Tag Archives: Emily

Moving Forward

A Little Memorial

We held the memorial service in our living room–a fitting place since most the events happened there–with us, the kids, and my mother-in-law.  It was an emotional and peaceful service.  Short and sweet.

All About Science

Every person handles loss differently.  For me, I use my knowledge of science and reproduction to obsessively deduce what has happened.

Because of the severity of the miscarriage–the intense contractions, bleeding, and clotting–it would seem that I was about 8 weeks along.  Unfortunately, the hCG levels  remained at a 4-week level. Slowly increasing.  Very slowly.  This left the embryo in a very inhospitable environment, especially since the amniotic sac was already having trouble connecting to the endometrium.

My body rejected the growing baby.

Moving Forward

During the memorial service,  a little voice whispered, It’s okay.  Your baby is safe with me.  Keep moving forward.

Moving forward doesn’t mean forget, it means continue to live.  I have much living to do with my sweet husband and beautiful children.  And with myself.

I have kept myself secluded inside my house.  Afraid to be outside,  unsure of how I would react to questions and condolences.

I feel myself ready to take baby-steps.  Taking short walks around the neighborhood.  Cooking meals.  Talking with neighbors, friends, and family.   Big gatherings, like church, are still too much.  Too painful.  But I’m emerging.

On Life

Many friends have brought over flowers.  They bring much comfort.  Their vivacious beauty reminds me how to live: It’s more than smelling the flowers, it’s nurturing them.

On returning home from our short getaway,  I ran up the stairs, into my babys’ rooms (they were sleeping) and scooped them into my arms.  I smelled their delicious scent and smothered their smooth faces with kisses.  Lots and lots of kisses.

Healing

I’m not as brittle as I was a few days ago.  I feel strong.  Powered by my husband’s love, my children’s affection,  and the Plan of Salvation, I know I can heal.  The pain will remain nestled within my heart,  nudging me every now and then (like all day today),  but I feel its rawness dissipating.

I am coming back,  armed with a new perspective and knowledge from my experience.

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Filed under keeping the faith

Seeing Beyond the Imperfections

I used to hide from the camera.  In my teen years, I didn’t want to remember what I looked like.  In fact, I still feel that way.  Like most teens, I was insecure–about my acne, my weight, my smile, and everything else.  My measuring stick were my sisters.  They were and are beautiful.  In my mind, I could not compete to my dark haired beauty counterparts.

The struggle continued into my marriage.  But, like the famous Mahana (Mormon joke), my husband’s continuous praise helped me see beyond the physical impurities and recognize my great potential.

Acceptance of my body has come in different stages.  The most important, for me, was accepting my face by no longer avoiding the camera.

Over the past few months,  I have obsessed about including myself in photos.  Not because I have some sense of impending doom,  but because I want my kids to have photographic proof that I was at certain events and that we did have fun together.

(The one catch,  Ben is not allowed to photograph me.  How do I put this…the photos he takes of me are not the most attractive.  Hey,  I have my dignity to maintain.)

Since I am alone with my kids much of the day,  I photograph us with the old-school style of holding the camera out and taking face shots.  That’s right, face shots.   My fear of looking at my blemished face has disappeared.  This is for my kids anyway.

My sweet angel, Andrew

My gorgeous daughter, Emily

These kids? They make my life full.  Fuller than I could ever have imagined.

Since the miscarriage, I am often reminded to hold my two babies close. This is hard because the physical pain I am experiencing;  still, I hug and rock them constantly.

How can I possibly describe the indescribable?  My little Emily and Andrew are my life.  I say that unashamedly.  Sure I have myself outside of them, but right now that “self” seems so unnecessary.  Perhaps it was the miscarriages that helped me see my reality: Despite the challenges of being a mother, it is one of the best jobs I have and will ever hold.

I will also say, I am the best mother for them.  Yes I am.  No living person loves these two more than me.  Another person would not sing them personalized songs when they wake up from naps and in the morning or throw spontaneous dance parties when they wake up at midnight or miss them while they are sleeping.  I am their interpreter, teacher, cook, mediator, and, best of all, their mother.

In a short time they will be grown up.  The will no longer need me as much as now.  This doesn’t make me sad, however, because I feel one of my greatest job responsibilities is raising them to be moral, industrious, conscientious adults. For now, though, they need me.  And I need them.

They see my face daily.  Not the face I crucially examine, but the perfect face of their beloved mother.

Just like I only see perfection in them.

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To My Eldest:

When you emerged into this world,  your curiosity was unquenchable.   That first night, you stayed up with your dad,  learning about your new world.  Your bright eyes–big even then–stared at everything with wonder and amazement.  With your first breath, you stole my heart.

That curiosity has remained part of your personality.  You learned to sit up, crawl, and walk around on furniture early because it enabled you to explore further and deeper.  Though your adventurous spirit often led to calls to the Poison Control or the doctor,  I was ecstatic to have such an interested student of life.

This day marks your second year in this world.  Thinking about that makes me gasp with how remarkably fast everything went.  I am not sad to see you grow up because I thoroughly enjoyed your infancy.   Your ready smile and brilliant, blue eyes kept me joyful and captivated.  You taught–continue to teach–me how to be a mother.   Even when your brother came so soon after your own year birthday, you remained the happy little girl you have always been.

As you are learning to communicate better,  I am discovering another component of your personality: compassion.  When I am frustrated or in pain, you immediately recognize that something is wrong and quickly quip, “Are you okay?” while pausing in whatever endeavor you were pursuing.  This question always gives me chills, even when I respond, honestly, “No, I’m not.”  This coupled with watching you interact with your younger brother has given me brief glimpses of the woman you will become one day.  I hope that you cherish that bond between your brother and yourself.

Dearest Emily, you have been patient with me during my evolution these past two years.  I am constantly grateful for your everlasting love.  You and your brother are my greatest treasures.

Love,

Your Mother

I emerged for a few days only to leave again.  Fear not,  I will be back very soon!  Have a wonderful (early) weekend!

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Filed under Letters

On a Whim

I do not like being away from Ben.  Even though he is gone quite a bit, I prefer his current schedule to one in which he would travel.  My preference does not exclude me from feeling overwhelmed.  Especially when Ben’s schedule becomes so packed that I am left to bear all familial responsibilities.  That is how last week was. When I recognized that my sanity was quickly slipping through my cupped hands, I made a difficult decision.

When Ben came home on Saturday night, I explained how I was feeling and offered a solution.  A visit to my family’s house.  Even though he would miss us greatly,  he realized it was the best possible answer.

On Sunday,  I finished laundry and packed the suitcases.  I was nervous. I would be driving for 6 hours alone and with the kids.  Two very young kids.

The next morning, Andrew and Emily woke up 15 minutes prior to when my alarm clock was set to ring–at 4 am.  I decided it was now or never, so I quickly fed Andrew and loaded the luggage into the car (which included 2 suitcases, 2 Pack n’ Plays, 2 booster seats, and 2 grocery bags filled with food).  After a long kiss good-bye and a prayer for safety, Ben helped me load the kids into the car and we were on our way.

Because I left so early, the kids slept most of the way.  The challenge was when I needed to use the restroom.  Thankfully, they are small enough that I could carry them into a bathroom stall with me.  Maybe not the most sanitary option, but that’s why I am liberal with hand sanitizer.

I still miss Ben, greatly.  Yet, it is nice to be somewhere with instant entertainment for Emily, yummy meals each night, and help with my little Andrew.

It kind of makes me hope we can stay out west for medical school.

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Filed under so help me

Together !!!

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Squaw Peak

Hiking this mountain with my husband, 2 babies, and a friend.

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Dusting off my running shoes and hitting the pavement while pushing these two cuties.

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Before

After

Getting my haircut for the first time since Andrew was born.  As you can see, I really needed it.

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Basking in my good friend’s awesomeness.

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Going on a date with my hot husband.

My week has been full of !!!.  What about yours?

Click on over to see more !!! moments.

Intentional Happiness

Momalom !!! Bad Mommy Moments !!!

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Filed under Awesomeness

A Big Slobbery Thank You

It just so happens that I forgot to mention one major culprit in my emotional drama of last week: Miss Flow.  While I am grateful for this physical reminder of my fertility, I can’t exactly gush about how she messes up my emotions.  Everything seems much more dramatic when she visits.

I recovered a bit of my spice over the weekend.  Your comments were a gigantic help in reminding me of the support group I have.   As much as days like those suck, it feels less overwhelming when I know that other people can relate.  Reading your comments while drinking Diet Dr. Pepper certainly alleviated much of the sadness I felt.

In case I forget how incredibly lucky I am, let me list a few things that made me smile this weekend.

Watching this little girl canter and twirl around our living room.

Feeling her sweet, slobbery kisses on my cheek.

Smiling as she sings little songs about me, Ben, and her little brother.

Tickling his numerous rolls.

Listening to his little baby noises.

Feeling like the greatest mom in the world as he smiles and laughs when I walk into the room.

Finally, all of you.  Your kind words of support.  Your wise suggestions.  Your digital hugs.  I really am a lucky gal.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

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A Special Birth Day

We are at the end of Five for Ten.  I have enjoyed this round as much as enjoyed the last round.  I have made many new friends, read many inspiring posts, and cried many times.   Thank you Jen and Sarah for hosting this and for all those who have participated.  It has been a blast! The last topic for this series is “Yes.”

I got up, intending to take the test discretely.  The crinkle of the wrapper as I opened it woke Ben.  He knocked on the door and asked me if I was taking it.

I can’t hide anything from him.

I took the test and he came in as we waited for the results.  In a few seconds, two lines appeared.

I looked at him, eyes glowing with happiness, and asked him if he was ready.

Nine 1/2 Months Later–Midnight

The contractions were getting stronger.  I squeezed Ben’s hand as another contraction started.  He started packing the bag.

Bag in hand, he looked at me and asked, “Are you ready?”

The Next Day, Around 2:00 pm

The midwife checked me again.  “She’s crowning.  You can start pushing.”

Ben and I looked at each other, eyes blurred with exhaustion, hearts aglow with happy anticipation, the unspoken question hanging in the air,  “Are you ready?”

10 Minutes Afterward

The nurse cleaned the baby while the midwife stitched me up.  Ben alternated between holding my tired hands and staring at our beautiful angel.

When the cleaning was done, the nurse came over.  Holding our squishy faced newborn in her arms, she looked at us and asked, “Are you ready?”

We looked at each other, looked at our baby, and excitedly, emotionally, responded, “Yes!”

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Kristen at Motherese is hosting an on-line book club at the end of this month.  The chosen book is our friend Aidan‘s rookie novel, Life After Yes.  Having had the opportunity to read it, I am proud to join Kristen in offering a free copy to a lucky ready.  Leave a comment on this post before 6:00 am on Friday, May 21 and a winner will be randomly selected and announced that afternoon.

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