Monday, April 21, 2014

Little Girls

  Before Riley, I had never wanted to have a little girl.  I don't get the make-up, dresses, princesses thing.  I don't like crowns, tiaras and all things sparkly.  Vomit.  I counted myself very lucky when my first was a boy.  He has always been in my comfort zone.  Rocks, mud, bugs (ok he hates bugs), trucks and trains.  Bring it on.

  But last night after my amazing 5-year-old son was in bed, I sat on the couch sobbing.  I cried because I missed my one and only girl.  I miss my daughter.  I want her to be here so I can dress her in a ridiculous tutu, so I can buy her some ridiculous Easter dress, so I can do her hair.  I crave the stupid sparkles, princess parties, petticoats, baby dolls and tea parties.

  I literally sobbed to my husband "I want a girl to dress in a tutu!"  Craziness.

  And here we are.  Not 24 hours later and I have some insane news to share.  We have been chosen by a birth mom to parent her baby girl who is due to come into this world on June 18, 2014.  That's 8 weeks away folks.

  I'm determined to jump into this full boar (even though I'm petrified.  So much can still go wrong).  I'm having a baby shower (I hate showers.....they are torture on Earth) and I actually WANT it.  I'm getting my house ready for my baby girl who is coming this Spring.  I'm buying her clothes, I'm telling everyone, I'm getting her room ready, I'm picking a name, I'm buying a damn carseat.

This in no way lessens my pain for my dear sweet Riley girl.  I love her.  I cry as I type this because I miss her so much.  And I intend to tell my second daughter all about her.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Photo of the Day

Holy Moses.  Did Hell just freeze over?  Two posts in two days after a half-year hiatus?  Here's the deal.  I'm remembering why I started doing this a few years back.  Therapy.  This shit is therapy.  Salud! and to my health.

So there is this awesome Photo a Day thing-a-majig from Fat Mum Slim that makes it's rounds on my Facebook page from time to time.  I find it uplifting.  Her lovely little prompts help me focus on making something small and lovely each day.

Here are my participatory photos so far this month.

Something Purple

No this lovely is not growing in my backyard.  My son is behind me having a time-out at the grocery store.

In my hand

Ok so it's not in my hand, but in my son's.  I'm trying desperately to grow some a vegetable garden this year.  We will see how that pans out.


The countdown on my very last infusion!

Good Together

Taste of Spring

A squill growing in my yard.  I have little plants everywhere.  They make me happy.


It took my best-friend a year to get me to start scrapbooking with her.  I refused because I thought it was lame-o. Now I'm addicted and have way too much crap and it's all her fault.

Favorite Time of Day

The morning with the birds chirping away.  Everything is clean and peaceful.

Favorite Time of Day II

Those few moments when my son has just woken up and is sleepy and snuggly.  It literally lasts 5 seconds.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Dare I Hope?

From 11/23

I have wanted another baby for 3 years now.  I know that's not that long for some people..... there are others out there who have tried to get pregnant for years and years and years.  Still the last 3 years have felt like a lifetime.

Each time we have gotten the happy baby news, it has ended in tragedy.....that child's death and a  trip to the hospital to deliver my baby.

So dare I hope?

We are beginning our adoption journey and it just now is beginning to feel real.  I know this is just the beginning of a long, long road, but I feel some hope creeping in.

I'm alive.

Yes, 'tis I.  Who has not written anything for myself since October.  For 6 months!

I don't know why I don't feel like writing.  Well no..... that's bull shit.  Sometimes, I feel whiny and I don't want to irritate people.  Sometimes it freaks me out for people to know that I AM NOT OKAY.  Because I try so hard to be okay.  To keep my feet moving.  But the reality is.  I am not always okay.

Something happened to me after my reconstruction (which was in February).  Something I can't explain.  It's like the reality of cancer finally has hit me.  Sometimes I cry for hours for no reason whatsoever.  In the middle of the day, suddenly I just ....can't....anymore.  I'm tired.   So tired.

I was expecting my surgery to me this amazing crescendo to my cancer journey.  This amazing body altering "ahhhhhh" end to the shit.  And it just wasn't.....isn't....

Surgery went fine.  Nothing bad happened. But nothing great happened either.  Don't get me wrong my body looks fucking amazing.  But, my body perception issues got worse, not better.  My mental health got worse, not better.  I feel like I need constant reassurance.  I have no idea what I really want.

I sincerely thought that this year of cancer crap was going to be a little blip on the radar of my life.  I would get through the 365 days of treatment and be done.  The cancer cannot come back, I will not be dying.  Just limp through the year and it's over.  Riiiiiiiight.   Treatment is over an now I'm being buried by the tons of baggage I've been carrying around because I've been too busy being a medical guinea pig to deal with it.

In an attempt to maintain my little disillusion, I have completely separated myself from the other patients at the cancer center.  I don't talk to anyone.  Ever.  I have been having infusions every 3 weeks for a year and didn't talk to people.  I sit with my little headphones in, watching TV on my laptop, being super friendly to the nurses, but ignoring the other patients.  Yep, I'm that bitch.

I know why.  It's because I couldn't handle it.  They might die.  Any freaking day.  And they remind me of the reality of cancer.  And they say things that I just can't hear.

 They say things like, "This is chronic. What we have is chronic."  This from a woman who has been on chemo for 9 YEARS.  When her cancer stops responding to one type of chemo, they switch to another.  She is dying. Period.

Or "That's what I said too the first time around.  This is the third time I have done chemo and my hair....blah....blah"  Honestly I can't remember what else she said.  I tuned out at "third time."

Or there is that lady they took to the ER last week.....

But my ostracized state is about to come to an end.  As you know cancer has taught me to get out there and do stuff even if it scares the shit out of me.  I recently applied to go on a First Descents trip this summer and just have to chose my dates. I am going kayaking with 13 or so other cancer patients/survivors.  I'm terrified of the kayaking (the first thing you have to do is learn to roll the thing....IN WATER.  You're legs are strapped into that shit!  I can't swim! ah!).  But a realization has come upon me.  There will roughly be a dozen or so of least one of us is going to die.  Somebody is going to lose.  I don't think I can handle getting to know someone who is going to die.  I can't lose someone.  I DO NOT want to get close to someone over this amazing week of freaked out bonding, just to have them drop dead.

It's all too much.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Day 2: Identity

I have had serious identity problems since the loss of my babies and my battle with cancer.  I don't know what I am.  I don't know who I am.  I don't know what I am doing or where I am going.  I am trying to be okay with that.  I am trying to roll with it and go where I go.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Day 1: Sunrise

Ok it's a bit past sunrise, but don't worry we are always up before the sun thanks to my miracle son who wakes us in the early, early morn.  I love the morning.  It's my favorite time of day.  It's when I feel most alive, energized and at peace.  It is quiet and still outside with only the small creatures to keep one company.  It's chilly, you need a blanket until the Colorado sun can warm you up.  The tree in this picture is my baby tree.  We plant flowers under it for my kiddos.  I leave them bouquets, pinwheels, Easter eggs.  There are wind chimes and bird houses hanging from it's branches.  It is full of life and love.

Pitied by the Pitied

Recently we attended the Walk to Remember's annual event.  During this event, the names of our angel babies are read, we release balloons to honor them, and take a stroll around a big lake

This is our third time attending this event.  I remember the first time Mitchell and I attended to honor Liam.  We went alone.  I was very, very pregnant with Riley.  It rained on us the entire time.  Very few people actually walked around the lake after the name reading because it was cold and down-right miserable.

I remember reading the names printed in the program and just about losing it over the repeats of last names.....  Hall, Hall, Hall.... Schultz, Schultz, Schultz.....  Holly, Holly, Holly...   All with different first names and dates of birth/death.  My heart ached for those parents.  Coping with the death of an infant once....ok...  But 3 times?!?  I didn't understand how those women were breathing, how they could keep trying, how they kept on living with such an enormous hole in their hearts.

And now...2 years later.   Jackson, Jackson, Jackson, Jackson.  Liam, Riley, Ben and Archer.  I am the pitied one.  The one the mom's with one loss see and think "it could be worse, look at that lady."  "Thank God we only have to do this once, not four times."  "Oh those poor parents.  How are they still breathing?"

To answer your question, Fictional-Pretend-Imaginary-Lady, I don't know.

The walk was especially hard this year for reasons that are so hard to explain.  See...People that have lost babies and now have their me crazy.   They hurt my heart.  I feel bitter, sad, and oh so jealous.  I will never have a rainbow.

Yes, loss happens, but it doesn't happen to everyone.  People in the loss community will tell you that not all babies die.  It is intended to give pregnant women hope.  It's true, not all babies die, but mine do.

Parents who have lost a baby deserve to have another more so than a mom with 5 kids who has absolutely no clue whatsoever how damned lucky she is.  They deserve it more.  They deserve a happy ending.  But it hurts me more.

Today kicks off Infant Loss and Awareness Month as well as Breast Cancer Awareness Month....Ha!   I guess October is my month......

I am going to try once again to "capture my grief."  Carly Marie runs this program each October where you capture your grief in photos.  One photo each day.  Last year I started but it was just too damned hard for me.  This year I am going to attempt it again