Monday, July 15, 2013

3-0

Today is my 30th birthday!  I really thought it would be harder and more "painful" but honestly, I don't even have the words to describe how utterly blessed I feel!  My heart ached yesterday (Ella Grace's due date) and I thought I would be depressed all day today, but it wasn't what I thought it would be.  I sit here, with tears rolling down my face, trying to find words, but there aren't any. 

I miss her so much.  I wish I had a baby girl here who was bossing Fletcher around, but what I do have is an amazing legion of people who showered me with more love than I even thought possible.  Aaron was out of town for work so I didn't get to see him at all, but he loved me from afar!  He sent me a text message at 4 am (around the time I was born) and wished me a happy day.  My baby sister showed up to take Fletcher for the day to play with him.  (Side note: there is no way to my heart than to love on my son!  It was such a gift for her to take him and love on him today!)  And she showed up with Starbucks!!  I got to walk into Fletcher's room and see that crazy, curly blonde bed headed boy grinning up at me!  Whew, my cup already runneth over! 

I got to work and my co workers had decorated my office.  And by decorated, I mean that everywhere I looked was a party!!  They had provided breakfast and the sweetest card!  There were cupcakes and lunch and party all day long! 

Around 2 I was sitting around working, and I heard little feet.  I looked around the corner and my Fletch was running down the hall with cookies!!  Best.Surprise.EVER!! 

Tonight my sweet Mom and Dad and Sister took Fletch and I to dinner to celebrate.  Not to mention that all day long my phone was going off with texts and alerts from sweet friends. 

I don't say all of this to "brag" or to toot my own horn, I say it all to remind myself that in spite of all we have lost, we have gained so very much!  I look around and see the amazing people God has strategically placed around me and the way they loved on my today in ways they will probably never understand.  I know, without a doubt, that some of these people are only in my life as a result of losing Ella Grace.  That God has made beautiful things from the dust of my heart.  And I. Am. Blessed! 

As I sit here, another year older, nowhere near what I thought my life would look like at 30, I am overcome with gratitude and love.  I could fill a second cup with the overflow from my first!! 

Ella Grace,
I miss you baby girl and I sure do wish we were having a 3rd birthday party this weekend.  I am so thankful for you, sweet girl!!  I am so thankful for the beautiful ways you have touched my life and have made our lives richer.  Thank you for making me a Mommy and for giving me the opportunity to have Fletcher.  Your little brother is such a good boy and reminds me of you daily!  I love you sweet baby Girl and I still think of you every.single.day.  My heart, which is still so broken and full of holes, is also so full!!  Can't wait to see you sweet girl!

Forever your Mommy!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Walking With You

A sweet friend, Lori, wrote on her blog today about a really interesting "event" going on at Sufficient Grace . I felt really strongly like I should also join in.  So after more than a year long hiatus from this blog, I am back. I don't even know if I still have readers, but here I am anyway.  

This weeks "prompt" is just to introduce ourselves and our babies.  I always feel slightly intimidated by these types of things because most Moms on this journey can write about one or two babies that they have lost.  I have to write about 6.  Six, half a dozen.  That just doesn't seem right.  I am Brittany, mother of seven, raising one.

We had the first 2 miscarriages in the first 2 years we were married.  We really thought we had worked out the "kinks" and maybe my body had figured out what it was doing when I got pregnant with Ella Grace.  She made it to 21 weeks before we found out that we had lost her as well.  She had Turners Syndrome.  I was induced on March 4, 2010 and I held her for the first and last time that day.  Our hearts were broken and I didn't think we would survive.  This blog and so many women I met, both online and in person, made me feel like I would overcome the grief and despair.  I saw beauty coming from the ashes.

Then we got pregnant again.  I felt sure that God would not put us through another loss, but He had other plans.  Around 12 weeks, just like the others, we found out that Itty's heart had stopped.  This time I didn't handle it "as well."  I was angry and confused and downright full of hate.

The next month I decided that we were done.  I went to my OB to have an IUD placed.  I still hadn't had a period, but knew that I couldn't face the heartache of losing another baby.  I found out the next day that I was pregnant.  I was in shock and not very optimistic.  About 30 weeks later Fletcher was born.  Five weeks early, but PERFECT and HEALTHY in every sense.  A miracle.

I adore that boy in a way few people can fathom.  And yet, I still didn't feel like our family was complete.  I couldn't imagine all of this love and heartache and the long journey ending with a family of three.

I found out in October of this year, when Fletcher was 10 months old, that I was pregnant again.  I was scared and excited and mostly, for the first time since our first loss, TRULY optimistic.  Long story short shorter, I not only miscarried, but found out that I was carrying twins.  One twin was miscarried and the other was tubal and required medication to "be removed" for my safety.  Really!?!?  Now I feel like we have been through it all.

Where am I now?  I am in awe that I have Fletcher.  He is amazing and perfect and funny and silly and smart and loving and a Mamma's boy.  I am also coming to terms with the idea that we truly are done.  My sweet, amazing, supportive husband has essentially put his foot down.  The fear of  losing me and leaving Fletcher with out two parents and leaving him a widow (although I think it is an over reaction) and the fear of experiencing another loss and  him having to watch me go through it all again, has pushed him to the edge.  To a place that there is no coming back.

I am still trying to come to terms with the idea that we will forever be a family of three on this earth, but a family of nine in our final home.  I am still grieving the family that I forever imagined with siblings loving on each other and giving each other a terrible time.  Grieving the family that I grew up with and coming to terms with the idea that someday, when A and I are both gone, Fletcher will be left alone, with no one else that lived in our home and lived the life he had.  I am grieving that I will never get to have tea parties and princess parties and never get to host a wedding or teach a daughter how to be a wife.

Am I thankful?  YES.  Am I blessed?  YES.  Am I still heartbroken?  OF COURSE.  And right now, I am learning how to be all of these things gracefully and figure out how to be a whole person without my whole heart.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

October "Month of Rememberence"

October is such a bittersweet month.  One one had it is incredible that there is an opportunity to share the chance to honor our babies, but on the other hand it really stinks to have to even be aware of this opportunity.  On the 15th "A" and I lit our candles for the babies. 

It was a beautiful night and we sat out side for the entire hour just talking about all 5 of our babies and thinking about how differently our lives would have been...could have been...should have been.  The pink frame on the right is one of my most prized possessions.  It is the page where the sweet nurses got Ella Grace's feet and hand prints.  They also wrote all of her "stats" on the page.  Born 03/04/10 at 6:18 pm 11.3 oz 11 in.  I can't even count the number of hours I have spent in the last 600 days.  (Wow, I just did the calculation and today is exactly 600 days...that's crazy).  The little wooden toy beside her frame was one of the first things we bought for her.  While I was pregnant with her we all called her "Roo" and that is a wooden kangaroo.  I thought about burying her with it, but I am SO thankful that I kept it as a memento of her life.  The blue frame on the left is one of my favorite pictures of BB.  It is a sonogram picture of his perfect foot.  The foot that looks exactly like his daddy's (long, wide and flat).  I love that picture so much!!  I really only thought it was fair for him to be represented along with his brothers and sisters that evening.

While we were watching the candles flicker I had a sense of peace. I felt like the candles were really acting out exactly how I felt like the babies personalities would have been.  The big pink candle in the center is Ella Grace's candle.  Of course, I think our baby girl would have had the biggest personality.  I can just see her rounding up the other babies and "bossing" them around.  Even though she was the youngest for a while, in my head I always feel like she is probably the strongest personality.  The outside green candles are for Peanut and Nunu.  I feel like they are probably more laid back and like their Daddy.  They probably tolerate EG's bossiness and even let her think she is in charge.  Now that poor pink, tiny candle right up front is for Itty.  From the get go Itty was weak and sickly.  I had a feeling through the whole time I was pregnant with Itty that it wasn't meant to be.  During the hour that candle kept flickering and threatening to go out.  At one point I even had to relight the candle.  I laughed when it happened cause even though EG is only a little "older" I can see her following Itty around and "babying" him.  I can see her trying so hard to carry him (even though she isn't much bigger) and see her protecting him and doting on him.  It probably drives him a little batty, but secretly he needs it. 

Now, this may not even be close to how things are where they are, but it gives me some comfort to think of them this way.  To think of them sticking together and sticking up for each other until their Mommy and Daddy can get there. 

On Oct. 22 we had the 9th annual Walk in the Park with Glory Babies.  As always it was a beautiful, meaningful experience.  It was a beautiful day with a live butterfly release. Of course, as usual, I bawled through the whole day, but some of the tears were of sadness, some of fear and anxiety, and some were of thankfulness of the place and opportunity to honor our babies.

We chose to spend the rest of last weekend looking forward and working on BB's nursery.  It was scary and overwhelming, but it is coming right along.  It has been a month of honoring all of our babies, for sure.  The ones who have already left us and the one who is still here! 


 
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