It was important that I have a personal connection with the sperm donor; that I meet him & get to know him; that he knows me. I wasn’t looking for a romantic partner, but I was looking for someone I could trust and respect, someone to meet my children without being “Dad”. I got that & so much more.
When I was new in my grief, there were a number of situations where people said or did something and I wanted to respond, but I just didn’t have the words. Now that I am further out, I have put together a set of potential scripts to use in these situations.
For the most part, I love Daniel Tiger. It’s a cute show with some deeper elements, and some generally great life lessons. There are two areas, though, in which the show gets it wrong, and unfortunately these are big ones for me.
I wonder, sometimes, where to draw the line between a “normal” amount of worry and the amount you feel for a child born after the death of your first. I don’t ever want to stifle her. My pain should never be her burden. And sometimes it just hits me—how much I’ve lost and also hold at the same time.
Integration is waking up in the morning because Peanut is hungry and needs to be changed. Integration is wondering what life would be like with a living second child. Integration is making plans for the future with acknowledgment that things may change. Integration is love AND sadness; grief AND joy. And it’s okay to have ALL of these things, and all at the same time.
After losing Adrian to undiagnosed preeclampsia, I was terrified to experience pregnancy for a second time. Terrified, but also holding hope. And my Peanut is finally here. This is her story.
Parenting, even parenting after loss, isn’t just sunshine and roses. It’s reality too. And I love this little girl with every piece of my soul, AND I feel overwhelmed sometimes. It’s okay to acknowledge the reality of life after loss. It’s okay to be cranky.
I put Penny to bed tonight, and I had another image of a rambunctious toddler jumping up to join us. I can’t see his face at all, it is mostly just a feeling. A feeling like he’s just right there.
I look back on that time now, and it’s like I’m looking at a different person. That old Miranda lived in a different world, where everything felt like it was possible. And even though it has been almost 3 years since then, I think a lot of people don’t understand I’m not that person anymore.
I caught a glimpse of my tattoo in the mirror the other day. The days move so quickly lately, sometimes I forget it’s there. Sometimes I miss the burning underneath my skin, how it felt when everything was new.
Our old house is for sale. In the photos, it looks cluttered. They have a boy and a girl, fully lived-in rooms. We wouldn’t have had that, not there. It still feels weird to look at.
Your sister was offered a daycare slot and it brings up memories. People around me are having boys and it brings up memories.
I’m glad I got out of bed today. I like watching the water. There’s a guy beyond the ice plant, painting on the rocks. I remember sitting here last year, feeling overwhelmed and sad. It was hard.
This past year has been different. You’d think the biggest part would be your sister, and of course she’s part of it. There’s also me. I’ve been developing. I’ve been learning and hiding in equal measures.
The lead up is different this time. It’s quieter. I’m not sobbing. I sit here with your sister and most parts of the day I feel fine. It’s only in those random moments, those echoes of memory — and I still wish I could feel more of you.
They I gave her to me and she was screaming and all I could think was yes, mama loves you so much. You are a new piece of my everything. And suddenly I’m just bigger and you are still gone and I’m straddling the world in two.
I find myself living in the world again, at least in pieces. And I railed and I fought and I thought maybe it would be that way forever. And I’m realizing, even when I maybe don’t want to, that somehow I am living.
And for the longest time, I couldn’t cry. And for the longest time I couldn’t cry about you. And then today, and it feels almost out of nowhere. Like it’s a full body memory, and I realized I still miss you. I’ve never stopped missing you.
For the past year, I’ve told myself everyday I would do anything to have you here with me. If I could travel back in time I would do anything to convince myself we should have been induced…For the past year, I’ve told myself this, but now I realize that’s changed.
Walking along the pier with my daughter where I used to walk alone, I think about the drastic changes of the past two years. Despite the sweetness of her new life, I don’t feel thankful for the hardship that preceded her. Life doesn’t work that way.
This car seat and the matching stroller were both Adrian’s. They were two of the few things that felt “okay” to use for his sister; things that would have handed down anyway. And when the car seat was ruined, I felt a surprising tug of pain. These were HIS things! I have so few of them.
A heavy, beautiful day today, and Peanut is officially laughing. Forever finding that balance in all of the feelings in life after loss.
I think we subconsciously want all parents to be superheroes. From the smallest scratch to the largest mistake, parents are blamed and take on the blame for every misfortune in their childrens’ lives. When we think about hot car deaths, this trend is dangerous. This death could happen to ANY OF US.
Spent the past few days going through items in storage, and tonight I can’t shake this heavy feeling. And I realize, of course, that it’s him. These were his things, and some are now his sister’s, and many are now finding new homes.
I saw his body laid out on the concrete and all I could do was scream. He was 11 weeks old, barely seven pounds. I was convinced he was dying. And it was my fault. I couldn’t lose him too, not after everything else I had lost in my world.
Almost three years ago, we both were pregnant. I didn’t realize at the time how closely we aligned. I think I thought about saying something then, but I didn’t. No excuses this time. And then your son was born, and my son died.
People sometimes ask me if my daughter is my first child. I needed a simple way to tell them I had a child before her, but he died. When people ask me now, I have a simple response.
Child Care is expensive. Pretty much everything involved in raising a child is expensive. I’m not complaining, though. It’s all better than the alternative.
I started celebrating Mothers Day when I was pregnant with my first child. Although he was unexpectedly stillborn one month later, I was and am STILL a mother. Today, I am celebrating for the third year, pregnant and expecting my second child. Happy Mothers Day.
I smile with genuine feeling. I finally feel excitement. I love her and I miss you. I realize I have given up control.