It’s Not About Me…

April 24, 2009

This isn’t a post about me or maybe it is…

Someone I care about very much has been diagnosed with bi-polar disorder – we will call him “H” for Husband and her “W” for Wife.  It’s been a hard road for this family to get to where they are right now.  Both H and W have been down a road with lots and lots of obstacles – some seemingly insurmountable and unsurvivable but still, they have endured.  H finally will get the help that he needs.  I’m so proud of the way they have handled things – especially W, she has a grace and presence of mind that awes me daily.

So why am I writing about this on my blog?  One, because I love them and two, because it’s a reminder to me that I need people in my life who support me and I want to have people who I can support back.  Sometimes I feel like I have taken more than I have given in the last year.  I know that’s “allowed,” I know that’s okay given the circumstances but I’ve never been that person before…someone so needy, where it’s all about me…I guess it’s a little glimmer that I’m getting back a little of the me that isn’t heartbroken, lost and hurt.  I know she’s in here somewhere, she just has a hard time swimming to the surface…

There is a song by 3 Doors Down called, “Let Me Be Myself” and while whole the song speaks to me, two lines really explain how I feel lately:

 “I’ll never see the light of day living in this cell.” 

“It’s time to make my way back into the world I knew.”

Maybe that’s where H is right now – making his way back.


April 22, 2009

So I sent the letter on Monday.   I have not heard from my mother yet.  Total silence.  I thought she would call last night and while I don’t think I would have answered, I was really surprised that she didn’t call…sigh….I don’t know what to do…I guess there isn’t anything to do but wait…she’s pissed at me, I know it…Do I regret sending the letter?  Nope.

We have an appointment to see the RE in about a week to discuss “super-ovulation.”  A woman on the Balanced Translocation Yahoo Group who has the same translocation that I do emailed me that her RE wouldn’t do the super-ovulation because, like me, she got pregnant easily.  People with my type of translocation are the most common and it’s the least severe in terms of how it effects staying pregnant.*  Yeah me.  Anywho, her RE said that she would not do the super-ovulation because if she kept trying, eventually one would stick.  This is why IVF with Pre-genetic diagnosis is not recommended for me either.  The cost does not justify the benefit.  And the great news is, she now has two children, just like I got pregnant with the boys.  Great.  Groovy.  So I’m supposed to  just keep trying.  This is not a third child that I am trying for here people – I don’t have any other living children to look at and think, “I’m okay with one.”  I would have stopped at the boys if they had lived.  I’m not being greedy.  I want the universe to understand that.  I’m not being greedy…just…OH COME ON!!! (fist is raised in the air and I am looking up…)

So I keep trying and it’s loss after loss.  I’m pregnant for 2 weeks then I’m not.  I don’t even get excited over a positive HPT anymore.  If it’s not a super-dark positive line, chances are, it’s not sticking.  I don’t even call the doctor – I don’t plan to until I hit the 9 week mark (I’ve gotten to 8 weeks twice now, I figure I make it to 9, then I will get excited..or not).  I just monitor my symptoms in case of an ectopic pregnancy and usually, one day I wake up and I don’t feel pregnant anymore.  And this is my life, over and over again.  Watching people around me get pregnant, have babies and move forward.  I’m stuck here in a cycle of loss that feels never ending.

My RE will  probably say no to the super-ovulation but I have to ask.  For my peace of mind, I have to ask.

*There is a whole world of this out there involving Robertsonian Translocations and break points and trisomy 13, 18, Down’s Syndrome.  If you are interested, email me but it’s a lesson in Genetics and my recall from college has been really tested….

I Lit the Fuse…

April 21, 2009

Now let’s all watch the bomb go off….

My mother sent me an email over the weekend that simply said, “I miss you.”  That was it.  I didn’t respond because I was still very angry about the Easter confrontation and the manner in which she handled it.  I knew that I needed to say something to her about the way that she and I have been relating to each other lately.  I admit that I am not totally innocent in this situation.  I have not been honest with her about my feelings and I have, at times, given in and rewarded her negative behavior.  I knew that I needed to talk to her before therapy last night.  We are still in the midst of the Mexican stand-off in terms of phone calls so I responded to her email.  Here is what I said:

My therapist said I should write you a letter so here goes.
See, I miss you because you are my mother and I love you and I need your understanding and support right now.  Instead, I get passive/aggressive behavior like the conversation we had before Easter.  You didn’t ask me to come for Easter.  You assumed I was coming and then got angry with me when I told you we weren’t coming.  I understand that you were disappointed and I’m sorry for that.  You didn’t ask me why we weren’t coming.  I had to lie to you because you didn’t have enough respect for me not to call me at work and get upset with me.  I couldn’t talk about the reason why we weren’t coming in the office.
That week before Easter was a really bad week for me but you didn’t remember that was the when I delivered the boys.  The worst day of my life and you didn’t remember.  And that’s fine.  I understand that it may not have had the same effect for you as it did for me.  But that and the fact that I had a miscarriage over that weekend, that was the reason why I didn’t want to come for Easter.
In addition, your repeated comments that you are “ordering a girl next time” have often made me feel like because they were boys, my twins didn’t matter to you.  That hurts me.  I understand that you were disappointed they were not girls but I am not.
I feel like I can’t trust you because when I call to talk to you when I’m having a bad day, you call Tim.  The one time I reached out to you because I was in so much pain, I couldn’t breath, you repeatedly asked me what was wrong.  You know what’s wrong.  Then you tell me not to cry.  Why in the world would I not cry?  And then you called Tim.  If I wanted to talk to Tim, I would.  I have no problem talking to Tim.  I wanted to talk to you.
My boys died a year ago and I’m having a hard time.  I’ve had 5 miscarriages in the past year and I’m tired, physically weak, and emotionally exhausted.  For a little while, there are going to be times when you want me to visit and I can’t.  It’s not because I don’t love you or I don’t want to see you or Tim is keeping me from you.  It’s because I don’t feel good – emotionally or physically.
I don’t want to lie to you anymore and I’m not censoring my conversations with you.  If you say something that hurts me, I’m going to tell you that you’ve hurt me and I will just deal with the silent treatment that will likely follow. 
I love you and I wish we could have the relationship that we used to have but right now, I would just settle for being able to be honest with you and not have you get angry with me or behave as if I have done something intentional to hurt you.  And if I do hurt you, I assure you that it’s not intentional.
Yup, I sent it yesterday about 3:45pm.  That large “BOOM” that you all heard here in the South, that was me, blowing 9 years of passive/aggressive crap wide open.
God, I feel nauseous.

I Am A Dumbass…

September 29, 2008

I do stupid things that I know will upset me.  I cancelled my MySpace because I was getting weird “friend” requests and I couldn’t stand looking at people’s newborn babies up on their pages.  Too painful.  One in particular was hubby’s friend from high school whose girlfriend was due a month before we were due to have the twins.  Coincidentally, we were all having boys.

So she and I would message back and forth about the babies and the ultrasounds and such.  And then we had to go to Philly and lost Baby A.  Did I mention they live in Harrisburg and we were staying in Harrisburg with hubby’s mom?  Did I mention that Girlfriend has lost 2 babies before?  In fact, the first time I met her, she had just had a miscarriage and was a wreck.  My first night hanging out with her, she was crying and screaming because no one could understand her pain.  Sound familiar?  Did I mention they didn’t call, didn’t visit, nothing. 

So when we lost the second Baby, hubby emailed his friend to let him know what had happened and that obviously I would be unable to attend Girlfriend’s shower in 2 weeks.  Nothing.  No card, no flowers, nothing.  Silence.  Crickets.

Now, being well-mannered, I knew that I had to send a gift to the shower so I drag my ass out of bed and go to Babies R Us and get a cute little blue blanket and a stuffed frog.  Did I mention I just lost my second baby less than a week earlier?  It was painful to be in that store.  Painful.  Did I mention that I didn’t get a thank you note, an acknowledgement, nothing?  Again, crickets.

But of course, morbid curiosity sets in and I look them up on MySpace.  I am so happy that the baby is doing well but really pissed that neither one of them could pick up the fucking phone and call us.  Or write a note.  She knows the pain I am going through and still, nothing.  I shouldn’t care about them but I do.  I guess she doesn’t want my dead baby cooties or something, I don’t know.  And I am pissed that this has upset me as much as it has….

Which is why, I am such a dumbass.

So I may have mentioned that I get a little freaked out around “people.”  It’s not so much strangers but people who know that I was pregnant and know what happened.  I still have a tiny voice in my head that tells me that someone thinks I did something to cause the death of the boys and that they think it was my fault that the boys died.  It’s not rational but hey, I’m not known for my rationality – just ask my hubby.

I finally agreed to attend the family reunion in October.  I haven’t seen much of my family since the loss of the babies and in fact, I don’t think any of them actually saw me pregnant.  I had planned to visit for Easter but was on bed rest and then Mother’s Day, well, I wasn’t in the mood for company.  Part of me feels like if I go to the reunion, I have to come for Thanksgiving and then there is Christmas.  I feel like if we attend events at my families’ house, we have go to hubby’s families’ house for Christmas and I can’t do it.  His cousin’s baby will be 3 months old, his sister’s baby will be 2 months old…our babies would have been 4 months old.  They had Christmas outfits with reindeer faces on the butt….it’s not fucking fair!  See?  Not the best attitude for Christmas.

But I am going to the reunion because Cousin Jen-Jen will be there and Michelle is flying out.  I am only going because Michelle agreed to come.  Otherwise, I don’t think that Jen-Jen and Hubby are enough of an arsenal to protect me from the stupid things that people will say.  Not so much the family but people who come 5 minutes before dinner is served and leave 10 minutes after.  They don’t help set up and they sure as hell don’t stay for clean up but for some reason they have no problem saying, “Martha, when you and Hubby gonna get knocked up?”  That was last year and I can’t guarantee that they will pull their heads out of their asses or lift their faces from their troughs long enough to remember that my babies died.

And therefore, every time I think about going, I feel like the room is closing in on me….

In short – you don’t.

Not the same way you did when your child was alive.

I finally sat down and watched “One Tree Hill” last night (don’t judge me, at least it’s not “American Idol” or “Dancing With the Stars” and you know you watch trashy TV too).  I have been a fan of the show for a while but this episode was about grief and loss.  I knew it would be a tough one and I debated whether to watch.  Since hubby was at karate tonight, I decided to sit down and see how far I got with the episode.

That line, “how can a mother ever breath again?” is brilliant.  It’s brilliant because it’s true.  I can’t explain to you what this pain feels like.  I can’t articulate how somedays the pain sits right in the middle of my throat and I am lucky if I can eat or drink or speak.  I used to watch shows like this and think, “gosh, that’s awful and so sad” but now, now I know.  I know.  I hate that I know.*

And in someways, I think I am lucky.  My children didn’t died in front of me.  They didn’t suffer, there was no illness, no accident, I didn’t have to “pull a plug,” there was no horrible malpractice, there is no one to blame.  They just died.  It’s hard to say that still, 5-6 months later.  They died.  They are no more in the physical world, only my heart.  There is no tomorrow for them.  But there is something comforting in the quickness and gentleness of it.  That’s what we members of the “Stillborn Sorority” do, we find solace in things that normal, regular, non-grief stricken people would never think about.  It’s a form of acceptance that borders on a secret handshake and is ridiculously morbid in the real world.

So I don’t breath the same way I did before I lost them but I am still breathing.  Some days it’s harder than others but I have come to the realization that I will be able to survive this.  That’s more than I could say 6 months ago – even just 2 months ago.  I literally felt that I would never be able to move forward, that I would be “stuck” here in this vast deep, dark ocean of grief. 

But honestly, I am scared at how quiet I have gotten.  Do you remember that scene in “Steel Magnolias” at Shelby’s funeral when Maylin loses it?  She freaks out, she screams that “no, this isn’t happening.  Why?” and she starts to tear at her hair and get angry.  Do you remember that scene?  Well, I can tell you, that’s grief.  That’s new, raw, painful grief.  I have done that.  Thrown pillows, hit walls, screamed.  Done it all.

But now?  Now I am quiet.  I am sad and lonely and angry but I don’t scream and cry like I used to.  I’m just quiet.  I go to yoga and acupuncture and I live my life but I am still so sad and so lost.  I don’t know if this quietness is good or not.

But quiet or not, good or bad, I am breathing again.


*Yes, I know it’s make believe but it’s still very realistic.  I am many things but delusional is not one of them – yet.

The List

September 17, 2008

So KB from sent me an idea for something that I should do and when she said it, I was like, “duh!  That’s perfect!”  She suggested that I make a list of 100 reasons why I deserve to get pregnant and have a healthy baby.*  It would focus my energy in a positive manner, help with the “worries” and silence the “fear voice.”  I mentioned it to hubby and we have decided to do it together so these will be answers from both of us.  It will sort of be like my “gratitude chant” (that makes me look like an escaped mental patient in the middle of Target) but instead of muttering to myself, I will be writing little notes….I already got a pad and pen for the cars and my purse….now I just look eccentric and that’s better than crazy, right?

I have decided to dedicate a page to this project and would invite you to read, “Our 100 Reasons” page.  I will update it often.

*I have since changed this to “why we WILL get pregnant and have a healthy baby.”  The phrase “deserve” does imply some kind of blame or fault and KB is right, we didn’t do anything to cause the loss.  It’s a negative word and I am glad she helped me change it to a positive.