Truett lit a candle for Ellie on Cristmas Eve and Christmas. It was really nice to think of her being there with us.
But now Christmas is over... and the only thing I have left on the horizon is Ellie's 1st birthday on January 24th. I see babies everyday and wonder what she (you, my dear sweet little girl) would be like right now. That thought passes through my mind before I even realize that is what I'm thinking.
But - I have decided that I would like to grieve for her by celebrating her life. I'm not really sure yet how I'm going to do that - but it's my goal for next year. Get out of the pitty rut that I've been in for the past 11 months and contribute something good to the world.
I went to see a different RE just because I had a feeling that my first surgery wasn't as successful as my previous RE seemed to think. And - what a suprise - I was right.
I still have a significant amount of the original septum left. So January 15th I'll have surgery #2.
When we started ttc again after Ellie I told myself if it hadn't happened by December - that was really it. I told myslef the same thing after our IVF cycle. That if it didn't happen I wasn't meant to have a biological child. Even though I should be - I'm not ready to give up yet.
T is beyond the point of wanting to keep trying. He was done with the ttc scene before our IVF cycle in September. Now I'm telling him that I'm going to have another surgery because the first one, that he didn't want me to have anyway, didn't work.
What's even worse is I kept procrastinating on making travel plans for our anniversary in December because I kept telling myself that we wouldn't be able to go anyway - I'd be pregnat. Well, I'm not and it's kind of to late to make any plans.
My next deadline is June - my 38th birthday. That really has to be the end. At a certain point I need to concentrate on learning to love what I already have not chase what I don't.
Someone we hadn't spoken to since May gave us the most amazing gift this weekend. It is a Christmas ornament with Ellie's name and birth date. How could something so simple and so small mean so much? It means that someone else remembers her. Someone else thought that her short life was important enough to acknowledge. To me, that's powerful.
10 months yesterday... almost a year of my life gone. Amelia still asks why her sister had to go away. I wish I knew.
Last year at Thanksgiving we told everyone that we were pregnant. This year I will taking pretty fall flowers to my daughter's grave. Not really fair is it. But what is fair anyway...
I went to see a new RE today. Not really sure why right now - but it helps me deal with things if I have a project. For the last 7 months that project has been conception. I told myself after the huge dissapointment with IVF that I was DONE - over it - never going there again. That was all of 2 months ago... But now I think I have perspective. Nothing unrealistic - just a glimmer of hope that I don't want to let die.
I'm having another sonohystogram done next Tuesday. Hopefully that will tell me if there is any chance at another pregnancy. If it looks good and the septum really is gone then I'll keep trying. If it doesn't look good and I need another surgery - I'll really have to think about things.
10 months that have changed the course of my life.
It's hard to believe that 10 months have already passed. Life is back to "normal" - get up, go to work, come home, make dinner, watch TV(read, play whatever fills the time), go to bed... Even "normal" doesn't feel normal anymore.
I used to love my job. I worked constantly - not because I had to, but because I needed to. There were just to many things that I wanted to do. After adopting Amelia I tempered that energy and spent more time at home with my family but that passion still existed. Today, 10 months after PE stole my child, my passion is gone. My job depends on my passion for creating. I am a creative director who can't create. I'm stuck. Is it writers block if you don't write? Or is it just plain inertia? I didn't see it coming and didn't feel it as it happened - but all of a sudden I am completely aware that I have lost all desire to win. I haven't lost my ability to design - I have lost my desire to design.
Everyone else who comes and goes in my daily life has moved past Ellie's death. It's as if my daughter never existed. And I guess to them she never did.
Because of the deflated state of our economy I have had to be party to many, many downsizing measures in the past year. And if you've been following my story here you know my husband was one of the casualties. After the last round of layoffs my boss was looking for consolation, comiseration and absolution for all of the horrible things he had been forced to do. In the past I would have given him a hug and told him it wasn't his fault. That he was just doing what had to be done. That it was the nature of business. That it was the only way we could keep the company going.
This time the only comment I could come up with was it has been a shitty fucking year. That 2008 was without a doubt the worst year of my life. And he gave me a look - and then I could see the realization wash over him.
Almost 30 years ago one of his children died too. His wife gave birth to twins at 27 weeks. One twin died, but one twin survived. In my own brand of obscene jealousy I can't help thinking how lucky he was that even though one child didn't get to come home - one did.
There was another tragic death in our family recently. One more little one lost. One more mother who left the hospital without her baby. There is no end to tragedy in this world.
I used to think that people who thought of birth as a miracle were sappy dopes. But I now know that it is truely a miracle. We have no control over the life or death of our children. Just because they are alive one day doesn't mean that they will be the next.
I wanted so much more for you my sweet little baby. I wanted to change your diapers, not my life. I wanted to nurse you, not my grief. I wanted to dress you up, not bury you down. I wanted to hear the sounds of you crying for me at night, not the sounds of my own crying for you, my innocent, misconceived baby. I wanted to see you grow, not the grass upon the grave. I wanted to see you asleep in your crib, not in the casket. I wanted to give you life, not death. I wanted to show you off, not go on alone. I wanted to comb your fuzzy hair, not save a lock of it. I wanted to pick up after you, not put down my dreams for you. I wanted to hold you in my arms, not this doll. I wanted to walk you late at night, not my fears. I wanted so much for you my newly born, newly gone child.
I packed them all up and took it to the consignment store yesterday. All except one - the sweater I was wearing when they told me I was staying in the hospital.
It amazed me how many of them still had tags attached. A small wardrobe that was never worn. I hope that whoever ends up with them now has a happy and healthy pregnancy.
My next goal is all the baby clothes that we were given. I hate to see them go - but they really have no sentimental attachments - just the dreams of what was supposed to be. And right now I'm ready to live with out those ghosts for a while.
It's been a really crappy couple of weeks (months, ect...)
DH finally got laid off for good. We always knew it was coming - it was just a matter of when. You'd think we would have been prepared for it, and I guess in a way we were. But it's still a huge shock to the system. So we'll be cutting back on lots of things in the near future.
The hardest part at first was that I had to be part of the group that made the decision. Yes - we are the dreaded office romance that everyone warns employees about. But honestly - other than a few minor bumps in the road - it's been a great 8 years of working together. Up until now when thanks to the sucky economy our company is having to make major cutbacks.
So - no second income means my dream of starting an adoption is completely on hold for the forseeable future. Now I really feel like all hope is gone. I have been really depressed and on edge. I want a baby so badly. It's really hard to see so many others moving on and having babies when I know that it just isn't an option for us anymore. Somehow I have to come to terms with my life the way it is and find happiness there. Right now - I just don't really know how to do it. This year has pushed me so far off my center I'm not sure I'll ever be able to come back.
I feel like sharing a couple pictures of my daughter. I've never shown them to anyone because I couldn't stand to see a negative reaction to them. To me she is beautiful and perfect in every way. I hope everyone else can see how special she is too.
It's been almost 10 months since you were born. 10 months seems like forever.
I have asked myself why so many times in the last 10 months. That more than anything haunts me.
Why did I get pregnant after trying for so long only to have my duaghter taken from me? Why did I get PE? My list of why's goes on forever...
I am still working on learning to accept that there isn't an answer to all of my questions.
I have days that are "good" and I'm thankful for having been able to spend even a short amount of time with my daughter. On those days I can feel the joy that she brought us. Those good days are few and far between. But they are bittersweet. I cry because I can remember how it felt to hold your tiny body. You looked like my grandma. That was the first thing I thought when I saw you. I love to remember the last day - the day after the successful amnioinfusion - when you were really swimming around, kicking and playing. I wish that it hadn't had to end. I wish that I could have given you another 4 months to grow and be healthy.
But then there are days when I am just mad - mad at the world, mad at anyone and anything. Mad at every woman who has ever had a successful, uncomplicated pregnancy. I'm mad a lot more than I'm happy or thankful. Because everything about this just sucks. Why am I less deserving than anyone else? Why did it have to be me?
My therapist has helped me come to accept that there is no good or bad way to feel, no right or wrong. Emotions shouldn't be judged. They are just there with you. Whatever you are feeling is OK. So be mad if that's what you're feeling right now - or sad, or happy or anything. But that's hard. It sets you apart from the rest of the world. How can you chime in and say what you really feel about that "cute" little baby that someone is trying to shove at you?
I'm trying to remember that my duty and responsibility is to ME.
Loosing a child is more than anyone should have to learn to accept.
I miss my child. Every minute of every day I miss her with all of my heart.
How does a mother ever come to terms with all of the pain and heartbreak of the days and months and years that she doesn't get to spend with her child?
There are many days that I wish I had never gotten pregnant. Sounds horrible doesn't it...but if I had never gotten pregnant my world wouldn't have exploded and I wouldn't be the walking zombie that I am today.
I went to see my therapist this afternoon... and my quest for a baby is not a good way to cope with loosing Ellie.
Yeah - I guess I already knew that.
So - take out the pain and loss part of the equation and TA-DA... Everything that DH says makes sense... It is to soon to "know" what we want to do. Yes & No on that one for me. I know I want another child - but the method for acheiving that goal. That's where I get a little hung up. Nothing has that absolute wouldn't do anything else feeling yet.
I am leaning towards adoption - just because that has the best chances of success. But none of our current adoption options feels like the right path for us. I have been doing tons and tons of reading and research on adoptions. In a perfect dream world I would like to adopt from Guatemala again. But for right now that's out of the question.
But I'm getting ahead of myself already. Darn it....
But if anyone out there has any advice I'd love to hear it. Are you adopting? Are you doing ART? How did you decide which was the right path for you?
For us the decision to adopt Amelia from Guatemala feels like a no brainer now. I know we did a lot of searching then too - but it always felt like the right thing for us. That's where I want to be with this decision.
So - I'm not giving up. I'm just taking my time. I'm not going to let my overactive brain pressure my heart into doing something that will have a permanent effect on our lives.
I haven't posted here in a long time... not really sure why - just to completely over whelmed I guess.
I wanted to keep this blog as a place to remember my sweet little girl and not bog it down in all of the other junk that litters my so called life. But that is mostly impossible because loosing Ellie goes hand in hand with the rest of it.
So - new mindset - new start.
Here's the short version of my story.
2002 - started ttc
2003 - got married
2005 - adopted Amelia
2007 - got pregnant
January 2008 - gave birth to my daughter Ellie at 23 weeks due to severe preeclampsia
March 2008 - Met with an RE for the first time
April 2008 - Surgery to remove a uterine septum
June 2008 - IUI - BFN
September 2008 - IVF - BFN
October 2008 - ???
Last year I found out I was pregnant on October 8th. This year I'm not pregnant on October 8th (or 9th, or 10th or 11th on and on goes the ticker in my head).
I'm having a hard time dealing with that.
I have spent the last 9 months since loosing Ellie trying to find hope. And for me that hope was the thought that maybe I could get pregnant again. After the IVF BFN I'm not sure where to find anymore hope.
It seemed so simple after seeing the RE. Do some tests, find out what's wrong, get pregnant. Did the tests, found out what's wrong - not pregnant. Now what - I'm out of insurance coverage. It's not a great time to go looking for a loan to finance medical treatment and I am still $8000 in the hole thanks to the damn preeclampsia.
Right now I would do just about anything to have a baby. Before I really wanted to be pregnant again. Now with a much more modest goal - I just want to have a baby.
And yes - I'll own up to it. Another child would be a replacement for Ellie. I'm not proud of that but it's the truth for me right now. I feel a tremendous need to fill my empty arms. And having a baby would certainly help heal the hole in my heart.
I want to adopt. I would start today. I would call this instant. But it's not up to me alone. It's something that DH and I need to do together. And right now he's spent. I have put him through more than he ever felt comfortable doing. He didn't want to see an RE to start with. And somehow I managed to drag him along through IVF. (Does this man love me or what???)
So now I'm trying to be as good to him as he has been to me. Right now - he needs time to heal and I guess I do too.
We went to visit Ellie's grave this weekend. Truett and I were going to go alone but then Amelia decided that she wanted to go too. As soon as we pulled in and parked Amelia was out the door running. She loves to visit "baby Ellie". I was working on putting the new flowers we brought in the vase and Truett was playing the guitar. Amelia climbed on top of the grave stone and sat down - like it was the most natural thing in the world.
It is so sweet the way that she always talks about her baby sister - but it makes me sad too. For her (and us) it is completely normal to talk about her baby sister in heaven. She hasn't noticed yet that most people pretend that they didn't hear what she was saying.
It wasn't the best visit ever but it was a nice family moment with all of us together.
Truett took pictures of my quilt square today. It turned out much better than I thought it would. It makes me happy to know that she will be aknowledged as a living child who existed on this earth for a short time every time some one looks at the quilt.
It's been almost 6 months since my daughter died. Wow - that's hard to say. All of the pain and hurt is still so fresh some days.
Driving home today I heard a Johnny Cash song. My first thought was - wow, that would have been nice to have for Ellie's funeral. Than I got really, really sad. I've been crying on and off ever since.
I want my daughter here with me right now - more than anything else in the world.
But she's not.
How in the world is a mother and a father and a sister supposed to be OK with that? I don't think I will ever be OK again. Yes, I'll get by. But that is in no way and indication that I've gotten "over" loosing my child. I'll get by and pretend I am who I used to be.