Our Blessings

Saturday, August 7, 2010

due date

August 7, 2009 was my due date, 40 weeks. That is, until mid-July when my official delivery date was going to be July 31. Sounds like a whole month in advance, but it was only a week. I was to have my baby at 39 weeks, full term. She died at 38 and 6.

As if I havent written about it 50 million times already.

August 7, 2009 instead was the very last day I ever laid eyes on my precious firstborn, on Friday night visitation. Wearing her white going-home dress and sweet little baby tights and socks, which I never saw, and wrapped in a matching pink hat and blanket. John didn't let me unwrap her, though I wanted to. I didn't know that I could have held her if I had asked. I should have taken a picture. There was nothing left to do but cry. The only words I remember from that open casket moment were from my brother Brian, who just said "oh my God, Beth" in the most compassionate and sympathetic voice I have ever heard. She was too beautiful and perfect to be dead. But there was nothing left to say or do. We were helpless. I don't remember them closing the casket, so I must have blocked it from my memory. I remember Travis said a prayer, and we motioned the director to come close it, and I panicked thinking there had to be something more to do. One more kiss, one more hug, one more "I love you". I remember in my panic literally and awkwardly forcing John's hand underneath mine to touch her one more time. And then it's blank. The casket was closed and I stared at it all night. I looked straight through my mourners to that casket. My baby is in there! I made her from scratch! Someone get her out! This has to be a mistake! Take those pink and white roses and that pink puppy off of there and open it back up. I'm leaving with her; do not follow me. Only John. Do not try to contact me. I want my baby.

I cant see the casket being closed, and it's appropriate because one never, ever reaches closure after an event like that one.

I have been delayed in writing the 2nd half of her birth story and writing about her party because they have to be perfect, and I am too drained for perfect. And maybe because it's another piece of closure that I dont want to be true. If I'm finished with her birth story, there will be nothing left to write. The story of Kathlyn ends there. If I write about her first birthday, then I'm officially in year two. The bereaved say that year two is harder. HARDER THAN WHAT I JUST WENT THROUGH?! How is that possible?! What is harder than grieving a child?! NAME SOMETHING!

And fuck you, fate, because I dont believe in you, you dirty temptress. DONT TRY TO SHOW ME SOMETHING HARDER. I'M NOT ASKING FOR IT! Sell tragedy somewhere else, I'm all stocked up.

I was shocked the other day when a friend asked me how my pregnancy was going, and added "you havent said much about it." Ouch. How is that possible either, because my 3 pregnancies are all I ever think about. ALL I EVER THINK ABOUT. In the past 372 days, has their been an entry or a status update about absolutely anything else? Maybe one about my dad on his birthday (but I probably thanked him for holding my baby for me) or one about John on his birthday or our anniversary, but John IS the other half of my children. It all points back to Kathlyn, my little cherry on top, my little lovebird.

There isnt much to tell about this new pregnancy yet. I want this baby as much as the other two, and honestly, as much as I want my 4th child who doesnt exist yet. But I cant feel her move yet. I dont even know if she's a she, though that's where I'm leaning now, where I first felt I was having a boy. I dont have any way to know if she's alive at any given moment. Even once my beautiful ultrasounds are over, the baby could die 5 minutes later or 30 seconds later or 2 seconds later and no one would be the wiser. I feel more exhausted than ever, after such a draining year, and now a new life growing inside me. The nausea is becoming less and less, which is disconcerting, but the fatigue is more and more. The heartrate at 8 weeks had gone all the way up to 174 from 108 and everything looked right on time. My next appointment is August 17, at almost 12 weeks, for my first trimester screen. Right now, my little baby would fit inside a peanut shell, yet exhausts me, I believe, more than a newborn would.

I welcome it. I would lay down my life for any of them.


  1. Thinking of you....knowing these days have been hard and honestly, I understand how you are feeling about where you are in the pregnancy right now. It's hard, VERY hard, to be optimistic at that point--or ever, really, after losing a child, much less two. It's not that you aren't overjoyed, you are just sort of being realistic about things and that's completely understandable and normal. This is not easy, no matter what anyone thinks it should be!

  2. Beth, I don't know you at all but your story just touches me so deeply and I can't tell you how sorry I am for your loss of your precious little babies.

    I initially stopped by to let you know that last night I started, a new prayer blog hop, Little Ones To Him Belong Wednesday.

    I wanted to make sure that I stop and take a moment to lift up these precious families in prayer and stop by and see how they are doing and just offer support in any way that I can and in the process try to help spread the word so that everyone knows your child's names.

    I am sending you much love and hugs and prayers and I pray for a healthy delivery of your precious little baby.

    You are welcome to stop by any time if you like.