It is ok to be sad

Featured

I feel you rolling your eyes, as I hit post. Another grief post you think! Your pain is no longer because it wasn’t your child you lost, it was mine, so you did feel sad for a bit after, you don’t understand how or why I am still grieving or posting sad stuff about grief. I get it its not your loss, you don’t feel it every day like I do and you don’t want to remember it  as much as I do. You might think I am bitter or want sympathy, I don’t. Just know that my heart hurts when I glance at the spot on the floor where she stopped breathing, that I have trouble thinking of moving because this is where she lived for 2 short weeks. Every time I hear a story of tragedy or a life lost I cry for her. Am I stuck? no I am human. I am a mother that gave birth to a beautiful baby that struggled to live, to breathe, that spent 5 weeks in the NICU, not sleeping, not feeling and slowly breaking. That was almost four years ago I know, you think I must have moved past this pain, I have another little girl right. She is my savior, yes. but also my daily reminder of my first little girl that is not here. Would they be best friends? or Would they fight a lot?  I wonder. And yes that too makes me sad. Immediate grief after a tragedy is overwhelming, its consuming and then time takes it away, little by little the intense memories fade and it is easier to ‘pretend’ life is what it is.

Today is October 15th- International Awareness of Stillbirth, miscarriage and infant loss

A day that makes me sad but grateful to have met and to be a part of a community of women, amazing women, that too have suffered a loss, something that is not openly spoken about but should be, something that people are uncomfortable to bring up, leaving the person(s) that suffered the loss alone. Why are we told not to share a pregnancy until 3 months? in case you lose the baby right, we don’t need to upset people like that! but then we suffer alone with our loss. Not right. After I lost my daughter, after she was born at full term, after she was given a birth certificate because she lived past 21 days (the time the government thinks your baby needs to live to be considered a human!) even though we all know as soon as we see that pink or blue line we have a child in our life, whether they live past 21 days or not, to be deemed a person! Different issue, I move on. The stigma that surrounds uncomfortable feelings needs to stop. People need compassion not shame. I don’t know how to change the world into thinking its ok to be sad, we do not need to ‘pretend’ to be happy all the time. As Buddha says ‘Life is suffering’ I believe we have pockets of happy moments or happy feelings but if you truly look at the world and live true, you see that it is about surviving, surviving tragedy around us, surviving, genocide, rape, famine , disease, homelessness, joblessness, then death. Acknowledging life’s struggles does not make us ‘negative’ it makes us real and if you let yourself feel the sad you will better be able to appreciate the happy.

After I lost my daughter, so many women came up to me and told me about their losses, a women lost her son when he was 21, another suffered multiple miscarriages’ but never told anyone, so many stories, so many women that suffered alone because society made them feel like they had to hide their shame because it wasn’t ‘happy news’ I call bollocks! I will continue to share my grief and encourage others to share because we are here for such a short time, all we have is each other. To help, to love, to pick each other up and hug.

Namaste

Thanks for reading.

Sheri

Advertisements

Who you’d be today

We went away, another trip you should have been on. I miss you lily. I remember that day you left us, I prayed and begged for so many things to have you to stay, I promised you I would buy us matching bathing suits to wear the following summer, I almost bought Hope and I matching suits this trip, I couldn’t. I miss you. This morning I was staring at a photo I keep beside my computer, it is of your brothers holding you and it struck me as I stared that it was you and not your sister Hope. All the things that are missed by you, by your life being over.

WP_20150712_005

Three years ago I slept a lot, not wanting to endure the pain of the slow minutes that past without you. I prayed to jump ahead in time when it would not be so raw, so real, and so hard. And here I am, three years later and I wish so desperately to go back to that pain, to feel your hurt inside my soul so I cannot move again. I miss you. I think of you still always. I wonder who you’d be today.

Thank you for reading.

Namaste

Call me Crazy

Would you call me crazy if I told you the truth?

Would you think I am weird for the tiny rituals I do to remember my lost little girl?

If you knew I wondered if every butterfly I saw was my daughter,

If you saw me cuddling the stuffed elephant I bought her 4 days before she died, that sleeps beside my bed so if  I wake up and want to hold it I can.

Do you wonder why I have so many stone Angels’ in and around my house?

Would you call me crazy if I told you I wake up in a frantic panic at times confusingly wondering where my baby is?

Would you think I am weird for gently touching the dried blood stains that I cannot wash off her blanket and hat?

If you knew I prayed for people to ask about her would you?

If you saw me talking, kissing, holding her picture, would you call me crazy?

Some might but I am ok with being a little crazy.

I am crazy for my living children, for my husband, why can’t I be crazy for my little girl whose life was so short but has touched me so hugely.

Call me crazy.

WP_20150712_003

Away on a family trip, a beautiful butterfly just like this one, landed on my 2 year old daughter Hope, who we had after Lily died. She freaked out a little because the butterfly didn’t seem to want to leave her shoulder, all I kept thinking was – It’s ok Hope its your sister.

Thanks for reading,

Namaste.

Rainbow Babies

This is for all the rainbow mommies.

What is a rainbow mom?

Well: A mother that has had a successful pregnancy resulting in a healthy newborn after having experienced previous pregnancy losses and/or stillbirths, or infant/child death. -Not a Webster definition- just my own.

I lost Lily my 3rd child my 1rst daughter in February 2012.

I had my rainbow baby April 2013.

Through my 1rst year of grief I met so many, too many, mothers (parents) that had lost babies or children, it was overwhelming. It’s like once the door to grief has swung open you see a world that is so sad that you never could imagine and probably didn’t know even existed.

I was nervous to share with them that I was pregnant again, after all I did have 2 healthy children already, some of them had none or 1 or multiple losses.

Throughout my pregnancy and shortly after the birth of my 2nd daughter, 8 other moms I knew were to become rainbow mommies with me, wonderful right? Well I also knew 6 other women at the same time that were pregnant with their 1rst as well- that’s 14… Wow 14 new babies! Awesome right?

No, in my mind I could not help but wonder which one of them would have a traumatic birth? Or which one of them would lose their baby, morbid?   Well if you look at the numbers, roughly 1-100 babies are stillborn, or have complications at birth that result in disability or death of the infant. Not a lot of people know that. Unfortunately if you Google it, it will tell you 1/1000- but that’s outdated and doesn’t include all relevant cases/statistics, such as home birth deaths or deaths in 3rd trimester.

So, I knew 14 women that were pregnant and to give birth in 2013/14.  Would it? Could it? Horrible thoughts, yes, it is! I was so scared for them all, I literally was consumed with their and their unborn child’s well being, I prayed constantly for them, sounds normal but I am not religious so for me it was not.

Slowly one by one they gave birth, I was relieved,ecstatic, that first of all, every one of my fellow bereaved mothers (fathers) had their rainbow baby! I was/am so elated for them, I know how they feel, this overwhelming sense of love and gratitude to this little, healthy bundle of babylisious joy! Many of us have said, we so don’t mind being up all night- because of what the alternative is/was.

The others began having their babies; I frantically scoured FB for news of their healthy births, the women I did not talk to frequently, if I never heard anything, I messaged them to ask. Then it happened. There was one. She messaged me, told me what happened. I cried, for what I know she went through and still endures.

I meant this post to be a tribute to my fellow rainbow mommies and all the hard feelings you experience when you have a healthy baby after a loss. All the wonderings and thoughts of; is this what they would look like? Would I have this one if the other lived? It is all so confusing to analyze because we think with our heart as we hold the baby that is alive. But I feel this post has turned into maybe a reality check of awareness for those who don’t understand how grief affects us and our thoughts – constantly and forever, even more so when we have our rainbow baby.

I found this site page that explains it quite well.

http://www.compassionatefriends.org/brochures/stillbirth_miscarriage_and_infant_death.aspx