Wednesday, December 19, 2012
And you understand me.
The funny thing is, I'm so serious. I joke with my bff Bree, who lives across the country from me, "Come have lunch with me!". But...I'm not joking. I would give ANYTHING to have her come have lunch with me.
As the Christmas cards arrive at my house, my husband will ask, "Who is that, again?" and more often than not, it seems, I say, "One of my online friends." And he'll be in awe...she lives in California? And she sent you a Christmas card? It's adorable. He's always been supportive and I love him for that.
I love how I can see on each card, whether explicit or not, a little shout-out to everyone's babies that are no longer with us. I love how I KNOW I could send them a card mentioning Sophie and Aiden and they would not blink an eye.
As I navigate this pregnancy after loss, the second one, I wish for that unconditional understanding. I wish to be around people that know what to say, to ask, and what to leave out. The barrage of questioning...the looks of confusion when I say that I've had both a c-section and a vaginal birth, actually (what is she talking about? their looks says). The way people just shut down if I dare mention this is my THIRD pregnancy, not my second. Even the freaking medical professionals.
Oh, and in our island, our compound, I know there are enough of us in each profession. So our nurses would be a loss survivor, too. Our teachers. Our insurance salesmen. So you NEVER have to explain, to stutter, to elaborate.
Sometimes, pretending to be "normal" is just so tiring. Pretending that what the person just said to you doesn't sting gets old.
Having to constantly say things like, "I know how blessed I am. I am so grateful. I'm so lucky to be a mom" when some days you feel SO beat down, just by normal life and no matter if these things are true (which they so are) sometimes you don't even feel like you have the right to complain or vent (which is, really because you DO know how blessed you are no matter what).
I dream of living in a little subdivision where everywhere I went I would see reminders of our beautiful babies, the ones we lost, and have my babies play with the ones that got to stay.
Friday, November 2, 2012
I am just about 31 weeks into this pregnancy. This is when I finally relax about about having a micropreemie, and start panicking about kick counts and stillbirth and low fluid, and a million other things I have not experienced but have read about.
Last weekend we painted a room. We painted it blue. I have a room in my house with a little girl and one Im now getting ready for a little boy.
I had some friends ask me about a shower and I heard myself saying yes. I almost couldnt believe it.
I just want to believe. I want to wash the little blue clothes and put the choo choo trains on the wall. I want to stock up on diapers and starting making plans.
This is all old news to you. I warned you that I dont have much to say. I feel so guilty because Im supposed to enjoy pregnancy, just be happy, dont take it for granted. But, the truth is, I hate it. I hate being pregnant. It scares the crap out of me, I cant focus at work I am not a great mom to Avery I think my grief for the twins gets a little worse. I have the stupid gestational diabetes again and it stresses me to the max. I really, honestly feel like time is standing still. I keep begging the universe...just help me get Avery a living sibling here and I swear, Ill be done. I wont push my luck,
I know I should be enjoying my time with just avery ,but frankly, she is 2 and not napping and I have a very stressful class and I am just cranky. I hate myself for that. Ugh.
I shouldnt even publish this, but I know some of you are wondering and checking in .im fine, good really, but too full of complaints for my own good. I know I am lucky, I know I have it good. I am ready to have this litle boy safely here.
Hope you are all well!
Saturday, September 15, 2012
I had a feeling that it was, but not a very strong one, and mostly just a "I'm scared" feeling that it would be. I'm not scared of having a boy, but I was scared of this feeling. This feeling that now, I have a girl and a boy.
The perfect family.
I remember when we found out the twins were a boy and a girl. I was over the MOON. One of each! What could be better??? A girl for me and a boy for the hubby. Pink, fluffy dresses and choochoo trains.
I don't talk too much about being pregnant. I think I might announce it on face.book soon, only because I have relatives that I would like to know and it's the easiest way. But, up until now, I haven't really said anything . Whenever I do, it's the first thing out of their mouth.
"A girl and a boy! Now you have the perfect family. One of each."
I want to scream. Don't they understand (of course they don't; if they did, they wouldn't say it) that I will never have the perfect family? I will have half of my family here, and half of my family in Heaven. I will have one girl and (hopefully) one boy, but the other two I'll never get to know. It's not perfect.
But, it's mine. My family. And I'm proud of it! Just sometimes it's hard to feel.
On Monday I will be 24 weeks. This week has been awful, filled with an enormous amount of anxiety and lots of nightmares. Last night, actually, I had to wake my husband up to turn on the light to make sure there wasn't a snake hanging on the curtain rod. I really, really believed it was there. I was up the rest of the night. Ugh.
It's not like I'm naive enough to think that once I get past 24 weeks everything will be ok, it's just the first of many milestones I need to get through. We started school a few weeks ago. I have a very nice class, but they are extremely needy and I'm coming home every day stressed and exhausted. I keep feeling like I'm doing too much and I get home and am almost scared to move. I'm SO thankful I have an understanding, kind, worried husband. He won't let me lift anything, use cleaning products, change diapers (since A likes to kick while being changed and finds it hilarious), etc. It helps my anxiety more than anything.
I had an appointment this week and asked my doctor about when I would have to decide about a tubal ligation. I'm not decided yet, but, I think I'm on my way. I know I wanted to have more than 2 kids, I know I'm still young, I know all these things. However, pregnancy and ALL it entails-it consumes me. It's never ending. PCOS, when is my period, am I ovulating? Could I be pregnant? fertility doctors, checking for bleeding, peeing on a stick, checking for bleeding, ptsd, being afraid to roll over, to sneeze for fear my water will break, not being able to lift my daughter....it all is so much. I wish it were easy, I wish I were "good" at pregnancy, but I'm not. And I am FOREVER and forever so unbelievably grateful that I got the chance to be pregnant, bring home a healthy daughter, and now hopefully a healthy son. I think I want to move on to the next chapter of my life, end my reproductive years and focus on being a mom.
Of course, I'll wait to make a decision until I'm at a gestation where prematurity isn't an issue. I don't know that if this baby died, I'd want to have any more anyway, but I don't think I'd get a tubal all the same. I remember my desperation to be pregnant again when I lost the twins.
Anyway, a lot on my mind lately. I'm just working, being a mom, and trying so hard to make this a peaceful, healthy pregnancy. I'm so thankful for your prayers, well wishes, and comments.
Sunday, August 12, 2012
I am, honestly, feeling hurt lately. Alone. I'm pretty sure that the general thoughts out there are: 1. Nothing bad will happen, it didn't with Avery, right? 2. You should just be thankful you can get pregnant, and did it on your own. 3. Avery's pregnancy was normal, you didn't have any complications, what are you worried about?
I'll tell you what. I still HAVE TWO DEAD BABIES.
Am I grateful? Oh, man, they have no idea. Some days I still cannot believe it. I still can't believe that I have been so lucky, so blessed. It's not that I "deserve" it, I just got lucky. And I think about it and thank God every.single.day.
I still have ptsd. I still have nightmares.
I still am afraid every.single.night. to roll over for fear of hearing that POP of my water breaking. I still am afraid that there will be no heartbeat. That there will be a cord accident. That one of the million things that I didn't know about before but do now, will happen.
I'm not being treated as high-risk this time. No peri, no extra appointments, no extra ultrasounds. It's hard. Really, really hard. I haven't had an appt in 5 weeks. The anxiety is all consuming. Overwhelming.
When I was pregnant with Avery, people were right there with me. Encouraging, listening. Now, it just seems like they think I should just shut up, move on and get over it because, after all, it won't happen again.
But, the thing is, of course it MIGHT. And, beyond that, I still am scared. I still have fear. I still don't know what will happen. I still don't know it will be alright. And I still need help. I need an ear, a hand to hold. I still need a friend to come over and sit with me. I still need to not be in bed at exactly 9:40, the time my water broke. I need so much, and I feel like people don't think I do. I feel isolated.
This is hard, yo.
Friday, July 13, 2012
And I FREAKED.
I was so mad at myself. I can't let myself do this. I can't let myself plan. And DAMMIT, I should have HAD A DOUBLE STROLLER BEFORE. All the reviews ask if you want it for twins or for an older sibling/infant. It made me feel so horrible.
This time, hubs is feeling so optimistic. It's adorable, and I love him for it, and I'm so glad, but the other day he asked if he coudl start working on "the room". I am only 15 weeks. There is an eternity left in this pregnancy. I said as nicely as I could that I wasn't ready. He pressed a little and I yelled at him (ugh).
What I want, what I think I deserve, is to ride this wave of happiness. To dream, and look up strollers on the internet, and pick out a room theme, and...
But, I stop because it hurts. Because having two kids is spectacular, but I should have two 3 year olds. And it breaks my heart. And I've packed up a nursery, which wasn't all that fun.
There's not a good balance for me, even second time around. I'm trying!
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Please understand that I am over the moon happy and so, so grateful. If I'm not careful, my brain starts going to double strollers and new baby clothes and a big girl bed for Avery so new baby can have the crib. But we are SO far away from that, friends. So far.
And so far, everyone I've told is just so....optimistic. And certain. And I need that. However, I am so scared. So, so scared.
And for all of us, it's the word "fluke" that gets us. My friends are just thinking now that what happened with the twins was a "fluke". It won't happen again. I mean, I carried Avery to her due date. A full 40 weeks. No trips to L & D. No cervical shortening. No infections. No water breaking, ever, in fact. (and I was so thankful for that-ptsd with water breaking has really got me). I did have gestational diabetes, which I was half expecting with pcos and it was borderline and completely diet controlled.
But....what if....what if Avery's pregnancy was the fluke?
Seriously. What if Avery's pregnancy was the fluke?
That's what I'm fixating on right now. I can't seem to shake it. I also keep feeling terrified that I'm going to have a missed miscarriage. I didn't even really know that coudl happen and now that I do, I'm so scared it will happen to me. It's enough to check for blood every single time I wipe, but to know that I could be miscarrying without even knowing it, I can't handle that.
The thoughts come back so quickly. The fear floods back in. I just don't think it gets much easier. Thankfully, I do have a daughter to keep my busy. I think that's a big difference.
I am trying to stay optimistic. I'm so grateful. Trying to be positive. Taking deep breaths. I can do this. I can do this.
Sunday, July 1, 2012
I also remember the first time I got a comment. I wish I could remember who it was, but I was, maybe oddly, so excited. I'd use this blog to pour out my soul and then I would read each comment over and over. I'd leave them in my email so I could re-read them when I got really sad.
It's become a different place for me. I don't really know what to do or say anymore. I continue to read the blogs, but I don't have...or I don't make the time to comment as much. I want to, I just...I don't know. I don't know what it is. I know I don't have as many readers, and I know I still talk to a lot of y'all on face.book.
I'm pregnant again. I'm sorry, I know that sucks to read. I mean, in general, I am always happy for people, but somehow it still stings when I read it.
I'm one of those urban legend people that I usually get so bitter about. Husband and I decided to take a break from cycling. In the month after our last treatment, I lost 15 pounds and then started feeling weird, but wasn't really wanting to take a pregnancy test because I do that to myself ALL the time. With pcos your cycles are so wacky and your symptoms are just like pregnancy symptoms.
But, one night, I just made myself do it, and there you have it. I just couldn't stop crying. I couldn't really understand. It's not something I can do on my own, but...somehow, I did.
I'm 13 weeks now, due January 7th. I've seen the heartbeat twice, but not since about 9 weeks, so anything could've happened since then, and I worry a lot.
I guess what I'm trying to say is I feel shitty because I need this blog again, but I know I've lost a lot of you. And I feel bad coming in and out, not posting for a while and then saying, Oh, surprise! I'm pregnant and now that I'm all crazy again, I need to write! (and, girls, I AM crazy. holy guacamole)
But, I'm going to write for myself, I've decided. And if it is annoying that I come back for this, I understand. And I will try to comment, but I can't let myself feel guilty if I can't.
Saturday, April 21, 2012
It was worse this year. It was better this year. It was the same as always.
The same people forgot. I swore I wouldn't remind people and then I weakened and did it because I couldn't bear if they all forgot.
I allowed my emotions to derail me, momentarily. I cried at work.
My husband sent me three deep red roses. One for each year.
I miss you so much, Aiden. I miss you so much, Sophie. It's so hard to be without you.
Monday, April 9, 2012
If you went by the "day" and not by the date, which I decided to do at some point, apparently, today would have been the day, 3 years ago, that Sophie and Aiden were born. All day long I relived it. Easter morning my mom commented to me that I didn't look like I felt well (apparently my infection was growing) and then in the night I kept waking up, unsure if it was indigestion or not...Monday morning I went into Labor and Delivery...all day long, I kept up with the time. Right about now, I actually can't remember the time but it was somewhere about now, I begged my mom to push me away from the NICU, begged her to get me away from there. I thought that if I could get AWAY, that Sophie couldn't DIE.
How freaking stupid I was. They chased me and made me come back. I ran away from my daughter. I tried to escape.
Today, my husband yelled at me. He said, "You wouldn't be so sad if you would just stop thinking about it." I screamed at him, but inside I was laughing like a crazy person. You know, that laugh where you feel like you've just realized you're at the edge of the cliff and you might go over. If I could JUST STOP THINKING ABOUT IT. If only. If only.
I checked facebook all day long, in between my avoidance of all phone calls and pretending like I wasn't around, and crying, and reading sad books, and wallowing in general, and I found out that a very sweet friend of mine has lost her baby. I wanted to shout from the rooftops, to make it not so, for someone to say it has been a mistake. Because right after it, one of my friends from high school, pregnant with twins-due in September. Their first daughter is even younger than Avery.
WHY oh WHY is it so easy for some people and so hard for others. And, of course, you may tell me that I don't know how easy it was for them and etc. etc., but in my head it was easy, ok? When I'm riled up like this I don't try to be fair.
I didn't ask for this. I didn't want this to be my thing in life. I wanted to be a mommy.
I know it's futile to ask why. I know it's not ok to be complaining about it. I know it's probably wrong that I am still THIS ANGRY 3 years later. I know I should just be grateful that I have Avery and shut up about all the rest. I know about a billion things that I should or shouldn't be doing.
But, alas, I can't help what I feel. And so here I am, begging for a world where my beautiful friends who have endured so much heartache can get a BREAK. Where we didn't have to think about fertility treatments or D&Cs or memorials or ashes or footprints. Where we could decide to grow our family and have it work.
I wish we could escape the pain. The trials.
Friday, April 6, 2012
How is that possible?
It's there, it's definitely there-but it's nowhere near the pain in those first days.
I have been thinking a lot lately about the early days. In the first few weeks after Aiden and Sophie died, I had one goal for the day: get up and shower. I kept telling myself that if I could at least shower once a day, I wasn't in the deepest darkest parts of a real depression. I don't remember if I cooked or not. I don't remember anything except laying in bed looking at the internet, crying, avoiding people, and getting up once a day to shower. My husband went back to work and I don't remember if he resented me for getting to stay home or not. I know it cost us money for me to stay home. I just don't really remember. We put our house up for sale in an effort to run away from everything (that didn't work so well!).
I do have some random, distinct memories. Venturing out on my own and having the lady at the gas station ask me when I was due. Deciding to stain the deck and have the neighbor literally turn and run away from me when I told her the babies died.
I don't even remember if I went grocery shopping or not. I haven't really asked my husband, I don't know if he would remember either.
I look at that, at us in that other house, and I don't recognize us. What was it like? Who was I before this happened?
Three years. Incredible.
Thursday, March 15, 2012
I wish she was here, my friend.
Sunday, March 4, 2012
Saturday, January 28, 2012
I would like to report a recent appointment that I had with Dr. T in the Fertility Clinic.
I was scheduled for an ultrasound in the clinic, with her there to read the results.
A little background-in 2009 I was pregnant with twins and suffered premature delivery and both were born at almost 24 weeks and they passed away in the NICU. Since then I have had a successful pregnancy, resulting in my daughter who is now 18 months old. I am back to try for another pregnancy, but as an intervention I have an ultrasound to check how my body responded to the medication (I do not ovulate as a result of poly-cystic ovarian syndrome) and see how many follicles are growing, in order to avoid a higher risk of conceiving twins again.
Dr. T :
1. Did not introduce herself. I had no idea she was even a doctor. She walked in and seemed to be in a rush.
2. She had obviously not familiarized with my situation/read my chart before hand and had no idea the reason for which I was even having an ultrasound.
3. She acted as though she was angry that she even had to be there as she “had no voice.”
4. She did not explain anything on the ultrasound.
After the ultrasound, I waited for answers. She said, “Well, it looks like you have one or two follicles.”
I needed to know if there was one OR two-that was the whole reason I was paying for that ultrasound.
She was very short with me. She was rude. She was demeaning and derogatory in how she spoke to me. She wrote a note in my file that was EXTREMELY demeaning, simply because I had teared up while watching the ultrasound. She implied that because I had teared up while looking at the ultrasound, that I "must need counseling" and that "a doctor cannot control how many eggs a woman produces."
I think most people are familiar with something called post traumatic stress. I have it. After holding two of my babies while they died, there are several triggers, specifically in the hospital setting, that cause me to feel anxiety, and even fear. For her to comment in a demeaning way because I “teared up” is unfeeling and cruel. I am SHOCKED that XX Hospital would employ a doctor (specifically in the fertility clinic, in which I’m positive there are others who have had situations similar to mine) is very, very sad to me.
After I explained my situation she replied, “Well there are no doctors here. We cannot control how many eggs a woman produces. Just don’t have sex this cycle then.” She then turned around and walked out of the room. She acted like she had NO time for me, and seemed to think an appropriate answer to my question was to “just not have sex”.
I left that appointment feeling horrible. I did not have any answers to help me decide about my next steps. In a situation when you are dealing with time sensitive issues (i.e. a menstrual cycle/ovulation) immediate feedback is essential. Thankfully, K, a nurse from the clinic who is extremely kind and helpful called me back, and my doctor, Dr. R, also called me back immediately the next day. I am a teacher and it’s extremely difficult to talk to a nurse during the day-especially when I had a doctor right there who wouldn’t answer any of my questions, so noe of this should have been necessary. I was also contacted by Dr. B, who had seen my note come through and was concerned.
I then was called by Dr. K, who asked for me to share about the incident. The ultrasound tech had informed others about the situation. She also apologized to me after the appointment was over. I appreciated the concern and the time they took to listen to me.
During my time at XX, I have had so many knowledgeable, efficient, caring and kind nurses and doctors. My family doctor is the most amazing person and treats me with the most respect. However, I have had many cruel and hurtful comments made to me since losing my twins. In a business that deals with so much loss, I would hope that doctors are educated on how to treat those who have gone through these big life changing events However, this time was by FAR the worst. I don’t expect extra special treatment because my twins died. What I do expect is to be treated humanely, to have my questions answered, and to be treated with respect.
I believe that patient safety involves patient emotional safety as well. I think that my safety was compromised. I am very seriously considering moving to XX for the fertility part of my journey, because it will be very difficult to schedule around NOT having Dr. T ever again.
I would be more than happy to explain more or answer any questions. My number is xxx-xxx-xxxx.
Thank you for your time and consideration,
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
I am not one of those people that you read so much about; I didn't suddenly become fertile after having a baby. I still don't ovulate; I still need help. Thankfully, the help I need is "minimal," meaning I take a pill and I ovulate.
It still means a trip to the RE. Which I did.
We decided to take the same plan of action as before. Get period, take femara (like clomid, but has a decreased chance of multiples) have a mid-cycle ultrasound to check and make sure there is only one follicle, timed intercourse, pregnancy.
I knew I needed to keep my head into perspective, not let it get lost in the clouds. I wanted to tell people right away, but I wanted to keep it to myself. The twins and Avery were both conceived on our first round of medication. I seem to be the "most fertile infertile." I am lucky. But I didn't want to convince myself that would happen, for fear of the letdown.
Anyway, the only way I get a period is to take birth control, which I did. Days 3-7 I took my femara. Mood swings, bad headaches, nothing awful.
Yesterday I went in for my mid-cycle ultrasound. DH couldn't go, it was the first day of the semester and he got all new students and I went before school.
The tech inserted the good 'ol va-ja-jay wand, and I watched her measure one follicle in my left ovary at 16 (mm? I don't know what measurement it is). Then I watched her turn her wand, and measure one follicle in my right ovary. 16 again.
I lost it. I freaking lost it. First of all, I had a TERRIBLE doctor's office visit. The doctor was extremely rude to me. She said and did so many things that I don't want to go into (but I did report to the clinic) but after the u/s she did not explain a single thing to me. She said, "Well, it looks like you have one if not two follicles. Great."
Um, excuse me. Is it one OR two ? You see, that's why I'm paying $150 for this ultrasound.
Anyway, she didn't answer any of my questions, but a nurse did later on the phone.
TWO large follicles. One in each ovary. Ready. Waiting.
I am showing other signs of ovulation, which I never have. Cervical mucous, slight cramping.
I cannot believe how hard this is. To skip a cycle. To know that I could make a baby (and quite probably two) right now, but I can't. I have to wait. I have to sit and wait and go against EVERY fiber in my being.
Because, you see, having twins would be too dangerous.
But it's all I ever want.
It's all I had.
It's all I'll never have.
Having twins won't replace Aiden and Sophie. Of course it won't.
But I feel SUCH extreme jealousy when I see twins. That's supposed to be me! ME! That was me, you see. I sat in a restaurant after my ultrasound and I called everyone I knew and screamed in the phone, "TWINS! OMG! YOU GUYS! TWINS!" and I sat in the teacher's lounge with a smug look on my face when someone new would come in and I'd be introduced as the "Twin Mama."
And I bought every twin book I could find. I memorized what I would do to tandem breastfeed. I came up with a gameplan about how I would get two babies in and out of the minivan we had just bought, just for them. I joined the local Moms of Multiples club, and made plans with my mom to go to their huge consignment sale to get ready.
I made their nursery. I watched my husband put up two cribs and two gliders. I carefully chose the paint for their room. I painstakingly picked out two outfits for their coming home outfits. One a size newborn, and one a size "preemie" because, you know, sometimes twins are born early (no one mentioned 16 weeks early, which they don't seem to make a size for at Target.)
I was (am?) a twin mama, but they're not really anywhere to be found. They seem to have vanished. Sometimes, when I'm brave enough, I'll go and touch their urns. It seems so strange to sit there, holding the cold urn, turning it in my hand. Is this really it? This is all?
So, yeah. I want twins again. I WANT TWINS AGAIN.
What if the whole thing happened all over again. What if my water broke and I had to do the whole.damn.thing.over.again.
And what if I could have avoided that, by skipping this cycle?
So, skip we will.
Even if there's nothing in the world I want more. I will move on and try to forget and hope my body will figure out that I just one want follicle, that's all I can handle, I don't know why my babies died and I can't chance it. I have Avery now and I can't be on bedrest. And so even though I'm on the lowest dosage, "You know we can't control how many eggs a woman produces" says the rude doctor with venom in her voice.
Well, excuse me for being upset about it. But I can see on that screen, the chance. The future. All within my grasp. And instead, I have to turn and walk away, and tell my husband that, "No, honey, I'm sorry, it won't be this month for us." And he'll say back, "It'll be ok. It's always ok."
Except it always isn't.
Friday, January 6, 2012
"She really needs to just move on."
"She needs to get over it."
"She must be depressed."
These are, of course, what I imagine they're thinking, instead of what they actually say. Well, they probably actually say it to each other.
I want to talk about them ALL THE TIME. I want to go outside and SCREAM their names. I want everyone to always remember that they were here. They were inside of me, and then they were born, and then they wrapped their little fingers around mine, and they EXISTED.
I think of them all day, long, still. Almost 3 years later. I wonder when it changes. I wonder when a day will go buy, and I'll be making dinner and I'll realize that I haven't thought of them.
Do you guys remember that I am my mom's rainbow baby? That my sister, Mary, was stillborn over 30 years ago, in between my sister and me? I want to ask my mom. I want to ask her when it stopped. When she stopped thinking of my sister every day, all day long. But things were so different with her. She grieved SO differently than me. She also had a totally different experience than most of us-she never got to see her, or hold her. She was whisked away. When she arrived home from the hospital, my grandmothers had gone over and taken down the nursery, taking the stuff to an undisclosed place. There was a statue of the Virgin Mary in my house, though, all my life. I remember it very clearly when I was a little girl. It moved with us, and with my mom once she and my father got divorced.
I always wondered a little about the statue. My mom is Catholic, and went to church every Sunday, but we didn't have any other religious figurines, or bibles, or anything in our house. But I never thought to ask. I recently found out that that statue is in memory of my sister, Mary. That my mom got it as a gift after she passed away and it is all she has. The ONLY momento. No hospital bracelet, no blanket, no lock of hair, no photos. So she did what she had to do-she chose something. A symbol.
But when was I told that I had another sister that had died? I don't know. How was I told? I don't remember.
Somehow, my mother has weaved Mary's existence into our lives.
This is what we do. We are expert seamstresses. We weave in and out of grief. We take the needle and pull the thread through, trying our best to wrap up and pull in those memories. Their names. Their entire, short, existence.