Thursday, December 27, 2007

Bringing You Up-To-Date

A few days ago ethan & I stopped at the drugstore. There are 2 registers facing each other. I stood in line waiting for the first available cashier. The woman behind me asked if I was in line for the register that was closer (by 2 feet) or first available. I said "First available". I could hear her huffing & puffing behind me about the wait. There really wasn't much of a wait, she was 3rd in line & the cashiers were moving quickly. I moved up when a register opened & that woman moved up behind another woman still at the register. The first woman starts complaining about the wait. Then I heard her say, " I'm a lung cancer survivor, I have a right to speak up." Huh?? You have a second chance at life and you gripe about a 3 minute wait to check out? I wanted to turn around and say, "I'm surviving the loss of my stillborn daughter, I'm not complaining about a short wait." Later I told my friend about the comment. We were both annoyed by her attitude, aren't we all facing some trials & tribulations? Death of a loved one, divorce, abusive relationships, stressful jobs.

We had a lovely Christmas. DH, Ethan & I exchanged gifts Sunday night. DH surprised me with a KitchenAid stand mixer - fun!! I also got a LL fleece jacket & toiletry bag. DH received a new putter & polo style shirt with his college logo on it.

Monday we drove to visit my family and to DH's mother's family on Christmas Day. Ethan got several toys, books, clothes & diapers. He received some money that will go straight into his college fund. We returned home on Wednesday. We were glad to be able to sleep in our own bed.

Monday afternoon, my mother wanted to take a nap. She was holding Ethan while I straightened up after changing his diaper. The next thing I knew she was in their waterbed with Ethan! I was so angry. It is not recommended to put babies in a waterbed - period. I told her that. She said that she was with him. I said, "But you want a nap and then no one is watching him. I've already lost one baby. I don't want Ethan in a situation that makes me uncomfortable." I took him out of the room, she probably pouted, but I'm sure she understood.

DH's family makes a family scrapbook. His mother included Sara in her pages with a butterfly & a caption saying,"Sara is always in our hearts." We included a butterfly as well. I plan to always incorporate a butterfly into our pages to remember Sara.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Poems for Sara

DH's grandfather wrote the following poems for Sara...

Sweet were our dreams for you
And sweet are our dreams of you.
You will forever be in our heart.
Our anticipation from the start
Underestimated the effect of you.

As we etch your memory in our mind
We are so pleased at what we find:
A child we love, and always will,
A love that stays on with us still
Which helps think of others - kind.

Remembering our plans for you,
We know God will make them true.
The joy we shared while you were here
Will help us keep you ever dear
And in our plans that's true.

As time passes slowly by us
We take time to make a fuss,
To plant a tree or pick a cause,
To have a prayer or just a pause
To think about your time with us.

(Written Sept. 30, 2007, 2 days before Sara's birthday)

From Mourning to Morning
A year of mourning now has passed
We find the morning here at last
Enter new life and save the past
In our hearts and memories cast
Deeply within us as a mast
With sails that push to outlast
Our feelings of sorrow or downcast
To bring back the joy you brought
At last.
(written Oct. 4, 2007, 2 days after Sara's birthday, 7 days before her brother Ethan was born.)

Monday, December 17, 2007

Commentary on War

From my favorite non-loss/SPAL/baby blog --- postsecret dot com:

Friday, December 14, 2007

And in this corner...

weighing in at 15 lb, 4 oz - Ethan the Great!!

Yep, we just had his 2 month wellness check this morning, my little guy is already over 15 pounds. He's in the 95 percentile for weight, 90 percentile for length at 23 7/8 inches. He also got 4 shots - ouch! He was not happy. So when the nurse left, we breast-fed & he fell asleep.

That's a picture of Ethan and his buddy Andy, Monica's baby. Andy is 10 days older than Ethan. Aren't they precious? About 30 minutes after this picture was taken, Ethan's diaper leaked on my lap! He was wearing a thick fleece outfit, so I didn't notice right away. I had to change his diaper & clothes on the floor of the star.buck's restroom. Yes, they do not have a changing table in there. I'm glad the diaper bag came with a changing mat!

This weekend is DH's holiday party. DH's mother is coming to visit & babysit. We'll see how it goes. This is the longest I'll be away from Ethan. I'll be nursing or pumping until the minute we leave & again as soon as we get home.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Sleep & Stuff

DH & I have a routine for Wednesdays & weekends, he works from home Wednesdays - I get up with Ethan overnight to breastfeed, but DH takes over at 5:30am, so I can sleep in. Saturday morning, I was able to go back to sleep until almost 10am!!
Ethan seems to only take little cat naps now - up to 45 minutes. I try to ignore him & let him fall back to sleep, doesn't always work. So by the evening he is cranky. Yesterday he continued cat napping through 8pm. He started screaming, so tired. We gave him a bath & settled down to rock/nurse. He fell deep asleep around 10:30 after more cat naps. He woke up at 4:30am!! 6 hours of sleep!! It was divine. I want to start getting him on a real schedule. I started reading, but who has time to read a whole book? I need a brochure. Can anyone summarize for me?

Update: Thursday night he slept great too - asleep by 10:30, up at 4 to nurse, back to sleep by 4:30, up at 8:15. :) Now he's probably sleeping too much at night. : ( After he nursed in the 4:00 hour, I had to pump. Walking around getting my stuff together, I noticed that the cat throw up his food. He occasionally binges & purges. Luckily I didn't step in it AND it was on the tile.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Sara's tree

Last year i couldn't bring myself to decorate the Christmas tree. But then a friend from our grief group gave us an ornament that touched me. It's a ceramic disk with a picture of an angel singing painted on it. On the back is Sara's name & her birth information. It was such a sweet gesture. So I decided that this year I wanted to decorate a tree just for Sara. I sent a note to our parents, siblings, & a few other close family members, inviting them to share an ornament that represented Sara's spirit. ( That was hard to word, I wanted to be sure that no one gave us a "Baby's 2nd Christmas" ornament, but I couldn't come out & say that unless asked.) We received several ornaments over Thanksgiving - angels, hearts, butterflies, a snowflake (because snowflakes last only a moment but touch your soul forever.) doves, a cross, perfect ornaments to honor Sara.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Thanksgiving Recap

Tuesday, I was emotional (see previous post), but I was going to run some errands & take care of things before heading out of town Wednesday. I was going to a fast food restaurant drive-thru for a quick lunch. As I drove through the parking lot, a woman backed into me. I saw it coming, blew my horn at her, but yet she hit my vehicle. My 1st thought of course was Ethan, was he OK? He was, he slept through it. She hit both the front & rear passenger doors, Ethan was on the drivers side (and will be moved to the center from now on.) I totally freaked out. I was angry at this woman for scaring the hell out of me, for adding more stress to the holidays, but I was able to remain calm enough to not touch her. Wednesday we dropped off my vehicle to be repaired & then went to get a rental - there were 3 to choose from, thankfully 1 was the size we needed to travel with lots of baby gear in the cold & rain - no open truck beds for storage!

Ethan did well for his first road trip, slept most of the time. I only had to breast-feed him in parking lots twice. He got to meet Santa on Friday morning. No I wasn't crazy,taking him to the mall on Black Friday. DH's grandfather has connections & Santa stopped by to see all of the great-grandchildren at their house.

We ate too much.

As much as I love all of our nieces & nephews, being stuck in the house with them (due to the cold & rain)was stressful. Sweethearts one minute, little heathens the next. DH had the pleasure of giving our 4 y.o. nephew a bath. During the bath, he asked DH what kinds toys he had when he was little. DH mentioned & The next day, another relative asked our nephew what he wanted for Christmas - Sta.r & DH is adored by this nephew. I think the feeling is mutual when he's not being a heathen.

We received several ornaments for Sara's tree. I hope to finish decorating her tree today, will post pix later.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Missing Sara

Yesterday, I went to the store to buy a 3 foot Christmas tree just for Sara. It will be in our living room & all of the ornaments will be for Sara. I enjoyed my time in the store - all the pretty ornaments, the cute snowmen & Santas, the sparkly gift wrap. I looked at a few ornaments, but didn't buy anymore, not until I hang the ones we have. If it needs more, I'll buy more. Plus I forgot lights.
When I got home & removed the tree from its box, I was suddenly sad. I didn't want a damn tree, I want Sara. I felt good, doing something to remember Sara and at the same time so sad.

Early this morning, I had a dream about Sara, I don't often dream about her, at least not that I recall. So I cherish the ones I do remember. In this dream Sara was still the size she was at birth and Ethan was his current size, so he was huge compared to little Sara. But for a moment I could 'see' both of my babies. I felt so happy and at peace seeing Sara & Ethan together. But then I also felt sad, my dreams can't come true, Sara's never coming back.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

You are what you eat

A few nights ago, DH & I had pumpkin - veggie soup for dinner followed by pumpkin smoothies (YUM!). In the last 2 years we've tried changing the way we eat - just more aware of fat, calories, less fast food, more exercise.

Growing up, neither of our families would have had pumpkin soup for dinner, much less pumpkin smoothies. But we try to expand our food options and to expose Ethan to lots of fresh fruits & veggies. We plan to make our own baby foods. I can't wait to see Ethan's reaction to avocado & sweet potato (separately of course).

DH & I have returned to Wat.chers. We have about the same amount of weight to lose. It'll be interesting to see how we do - with me breast-feeding & him having the option of more exercise, (nothing strenuous for me.) Is it wrong that we weighed Ethan at We.ight Wat.chers?? I'm sure it wasn't 100% accurate, DH had to support him. Next time I'll weigh Ethan on the produce scale at the grocery store.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

How Could She?

Friday evening, my friend M. came over to meet Ethan. I've been friends with M. since Jr. High, over 20 years. (Ugh, I feel really old, seeing that.) In the past few years, M. has become very busy with her family & job, so we don't get together often, although we live 20 minutes away from each other.

She asked about Ethan's birth, b/c I had only given her the highlights when we talked on the phone. M. has 1 son & had him by C-section, so we compared C-section stories. At one point though she said something about "first-time deliveries". It made me catch my breath, Ethan is not my first delivery, how could she forget? (DH heard her say it too, she implied that this was our first time, like her first & only time in a delivery room.) She caught herself quickly & moved on to a different topic. I didn't call her out, but I made it a point to mention Sara then, comparing the 2 labors & deliveries.

It hurt. I know she didn't mean to hurt me, it was just a slip of the tongue. She was caught up in her son's birth story & it just came out. But it did hurt. It hurt that for even a split second, one of my oldest friends forgot that I had been pregnant before, that I had delivered a beautiful daughter who had died.

Thursday, November 1, 2007


Last year, Halloween was awful. I had been looking forward to taking Sara to a pumpkin patch for pictures, the start of the holidays, etc...Instead I cried most of the day. DH & I went out for dinner & hid in the house, avoiding the fairies & superheroes that ran around our neighborhood.

This year, we took Ethan to a pumpkin patch a few weeks ago. I dressed him in his Halloween onesie. He slept through the trick-or-treaters. There were some cute little at our door. I couldn't help but wonder what I would have dressed Sara up as when I saw the little princesses & ladybugs. Ethan was sleeping in the living room - he couldn't be seen from the door. But one little girl must have seen all the baby stuff behind me. She said, " Oh, you have a baby. Can I see him?" I explained that he was sleeping, gave her some candy & she was happy.
Another tiny little girl, maybe 18 months, said to me, "You pretty." Yeah, I felt gorgeous in my gray t-shirt & khaki shorts with little breastmilk stains on them. She deserved more candy!!
We were out of candy soon after 8pm. It probably would have lasted longer if I hadn't been sampling all the Peeps. But we were tired & wanted to get some sleep.

I meant to post this with my story about Lisa, our nurse from last year. We had shared Sara's story with our day nurse this year. When it came time for me to get the epidural, she said, "Remember how this is done?" I told her flat out, "No." I remember being taken to a delivery room & being hooked up to monitors & IVs , but as far as the method, no I don't remember. My world was crashing down, I don't remember the position I sat in to get an epidural. She asked that several times as we waited for labor to progress & each time I said No. She won't be getting a thank you note from us for her care.

Saturday, October 27, 2007


My mother stayed the week with us. I know she really wanted to help out with Ethan. We had already spent the 1st week without any help & survived. It was nice to have her take over the early morning shift, so I could sleep, but other than that & some cleaning she did, there wasn't anything that we couldn't have handled alone.
My mother did comment on Ethan's feeding schedule - "Didn't he just eat?" "Well, 20 minutes ago & that was just for a few minutes before he dozed off." Seriously after losing Sara, feeding schedules are not important. Ethan is loved, clothed, clean, fed, safe & warm and ALIVE! I'm glad my mother went home. I felt like DH & I didn't joke around as much, not our silly selves. Plus I didn't want to rely on her too much b/c she lives 2 hours away - if I do need help right away, I'll call friends locally.
My father, sister, & 2 nephews came o pick up my mother/visit yesterday. CHAOS! My sister brought more hand-me-downs for Ethan, which we gladly accept, but the house is messier than I like during the transition. My nephews are cuties & generally well-behaved, our little house just felt even smaller & noisier.
So we're back to the 3 of us. And we couldn't be happier.

Monday, October 22, 2007


Last year we had a wonderful nurse Lisa who helped deliver Sara. She stayed with us most ofthe night. She treated us & Sara with so much respect. She took pictures of Sara - which we are grateful to have now. She helped us love Sara & create memories on the very worst day. She was spiritual without being overly preachy.

The Saturday after delivering Ethan, DH found Lisa (we had been checking around for her) & asked her to come by our room. She remembered us. We talked for a while. She seemed genuinely happy to see us again, this time with a healthy live baby in our arms.
We had several nurses during our stay with Ethan. They were all capable nurses, but I don't feel that any of them could have given us the experience we had with Lisa guiding us.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

What did I do before?

Ethan sleeps alot during the day. Between breastfeeding, pumping & diaper changes, I feel like I just have time to wash the dishes, maybe a load of laundry (because Ethan peed on his bedding), take a shower, help with meals( thaw previously frozen meals or simple meals), blogging once a week, write a couple of thank-you notes, then it's bedtime. How did I get everything done when I worked full-time or even part-time & very pregnant?

My mother is staying the week with us. Hopefully DH & I will get to have a date night.

DH & I took Ethan to a pumpkin patch last week.

I love Ethan so much. I think about Sara often, it's just bittersweet. I've cried for Sara while holding Ethan. While breastfeeding he often reaches up & grabs my necklace which has Sara's heart charm on it. His little fist is tightly wrapped around that heart.

OK Ethan's sleeping after a long nursing session, I'm gonna try to grab a nap.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007


We got home Monday afternoon. Since then I try to sleep when I can. Ethan tends to sleep all day & then is awake during the night & wants to nurse more. Luckily I can sneak in naps myself. Today he was up for a while during the late afternoon, so I hope he'll sleep more tonight.

I've done so much laundry. We received a lot of clothes as gifts so I've been washing the 0-3 month sizes as well as sorting & storing the bigger sizes.

I think Ethan looks like Sara in a sibling-kinda way, not a spitting image, but they favor each other. Usually when Ethan is peacefully sleeping, I can see Sara. It doesn't upset me. I just think "Sara is gone", just acknowledging everything that the loss of my daughter encompasses. If Sara were here, I wouldn't have Ethan. I'll always love & honor Sara, but having Ethan to hold, to nurse, to change his diapers, I know more of what I missed with Sara. Sara has taught me so much about myself.
We planned to deliver vaginally, but after pushing for 2 hours, Ethan wasn't progressing; I went in for a C-section. I started getting anxious after 9:30 pm. Sara was delivered at 10:22pm, Ethan was born at 10:17pm. After he was delivered, we were told that the umbilical cord was around his neck 4 times. I don't even want to think about what would have happened if we had continued to push. (Although I was so exhausted, I think DH would have insisted on a C-section.) I know Sara was watching over us Thursday night.

DH's grandfather wrote a beautiful poem for Sara, saing how we've come full circle in a year's time & have felt pain & joy and that we'll keep her memory with us. I cry everytime I read it.
This is Ethan in his Thinking Cap.

Monday, October 15, 2007


Just a quick post & then I should rest.

Ethan James was born Oct 11 at 10:17pm. He weighed 8lb, 14 oz & was 21 inches long. He's beautiful. We ended up having a C-section, after pushing for 2 hours & not making progress. Hearing him cry was the most beautiful sound.
Sunday morning his numbers for jaundice screening were high, so he was put on the bili-blanket. He was our little glow worm. The numbers went down a bit & we were finally released Monday afternoon. It's good to be at home with our son.
I'm doing ok, healing as well as can be expected after a c-section.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Final Countdown

I'm one of those people who cleans the house before a vacation. I figure I'll have plenty of laundry to do when we get back home, junk mail to sort through, etc...So today I did a final touch-up around the house - nothing extreme - just swept, wiped down the kitchen & bath, we'll run the dishwasher tomorrow morning after breakfast & take out the trash before we leave.
But this time we're not going on a vacation. We're having a baby!! This will be the last night at home - just the 2 of us. The next time we step into our house, we'll have Peanut with us. (Well, I've been carrying him around for the last 38 weeks, but you know what I mean.) For the past few days, DH & I have been saying "This is the last time we (fill-in-the-blank) until Peanut's born.
It feels strange to know that tomorrow we'll be waiting for Peanut to be born. No more wondering "Is today's the day, will I go into early labor?"
I think we're all ready - our bag is packed, cameras charged, email list is set up, car seat installed. Now if only I can get some sleep.

We found out tonight that DH's mother is sick and won't be able to make it to the hospital tomorrow. We're all upset, it means so much to us to have our parents there as soon as possible. I ordered some flowers to be delivered to her house tomorrow. The card is addressed to 'Granny' & signed with Peanut's real name. It felt funny to type out his name that other people will see. DH's mother may find out Peanut's name before he's actually born depending on when the flowers are delivered vs. Peanut's delivery.

Oh yeah- anyone want a cat? DH discovered that our cat pooped in the nursery tonight. His litter box is clean, so I think he acting out. If the cat continues to poop in the nursery or other inappropriate behavior, he WILL be shipped off to live with my parents.

If there are no other posts from me within the next 8 hours, you'll know I was able to get some sleep or at least find some decent re-runs on TV. Otherwise, I'll be back, I don't know what I'll blog about.

Hoping for a wonderful Labor Day,

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Lovely Day

Well it actually started last night, DH & I went to one of our support groups. These women are so amazing. Through a random connection, one of the women emailed me days after losing Sara & invited us to the group. Well it just so happened that instead of the regular group therapy, they were having a pot luck dinner a week after our loss. But we attended. 2 of the women were pregnant after their own losses, some had had a baby already, others were trying to figure out the next step on their path. That meeting/dinner was a year ago.

Last night's group was great - we talked about Sara & Peanut and everyone got to share their story, where they are now. We just feel so hopeful & peaceful after spending the evening with them. They are a wealth of information, recommending drs., other therapists, etc... & just so positive and hopeful after going through a loss.

Recently one of the women gave birth & a baby shower was thrown for her & Baby J. today. Again it felt so amazing to be surrounded by these women who have found their new "normal" after a loss. This time I was one of the pregnant women. There was a toddler, a 1 month old & the guest of honor who is 2 months old. Other children were at school or day care. If the group had been in a public place, I'm sure no one would have even considered the heartbreak that we have been through, that brought us together.

They are so excited for us, they discussed when they would come visit us at the hospital. I want our hospital room to be overflowing with friends & family. It was so quiet after losing Sara, we only allowed our parents to visit. I don't think I could have handled more at that time. We had a lovely memorial service for Sara & so many friends & family attended that.

I can't believe we'll be inducing labor in a matter of hours. I plan to stay busy tomorrow so I'll be able to get some sleep Wednesday night. This is one appointment we will not be late for!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Can't sleep

I can't sleep. I'm uncomfortable & was hungry. Usually I would watch TV in the living room until I got sleepy but I must have hit the wrong combination of buttons, the TV was 'on', but not the cable. Anyway, I have lots on my mind.

Earlier (late Sunday) I found out that a couple from our support group lost their 2nd baby at 15-16 weeks. DH & I saw them at a of event in early September & they told us that they were 3 months pregnant. We were so happy for them. They lost their first son in September 2006 & I've been so caught up in my own life, I forgot to contact them on their son's day. I had been thinking that I needed to email them, to see how the pregnancy was going. I'm just so heart-broken for them. I know what it's like to lose 1 baby, but 2 - there are probably other emotions that I haven't had to face. I'm thinking of you L. & R & your Babies.

I wish that there was something I could do for the couples who have had multiple losses. I don't know what. It's not a problem that you just throw money at, money doesn't guarantee a baby. I guess I can only remember these babies and be there for the parents.

Also when I can't sleep, I imagine scenarios that could be perfectly harmless turn out to be petty & ugly. Like tonight, I made up this scene that when my sister,niece & aunt come to visit, my niece is a complete brat - griping about how there's nothing to do at our house, wanting to eat ALL of our food, like we're a freaking buffet. I don't know the best description for my aunt. I love her & she wants to be helpful, but I could imagine if she offered to make a sandwich & I said, "Yes please", she would then ask questions like "How much mustard do you want? How many slices of lunchmeat? Should I use a paper plate?" The situations always turn out better than I imagine.

OK I'm getting sleepy. Hopefully I can find a comfy position.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

The Last Weekend

The last weekend before Peanut's born.

I kept busy today. I washed more of Peanut's clothes. Tomorrow I'll dust & vacuum the nursery so it's fresh when we have visitors.

I bought some new pillows for our bed. I figure that if we'll be getting less sleep, we should have nice pillows to get quality sleep.

I went to the card shop to buy a Christmas ornament for Sara's tree. This was my 3rd attempt. The 1st time I went was the 1st wave of releases of new ornaments. The particular ornament I was looking for was to be released in October. I had asked when in October & was told the 1st. So on the 2nd of October, DH & I stopped by the card shop, no it was being released the 1st weekend in October. So I went again today. At first I couldn't find it. I could understand selling out of Bar.bie ornaments or some other pop culture icon, but a memorial ornament?? An employee brought more out from back stock. I hated that the ornament I wanted was surrounded by "Baby's 1st Christmas" ornaments. Just another reminder of the unfairness of my life.

I got a pedicure - Electric Blue!!

I went by the grocery store to pick up things - fresh fruit & convienence foods to have on hand. I went to the restroom first. At the back of the stall was an empty box for feminine spray. How bad do you have to smell to buy feminine spray AND use it in the store??

This evening I got a text message - " R U getting wasted 2nite?" I laughed & wanted to reply - but what to say? I'm 37 weeks pregnant, no I'm not drinking tonight, maybe next Saturday dawg. Instead I just deleted it, it was a wrong number anyways.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Counting down the days...

Yesterday we had our last scheduled ultrasound/OB appts. I'm dilated 3 cm! Peanut is looking good - practicing his breathing, still has hair and he's big! They guestimate that he weighs 8 lb. 13 oz. I'm so glad we're inducing early, I couldn't wait until we're at 40 weeks - both for my anxiety & his size!

We discussed the possibility of having a C-section - if I don't progress quickly enough, if Peanut's big shoulders get stuck,etc... DH & I are both OK with the idea of having a C-section - whatever we have to do to have a healthy, live baby. I'd prefer to deliver vaginally just for recovery issues, but oh well.

This morning we were watching the news - next Thursday is now in the forecast - it's predicted to be in the low 90's on the day our son is delivered. It's just wild to think how close we are to having our son. These next few days are going to drag. We have a few things to do to pass the time - work, football (Go Soo.ners!), cleaning/preparing the nursery. I have a baby shower to go to - the baby's already here, we meet the couple at our support group. I'll get a pedicure this weekend.

I think our cat is acting out, knowing that his life is about to change. He's our only pet & spoiled rotten. He likes to go outside & hang out on the porch. This morning when I let him back inside, there was a dead baby bird on the porch. Kitty hasn't brought home a dead animal in years. Bad Kitty! No Treats for you!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

We survived!

Yesterday was Sara's first birthday. I didn't know how we would react to all the emotions. Part of me was afraid that I'd wake up crying and not stop. But it ended up being a peaceful day.

DH & I went through Sara's things - that was probably the hardest part of the day - seeing her untouched pictures again (we had them touched up & display those.), the blanket she was wrapped up in, her hair.
We looked through the cards we received, the donations that were made in Sara's memory.

We had an appt with our therapist. On the way, we stopped for coffee. The barista commented on my necklace - Sara's charm in the shape of a heart. It was nice - someone noticed, even though she didn't realize what the heart represented.

At the therapist's, we talked about remembering & honoring Sara on her day & after Peanut's born. We talked about signs of post depres.sion & what we could do to prevent any extra stress.

We went to the jewelry store to buy an new charm for my bracelet.

Then we went to the hospital. I was dreading it & looking forward to it at the same time. I hadn't been back since losing Sara. We went to the nurses station & asked about the nurses we had last year - neither were on duty. Maybe we'll see them when Peanut's born. We explained the care package & the nurses started to tear up. Then we asked to visit our friends Monica & her DH - their precious son was born on Oct. 1. The nurses said that they knew Monica & told us which room she was in. I'm sure they put the information together & realized that we knew each other from our support group - not just co-workers or other normal friendships.

We held a newborn baby on Sara's birthday! We can't wait for Peanut to be born now. To see Monica & her DH so happy, we want that! Monica shoo'ed everyone out of he room - she knew it might be hard for us to be there on Sara's birthday - but surprisingly - it wasn't. We felt very peaceful.

I wish I could do a better job of explaining how we felt. We felt peaceful & close to Sara. We created traditions that we hope to continue. Sara will be remembered!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Greeting cards

Yesterday I wrote notes in 3 cards - 1 for Monica, her DH & Critter, 1 for my friend B. & her DH on the upcoming birth date of their daughter that they lost & 1 to put in a care package for a couple that will have a loss at our hospital eventually. (I don't know this couple & the loss hasn't occurred yet, DH & I decided to leave a care package for the inevitable.) I feel like this is our role in life now - celebrating a birth after a loss, remembering a loss at special times & lending support when another loss occurs.
I've also received a few greeting cards in the past few days. Sara & I share our birthday. It is HER day now, I can't "celebrate". Maybe once Peanut is born... 2 of our aunts sent birthday cards to me - both were sweet & to the point - "We're thinking of you at this time." I would be pissed if anyone sent a card with clowns & monkeys in costumes. The same aunts sent separate cards remembering Sara. I was so touched, just a simple gesture, but it means so much that people remember our Sara.

So now I'll be sending more greeting cards - thanking them for remembering Sara. (I think I'm keeping the Postal Service in business.)

10 more days until Peanut's born. (Today's half over & the 11th is his day)

Saturday, September 29, 2007


Why do birth control & feminine product ads still act like having your period is a curse? Like you're a leper? Like you have to hide at home or wear shapeless baggy clothes? I get that periods suck. I used to get horrible cramps - so bad, I would vomit. Obviously I stayed home those days. But for the most part, I didn't change my plans because of my period. There's an ad currently for some birth control that will shorten your period. One of the girls comments "So I could be at the beach now?" Is she afraid that her super absorbent tampon is going to suck up the ocean? Yes, you can go to the beach while on your period. You can wear a swimsuit! (I wouldn't advise with a maxi-pad, but that's up to you.) As long as there are bathroom facilties near by, what's the big deal?

Friday, September 28, 2007

Acts of Bravery

Yesterday, not only did I remove the tags from Peanut's homecoming outfit, but I washed it too! How's that for bravery?? I also packed my bag.

Next week is going to be hard - DH & I will spend October 2 remembering & honoring our daughter Sara Elizabeth. I'm trying to approach each situation with a positive attitude - we CAN do this. We've already been through the worst - we lost Sara. We plan to go back to our hospital to drop off a care package for the nurses to pass along when there is another loss - just a journal, grief book & a disposable camera & a note from us. Our friends Monica & her DH will be at the same hospital, they're being induced on 10/1. I want to visit them & meet Critter. I hope I can. I hope Critter's birth can bring some happiness at such a sad time.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


I usually don't like to use the term Miscellaneous - too broad - but this is just random things that happened lately that I wanted to share.

Sunday while in my hometown, DH & I had lunch with our friend B. & her husband. Although they saw many people they knew, I didn't recognize anyone. Last year at this time, I wouldn't have thought to suggest getting together for lunch w/B., we knew each other, but weren't exactly friends. Now we're bound together by our shared losses. B. gave me a Will.ow Tre.e figurine - "Cherish", it's perfect, a pregnant woman rubbing her belly. I cherish both of my pregnancies. I put it on a shelf near our bed.

This morning I was putting away a new bag of cat food. It's a 7 lb. bag - roughly what Peanut weighs. I suggested to DH that he tied the bag to his stomach for the day to get a better understanding of what I was feeling. Of course the cat food wouldn't kick him in the ribs or dance on his bladder.

I'm reading an interesting book, well interesting to me - "The Profess.or & The " Back in the1850, the Eng.lish Diction.ary was started. Many people contributed quotes to further explain definitions. One man Dr. Minor made contributions for 20 years. The editor, Prof. Murray, continued to ask him to meet in person. Turns out, Dr. Minor was a criminal lunatic at an asylum! It also made me think about the idea of putting together a dictionary. Now with computers & the internet, we can easily gather & store information, edit changes. But when dictionaries were first considered, spellings differed from region to region, definitions even varied. OK I'll just start rambling soon, so I'll quit.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Sara's Tree

Over the weekend DH & I went to my parents' house to visit Sara's Tree. Friday night I made cupcakes - strawberry (pink of course) w/ vanilla icing. I started crying while making them, this wasn't how I imagined preparing for my daughter's birthday.
Saturday we stopped by the store for flowers & balloons. DH dropped me off while he filled up the gas tank. I went to the floral area & asked for 8 pink balloons (8 people would be at her tree.) The lady asked if they were for a shower. Silly me, I was wearing pink, obviously pregnant & asking for pink balloons. I just said No. She said that they have pink balloons with "it's a girl" printed on them. I just shook my head. She dropped it then. I picked out 3 bunches of pink roses in various shades. DH walked in just as I was paying for everything, perfect timing.

When we got to my parents' house, DH went to prune Sara's tree. He found a tiny tree frog hiding in the leaves. He tied a pink bow around the trunk & placed the roses in bucket at the base. At sunset, we went back out to her tree - DH & me, my parents, my younger sister, her husband & their 2 sons. When my 4 y.o. nephew saw the balloons, he asked what they were for. I told him that we were remembering our Angel. I tried to be careful to not upset him. My sister said that occasionally he will talk about "the baby that died." But being so close to Peanut's due date, I didn't want to scare him.

We wrote messages on the balloons & talked about her/to her - saying how we loved her, thought about her, missed her. I was touched that my brother-in-law was the first to speak up. We released the balloons & they all floated up together. We watched until they were just little specks in the sky. After dinner, we ate the cupcakes.

Currently Sara's Tree is fenced in to protect it from the cows (yes, I'm a country girl), but my father said that he plans to change the fenceline so the tree will be accessible. We also plan to buy a small marker with Sara's name & birthdate on it & a bench to place under the tree. I think my parents are pleased to have Sara's Tree there, she doesn't have a gravesite, but this gives our family a place to go to remember & honor her. We hope that this will become a family tradition, a time for our family to remember our baby girl.

As hard as it was, I felt very peaceful. I love you Miss Sara!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Update to Petty Vents

My older sister T. just called, she mentioned coming to visit after Peanut's born - that's fine. She said that she knew we'd have plenty of help the first few days - with the grandparents & other friends in town. She specifically mentioned my friend Michelle. A few months after losing Sara, I found out that T. was emailing Michelle to check in on me. That hurt. My own sister can't call or email me to ask how I am. We're not very close, but we have a good relationship. But the other side of that is that Michelle isn't the most reliable resource. We've been friends for a long time - since jr. high. But she has her own life - her family, job, etc...She spent a few hours with DH & me at our house a few days after we lost Sara. But we've also tried to get together numerous times & she usually has to bail at the last minute. I understand she's busy - I don't fault her for that - but if my sister wants to know how I'm doing, it might help if the person she's asking has talked to me or seen me. I can recall 3 times that Michelle & I have gotten together in the past 11 months - other than the night she came over. None of them were just us, one on one time, usually there was another activity going on.

Also I didn't tell T. that DH & I plan to visit my parents this weekend to honor Sara. (My younger sister J.knows & will be there, she lives down the street from my parents.) T. asked if we were still planning to visit our parents at the end of September, I said no, that we weren't comfortable traveling so close to the due date. I don't think she would understand if I told her that I didn't want her daughter around me this weekend, although J's sons will be.

To the Monicas - thank you for your comments. I have to do what feels right for me & DH at this time - even if other people get their feelings hurt. That hurt doesn't compare with the hurt of losing Sara.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Petty vents with some good news

Earlier today I sent an email to 2 colleagues, referring a client to them, I'm not taking on any new clients at this time. 1 colleague I've met for lunch a few times over the past few months, the other I haven't talked to since March/early April. She was pregnant, had a baby in June, but I had heard that she returned to work. She replied back thanking me for the referral, hoped everything was going well in my pregnancy & that her baby was now 3 months old. Well whoop-de-do. I don't wish harm to her or her baby, but really I don't want to hear about her perfect life.

We had an OB appt today - everything's looking good. I'm 1.5 cm dilated at 34 weeks, 5 days!!

DH & I had planted a tree in Sara's memory last year at my parents' house. We had hoped that we could visit her tree near her birthday, looks like it'll have to be this weekend. I feel so petty & selfish saying this - I don't want my niece to be there. My niece lives about 2 hours from my parents, but spends weekends w/them when possible. My sister brought my niece to our house a few days after we lost Sara. My niece was 8 at the time. The only thing I remember her saying during that visit was "Can we play Scattergories?" She knew that Sara died, but she didn't understand the impact. I was annoyed that my sister brought her along, it was a school day - couldn't her jerk of a father drop her off/pick her up one day during a family emergency?? I don't want this time to become about my niece - wanting attention, being a brat about meals, this is Sara's time. I had to tell my mother that I didn't want my niece there, thankfully she understood & luckily my niece had visited last weekend.

Monday, September 17, 2007

24 more days!

24 more days until we induce! 2 dozen days! I could buy a 24 pack of root beer & have one a day, counting down the days until we go to the hospital.
4 more grocery-shopping trips. 3 more gas tank fill-ups.
3 more ultrasounds/OB appts.

During that time, we'll also honor Sara - 15 more days until her birthday. I'll always love you & miss you Sweet Girl.

What a bittersweet time...

Made With Aloha!

According to the King's Hawaiian bread website (and I always confirm my factual data on food websites), "Aloha stands for much more than just "hello" or "goodbye" or "love." Its literal meaning is the joyful (oha) sharing(alo) of life energy (ha) in the present (alo). The Aloha Spirit, then, is an all-encompassing attitude toward life: positive, loving, spiritual, respectful."

Our son was conceived in Hawaii. I don't say that to brag. To me it feels like it was destiny. DH & I hadn't talked about going to Hawaii, actually we considered a small trip to Georgia in the spring. Long story short, we were offered the use of a beautiful house on the beach on the Big Island in January. Of course, we couldn't turn it down. The friend who offered the house - I met after losing Sara - such generosity! Hawaii is such a beautiful, healing place. I felt like my soul was recharged there. I have a picture of me & DH while in Hawaii - we have smiles on our faces, real smiles.

I feel like Sara played a role in our wonderful vacation, that she was giving us her blessing for a sibling. I can't wait to go back to Hawaii, it will always be a special place for us.


Saturday, September 15, 2007

Bound By Angels

I was looking through my email address book - I have emails of 17 women who have lost babies - 17!! And I have met all of these women in real life. The majority are from our 2 support groups, 2 I had met previously - 1 is the sister of a former co-worker, another I had met through networking.

Then there's B. (If you're reading, Hi B!) I've known B since she was a baby. I'm 10 years older than her, but now it's like we're the same age. We grew up in a small town, attending the same church - she still attends, I try to go when visiting my parents. (Just going to church has been hard this last year - surrounded by babies, especially at Christmas & Easter.) Our families have attended this church for decades. B lost her daughter 4 days after we lost Sara. B's husband & my mother worked together until a few weeks ago - he changed jobs.
I saw B about 6 weeks before we lost our daughters - at my nephew's baptism - she & her husband are friends of my younger sister & her husband. We were both happily pregnant & chatted for a few minutes about our babies. Now we call & email ech other often. B is pregnant again - 17 weeks along.

Before losing Sara, I don't recall knowing anyone who lost a baby during their pregnancy other than my aunt who lost a son 35+ years ago. Now I know 17 - plus others that I met at group, but didn't exchange emails with. I'm glad I have met all of these women, they have helped me & DH during this difficult journey, hopefully we provided some support to them as well. This is a horrible club to belong to, but the members are some of the most amazing people I know!

Damn you Paul.a De.en!

DH & I often watch Paul.a De.en on Saturday mornings. I always get cravings after watching her. Today she made chocolate eclairs - stuffed with chocolate filling too, not vanilla. I considered adding the ingredients to my grocery list or just picking up some eclairs at the bakery. I do not need eclairs! As evil as her recipes are (anyone catch the deep fried ma.c & che.ese a few weeks ago??), I think there is a special place in heaven for Paul.a De.en!

DH rented a power washer this morning - making the house pretty for visitors in a few weeks - just the exterior, driveway, sidewalk. My house will never be so filthy that a power washer is needed to clean the floors, countertops, etc...I'm heading over to my cousin's later to check on their dogs while they're gone & swim for a bit.

Thursday, September 13, 2007


I'm 34 weeks today - one more month! I can't believe how quickly this pregnancy has gone by. In some ways, this pregnancy has been very similar to Sara's - not much morning sickness - with Sara, I has started taking my prenatal vitamins in the morning, that made me sick, so I quickly changed to taking them before bed. With this pregnancy, Peanut doesn't like coffee, some mornings just the sight of coffee on a commercial made me gag. I was tired in the 1st & 3rd trimesters with both pregnancies - as to be expected.
But the differences! I've gained more weight with Peanut than with Sara. I hadn't lost all of the weight from my first pregnancy when I got pregnant again, so I'm at the heaviest I've ever been. I don't let that bother me - as long I can bring home a healthy baby, I don't care how big I get. But Peanut is big too! He approximately weighs 6 lb, 3 oz, Sara weighed 5 lb, 4.8 oz when she was delivered. Of course my mental state is different. I'm so excited to be pregnant again & so very close to having Peanut soon. But my innocence is gone. I know that all babies don't live and sometimes it's hard to imagine the future with a baby. But then I have moments of excitement, I'll buy clothes for Peanut, knowing that he'll get to wear them.
One of the biggest differences though is the placenta. With Sara, the placenta was in the front, it dulled her movements. I could feel her move & often DH could too. But comparing the two, OMG it's so different. I feel Peanut moving so much more, I can pick up on weaker movements from him, as he's warming up for his dance routines. He performs several times a day, in addition to general re-arranging. I put a small bowl on my belly while he's wiggling & it moves, my whole belly rolls. Sometimes it tickles. It gives me reassurance when I can feel him move so much. I wish Sara's placenta were in the back, then her kicks & wiggles could have been stronger too. Perhaps I would have noticed more of a change in her movements. I know the placenta didn't affect her, but I wonder if our story would be different if it were in the back.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Peanut Update

Yesterday we had an ultrasound scheduled for 3:30. By 4:20 we still hadn't been called back. I checked with the receptionist, she said that they were backed up b/c Dr. D. had a compliation with one of the ultrasound. Of course I couldn't ask what that meant, but I had to remember unfortunately this may be the worst day of another couple's life & to have patience. Within a few minutes, we were taken back. Peanut had been wiggling around all day, so I wasn't worried about him. We saw the heartbeat - that makes me so happy each time. Because he was moving so much, the tech wasn't able to get any good pictures of him, she was able to take measurements - just no new cute faces to see.
They estimate that Peanut weighs 6 lb., 3 oz.!! I'm only 33 weeks 4 days. We're inducing at 38 weeks - how big will Peanut get??

Monday, September 10, 2007

Stupid Surveys

I hate those stupid surveys that friends send out - the mass emails or MySpace bulletins. There's always a couple of questions that I don't want to answer. The previous replies were funny or serious but something everyone could relate to. How do you answer that the thing you miss the most is your daughter right after answering that your favorite mixed drink is a dirty martini?? Should I play along and say that I miss McDonald's McRib Sandwich? ( I don't, but that's the crap people want to see to get a chuckle.)
The most recent survey I got included some of the following questions, I'll answer here for you:
Your Fears? That something will happen to Peanut.
One of your Wish List Items? To hear Peanut cry.
Your Life? Is blessed in many ways, but there will always be a place for Sara.
Your Mood? Excited & Anxious
Missing? My daughter Sara Elizabeth everyday
What are you thinking about right now? Sara & Peanut
Last time you cried? As I write this.

Maybe people will quit sending them to me if I either ignore them or answer them brutally honestly.

Sunday, September 9, 2007


Peanut is a Te.xas fan! I watched the game during the 3 overtimes yesterday - he was going crazy -rolling around, kicking me in the ribs. In 19 years I'll probably catch him on ES.PN with his face painted or maybe he'll be a yell leader. DH would prefer him to be on the field. I don't know his feelings towards the Soo.ners or Long.horns - I didn't expose him to such things.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Pot pies & cookies

Funny that, so far, my post that has received the most replies is about pot pies. I love to bake. I considered perfecting a cookie recipe & then eventually entering a baking contest. For a while once a week, I'd make a huge batch of cookies, keep some at home, send the rest to work with DH for his co-workers to taste-test. I got back a few responses critiquing my cookies - usually positive. It was a good way to past an afternoon - shopping for ingredients, baking, cleaning up, then sharing cookies & milk with DH. Maybe I'll whip up another batch before Peanut's born - Peanut Butter of course.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Who's in control here?

I've been preparing for Peanut's birth, I want things taken care of, the pantry stocked. I made a huge pot of potato soup last week, froze 3 bags of that. Will attempt a chicken pot pie soon. Will go to Co.stco in the next few days for paper goods, other bulk items we can use. Need to buy a new printer cartridge so I can print out Peanut's birth announcements. Need cat treats for Brody who has become whinier in the past few weeks - it's like he knows he will be demoted soon. I want bills to be paid. Yeah, I consider myself organized. I know when Peanut's born that trait will go out the window. I'm OK with that. I'll give up some control over our household. Anything for Peanut.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Eviction Notice

I got confirmation today from my dr.'s office - we'll be inducing on Oct. 11!! Peanut will be evicted!

For the past few months, I've been crocheting a baby blanket for Peanut. I will never claim to be a expert at crocheting. I basically make scarves. I figured that I could make several scarves & then stitch them together. It looks bad. The scarves weren't the same length, so I decided to rip out some of the knots to make them the same length. That was taking longer than I expected, so I simply cut off the excess & stitched all of the raw edges. 3 sides of the blanket look good, but the 4th is frayed & ugly. I pick at it, hoping to get rid of the loose pieces. I hope Peanut likes it though, it's so soft. I promise Peanut, I'm a better baker than crocheter.

Passage of Time

I lost Sara 11 months ago - 11 damn months! Where has time gone? 11 months ago I was afraid of what my world would become. Those first few days, weeks I cried so much, would I ever be able to function normally again? DH & I returned to work a few weeks after losing Sara - full-time for him, part-time for me. That helped - just getting out of the house.

11 Months - I couldn't even consider what my future held 11 months ago, now I'm just weeks away from delivering our son. Life goes on.It's funny how one event can feel like it was so long ago & just yesterday at the same time.
I'll always remember Sara - that's the important thing to me - to have our families & friends remember our first daughter - 11 months later, 3 years later, 15 years later.
I love you Sweet Sara!

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Not What I Expected

I chose this title for my blog because after re-reading through my journal - I realized Iused that phrase often - Christmas 2006 was not what I expected, New Year's was not what I expected, every day after my daughter was delivered was not what I expected.

I often lurk, sometimes post on a local message board. Some of the women know my story, I go there to vent, but most can't relate. They have a weekly pregnancy check-in along with a question of the week relating to the pregnancy. This week's question: What will be the biggest change for you once the baby arrives? I can't answer there. All the other women with their innocent answers - change in sleep patterns & schedules seem to be the biggest concern. My biggest change - actually having a baby at home after being pregnant for nearly 18 months.
I sleep too much as it is, I'll gladly survive on caffeine & sugar highs, if that what it takes.

New Here

I've been following friends' blogs lately & decided to go ahead & start one. I lost my daughter Sara October 2, 2006 & have been writing in my journal to her ever since. I figured I could use feedback from others who have been in my shoes.

We lost Sara suddenly to an umbilical cord accident. Labor start that day, I called DH to come home, called my dr's office - they asked me to come in first so they could see how far along I was. We were taken to an exam room, like any other dr. appt. Then our world came crashing down.

The nurse listened for Sara's heartbeat, she had trouble, so she asked another nurse to check, she couldn't find it either. I started screaming "No!" We were taken up for an ultrasound where it was confirmed - our beautiful daughter was gone.

Fast forward to January 2007 - we had decided to start trying again to get pregnant. My periods weren't quite normal but we had also heard stories from other couples in our support groups who had trouble getting pregnant after their loss & I was already 33, so we decided to go for it.
The next month, we got positive results on our pregnancy test. So I am expecting our son Peanut(his name's a secret until he's born.), due roughly 9 days after his big sister's birthday - which also happens to be mine.