Tuesday, January 31, 2012

18 Months - Nightmares

I had intended to visit the cemetery on Saturday to mark Amelia's 18th Month. I was going to add an ornament given to us as a gift to her wreath. I was with my Mom for most of the day shopping and running errands. I was keeping myself busy because I really didn't want to go.
I never, really want to go there.

I know for many baby loss Mamas (including me) cemetery visits and decorations are an important part of continued care and love for their sweet babies. In many ways I too feel compelled to tend her "spot." I can't care for her anymore, but I can, brush her stone clean and leave beautiful arrangements in her vase as an outward expression of my love for her. I enjoy caring for her in this way.
But there is another side to my visits (or lack of visits) that I have not yet found the words to share completely here on her blog.

The thing is, I have nightmares.
And after a visit to her grave, they increase in both frequency and intensity. I have nightmares about her body just below the ground marked with her name carved in stone. Nightmares about bugs and cold and decay. You see even though I know that her body was just a shell...it is still her body to me.
The precious body I carried for 10 months. The body I held in my arms on the day of her birth. The lips I kissed. The face I memorized. The body I dressed to bury.
My baby girl is still down there...

The nightmares are dark and disturbing and the worst part is they begin while I am still awake and waiting for sleep to come. As much as I try to put the thoughts out of my mind, most nights the darkness still creeps in.

I suppose in part, the reasons I have not shared much detail of this particular piece of my "grieving" is because I am a bit embarrassed by it. Embarrassed because I just can't seem to trust God in this aspect of Him "saving my Girl." I put my daughter in a box in the ground 18 months ago, and I guess I'm just not quite convinced that God is "protecting" her body from decay in the way that I desire he would.

Sunday, I found myself seated at the computer reading through some recent blog posts and stumbled on a post written by my dear friend Stacy (Rachel's Mom). It was a post that I desperately needed. I cried as I read her words. I may as well have written them myself...

at the end of her post she had included an image from her calendar that brought peace to my troubled heart.
It read,

Even in the stillness of a resting earth,
God is at work creating beauty,
restoring life,
and preparing all things to blossom,
in His perfect time.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

It's been a while...

I know I haven't been blogging much.
Some days, I think I am done blogging.
I mean how many times can I say...
My sweet baby girl is dead.
I miss her. every. single. minute. of the day.
I can't wait to see her again. :)
I wish things were different.
I still can't believe that this is my story.

Today I needed to write.

Some days, I will get a single Amelia moment stuck in my head. It replays in my mind over and over throughout the day. So often sometimes that I begin to wonder if I am missing something. Is there a lesson I need to be learning from this memory...something I missed the first time? Today that snippet is a single memory from the days before her funeral.
The day I picked up her photos.

I had several printed so that I could create a mini scrap book to display at her service. As I stood and waited, the woman on the other side of the Walgreen's counter, fumbled around looking to make sure my photos were all in order. I remember her asking me if the photos were professional, "oh, yes, they must be, I see your release from the photographer," she continued to ramble, one of the gals and I were looking through them and she thought they couldn't be professional because she didn't think they let photographers in the operating room but I said they were. You gave me such a good idea, I am going to have to tell my husband that we have to remember that when we have a baby. That is so neat." 

I recall thinking to myself, Lady, I sincerely hope you never have the need to have a photographer and your pastor at the ready when your deliver your child. I promise it's not neat...

I didn't say anything, just nodded my head as she talked, said thanks, and left with my envelope of pictures.

I remember being part surprised and part pleased, that she had no idea that the "baby photos" she had been thumbing through were in fact pictures of my dying and dead baby - pictures of my anencephalic baby. I wondered if she'd be disappointed months later when she was denied her request to have her photographer in the OR suite as she delivered her child. Maybe I should have explained...

but I didn't want to upset her.

I often find myself self-censoring in order to protect others.
At the time I felt that it was more about self preservation...
Today I find myself wondering if I would be in a different place emotionally had I let myself break down more often.Would I be any better off? Would I be any further along in my healing or grief?
I doubt it.
But still, I wonder.
With every replay, I wonder.