Angels

26 August 2010

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I've never gotten the whole angel thing when someone dies. I've heard it all. Supposedly, I have two angels in Heaven...watching over me...protecting me...waiting for me. Especially when babies or children die, they are immediately changed from a child, to an angel.

Don't people really know what angels are? Have we, as a society forgotten that angels aren't pretty little cherubs with wispy wings that hover above clouds or sleep upon flowers? They're not the cute, tiny pastel colored little angels that flood Hallmark stores. They're strong and bad-ass. They're so overpowering that they bring fear in people and talk with direct orders from God. Most times, when an angel is mentioned in the bible, people freak out. They don't look at the angel and want to hug it. They freak out and fall to the ground. In one of the most famous angel encounters, one we hear every Christmas...in Luke 2:9-10 it reads "And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened. But the angel reassured them. "Don't be afraid!" he said. "I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people." The folks that saw this angel were freaked out! In Luke 1:12-13 it reads, "Zacharias was troubled when he saw the angel, and fear gripped him. But the angel said to him, "Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your petition has been heard...".Zacharias was gripped in fear!

So why, when we know that angels are messengers of God...messengers that bring warning or good news or directions...and that quite frankly, aren't very...welcoming...why do we translate that into our babies? Our children?

And why on so many babyloss websites are there floating pastel 'angels' covering the pages? Why do people tell me I now have an angel in heaven? My girls, aren't angels. They were alive...and then they died...and now they live again in Heaven with Christ and I can't even imagine the party that happens every day up there. They're waiting for us. I believe they can check in on us...watch us let's say for a lack of a better word...but I don't think they're protecting me. I don't think their floating on clouds with wispy wings attached to their backs.

I don't know. I just don't get it. My babies, were babies...just babies.

The stillbirth roller-coaster

22 August 2010

As I was sitting in church last night I worried about my baby. I'm in this phase where I can feel movements at times but not at others. It's normally little flutters and bumps but never anything large. No big movements or jabs to really put my mind at ease. So though I know this is all normal and that there may be hours if not days where I don't feel anything, it still freaks me out. It makes me want to run to the hospital which in itself is silly since this lull in movement is expected and if the baby did pass, there's nothing they can do...but still...

So I sat there, trying to listen to the message, but not being able to. My fear kept me only thinking about death. But then, as fast as the dread hit me, it lifted and within seconds my fear was gone and replaced with the knowledge that in a few short months, we will be bringing home another child, another son. There was no question in my heart. We will be bringing home a child.

This roller-coaster of emotions is an almost every day occurrence. I'm freaking out one moment but a few moments later, I'm thinking of buying things for the baby or dreaming about our delivery, ending with a screaming, warm, slippery child in my arms. My emotions are all over the place.

Life is all around me, but so is death. Another mama from my OB-GYN's office lost a baby full term a few weeks ago. Just Thursday I met a woman who's friend lost her child at 25 weeks about 6 weeks ago. It surrounds me. Infertility, miscarriages, stillbirths. There is so much pain. But there is so much happiness too. I'm in an up-down ride that at times makes me nauseous. I can't wait for this all to be done.

I'm thinking of purchasing a doppler for my own ease of mind. I was talked out of it with Asher, but now, I think it could really help. Just knowing when I don't feel movement, that he's still OK in there...though I know it can be hard to find the little heartbeat sometimes, I still think it may bring me some calm moments.

the baby's bedroom

14 August 2010

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I started cleaning out the baby's bedroom this morning. It's been the dumping ground for just abut everything...but mainly pregger clothes and stuff Asher has already grown out of. It was clean as of December '09. And then we lost Selah. We lost the hope that she would occupy the room, so I started using it was a dumping ground.

I had mixed emotions about cleaning it. I kept thinking about when I cleaned out the room for Selah...and then that made me feel as if I'm tempting fate...starting the downward spiral that's inevitably going to hit us. Another part of me got a little gitty. I started thinking about refinishing the dresser, choosing the pictures I would hang, and deciding what to do with the guest bed. Then I thought about starting to bring up some of the newborn clothes and necessities...but then my mind went dark again.
I found the box of little girl clothes and the clothes my mom gave me from when I was an infant. All pink and knitted, dresses and strappy sandals with flowers. I put a sweater into Jorai's memorial pile as I had purchased it for my first daughter...and had kept it in hopes of another...but what should I do with the rest. Sure I have friends I could give them to, or Shared Pregnancy, but can I? I mean, it's silly to keep them...but how do I get rid of them? I never purchased them for the girls...they were just stuff that I got...and why keep them? What would I do with them? But how do I throw them away as well? It's a small reminder that we had little girls...for a short time anyway. And the child I'm now carrying is a boy...and even if we lose him...I don't think I'll ever become pregnant again. At least not because we were trying to. So why keep them?

And then I found the muslin fish sleeper I purchased for Selah. Should I pass it down to her little brother? Or do I place it in her memorial box. It was the only thing I had purchased for her yet why just put it in a box to rest next to her blood stained blanket?

I wanted to continue cleaning up the room, putting things away, keeping certain things out, and day dreaming about the possibility of having it occupied by a permanent resident in early February...but then I remembered my track record and couldn't go any further. I want to be positive. I want to only think happy thoughts. But I can't. My mind always seems to go there...to those cold hospital rooms. The silence. The smells. The drugged, ripped apart at the seams, feeling. The emptiness. I know I feel so full right now. My belly is round and I feel more and more movement each day. I think of names and what his personality will be. I think of holding him and kissing his warmth and crying at his screams. But I fear the cold. I fear the silence. I fear that ultrasound tech, telling my ears what my heart already knows.

I'm 15 weeks. I have just 9 more until I hit 24 weeks. 13 until I hit 28 weeks. I only have 4 more weeks to miscarry...after that, I'll need to deliver. 19 weeks will be the start of my own personal hell on earth. I don't think I'm ready for it. I want to be positive. I want to be strong. 4 more weeks. Am I ready for this journey? Am I just as ready for the heartache as I am for the joy? Can I be? I just need to keep breathing.

Baby brother

11 August 2010

We had our appointment with Dr. Notsonice today. We started with the ultrasound that was suppose to check for downs and other chromosomal abnormalities. As I already knew. I'm too far along to check. But we were able to see the baby, we were able to see the heartbeat and the hands and feet and PENIS!!! Yup, we're having another boy. It seems so strange to know the sex. It doesn't seem right. I was so happy to hear that Asher was going to have a little brother. It's so cool...but I have to admit that there's also a small part of me that wanted a girl. But having 2 boys...there's something cool about that.

The second part of the exam was the consultation with Dr. Notsonice. I was bracing myself for it. I had all my comebacks ready...I walked in knowing that I was going to be pissed off in a few moments. The kicker? The appointment went really well. Seriously well. And Dr. Notsonice, was kinda nice. Really.

He tried to talk me into getting the quad test, which he didn't succeed...and surprisingly, he was OK about it. And we came up with a good plan. We're having an extensive ultrasound at 19 weeks. It will check everything. The placenta, the cord, blood flow, the baby...everything. At 24 weeks we will start having weekly bio-physical profiles through at least 28 weeks. If the profiles show stress on the baby, I will be given steroids to move the baby's growth along and then deliver as soon as we can. It's not the best...but if it brings this baby into the world alive, I'm all for it.

This appointment brought me hope. I'm still nervous. Real nervous. And bummed that I'll have to be watched so closely and have all these extra ultrasounds, but if it brings this child into the world kicking and screaming...I'm all for it. I'm hopeful...and that's a good feeling. I never thought I'd say this, but Dr. Notsonice, was nice and he gave me hope today. And we're having another son. Asher will have a little brother.

Guess it's time to start figuring out a name!

what to say?

08 August 2010

I never knew that the subject of children could ever be so bittersweet...

'Is that your first?'

'How many children do you have?'

'How old are they?'

'I bet you hope the child you're carrying is a girl since you already have a boy!'

If I don't answer honestly, I feel as if I'm dragging my girls names' through the mud...as if I'm not honoring them...I'm ignoring them. But if I answer these questions honestly, I get the look...the apologies...and I also know that I've just made the questioner extremely uncomfortable.

My answer? Usually, I tell the story. An abbreviated one. "This is our fourth child", "we have a son at home and two daughters in heaven"...depending on the situation I may go into our story a bit, or it may end there.

Tonight in the Lowes parking lot, we ran into a very nice couple who was waiting patiently for us to load Asher into the car, so they could get into theirs. The conversation starts...'Oh, no rush...we have kids at home...no worries!"..."What are you having?"..."Oh I bet you're hoping for a girl since you already have a boy."

'Yeah...I think I'd give my left leg for a girl. But not just any girl...not any girls...and no, actually we're hoping for a boy since something happens to girls when they're growing within me and they die. We're hoping for a boy because that will give us a slim sliver of hope that we may be able to hold a warm, breathing child, rather than a cold, tiny, lifeless one.'.

OK...so that was a conversation that only played out in my head...my real response? "We're actually hoping for a boy...I think it would be cool to raise boys.'. No lie. Just not the full truth either.

I think this is the hardest aspect of being a mama to Heavenly babies. The constant questions. The never ending mother questions. Describing your family...filling out forms of all kinds that ask to list family members...it's non-stop. It's a constant opportunity to share my sweet baby girls lives with others...it's a way for me to honor them and love them from 'the grave'...but it's also so, very, hard. Not that I ever...ever, want to forget...but it's also a constant reminder.

sensitive subject...

01 August 2010

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I've been going 'round and 'round in my head of whether to post on this subject or not as it's kinda one of those areas, people don't seem to talk about. But I've finally decided that I need the support and reassurance that what we're doing is 'right'...and ...well...since when have I not talked about something? right?

So today we'll be talking about testicles. Asher's right testicle to be exact.

The day after he was born, our doc informed us that his right testicle wasn't descended but that it's normal and that within the first year, most descend. We never thought much about it.

It still hasn't descended. Well, that's not true. It can descend, it just doesn't stay down. At his two year check up, our doc decided to send us to a pediatric urologist. We had that appointment on Monday. I got a strange vibe from the guy. He was quiet and not very friendly and he didn't interact with Asher at all...which is strange for a peds doc...but whatever. He poked and prodded at my boy and then immediately started talking about surgery to pull it down and secure it. Which of course freaked me out! All of a sudden, this is a big deal?

I got on-line finally and yeah, it can be a big deal. In adulthood it could cause sterility of that testes, it could become cancerous or a whole slew of other things. But that's for an undescended testicle...Asher has one that can be drawn down and when hot, has definitely come into place...from what I've read, that is called a retractable testicle which requires no treatment. So the questions are...what does he really have and what's the best form of treatment?

He had an ultrasound today, which he was a rock star in! I'm so proud. He just laid there as some lady ultrasounded his boyhood. He laid all content with his John Deere tractor DVD. But the ultrasound never found his testicle. Which I found strange. It's there...the doc pulled it down and showed us on Monday. So what does that mean?

Sorry that I have to put all this out there about my boys' bits and pieces, it's just taken up a lot of my thoughts lately. I'm worried for him. I'd hate for this to affect him in the long run, but the thought of surgery scares me too. Has anyone out there had to deal with this? Anyone?

Pretty pusher hospital gown

Look at how pretty this is!!!I think I'll just have to go buy one! Plus it looks so much more comfy than those ugly, scratchy light blue gowns you get in the hospital. And it's cheap! Yay! So excited.