, or hold back information. Some of my deepest, darkest things I have been able to say aloud. And instead of judgment, I get a head nodding right along with what I'm saying.
I guess I don't know what the point of this post is, except that today, on Mother's Day in the U.S., I had bunch of people wish me Mother's Day for the first time.
And then I had those that wishing me Happy Mother's Day for the THIRD time. And that means so much to me. And because of that, when something happens to me, I want to pick up the phone and tell the people that are so kind to me. But I feel so sad about the fact that I have ruined the friendships I used to have. I kind of stopped trying a while ago. I'm so much more of a homebody now. And probably that will change-Avery will make friends and join things and we'll be forced out. But for now, she's a great reason to stay home.
This is going round and round and I think you know what I mean, but thank you. Thank you if you've ever commented, thank you for still commenting when I don't have very time to any more :(, thank you for being there for me. For being my friend.
And happy mother's day to all of you-no matter what part of motherhood you find yourself in.
Monday, May 2, 2011
Here was my speech for the ceremony at the March for Babies. Our team raised over $2,000.
Hi, everyone. I’m Christy and I’m walking today with my team. This is our second time walking together and we’re made up of family and friends and coworkers of mine and of my husband Brian. If I’m really honest, I would tell you that I wish I could say that I walk for the March of Dimes for my twins who are here with me today. I wish that I could tell you that my son, Aiden, and mydaughter, Sophie just turned two a few weeks ago. I wish that I would then have them wave their little toddler hands from the crowd so you could see how amazingly beautiful they are-how far they’ve come from the 1 pound 8 ounces and 1 pound 6 ounces they were when they were born at 23 weeks, 3 days gestation. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you that because they aren’t here. But I can I tell you that I’m here because all babies are miracles. Aiden and Sophie were miracles and even though they aren’t here today to show you that-I walk in their memory so that people will know that, and remember. My family and I are here today walking because on a Sunday night, I rolled over in bed and my water broke. For no reason. I’m here today because I did everything right, and it still happened to me. To us.
I’m here because the March of Dimes gave me the biggest gift I could ask for-they helped make it possible for my daughter, Sophie, to wrap her tiny little hand around my finger from her isolette. They made it possible for me to get photos taken, and handprints made. They helped make it possible for them to stay alive-if only for a day-to give them a fighting chance at life. And although they didn’t get their chance, we walk for the March of Dimes so that they get the money they need to continue their research so that someone else’s twins DO get to come home with them. I dream that someday they may figure out what causes preterm-premature rupture of membranes and maybe even how to fix it. I dream that no one will have to plan a funeral instead of a baby shower. I dream that all women can have healthy, full-term pregnancies.
We walk today in honor of all the babies who have been born too soon, or too sick, whether they are here with us or not. We walk in honor of all of the beautiful women that I have met along this journey. The ones that are battling with high-risk pregnancies and incompetent cervix and the need to take p17 shots. Who stay on bedrest for weeks, even months at a time trying to do anything in their power to give their babies a chance. In honor of the women who fight this battle silently or loudly. We raise money and awareness for those of us who don’t know why it happened to us and for those of us that do know why and need help preventing it from happening again.
We are here because in the crowd we have my beautiful daughter, Avery, who will be 10 months old in a week. She was born full-term-on her due date, actually. We were so lucky and so blessed to have a normal, uncomplicated pregnancy with her-but we never would have even tried if not for the March of Dimes. Thanks to the March of Dimes, I was able to read about stories of survival, the stories I’ve read about of preemies that DID make it. The March of Dimes gave us enough hope to try again. That hope gave us the strength and now we have our daughter.
Thank you all for coming here today, in whatever weather conditions Mother Nature throws our way, to support the March of Dimes and to honor all of our miracles
Sunday, April 17, 2011
On Tuesday night, the day before the twins' birthday, I tried to help myself get a release from my grief. I went through the photos, I made a facebook group for their birthday, I re-read some of my blog posts from the very beginning. I uploaded their footprints for the first time:
The day of, I was numb. I went through the day in a weird state of indifference to everything. I took advice from some of you and went to the computer lab and gave the students a project to do so that it was still worthwhile, but I still didn't have to stand in front of the class and teach.
When I got home from work, my friend Sarah rang the doorbell and had made me this:
My husband then came home from picking up Avery from daycare. He was equipped with french fries for me (how thoughful is that!?) and this from my daycare provider (who has talked a lot with me over the past few weeks):
Then I got this candle in a package from a very good friend of mine:
I also got a beautiful ornament from the beautiful Bree and another ornament from the amazing Tina. I got cards, e-mails, texts.
I felt like they are so loved. I know that this year they are remembered. It makes my heart full.
That night, I went to sleep feeling so-weird. And, for the first time, I had a dream in which my little Sophie and Aiden made an appearance. It was amazing. I have been so jealous of those who have had dreams about their babies. I typically don't see faces in dreams, and this was not any different, but I knew it was them. They were toddlers with blond hair. I knew they looked like Avery. I knew we were all together and it made me so happy. I woke up feeling confused but peaceful.
Then, on Saturday, I had planned a surprise birthday lunch for one of my friends from college. It was a 1.5 hour drive and on the way home, I could feel things building. It's a long story, but I get home, click on the internet and realize that my step-father has de-friended my husband and me from facebook. I called my mom. Screamed at her. Then hung up on her.
Then I sat here and sobbed.
I cried so hard my contacts popped out and I was gagging and I just kept screaming, "I want my babies back. I want my babies back." I know each of you are reading this, nodding along-I know that feeling. I know that feeling of losing control.
I had a total breakdown. Today, my head is still a little fuzzy and my eyes a little puffy.
I really think that my body knew I needed to keep it all in. And then once my responsibilities were over , I had that release that I knew I needed.
Then, I gathered myself, called my mom and apologized. Figured out the Facebook fiasco (seriously sometimes HATE facebook). Went to bed early and slept for 12 hours (thank you, dear husband, for letting me sleep in!). Today, we went to the mall so Avery could meet the Easter bunny. I will leave you with this picture. I'll scroll it down a little in case you're not the in place in your journey to see a LC.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
I miss you beyond belief.
I love you beyond words.
Your daddy and sister and I sent a balloon to you today. Hope you got it.
Monday, April 11, 2011
I cried all through my day at school today. I looked at the clock a hundred times.
It was this monday, 2 years ago, that Sophie and Aiden were born. 2 years ago it was on the 13th and Easter was the twelfth. I went into labor Easter night.
I just kept looking, thinking, they were almost born, they were almost born. Sophie was born. Aiden was born.
Right now, two years ago, they wouldn't let me in the NICU to see them because things were so touch and go.
I just can't do anything but that. Recount the events.
The pain is there. I can't avoid it. I look at Avery and I am so beyond thankful for her. She makes every day so much better.
But, but, but, but-
I want them.
I want them here. I want them back.
Thursday, April 7, 2011
I see my father once every year, usually. Sometimes not even that. He lives 3 hours away, but since he and my mother divorced, we don't have a relationship. He has a very big problem with lying and he verbally abused my mother, my sister, and me. I grew up being called names and being screamed at. He never hit us, but I felt scared that he would because of his problems with anger. He pushed me into a closet once when I accidentally let the dog out. Soon after that, he had an affair with one of our neighbors and my mom moved out.
Anyway, he wanted to meet her. Insisted. My husband pushed me to do it. So on one of our trips home to visit my mom, we told my dad we would visit him. We made plans to call him when we were an hour away and he would pick up lunch and meet us at his condo. It had been over a year since we'd seen him last.
When we got close, I sent a text and didn't hear back. Then I called and left a message. Figured he went to get lunch. We got to his condo, we rang the bell. I could hear the dog barking, but no one came. Called his cell. No answer. Somehow, I remember his work number (I hadn't called it in YEARS). He answered. Was dumbfounded. Made up some excuse about how he didn't think I was coming since I hadn't called when I got close. Told me sometimes cell phones don't work in his town on Fridays (ahem) and added that he works in a metal building (.....)
We brought in Avery and he was like, oh, she's so cute. Then he SCARFED down his food, asked ot take a picture with her, and then stood there, looking at his watch.
It was as if he wanted a picture with her just to PROVE that he had seen his granddaughter. To show it off to his friends, to make it look like we have a relationship.
I try to do the right thing, to send him pictures of Avery. Instead, every time I send an e-mail, he responds with, "When can I see Avery? We'll drive there" (we as in his current girlfriend).
It drives me crazy. The pressure makes me want to RUN THE OTHER WAY.
We just had a similar situation with my sister-in-law. We have had a terrible relationship with her, mainly because her husband is very controlling (to the extent of abuse) and a few years ago when my father in law died, things got very bad (she refused to come home for the funeral saying that no one wanted her there-she came at the last minute and acted like a psycho and still blames everyone else-it's a loooooooong story). Anyway, her husband is in the navy and they move every 2 or 3 years. I couldn't believe that she didn't want to come home when her father was sick. I despise my father, and I still would take care of him if he got sick (and she was a stay at home mom and her kids were in school, so she could have made it work). Anyway, she never even visited even though she lives about 6 or so hours away and it's been very hard to navigate through my mother-in-laws health and depression issues as the only children.
So, out of the blue, she came to visit for a week, with her jerk of a husband. We weren't off school so I only saw them twice in the week. The first time, I walked into mil's house and I hadn't seen my bil in FIVE years and he didn't even look up from the tv when I walked in. We went to a big family dinner one night where we drove an hour away for dinner, past Avery's bedtime, and she invited her friends from high school to it! BUT, she took pictures, posted them on facebook, and plastered her wall with her "amazing family trip" and wrote "thanks for the memories" on my husband's.
Do you remember sitting in the same restaurant and not talking to us?
But, she has the pictures. The "proof." To the external eye, it was a great, wonderful, family trip.
So much of my life is fake.
So much of what people look on and see is not real.
So much of what we do every day, surviving, seems so much easier to other people than it really is.
Sometimes it feels like so much of it is a big lie.
But, of course, there is the opposite. So much of my life is REAL-the amazing love that I feel for my family and friends that care for me. That actually support me. The passion I feel for the students I teach. It's so real I could reach out and touch it, almost.
Life is full of surprises.
I wonder, sometimes, if I would know all this, if I would understand how rich and important life and love is, if I hadn't lost the twins. I would trade it all to have them back.
I miss them.
6 days and it will be TWO YEARS.
Where have those two years gone?
Monday, March 28, 2011
The one day a year that I somehow feel ok with letting myself completely be vulnerable. For picking off that scab and letting the pain flow freely and over me.
The one day that through that pain I can see the little specks of light. The sunshine peeking through. The thought that I am so grateful that they were ever here. That they have shown me love beyond means. Love beyond my wildest dreams. Emotions that I could not have ever imagined.
Last night, it was 2 years since my water broke. I laid down in my bed to go to sleep on a Sunday night. I couldn't get comfortable. I flopped over onto my right side and heard and felt a pop. My life instantly felt over. I glanced at the clock as I left the room to go to the hospital. 9:40 p.m.
Last night at 9:40 I sat in a chair, numb, starting at the clock.
Today I found out that since I used up all my days taking care of Avery after she was born, in order for me to miss work on the 13th, it will cost $246.57.
The cost of me being able to grieve.
Will mean we wouldn't be able to pay our bills.
And so my heart is killing me because I know that the right thing to do would be to go to work.
How in the world will I do this?
I need advice. Have any of you chosen or been forced to go to work? I'm sure you have. What did you do to make it through? How do I stand in front of 180 middle schoolers throughout the day without breaking down?
Saturday, March 19, 2011
If you have a moment, please go here and leave some love and tell her a story:
I just discovered this blog and she found out at 16 weeks along that her baby had died a week ago :( She is in the hospital going through the induction process, which is stalled and taking forever.
It's so horrible I could throw up. I just can't believe it each and every time this happens.
Please go spread your love.
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
A lot of us have pets, right? And a lot of those pet owners feel very strong connections to their pets.
In my case, we got our little doggie, Louis (pronounced the French way, like Louis XIV, which is his full name) one week after we got married. He's as old as we are married :)
Anyway, we spoiled him rotten. He went everywhere with us, slept in our bed, everything. He's called "granddog" to my parents.
Before we had Avery, we were very worried that he wouldn't get along with her. That he'd be jealous.
And he is. He mopes and is depressed and whines and is just very unhappy. He is a completely different dog than before. He doesn't want to play. He watches us play with Avery and if we can't drop what we are doing instantly to play with him, he gets mad, runs off and gets into something (pees, eats paper, etc.)
So we searched, and we found a very nice family willing to adopt him. We made the decision a week ago, but he leaves tomorrow, and I can't even look at him. I feel so unbelievably guilty.
There are two things pulling at me right now:
1) I feel like he is dying, even though he is not
2) I feel like by giving him away, we are expecting Avery to live, thus tempting the universe to show us who is boss
I can't stop crying.
After all of this, I just can't be good at saying good-bye.
I will miss you, baby bumblebee Louis.
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
There are so many children that should be here that aren't. It's every time of year, though.
We are always missing them.
My friend had her twins. Peyton and Parker. They came early, but at 36 weeks they had no NICU time and are already home. I only know they are home because of a mutual friend. I'm too afraid to ask about the birth story. I'm too afraid to ask how it's going.
I'm afraid to know. I'm afraid to know that they're not getting any sleep. That breastfeeding two babies is incredibly hard. That they are going through SO many diapers and washing seventeen loads of laundry a day.
I am really struggling with this, but it's just there, just at the brim-I haven't been able to let it out yet. I haven't been able to really let this wash over me and let me truly accept.
Avery has a cold. When she has the sniffles, I panic. I swear I've read stories about SIDS where they start with a virus.
I wonder when, if ever, I will put Avery to sleep and not immediately start to worry that she will never wake up.
All of this has nothing to do with the other and everything to do with the other.
I'm lost. Wandering through a fog. Stressed. Sad.
Happy. So incredibly blessed.
Same old, Christy. Same old.
Sunday, February 27, 2011
I've been able to mostly stop the replaying of the entire 2 weeks between the moment when my water broke and the moments that we held them when I lay down at night. My therapist told me all this tricks to continue to tell myself "It is over. It is done. It is in the past. I will think of these events only when I want and have time."
There was a part, too, about how I should mentally put the memories into like a chest or something at the bottom of the ocean, but I could never actually wrap my mind around it.
Sometimes the really bad memories hit me like a flash (punch in the stomach) and I don't know when they'll come and it's bad, but it's usually momentary.
Lately, the "good" memories are hurting worse than the bad.
I keep flashing to my husband and me. Sitting in a sandwich shop. We had just had our very first ultrasound where we were told it was twins.
I don't know if I'll ever see my husband that happy again. That truly, truly happy. I won't forget the phone calls we made-the SCREAMS of delight we heard over the phone-the tears of gratefulness. The happiness we gave our families.
I can't remember what I was wearing. I can't remember specifics like that, but I just remember the happiness.
I also keep thinking about the day we had our 20 week scan. I almost threw up in the waiting room I was so nervous something was wrong. After we had a perfect scan, after we found out we had a boy and a girl waiting to meet us, we decided, on a whim, to go and buy a mini-van. We spent the rest of the day at the car dealership, then drove all the way to Brian's mom's house to show her-we were SO DARN proud of that stupid van.
I hate driving that van.
Sometimes I really think the happy stories hurt me just as much as the horrifying ones. Sometimes I hate that these memories creep up on me. It's weird because Avery's pregnancy was more recent and I don't remember a lot about it at all-just the crippling fear.
Our brains try so hard to protect us. It doesn't always work.
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
I'm afraid we won't be able to afford to have another child.
I'm afraid we won't be able to find the second jobs we'll now need to pay the mortgage.
I'm sad. I miss Sophie and Aiden.
I can't even bring myself lately to read blogs, which is ALWAYS my safety net.
I guess I just need a break. Not really sure.
Just wanting to give an update and let you know I'm still here and I'm always thinking of you.
Sunday, February 13, 2011
*brought me a plaque with their name on it and a necklace
*bought me jewelry with their name on it
*made me leave the house
* sat with me in the house
*cried with me
*looked at their pictures and told me they were beautiful
*said to me, "I'm sorry. This sucks."
*asked if a conversation was hurting me so she could stop if it was
*raised over $300 for the walk and walked with me in the cold and rain
*called on their birthday
*asks about them TODAY and by name
*so, so much more
If it were anyone else, the second I heard "Twins" and "boy and a girl" I would have been GONE. I would've never spoken to her again. I would've run away.
But I couldn't. I wanted to---
So I went, and had coffee with her. I brought A, to help.
It was good. She cried first and just said she wished there was anything she could do to not hurt me. Then, we talked about everything else-our jobs, our husbands, TV, all the stuff we normally would. And it felt good. And I had missed her.
And I said, "I don't want you to hold back your happiness. I am happy for you"
And do you know what she said, you guys?
Seriously-if everyone we know could just GET this-
"Honey, I am happy. But I can have a MILLION moments of happiness, and there are plenty of people to talk to about twins and how amazing it is-but I don't need that happiness RIGHT now. I can get it other times. I can talk about it whenever. And with people who it won't hurt."
I mean, how lucky am I?
Those of us going through infertility, loss, all of that. There's that attitude out there-don't expect other people to stifle their happiness with their pregnancy. Don't expect them to not talk about it with you-you are the bad guy if you can't handle it.
But doesn't her thought make so much sense? She can get that anywhere else, all day long.
Why her? Why her? Why her?
I guess I won't know. But if it were anyone BUT her-I'd be long gone.
Thanks for your well wishes-I did it, and I'm so glad I did, and I know that was FAR from the hardest thing to come(I told her I can't come to the hospital-she understood-and I told her I need to see them the first time with no one else so that I can cry-and she said she'd be crying with me).
Thank goodness for great friends. :)
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
I had a huge breakdown.
I haven't seen her since, we've just been e-mailing.
So, I've been kinda putting it off, but now we have plans, for Saturday.
I don't know what I am.
I need strength.
I need something.
She's already almost 34 weeks along.
I just need strength. I feel so beaten down lately.
Saturday, February 5, 2011
Their two year birthday isn't until April, but March was the beginning of the end. My memories are in pieces, but mid-March I think I lost my mucus plug without really knowing. March 29th-the night my water broke and my life fell into shambles.
I just can't believe that it's only been 2 years and I can't believe that it's already 2 years.
I look around and I see people doing amazing things in memory of their babies. I just can't seem to get it together. I want to run away; to hide. I want to pull the blankets over my head. I am in the middle of planning a March of Dimes walk and there are mornings when I want to cancel the whole thing. I want to sulk and cry and mope and whine.
I wish I was different. I wish I was better. I wish I could do something amazing in Sophie and Aiden's honor.
But I feel so heavy. I feel so much weight on my shoulders. I feel sad. I feel like I need to stay happy for Avery. I've had trouble the last few nights as I snuggle her before bedtime. The tears just start rolling and I can't stop them.
I wish I could blink and have it all be over with!
Sunday, January 30, 2011
I found out last night that it's not true. I mean, of course, I wish they could be here with me and of course I know that once I die I will be reunited with them. But, I want to be here.
My mom came yesterday to spend the day with Avery so we could have a little time to ourselves. We went out for a relaxing lunch, went grocery shopping, and hung out with my mom. When the evening was over, I had to drive my mom to a town about 40 miles away so her husband could pick her up.
We had one of the best mother/daughter talks we've ever had during that time. We talked about the twins, about Mary (my sister who was stillborn), about funerals and how we want to be buried. We talked about guardianship of Avery and wills and living wills. We talked about my (estranged) father and just life in general.
After I dropped her off, I got back on the interstate to head home. It was snowing lightly and raining a little. My cell phone rang and I picked it up only to tell my husband that I was on my way home. As I was driving along, I told him I had to go since I don't like driving and talking and right when I said that, all of the cars in front of me were suddenly braking. All I could see was brake lights. I don't remember all of it, but I hit my brakes, and the anti-lock brakes kicked in, and my car went out of control. I realized there was ice on the road. I wavered a little, tried to pump the brakes, and then started to spin. I spun around completely twice, then went into the ditch. Pretty far, around 20 feet, into the snow.
My poor husband could hear it all happen. He could hear the tires squealing. He could hear me screaming.
You might think this is dramatic, but as the car was spinning, I thought I was going to die. I wondered if I had said I love you to Avery before I left. I was thankful I recorded her a storybook for Christmas so she could have a sample of my voice.
I don't want to die.
It ended up that I just needed pulled out by a wrecker, and the van is ok, and I am ok. The dog was with me, and he is ok. Brian is shaken up because he, too, thought I was going to die. He tells me that he wanted to hang up because he didn't want to listen, but he couldn't hang up because...well, you just can't.
As if I needed a reminder that life hangs by a thread-that one single moment can change the entire course of your life.
But I got another one.
Friday, January 28, 2011
That I'm maybe, even (shhhhh!) better than ok.
That I'm good.
That we continue to move forward and look forward and spend less than thinking back.
Ya know, to then.
Then there are days when I scream "BUT MY BABIES DIED!!!!!!!!!!!"
I might be sitting in a meeting or in the middle of teaching a class and I'll think "I'm here today, but I shouldn't be, because you see-Aiden and Sophie are dead. And they are not EVER coming back. Ever."
Sometimes, just that phrase, "Dead babies" will go through my head.
When things start to go "bad" (and I use this term lightly, because I know what bad really is, but you know-when you have a bad week or something) I feel like it brings my grief back into the forefront.
Well, I hit a car in the parking lot. But, my babies died (so it's worse).
I had strep throat so bad that I was throwing up the first day of a brand new semester. And Aiden and Sophie are dead (so it's worse).
I just wonder if this will ever change.
When I checked my blogs just before writing this, I felt an alarming feeling. I hadn't thought of Aiden and Sophie today. I mean, I had. Because I got an e-mail about the March of Dimes walk, and the secretary at school reminded me that her son is having twins, so I had thought of them. But not exclusively. I, for the first time, hadn't taken the time today to sit down and just let my mind wash over them. Their memory. Sophie's hand curling around my finger.
I'm scared I'll stop remembering.
I'm scared that my life now is going to take them further away from me.
But then, they're already so far away, aren't they?
Sunday, January 16, 2011
I am feeling lately like I'm completely drowning. Having B and I both back to work is just so hard-and I feel like I'm failing at everything now. I'm not as good of a teacher, I'm not as good of a mom, and not as good as a wife. I'm like seriously obsessive about the cleanliness/non-clutter of my house and when I don't have enough time to devote to it, my stress level sky rockets.
I'm feeling so out of it and so over-sensitive. After losing the twins, I'm just so darn emotional and I was emotional even before all of it. I take everything so personally (and this is not great when you work with sassy middle schoolers) and I'm annoyed with my family, specifically my in-laws, who are some of the more selfish people I've met in my life.
Avery had this horrible stomach virus last weekend-she had awful, awful diarrhea. I know I've read this on other blogs, but the second anything is even a little off about her, I am convinced it's some sort of horrible illness. If she doesn't take her normal bottle, I think she may die of sids. I read too many blogs. Too many stories on faces of loss. I need to stay positive and know in my heart that she is fine. That she's healthy. That she was born full term. That she's beautiful and thriving and meeting all her milestones.
But so was the case with so many of our beautiful lost babies.
Life is so tender. It can be ripped from us in a minute.
And because I think about all of this, I'm not sleeping well. When I can sleep, with Avery teething, and getting 6 month shots and all the rest.
I don't know where I'm going with any of this. I guess I'm just saying when things get like this I want to run away-today's destination is Asteroid b-612 (anyone a little prince fan out there?).
Thursday, January 13, 2011
Tonight, as I rocked my beautiful daughter to sleep, I closed my eyes and let my mind wander back.
21 months ago, at this hour, I had just said good-bye to my first-born. I may even have still been in the middle of it-in the NICU, with the dividers up, with all the nurses lined around the sides while my husband's hand rested on my shoulder and I sobbed, screaming, "I'm so sorry. I'm so sorry" to my daughter, who was dying.
21 months ago, I would go back to my hospital room, bleeding, focusing renewed hope on my son, who would make it through the night only to be greeted with his mother agreeing to take off life support so he could be free to escape this Earth and be at peace.