My Dearest Luk,

I thought today would be different. A year after you have gone to heaven, I thought perhaps I would be pregnant or have a baby now. Right now, I will admit that the hope for that is low. However, I wanted you to know that we miss you. We think about you often, what you would be doing now, had God not called you home. We had hopes for you, and while our time with you was only in my womb, you are still in hearts.

Lukasz

We lit a candle for you and said a prayer. Our lives have changed so much this past year, and we talked about the hurt and trials we have been through this year. We also made a decision tonight to do something in memory of you. We have decided to live and love with our whole hearts. It will not be easy, but I feel if we are ever going to be happy that we must fill our lives with love…love for ourselves, love for others, love to fill the void, love to light the way. We will love each other, and we will always love you.

And we will continue to share so that others may know that it is okay to grieve. It is okay to share feelings. And we will remember you and always love you.

Love,

Mommy, Daddy, Sissy, and Bubby

 

To my readers, if you have experienced loss, please feel free to share your feelings or your own letter to your loved one in the comments below.

 

 

Mending and Processing

I must admit that I still am laying low for now. Honestly, the closer it gets to next month, the more I want to hibernate in my home. I am going to be honest. I am still sad. Somedays I feel broken. I feel awkward talking about my feelings. Almost a year ago, I suffered a miscarriage. In the past year, I have lost another.  In addition, I almost lost my business. I was harassed and terrorized by my next door neighbors, and I am currently on week three without my husband.

I am sure eventually it’s going to be okay, but quite honestly, I feel like I need a break from reality to process the events of the past year. I don’t feel like myself. I find it easier to hide behind my computer and give a persona that everything is fine and dandy when I feel like my world is falling apart.

Sometimes it’s hard to put on a happy face for my kids. It’s even harder when I know they are hurting. My son desperately wants another brother or sister. I don’t know if that’s going to happen. Do you know what an emotional roller coaster it is to try for a baby after miscarriage? It’s downright terrifying. You find yourself looking at the calendar to keep track of your cycle, when you are ovulating, and then you wait. And you know what’s worse? Sometimes your body is a real jerk to you and gives you false hope. You feel that queasy feeling in the morning and think maybe this is the month, until you find out a day or two later that it is not and that your cycle this month is going to be hellish.

I am not a holiday person. I worked retail for so many years that I associate this time of year with greed and ill-behavior. Losing my baby so close to Christmas last year did not help the situation. I had so many dreams for my baby. I have friends that had babies right around the time mine was due, and sometimes I can’t help but think what my baby should be doing now. I feel haunted.

The holidays are supposed to be a happy time, but there are many people out there that are like me. Maybe they lost a loved one. Maybe they feel alone. Maybe they are depressed. If you see someone like this, give them a hug. Invite them for a cup of coffee. You don’t need to act like you know what they are going through, but show some love. It might make all the difference in the world.

As for me, I am going to keep writing. I am going to try to find ways to get through this, and I am going to keep sharing because I want those that have been through what I am going through to know that you aren’t alone. It’s okay to cry, and it’s okay to feel however you feel.

Please feel free to join the discussion in the comments below or on facebook:

www.facebook.com/bearhavenboutique

It's a little blury, but other than a copy of an ultrasound picture, this is my only reminder of the baby I lost. My belly grew very quickly last fall, and I took this picture about just a few days before I lost Luk to remember my pregnant belly. I didn't have the heart to delete the picture.

It’s a little blurry, but other than a copy of an ultrasound picture, this is my only reminder of the baby I lost. My belly grew very quickly last fall, and I took this picture about just a few days before I lost Luk to remember my pregnant belly. I didn’t have the heart to delete the picture.

To Be Normal

If you follow me on Facebook, you would know that I have been attempting to keep up on Social Media the past few weeks. Unfortunately, I haven’t been very successful. To have a business on top of blogging, I really should be keeping up on things. However, the past few weeks have not been that great, and while my intentions have been good, I just haven’t been able to keep up with everything.

I am going to try my best this week to start the new schedule of memes that I have been meaning to do. I also wanted to say thank you to everyone who has stuck with me on my blog, on my social media pages, and as my customers. You all are wonderful.

Physically, I am doing much better. I am not sore anymore, and I am working on getting back to my regular workouts. Mentally, I am still a bit of a mess. My kids have been amazing though. They push me to get out of the house when I would like nothing more to do than hide on the comfy couch. I know it can’t be easy on them, especially with my husband being gone for work. However, last night I told them that I am sorry I am not a lot of fun lately, and that I am going to work on it. I mean it. I need to have some sort of focus right now.

I have a feeling I will be writing more about miscarriage and the aftermath. I am finding that it is sort of a taboo topic. I don’t think it should be. Those of you who have experienced it know it is a loss. Those who haven’t may be at a loss as to what to say. Also, writing my feelings is therapeutic.

Thank you all for kind thoughts and words. It means a lot! I appreciate all of you!

 

 

 

Broken

I had plans originally for a different topic for Mommy Monday. However, a lot has happened here in the past few days that I thought I would share with you all, if nothing else, just to try to make sense of my life right now.

Today, I had planned to tell the whole world what was to be my family’s happy news. I had an ultrasound scheduled for today, and I had visions of seeing this little tiny being in the pictures. I had actually told a lot of my family while I was in Ohio since it seemed like everything was going great. I was somewhere around two months pregnant. I was waking every morning to the feeling that I was going to hurl. I have been tired and forgetful (ok, so I am forgetful a lot) for weeks. Those are all supposed to be good signs of a healthy pregnancy. Only they weren’t.

We are not really sure what happened. I was treated as if it was an ectopic pregnancy. However, there was nothing there when they did the laproscopic surgery. I am lucky I suppose that my ovaries and tubes are still in tact. I want answers though. My midwife mentioned today that it could have been a blighted ovum. I had to have bloodwork. They will let me know if my hormone levels are decreasing. They think that perhaps my levels are not. I passed something on Thursday. We just don’t know what it was. Needless to say, I am once again left with empty hopes and dreams. Only this time, I don’t know if there was ever a real baby inside me. The idea that maybe it didn’t develop into an actual baby is supposed to be comforting, but it isn’t. I just feel confused.

Everything seems surreal right now. I keep thinking I am having some odd dream, and when I wake, everything will be ok, except that hasn’t happened. I am now empty again and now filled with questions. I want some sort of closure. I want the pain to go away. Honestly, I just want a break.

This past year has been full of too many changes and now two missed chances of me being a mommy again.  I feel lost. I feel cheated. I feel broken. I feel very confused. I know life is not fair, and that there is much suffering in the world. I don’t want to have a pity party, but in some ways, I feel like I have been through enough in my life and that I deserve a break. I don’t want much. I don’t have aspirations to be rich or famous. I just want to raise my kids, have one or two more babies, continue falling in love daily with my husband to the point that it makes others ill, and come up with some awesome parties. That’s it. It took a long time to get to that point too. Eleven years ago, I had much bigger plans. I was going to graduate college, get my master’s degree, and then get my doctorate. I was going to live in foreign countries and teach English. I was going to have this amazing career. Then in the blink of an eye, the dream was gone. Tomorrow marks eleven years that my life changed forever when I got hit by a car that made an illegal left turn and wasn’t paying attention. All those dreams were gone. I have struggled over the years to come up with new dreams and aspirations and to not be so angry and bitter. These last few months, I have made a lot of changes, and honestly, I have felt like I turned a corner and made peace with all the hurt and bitterness from everything over the last eleven years. Honestly, I felt that this baby was my new beginning. Only it isn’t, and not only is it not a new beginning, but it may have never actually been a baby.

So right now I am grieving. Whether or not, the baby was a baby or just a bunch of cells, I am mourning the loss of what it represented, of the dreams I had, of the future that will not be. I don’t know if we will try again. I don’t know anything right now. I just know I needed to say all of this, to get it off my chest. Thank you for listening.

The Great Beyond

My husband and I recently started trying to conceive again. As you may remember, I suffered a miscarriage last winter at 3 months. I wasn’t sure that I wanted to try again so soon, even though I was told that the first six months are the most fertile. The experience zapped my confidence. It robbed me of a baby that will never be but also left me feeling empty and questioning why we decided to have another baby.

I have heard everyone and their brother ask me the same question: “Why would you want another baby? Your kids are at the perfect age to do anything with them. You have a boy and a girl. Why do you need another?”

Honestly, I don’t know. We started young. After the ordeal I went through with my daughter, I was pretty sure I was done. However, I started realizing the last few years that I didn’t think our family was done expanding. I love being a mother. I love kids way more than I like adults. Having another baby just seemed right.

So here we are, back at the beginning again, trying for a baby, and I am scared to death. I am afraid of getting pregnant. I am afraid of not getting pregnant. I am afraid of losing another baby. I don’t think I could handle that again. My children are going to be 7 and 10 soon and are at a pretty easy age, and I worry what if I really can’t handle all three. I had to do single parenting for a bit when my son was a baby, and I wonder sometimes if I can do it again when my husband is gone at work. I am afraid that I might have to rely on my friends for support, even if it is purely emotional. However, I have trust issues, and even though I know I have a wonderful group of friends who have shown me so much love the past few months, I worry even though I know I shouldn’t.

I was so excited about my last pregnancy, and now I worry that if I get pregnant now that I might not be as enthusiastic. What if I spend nine months on edge? Will the baby still know how much I want it?

The miscarriage really shattered my perceptions of things for a while. I really never gave it a thought that I would get pregnant and not deliver a healthy baby. I don’t want to be preoccupied. We have been trying so long. I want to be able to get pregnant and enjoy being pregnant, something I was denied with my baby I lost and my now almost seven year-old.

It is scary to think that there are so many uncertainties in life. It is like going into the great beyond. You might not know what is out there, but you are willing to explore. I am readying myself to step into the great beyond again where I don’t know how it is all going to end or if I will be happy or if I will be hurt. Deep down underneath my fears, I hope for the best. I hope not to be hurt. I hope to conceive. I hope to have a sweet baby for our family to love. I hope to be a good mom, and I must continue to hope and let the hope outweigh the fear.

 

Mommy needs a time out

Tonight I hit the wall, that invisible wall that says, “Hey, stop here. You are doing too much. You can’t go any further.” Yup, that would be the wall I hit.

My husband left over a week ago for Canada, and I have been going at full tilt pretty much ever since. I had to keep the kids busy, catch up on work, process orders, do schoolwork with the kids, take care or finances, give extra cuddles, attempt to go to the bathroom alone, realize after attempting that there were little hands under the door that reminded me that I could not even pee in peace, give more extra cuddles, try to figure out what else was making my six year old just a little off, realizing what was wrong with my six year old (I will explain that in a moment), and want to cry. So tonight, I just gave up. I forgot to take my son to cub scouts. I fed my children pizza bites. Then I tried to hide out on the sofa and put myself into a sugar coma which did not help at all by the way and only brought me to the point of letting the kids watch extra television tonight because I was just too tired. And if you think that this last paragraph seems a bit rambly and muddled, then you have a keen sense of what is going on in my head right now.

I just want a break. I love my kids dearly, but sometimes, especially when my husband is gone, I just want an hour where I can just breathe, read, or do something on my own. Tonight was one of those times. The kids have been so clingy, and finally I snapped at them. I felt bad afterwards. I felt even worse when I thought about how we were going to have a baby, and the I start questioning the idea of trying again, wondering if I would really be able to handle three kids.

It has been an emotional week. My daughter has missed her daddy a little more than usual. Of course, he was home for three weeks, so naturally it would be hard on her. Then she was talking to her cousin on the phone the other day, and her cousin told her about the new baby cousin she will have this summer. I hadn’t told her. Honestly, I am still trying to come to terms with it. I am happy for my brother and his wife deep down, but in a way, it does bother me a bit. This will be my brother’s sixth child. I was just trying to have a third. The baby will be born soon after mine was supposed to be born, so when my daughter told me that it wasn’t fair, I couldn’t help but agree with her in my head.

I don’t talk about the loss of the baby much, but it is still on my mind. My husband and I have been talking of trying again, but I am afraid. I am afraid of it happening again. I am afraid of my husband being gone. I am afraid of feeling empty and alone.

My husband was supposed to be gone six to eight weeks. I found out tonight he is coming home this weekend for a week. I couldn’t be happier. I need to take a breather. I love my kids, but I need a time out now and then.

For all of you who have a full plate and are running the house on your own, what do you do to stay sane?

Someday it will be ok…

…but that someday is just not today. I haven’t posted in a while about the miscarriage and everything. I threw myself into the holiday and my husband being home. I have been trying to get myself sorted and get back on track with my business and blog. Part of me thought that after a month, I would be feeling a bit better about everything, but truthfully, it still hurts. I am moody, irritable, and not a lot of fun right now. I find myself making excuses not to do things. Part of me doesn’t really want to talk to people. I know my friends love me, but I don’t want to be the Debbie Downer. Instead, I just hide away instead.

We still haven’t decided if we are going to try again. Apparently, the first six months after a miscarriage are the most fertile. However, my husband has been gone since the beginning of January, and even though he is coming home for a week or two this weekend, he will be heading back up north for goodness knows how long. It’s not the best situation for family planning. Not only that, part of me is afraid that this would happen again, and let’s face it, I have been a hot mess for a while now. I am not sure I could handle this.

I don’t blame myself anymore. My doctor has been quite reassuring. They sent the fetus for testing. It was a chromosomal abnormality. However, I still find myself wishing that I could turn back time and change everything. I want to plead with God that I needed Luk, and that he shouldn’t have taken him away from me. And when I am alone, after the kids are in bed, I still find myself sobbing by the end of the night or quietly raging in my room. I don’t know if it is normal, and right now, I just don’t care. I hurt, and I want it to stop. I wanted Luk so badly, and I will never be able to hold him or have him with me. And I wish the pain would go away. I wish for my happiness back, but right now I am still grieving. And I feel so lost.

I don’t know what’s normal. I don’t know if this is how I am supposed to feel or when it will stop hurting so much. For now, I am taking it little by little. If you have gone through a miscarriage, I would love to hear your thoughts.

To Feel Like Myself

My son and I made a pinky swear pact tonight (so you know it is serious). We decided no more McDonalds. We are not fast food people normally. Once in a blue moon I will have a craving for McDonalds. Our family has actually been eating pretty healthy for a while now. I cut out diet soda, then most of my regular soda, most processed foods, and junk food. Lately, I just haven’t cared. I haven’t cared if I ate or what I ate. I lost 10 lbs this week with everything going on. However, tonight was the night we decided to quit.

My son can’t sleep. I can’t sleep either. My daughter says she is fine, but she still ends up in my bed. It is so easy to just not care what I am putting in my mouth. At first my kids were going along with it, but my son is right. It isn’t good for us. Maybe going back to eating good food will help us sleep at night. I doubt it, but at this point, I would really like some sleep.

I still don’t know how to make this better. I just try to keep us all busy. I am preparing for someone’s party this weekend. I am letting someone else do most of the hosting Saturday, but I am still in the background making sure everything comes together. I stupidly volunteered to host the playgroup’s Christmas party at my house next week because I didn’t want to see it cancelled. Plus, my kids have been wanting to have all their friends over at the house anyways. It keeps me occupied so I can’t think. I don’t like to think. I would rather be busy or making snarky remarks about something or thinking about Star Wars or playing Kingdoms of Camelot or coming up with an awesome party. I don’t like feeling like this. I don’t like feeling vulnerable, and I don’t want to cry. Just when I think I have no more tears, they just keep coming.

I hope that I get some sleep soon. I would settle for just hoping my son gets to sleep soon. I can’t wait until my husband gets home.

How do you deal with your children’s emotional pain?

What do I do now?

Today a package arrived with the mail. With it being close to Christmas, my kids were all excited it was for them. It wasn’t. It was the maternity clothes I ordered a while back. It was if they came today to taunt me. I was doing so well this morning.

My son eagerly grabbed the package. He wanted to see what was in the package. I asked him to stop. I didn’t want to see it. I didn’t want the reminder. I actually tried to cancel the order, but the company never replied to my messages. Now I have this package to remind me what was not going to be.

I lost my baby last week. I was at the end of my first trimester. I was so happy. Now I am so empty. I never thought something could ever hurt as bad.

I am trying to cope. I try not to cry too much in front of my kids. I know they are hurting too, my son especially. He was so happy when he found out that I was pregnant that he cried happy tears for over a half an hour. My daughter is just beginning to understand that Mommy isn’t going to have a baby now. My husband is stuck in Canada. He won’t be home until the weekend. I just want to crawl into my bed right now and not come out until after the holidays. I just don’t understand why.

Yes, I have been working to get things ready at my shop, but I slowed down. I have been eating well, taking my vitamins, taking care of myself. I was talking the other day how I planned on cutting my hours at the shop because I wanted to concentrate on the kids and the new life that was in me. This was going to be the pregnancy that I would be able to remember. Yeah, I will remember it all right, because it is the one where I lost the baby right before Christmas.

And I am angry. I am sad. I hurt so bad that I wonder if there will ever be a day that I don’t feel the emptiness inside. I just don’t understand why.

The one thing I will say is that I don’t think I ever realized how much I am loved, how much my friends and family cared about me until this all happened. The outpour of love and support has been amazing. My friends have taken my kids to give me space. They have come to comfort me. They have even come to bring me comfort food. I am so thankful for the support I have.

So what do I do now? I don’t know. I will continue day by day. I am having some of my friends take over duties at the shop as well as the blog and my other social media. I will try to heal. I don’t know if we are going to try again. Part of me wants to try. Part of me is afraid of going through this again. I miss my sweet angel that I will never get to hold. I wish I could change this. I wish I could go back in time and make this never happen. I can’t. I may never understand why this happen.

My goal right now is to try to get through the holiday season and try to make sure the kids have a good Christmas. Christmas time has never been my favorite time of year, but I was actually excited this year. I was imagining that this time next year I was going to have a little one on the cusp of crawling.

To those of you who have experienced loss. I am sorry for your pain. How did you cope? Feel free to discuss in the comments.