Tuesday, August 31, 2010


My doctor thinks I have had a miscarriage. Two babies lost in one summer.

I called at 9am today and the nurse said my hCG level dropped from 83 on August 24 to 50 on August 26 and that my doctor was in her office going over the results when I called. She asked if I wanted to know if my doctor thinks that it is related to my last pregnancy or if it is related to a new pregnancy (of course I did). She said she would check with her. So I waited for the next 6 hours for her to call me back. Finally, I called the nurse and when I said my name, she said "Oh yes" and promptly told me what my doctor said. She had probably known for hours. I wish she had just called sooner.

Anyway, she said that because it has been more than 10 weeks since I had Jacob, they think the bleeding and the elevated hCG is from a new pregnancy. So, just because I needed to hear it, I confirmed that that  meant that I had a miscarriage on August 20 and she agreed. I have to get another blood test done in a week, which means I have to go back in that office and pick up the requisition. The last visit there was tough and now I have to do it again. It's not going to happen today.

I have cried alot since confirming that it was a miscarriage. I suspected it all along, but I kept hoping that I was actually pregnant. I know early miscarriages are fairly common, but losing 2 babies in less then 3 months just makes me wonder what is wrong with my body. And now I have 2 angels in heaven. One was more than enough.

I hope my hCG level goes down in time for us to have a chance in September.

We got the keys to the house today. It just wasn't supposed to be this way. I should be celebrating. Instead I just have even more to be sad about. Today is 3 months since I found out Jacob died.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Tomorrow is the day we have been waiting for

That title should only be about getting the keys to our new house tomorrow.

Tomorrow I find out if I’m pregnant or not and I am getting more anxious as the day goes on. I know sleeping won’t be easy tonight.

I don’t think I am pregnant. At least, that is what I tell myself so that the disappointment tomorrow won’t be so great. It will be though, I don’t think there is anyway that I can protect myself from it. I felt nauseous on and off over the weekend, I felt a little bit of heartburn and I fell asleep on the couch at night. I haven’t had heartburn since I was pregnant with Jacob and it is so rare for me to fall asleep on the couch. I did it almost every night when I was pregnant though.

I’ve taken 4 pregnancy tests at home and they have all been negative. I hate having to wait to find out what my latest blood tests says. If it turns out I’m not pregnant, then I have to figure out why I had the strange bleeding and the hCG came back positive.

At least all this is distracting me a little from the lump I have and the upcoming mammogram and ultrasound I’m supposed to have tomorrow (of course, no mammogram if I am pregnant).

I also got some big news on Saturday. I am very happy about it, but also apprehensive. My sister is 5 weeks pregnant. A few weeks ago, maybe a month, she asked how I felt about them trying again. I said that she should go ahead, that she shouldn’t put her life on hold because of what happened to me. She knew for a few days before telling. She was understandably worried about telling me, but I started to ask about when she was ovulating and she didn’t want to lie to me, so it came out. My first reaction was to say congratulations and hug her. I felt genuine happiness for her. I still do. But as time passed on Saturday, the thought of seeing her belly grow while mine stays the same really started to weigh heavily on me. I know that if I’m not pregnant now, I could be soon. But what if I can’t even get pregnant before this baby is born at the end of April (I’m trying to be positive about her pregnancy and not say “if” the baby is born at the end of April. I have to remind myself to talk this way around everyone. Not if. When.) I should have a 6 month old baby boy in April. Laurie has also offered to be a surrogate for me, should it come to that. She has been offering this for years, ever since we were teenagers and I had the cyst on my fallopian tube and we were wondering if my ovary could be saved (it was). She has brought it up several times lately too, which I think is so sweet and kind of her.

Laurie and I went to the local splash pad on Saturday morning with Ben and we took turns watching him. When she was watching him, I sat by the side and saw all of these little boys, from about 1.5-4 years old, running around in the water. The 1.5 year old boy got to me in particular. Watching his awkward steps, watching his Mom hold his hand. Then I noticed that 2 of the boys were named Jacob. That did it. I sat there crying and crying, complete with chest heaves and all. I had my sunglasses on and I was trying to control it so that no one would notice. Laurie did though and she came over and asked if I was crying. I said yes and she hugged me and said it would happen for me soon. I asked how she could tell I was crying and she said my lips were really red.

There was also a woman there who was about 7 months pregnant. If Jacob hadn’t died, I would have been at the park with them that day, bigger than she was. Maybe we would have started talking about our pregnancies, who our OB was. All that.

I went to the garden after to visit Jacob. This was the first time that I have been there alone and I’ve wanted to do that for awhile. I just stood there and cried and talked to him a lot. I sat on the ground near the garden for awhile and I walked around it several times. I got the leftover bubbles from the wedding last weekend (which I still have to write about) and blew them over the garden, imagining him running around trying to catch the bubbles. One of the millions of things he will never get to do.

We had the walkthrough at our new house on Friday. It was fine. The last time I was there, I was still pregnant. There is a picture of me walking up the stairs the second time that we saw the house. I look happy in the picture. Hopeful. Not a trace of sadness. Now there is sometimes a trace of happiness in my eyes, but it is mostly sadness.

I got to talking with our real estate agent while we were there. I spent more time talking to her than I did walking around the house. When Jacob died, she sent an email saying how sorry she was and that she had lost a baby too. It turns out that she lost Amie at 4 months and had a D&C. When I said that I gave birth to Jacob and we held him, a look of horror crossed over her face. We talked a lot about it and she said some intuitive things, like it is good we didn’t lose him in our new house so we don’t have that association, but it must be hard since we bought the house because he was coming. She also told a cute story. She had another daughter after losing Amie. This one’s name is Charlie. When anyone asks Charlie how many siblings she has, she always says she has a brother and 2 sisters and she either says that her sister Amie is dead or is in heaven. Our agent often has people come up and give her their sympathies and express amazement at how cheerful she is, since Charlie makes it sound like she lost Amie recently (it happened 15 years ago). I think it is really cute how Charlie has just made Amie such a big part of her life. A sister that she never even met, but is still important to her.

Sunday was easier than Saturday. Today isn’t so bad either (so far). I am nervous about tomorrow though.

Friday, August 27, 2010


Dear Jacob,

Yesterday was our last day at the condo and I have mixed feelings about leaving. This is the place where I was pregnant with you and I have so many wonderful memories there - of lying in bed and on the couch and looking at and rubbing my belly; of standing in front of the bathroom mirror, watching my belly get bigger and bigger; of looking down at my feet in the shower one day and realizing that I couldn’t see them anymore (and of throwing up in the shower one day when the nausea was really bad...I laugh at that memory now); of taking my belly pictures in the hall; of calling everyone when I was sitting in the living room, telling them that I was pregnant and listening to their reactions (which included a few screams of happiness); of looking out the living room window in the middle of the night as I ate a few crackers because I woke up starving; of getting up three times a night to pee; of running to the bathroom halfway through dinner to throw up, with my hand over my mouth hoping I would get there in time; of feeling you kick and sitting on the couch with your Dad resting his hand on my belly, hoping that he would be able to feel it too. He never did get to.

But the condo is also the place where I have spent the darkest days of my life after I lost you. The days when I didn’t want to wake up in the morning because I knew you would be gone. The days when I woke up crying and fell asleep crying and cried all day in between. The days of feeling completely devastated and completely hopeless. Not all of those days have passed. Many have come, stayed awhile, left for awhile and come back. Many will be with me forever, or that is how it feels right now.

Today we went for the final walkthrough of our new house. The house we bought in April because of you. It has 4 bedrooms upstairs, plenty of room for you and your siblings. I had your room picked out. I imagined bringing you home from the hospital to this house. I imagined walking to your Aunty Laurie's most days to visit and so that you and Ben could play together. I imagined hanging out with your Grandma when I was on maternity leave with you. I imagined you going to the school across the road and of taking you to the nearby parks and watching you play in the splash pads.

Now the house seems so, so empty. It is big and empty. When we went back to see the house the 2nd time before putting an offer on it, your Dad was taking some pictures and I happened to be on the stairs when he took one. I looked so happy and hopeful there. I was almost 16 weeks pregnant with you and thought I was out of the woods. Little did I know the rollercoaster ride that I'd be getting on soon and that I will never be able to get off.

I am still excited about the house and I'm glad that we now live in the same city where your ashes are buried. I feel like a better Mommy now because I will be able to visit you more often. I talk to you alot and I think of you all the time, but I just like being able to go to the garden, it makes me feel like you aren't so alone. We drove by it tonight and it was so dark in there. It bothers me that it is so dark, but I know that's silly. I'm babysitting Ben on Wednesday and I want to take him to the garden for awhile. There is just something about seeing him play around the garden where you are. But I also just want to go there, sit on the bench and cry my eyes out. If I could, I'd lie over the place you are buried and sob.

I miss you so much. You will always be my sweet, sweet boy. If only I could hold you again, if only I could kiss you one more time.

I love you forever,


A minefield of pregnant women….could I be one of them?

If I thought my feelings were all over the place before, they really are now.

When I got home from work on Wednesday night, there was a message from the nurse at my OB’s office. She said, with some surprise in her voice, that the blood test I did on Tuesday for HCG came back positive and my doctor wants me to do another blood test.

Ted and I couldn’t believe it when I listened to the message. We listened to it again, and then I listened to it several more times. We are excited, but we are scared to be excited. We are hopeful, but we are scared to be hopeful. I am scared of the let down if I find out that I’m not pregnant or if I am having a miscarriage. I did 2 HPT’s on Wednesday night and they were both negative.

Yesterday I drove to my OB's office to get the requisition. It was horrible being there again. My heart was pounding the whole time. The last time I was there was for my 6 week postpartum appointment. The room was full of pregnant women, I felt like I was in a minefield and didn't know what the next second would bring or how long I could last there.

I saw a pregnant woman park near me and I followed her up to my doctor’s office….at a safe distance so that I couldn’t see her on the stairs. She was about 5.5 months along. My belly was just slightly smaller when I lost Jacob. We were both waiting to give our names, but the nurse was on the phone so I walked out of the office and stood in the hall. I didn’t think that I would be able to control the tears, which had been coming on the drive there, if I kept standing there. When she stopped talking, I went in and waited, but another patient came out of the exam room and she started talking to the nurse. My doctor came out too and just seeing her face made me flashback to lying on the exam table, watching her face for any signs of hope when she was trying to find Jacob's heartbeat. I finally got to talk to the nurse and told her I was there to pick up the requisition. I already knew what they were looking for, but I wanted to ask to make sure I was right. So I confirmed that if the HCG level is up, then I am indeed pregnant. If it has stayed the same or has gone down, I’m having a miscarriage or there was tissue left from the birth that is just now, almost 3 months later, making itself known. I asked what the next step is if the level hasn’t gone up and she said that we’d have to wait and see. I assume it will be an ultrasound and maybe a D&C. I’m not having any significant pain, just a little achiness in my abdomen now and then. Wouldn’t a miscarriage hurt more? But if I am pregnant, how can I be bleeding this much this early on during pregnancy, and still be pregnant? I also had a normal AF from Aug 6-11 and as far as I know, I didn't ovulate before the second round of bleeding started, so I would had to have gotten pregnant in July. I know some women bleed during pregnancy, and that gives me some hope.

They won’t have the results of the bloodwork until Tuesday. I explained that I am supposed to have a mammogram on Tuesday because I also have a lump and I don’t want a mammogram if I am pregnant. So she said to call her Tuesday morning to get the results. I guess I’ll call the mammogram place today and tell them the situation so they don’t charge me for canceling an appointment the day of. I am also frustrated that the results will be available on Monday, but my doctor’s office is closed on Monday, so they can’t tell me what they are until Tuesday. They will just be sitting there and I won’t be able to get to them.

I did alot of crying yesterday. ALOT. And now I am tired. I just don’t know how much more I can take. I am happy that there is a chance I’m pregnant, very happy. I just hope it is true and that this whole nightmare doesn't get worse by needing a D&C.

I didn't sleep well last night....I kept waking up with my heart racing. Tuesday seems so far away.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Things went about as well as I could have hoped for yesterday. The doctor I saw (not my regular family doctor, but I wouldn’t mind seeing him again in the future) felt the lump and said that it feels like a cyst. He has ordered a mammogram, an ultrasound and a needle biopsy just to be sure….all of the tests that I want to have done. I’m having the mammogram and ultrasound on August 31st and I call the surgeon I’ve been referred to tomorrow to make an appointment. I could have had the mammogram and ultrasound done today, but it was at the same time that we are meeting with the lawyer to close on the condo and the house. I don’t think a week will make much difference if it is bad anyway.

I felt so fragile all day yesterday, and several times today. On the GO train on the way to Oakville, I couldn’t concentrate on anything, I just stared out the window thinking of Jacob. Remembering the other time I took the train there to see my OB for my 16 week appointment, the first and last time I heard his heartbeat. It was the most wonderful sound. What I would give to hear it again, to have him with me again……

I got to the doctor’s office early because of the train schedule so I went to do the blood work my OB ordered first. There were only 2 people waiting when I got there and I got called back right away. Of course, who is standing behind the desk where I hand over the requisition? A pregnant woman who is about 7.5 months pregnant. A punch in my stomach would have hurt less. I was really hoping that she wasn’t the one who would take my blood and she wasn’t. I wondered if the person taking my blood would try to make small talk about my being tested for the HCG hormone and what I would say….I imagined it would go something like this:

Tech: So, you might be pregnant? Isn’t that exciting!

Me: Maybe, but if I am, I’m probably having a miscarriage. It could also be leftover tissue from when my baby was stillborn 2.5 months ago.

Tech: Stunned silence or a muttered ”I’m sorry”

If the pregnant lab tech had taken my blood, I wouldn’t have told her about Jacob. How could I tell a pregnant woman that my baby died while I was pregnant. It wouldn’t be fair.

After the tech left and I was applying pressure to my arm, I started crying. I had a few tears come down my cheeks, but I managed to stop them before she came back. As I was leaving, there was a new pregnant woman waiting to be seen, laughing with a friend. I got out of there so fast and burst into tears as soon as the door shut behind me.

While I was waiting for the train to come to go back to Toronto, there was a mother and 2 little boys waiting near me….about 3 and 5 years old. I just watched those boys for awhile, wondering if I would ever take my small children on the train and to the CNE. Will I ever hold my child’s hand? I wondered if that mother has ever lost a child or was she lucky and had 2 kids and no problems having those kids.

Once I was back on the subway, my eyes kept welling up with tears. I ended up putting on my sunglasses to hide it.

When I got home, I found a beautiful card from Carrie which brightened my day (thanks Carrie, I love it!). I started working, cleaning out the fridge and freezer, moving-related stuff. Ted got home and we talked about everything that happened at the doctor’s again (I called him right after the appointment). He said how relieved he was and that the thought of losing me really put our other worries about moving and finances and setting everything up into perspective. He is right, it did. He acted like he wasn’t worried about the lump when I first told him, which is what I needed at the time, but last night he admitted that he had been pretty worried.

Then I talked to a wonderful friend on the phone and actually laughed a lot with her. She can always make me feel better, but I was surprised how much I laughed, given how terrible I had been feeling.

Yesterday was really, really tough….the worst day that I have had in a few weeks. The tears were right below the surface the whole time. If I was still pregnant, I would have had an appointment yesterday morning to see my OB for a regular checkup. Instead I was having a blood test done to figure out why the heck I am still bleeding and getting tests ordered for a lump.

I want to thank everyone who left me a comment yesterday, sent me a note or called me. Every single one of you has helped me so much. Each time a new comment was left, I felt a little bit better. I can’t even begin to express how all of my BLM friends have helped. Knowing that so many people, who have been through their own horrible tragedies, were thinking about me definitely helped get me through the day.

Thank you all so much!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Breaking Point

My baby dying has made my threshold for stress lower than it was before and I have been feeling a lot of stress lately. I have been dealing with it – it is the usual stress that comes with moving, finances, my baby dying, my dreams for the future being dashed….you know, the usual. But it has been getting worse lately and at times today I have felt like I have come to a breaking point. When I started bleeding last Friday, 9 days after AF finished, it got worse. I have no idea why I am bleeding and I feel like it has ruined any chance of getting pregnant this month. That leaves me only one more month to try before Jacob’s due date in October. My hope is getting smaller and smaller that it will happen. I called my OB’s office yesterday and explained what was happening to the nurse. She talked to my OB, who has ordered an HCG blood test, which I will do today.

Then, late last night, I discovered a lump in my breast. I really don’t need this right now (or ever), on top of everything else. This isn’t the first one I’ve found one, but it is a new one and it scares me. It feels different than the others. My mind started running wild. What if it is cancer? What if I die? What if my husband loses his baby and his wife? He will be in the new house all alone. I can’t stand that thought. If I don't die, but it is cancer, I will have to go through all kinds of treatment and surgery AND I won't be able to get pregnant until that is all done, which would be a few years. And I would have to retrieve some eggs before that and store them so that they don't get damaged by the treatments. I was so anxious this morning. I cried, I felt more depressed than usual. I felt like I was reaching the breaking point. Last night when I got home, there was a card from a wonderful, dear friend (thanks Allison!). I have read and re-read that card so many times today. It helps me feel a little less stressed every time I read it. I have had encouraging words from the people that I have told about this latest development. People keep assuring me that it is probably nothing. I know that it probably is nothing, but what if it isn’t? It still makes me feel better to hear that though. I told Ted and he didn’t act worried at all, which makes me feel better.

I called my family doctor’s office. He isn’t there, but I said that I would see anyone, so I am going in today at 3:20. I hope that the doctor I see orders an ultrasound or something. I’m also going to ask if any autopsy reports came in after July 13th and ask for copies of those.

I don’t feel as panicky now as I did this morning. My heart is still pounding a little harder than usual though. I’ve been talking to Jacob more than usual since finding the lump, asking him to help me. I just lay in bed holding his blanket, crying and talking to him.

It doesn’t help that today is a Tuesday either.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Family Reunion

Dear Jacob,
Your Dad and I have been pretty busy lately, but you have never left my thoughts. Last Sunday, August 15, there was a family reunion on my Mom's side near Kingston, ON. Before the reunion, there were some emails going around about the planning. One of my Mom's cousins, Margie, was working on a family tree and she emailed my parents to get information about our husbands. They were at the cottage, so I replied with the information and asked that you be added to the family tree as well. She wrote back and said how sorry she was that we lost you, which I liked of course. I saw another email from her (that she sent to everyone) and she wrote that her son and her daughter-in-law wouldn't be able to make it. She also mentioned that they are expecting in October. I'm so glad they couldn't come. How could I have gone if she had been there, seeing how big she was, how big I should have been too? How her dreams were still alive and mine died on May 31st? I don't think I would have been able to go to the reunion. I would have felt bad missing it, but it would have just been too painful. I was a little worried that they would be able to make it afterall, but they didn't so that was a relief. 
As we were driving to Kingston, your Dad and I were talking about where I should get a tattoo of your name (my right shoulder blade or my left ankle – the left one because that was the leg that would have caused you some problems). Your Dad said I should get it on my ankle because then I can see it. I like my ankle for that reason and for the symbolism. I asked if he looks at his a lot and he said that he looks at it all the time. Sometimes he sits there and just rubs it and thinks about you. I wanted to cry when he said that, but I held back because I wanted him to keep talking. I thought it was so sweet that he has several moments everyday when he looks at it or rubs it and thinks of you. 
Margie put the family tree on some charts and taped them to a table. She saw me and pointed out where your name was. It was nice to hear her say your name and it was so nice to see it on the family tree. As everyone was looking at it, I wondered how many people were noticing you and noticing that your date of birth and date of death were the same. Would anyone come up and say anything to me or your Dad? 
They didn't. 
My Mom was talking to a few of her other cousins and I was there when she told Debbie that you died. Debbie said how sorry she was and we ended up talking about you and other related topics for about 20 minutes. She said she has had 2 miscarriages, but that she was nowhere near 5 months (which I was happy that she acknowledged that). I briefly told her how it happened and she asked if I had to deliver you and how and I said it was a regular delivery and that we held you for several hours. She has 4 kids, the last one came after the 2 miscarriages and we talked about their births and she said that the next one will be fine and stuff. She said that after I pass the 5 month mark with my next baby, it will be a huge hurdle for me and I’ll probably feel a lot better. That is true, and I said that I would be relieved, but I won’t be at peace really until I have a living baby in my arms because I’ve met so many women who have lost their babies right up until delivery and shortly after. She said that they can take the baby earlier though and everything would be fine because the baby could live. I didn’t bother saying that the baby could easily die before the doctor’s know there is even a problem……
As we were saying goodbye several hours later, she said that she would be thinking about us, which was nice. I heard my Mom tell a few others, but I wasn't with them at the time and they never came and said anything to me. Later on I was looking at the family tree again and Margie said how sorry she was  again, which was nice. I wonder if she felt especially affected since her grandchild is due around the same time you were and she imagined how horrible it would be if it happened to her grandchild. 
I knew this, but I hadn't thought about it in a long time. My great-grandmother (my mom's, Mom's Mom) had a baby boy who died at 1 day old in 1920. His name was Frederick and he was born after my grandmother (she had 9 kids, including Frederick). Mom told me about it years and years ago, but I had forgotten until today and several of my Mom's cousins were surprised when they discovered that. I saw it because I was looking at the family tree to see if there had ever been any other stillbirths and I saw his name. It must have been horrible for my great-grandmother. She also lost a son, Reg, in WW2. He was shot down somewhere over France or Germany. My uncle is named after him and so is my Mom's cousin (my Mom named a stuffed toy dog that she got as a little girl Freddie, after Frederick. We still have the dog). They had some pictures from the late 1800's onwards and there were a few of the original Reg. Seeing all the children of my grandmother's brothers and sisters made me think about who else would be there if Frederick and Reg had lived. If Frederick had lived, Debbie wouldn't have been there because her Dad was born after Frederick. Debbie's 4 kids wouldn't have been there, Irene wouldn't have been there, or her 2 kids or 4 grandkids. 
It was a cool day and it rained on and off, but it was still nice. Ben had a lot of fun. I got on a swing and asked him to push me. His little hands on my back felt so cute. He sat on my lap on the swing for awhile and liked that. 
I wasn't sure how I would do in such a large group of people. I haven't done well in the past...I can't concentrate, I daydream, I just can't focus. But it wasn't too bad this time. I can see how I am recovering. I never thought that I would be at this point again. I thought that I would always feel overwhelming sadness every second for the rest of my life, always on the verge of tears. Don't get me wrong, I am still sad and I still miss you every second. I can't do anything without thinking of what should have been, what could have been. I shouldn't have been able to wear the outfit I did to the reunion, it should have been packed away months ago because it didn't fit. I shouldn't have been lifting heavy things, I shouldn't be trying to get pregnant again now. There is no point in thinking like that, but I can't stop. 
I just miss you. I should have been at the reunion with a big belly and everyone coming up and rubbing it, asking questions...do I know if I'm having a boy or a girl, when is the baby due, does the baby kick alot. Questions I miss, questions I may never get to answer. 
Miss you baby,

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I had a nightmare on Friday night.

I had just given birth to Jacob. He was born at 21 weeks, but he hadn’t died before he was born and they tried to save him. I was in the NICU, which was a large circular room with babies in beds all over the room. I was walking quickly around and around the room trying to find him. I looked at each baby, but I knew that Jacob wasn’t one of them and I was getting more and more frantic by the minute. I couldn’t find a doctor or nurse to tell me where he was and I was feeling completely panicked. I started saying to whoever would listen that he was dead, I knew he was dead. I found my husband, Mom and sister Laurie standing together near a gurney, still in the NICU. I lay down on the gurney, completely worn out and hopeless. They were talking to a doctor. The doctor told them that Jacob was dead and that he had been dead for awhile. I asked him if he said that Jacob was dead and no one would answer me. Finally, Laurie said that he was dead. I turned over on my stomach, buried my face Jacob’s blanket and started screaming. I did at least 3 huge screams, screaming like I have never screamed before. I just wanted to die, I didn’t see how I could go on. I woke up then, my heart pounding. I was shocked that I wasn’t really screaming and that Ted was sleeping peacefully beside me. It was horrible.

I’ve thought about the dream a lot since then. All I want is a nice dream about Jacob, one that I can see his face in, feel his arms around my neck, feel his hand in my hand, but I got this dream. Sometimes I think that the dream was a way to relive what happened (although Jacob was already dead when he was born and was never in the NICU), and to show me another way that I could have reacted. When I found out that he died, I cried. I cried a lot. But I didn’t make a lot of noise. And there were periods of time when I didn’t cry, when I was just in so much shock and I just thought I had to be strong for others (even though I didn’t need to be). Maybe the dream was a way of releasing the emotions that I really felt on May 31st, I really wanted to scream, but I didn’t. The shock and everything else stopped me. I’ve screamed since then, but even then the screams were not like the ones in my dream. The ones in my dream still haunt me.

Then I had a really disturbing thought. What if I was dreaming of something to come. What if the baby I was looking for wasn’t Jacob, but my next baby? What if I lose another baby? Maybe I was screaming so much in the dream because I lost another one and this time I didn’t hold back. What if I do lose another one? I don’t care what the statistics say about the odds of having another stillbirth, I beat the odds this time (in more ways than one) and I can beat them again.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Siblings remember

I had another post in mind today, but then I saw this story in the paper.

I was reading the Globe and Mail and found an article about the former Prime Minister of Canada, Brian Mulroney. His son Ben and his wife just had twin boys (at a hospital not too far from where I work). It was so hard to look at the picture of Brian Mulroney with the twin boys, but something made me read the story. The first baby that was born was named after him. The second was named John. Brian Mulroney, as it turns out, had an older brother named John who died within hours of his birth June of 1935. They don’t know anything else about that baby and he said that it has troubled him and his siblings for decades. They have tried to reconstruct events, to interview people who might be able to provide some information and they have searched records with no result. He said that they want their brother John to know that he has never been forgotten and that they love the brother they never knew. They only know what city he is buried in, but they don’t know where. He said he often reflected on the sadness of the story and how powerless he was, even as Prime Minister, to make it right in any way.

I was so moved when I read this. Siblings don’t forget either. Siblings wonder and are troubled by what happened to their lost sibling, even 75 years later.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

I miss you

Dear Jacob,

I miss you so much. I miss you all the time, but I'm just missing you so much tonight. I can't seem to stop crying. I miss everything about you. I feel so lucky that I was chosen to be your Mom, I'm just so sad that I couldn't keep you.

Today Dad and I went out for dinner and sat on the patio, which faced the street. A pregnant woman walked by with a tank top on and I couldn't stop staring at her belly. I asked Dad if that was how big I was and he said that it was. It seems like so long ago....it is hard to believe that I was ever that big. I miss having you inside of me, I miss rubbing my belly, I miss feeling your kicks...what I would give just to feel you kick me again, just to hold you one more time.

I know I carry you around in my heart, I know that you are always with me and I know that you are an angel. But I didn't want an angel baby, I wanted a baby that I could raise, that I could teach, that I could just love more than anything. I do love you more than anything, but I can't hug you, I can't kiss you, I can't brush your hair, I can't kiss your cuts all better, I can't show you off to other people, I can't read you stories at night, I can't sing you lullabies, I can't watch you make a funny face when you try a certain food for the first time and don't like it, I'll never hear your sweet little voice and I'll never see your eyes light up when I walk in the room.

I am so proud of you baby. I was so proud of you at every ultrasound when the technicians said how much you were moving around, so much that it made it hard for them to get your measurements. It was ridiculous how proud I was of you. I watched you on the screen and saw you flipping from side to side, opening your mouth, stretching your neck, moving your arms and legs all around. I also remember staring at your arms and legs when I was holding you. They were so still. I couldn't believe that you had died, you had such a strong heartbeat and you moved around so much. How could you have been so healthy and then just died? I need an answer, but I'll never get one. Will I ever be at peace with that?

There are alot of songs that I've heard other babyloss mom's talk about, but I just couldn't make myself listen to them yet. When I was pregnant and emotional, every time the song "Wavin' Flag" came on the radio, I would start to cry because it made me think of all the injustice in the world and of all the suffering children. Your Dad and I would laugh at how I cried every time I heard it, it would start just by hearing the first few notes of the music. I just can't listen to that song now, it reminds me so much of when I was pregnant and so happy.

Tonight I listened to "I Will Carry You" by Selah. I read the book about the little girl that the song was written about, so I'd been meaning to find it. It is a beautiful song and I've been crying ever since I listened to it 2 hours ago.

I just hate that babies die, I hate that there is so much pain in the world and so many Mommy's, Daddy's, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles and friends are missing babies that died way too soon. That there are so many empty cribs,  broken hearts and lost dreams in the world.

I hate that we don't have you anymore. I hate that time is passing and each day takes me further away from the last time I held you and kissed you. I don't want to move further away from that time. I know that time makes the pain of losing you a little easier to bear most days, but I am still so devastated. I dreamed of you for so long and we wanted you so badly.

I love you so much.


Monday, August 9, 2010

Cottage weekend

Dear Jacob,

Dad and I went to the cottage this weekend. It is a place that you would have grown up going to every summer. I probably would have taught you how to swim there and we would have built sandcastles together down at the beach. I've imagined you there so many times.

 On the drive up, I suddenly felt so, so sad and it happened less than 5 minutes after leaving the condo. We stopped at Tim Horton's and your Dad ran in. I just starting sobbing in the car. I somehow felt like I was abandoning you by going to the cottage because I was leaving your things at the condo. I started to worry that the building would catch on fire and all of your things would burn up. I know it is all unreasonable and I go to work everyday and leave them there, but I just felt bad. I pulled myself together before your Dad got back, convincing myself that I didn't need to go back and get your things to bring with us.

 I was driving because your Dad was really tired. I kept crying on and off on the way up (while he was sleeping). I imagined how we would have driven there next summer with you in the back seat, listening to kids music the whole way. I would have been sitting back there with you of course, talking to you, playing with you. Now I will never get to sit in the back seat with you.

When we got to the cottage, your Grandma was sitting on the deck with Ben on her lap. I walked over and picked Ben up and got a nice hug from him. I can't help but think of you when he hugs me, what it would have felt like to have your arms around my neck, your cheek pressed up against my cheek, hearing your laugh and seeing you smile.

 Grandma surprised me with a gift. She was in one of the small towns near the cottage and saw a mug with butterflies on it and she bought it for me. She knows that butterflies remind me of you. I thought that was nice of her, especially after the "only" grandchild incident from last week (there was another little incident - Mom had written Ben's name in the sand, but not your name - I'm trying not to be too sensitive about it so I didn't say anything).

 Laurie and I took Ben out on the paddle boat, with Ben sitting between us. He kept leaning over and putting his left arm and hand on my thigh, basically using me as an arm rest. It was just adorable and I loved every minute of it, but as always my thoughts turned to you. I stared at Ben's little hand, imagining what your hand would have looked like.
As we were paddling around, I saw your Dad working on a project on the beach. He was gathering lots of little twigs and I gradually saw what he was working on as he progressed. I wanted to cry and smile at the same time. It was just beautiful.

I kept going back and checking on it all weekend, making sure that the water hadn't damaged it in any way. I wish we could have done something to it to make sure that it stayed there always.

Dad and I went for a long canoe ride, all the way around the lake (which was pretty good for me since my back has been bothering me). I try to enjoy things and just be in the moment. Sometimes it works for a few minutes, then I see something that reminds me of you. Something I would have like to show you, do with you or teach you. We would have taken you on so many canoe trips.  When I was little, your Great Grandma and Great Grandpa took me on canoe trips. I would sit in the middle of the canoe while they both paddled. We have that canoe now and I remembered doing that when I was a kid and imagined you sitting in the middle of the canoe. I'm sorry you will never get that chance. I'm sorry there are so many things you will miss out on. I just hope that things are even better where you are than they are here and that you are so happy there.

We had a BBQ for dinner and then roasted some marshmellows afterwards. On Sunday morning, I was the first one up. I had gathered some stones from the lake on Saturday and I wrote your name with the stones on the deck railing and then in the lake. It just seems like I can only really concentrate on an activity if it somehow involves you.

Later on, I was sitting at the lake with Ben and 11 ducks came by and were cleaning themselves close to the shore. As I held Ben on my knee, talking about the ducks, answering his "why" questions about everything, it hit me again that that is something I will never do with you.

I don't know why I have to compare everything that "is" to "what could have been". I know it never will be, that I will never do these things with you. No matter how much I wish and dream and imagine, it will never happen. It kind of seems like I am just making myself miserable by thinking about everything we will miss out on with you, but I can't stop. I don't want to stop. I suppose one day I will suddenly notice that I haven't done it, that I have just enjoyed the moment.

Despite all of my wishing and daydreaming and sadness, the weekend was still nice. The cottage is such a nice, peaceful place. There aren't many triggers (except everything I have written about so far - and more I didn't mention), but I didn't see any pregnant women or any small babies and it was so nice.

I hope we will bring your brothers and/or sisters there someday Jacob. You will always be a part of those trips. Every time I am there, from now until I die, I will write your name at the cottage somehow. Next time I Go, I'm going to pick out a tree and carve your name and Ben's name in it. It will become the tree where all of the kids' names are carved. You won't be left out. I promise.

When we got home, we did some packing and I talked to another Angel Mom, Allison. Our experiences are so similar and it was so nice talking to her. I bet that you and her little Drew are good friends up there.

Love you baby,


Friday, August 6, 2010

It's here

AF came today. I kept hoping that it wouldn't, but it did. So now it really is back to square one. No more hope that I am pregnant right now. I haven't cried about it yet, maybe because I was at work when it started. Just last night I was saying to Ted that 2 of the symptoms I often get when it is about to start haven't shown up yet, so I started to get hopeful again. 

I know this is only the first month that we have tried and that it would be pretty amazing if it did happen the first month, but it has happened to others so I hoped it would happen for us. 

I'm trying to look at the bright side. Maybe the baby we are meant to have isn't ready to be conceived yet (this point will only continue to make me feel somewhat better if I get pregnant in the next month).

We are moving at the end of the month. Maybe if I was pregnant now, the move would somehow hurt the baby. But I doubt it because I would know that I'm pregnant and I wouldn't lift a thing.

Maybe my body just isn't ready to carry a baby yet. Maybe by not getting pregnant this month, I am being saved from losing another baby. I'd rather wait another month (or 2) to get pregnant than lose another one. Of course, I would never want to change getting pregnant with Jacob. Even if I could have been saved all of the grief, he is my baby boy and I am so proud of him. I can't imagine not knowing him. I loved every minute that I was pregnant with him and every little kick made me happy beyond belief. Every ultrasound I went to was one of the highlights of my life (except for the last one). I loved seeing him move around, I was so proud that he wouldn't stay still for the measurement and that his heartbeat was so strong. I just couldn't believe that I was actually having a baby. I love that I got to carry such a special baby.

I'm just trying to come up with things to make me feel better, but I'm starting to feel more and more depressed about it.

My trigger for today is the cans of gingerale in the fridge. We bought them months ago when my nausea was really bad. I only had a few at the time. Now everytime I open the fridge they are right there. I also have a can of apple juice in there that I never opened. I used to pour it in water bottles and drink it on the subway on the way to work. It was the only thing that kept me from throwing up on the train (until I discovered Werther's Originals). 

I've had some cramps and back pain today, but I haven't taken anything for it. Before I got pregnant with Jacob, I would have. Part of me thought that I shouldn't just in the off chance that I was actually pregnant and just having some spotting (AF was light this morning). I am also in the mindset of not taking any pills, except vitamins. I didn't take anything other than vitamins when pregnant with Jacob, not even tylenol,  and it seems strange to me that I am allowed to now. 

I hope we get some good news at the beginning of September. It would be a nice way to start out our lives at our new house.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Back to square one

I am almost at the end of the 2ww and I should know in the next few days whether or not I am pregnant. I'll be so incredibly disappointed if I'm not. When we were trying to get pregnant the first time, I was pretty disappointed as each month went by and AF showed up. But that disappointment is nothing compared to what it will be this time.

I bought some pregnancy tests the other day but I haven't used any of them yet. I'm scared to. I still cry everyday for Jacob, but I will just be adding to the grief and uncertainty about the future if I find out I'm not pregnant this month. I have this goal of being pregnant before Jacob's due date in October. I know his due date will be incredibly hard whether I am pregnant or not, but at least I will have a new pregnancy to give me hope, a new baby to think about and be excited about. I know I will also be worried the whole time and I won't relax until I have a breathing, healthy baby in my arms.

Childbirth used to seem a little scary to me. Now it isn't as scary, I guess since I've been through it (even though Jacob wasn't full-term). I know I was fortunate that his birth was a relatively easy one, especially since he was breech and that could have caused a bunch of other problems. What is scary now is being pregnant...will I get past the first trimester? Will I get past the second trimester this time? Will the baby be healthy? Will the baby live?

I hate that I am back to taking my temperature every morning, that I obsess if it goes down even a tiny bit. I keep comparing my temperature to what it was when I got pregnant with Jacob and it is close so far, but that doesn’t necessarily mean anything.

I get little symptoms here and there. If I feel a wave of nausea (which always goes away quickly), I wonder. If something smells stronger than it usually does, I wonder. One of the first signs that I was pregnant with Jacob was that I couldn’t stand the smell of bananas. I'm really trying to tell myself that I'm not pregnant and that it's not the end of the world if I'm not, but I’m still hopeful. I tell myself that it might even be better if I’m not because it gives my body that much more time to get ready for a pregnancy. And besides it just taking time to get pregnant in general, it might take a little longer because of my age and because of the damage to my right fallopian tube. If only I could know when I would get pregnant, then I could relax a little......

I hate being back to square one in the pregnancy game. I hate even more that I should be 30 weeks pregnant today with Jacob and all I have are a few items, some pictures, my memories and my tears.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Baby Memoriam - found in paper

I found this in a major Toronto newspaper on July 28, 2010 and it had me in tears. I still cry every time I read it again.  I couldn't imagine not knowing for 43 years where my baby was buried. There are so many babies there, so much heartbreak....

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Ben is their only grandchild? What about Jacob?

So it is Tuesday and Tuesdays are typically bad days for me. I had a surprise last Tuesday when I noticed that it was 10:30am and I hadn’t relived what happened the day Jacob was born from 6-9am like I had always done since he was born. No such luck today. I am reliving it all, sitting here crying at my desk as I do.
We got the cats back on Friday so I got up 15 minutes early today to spend some time with them before getting ready and leaving for work. I lay on the couch and turned on HGTV and Colin and Justin’s Home Heist was on. When I was pregnant, I always got up a few minutes early and lay on the couch feeling my belly and would watch the end of that show. Well, it just brought it all back and I started crying and crying as I lay there. Oliver came and lay on my chest and put his paw on my cheek. It was pretty cute, but I just want my baby back.

I got really upset over something on the weekend. We have a big family reunion on my Mom’s side of the family on August 15th. The organizer sent an email to each family asking how many people are coming. My parents wrote back and said that each of their kids, their kids spouses and their only grandchild Ben would be attending. Their *only* grandchild. Who was that baby they all held on June 1 and cried over? Did they really have to use the word *only*? Couldn’t they have just said their grandchild Ben? I called my Mom and told her that I was upset about it. She said that all of her friends talk about their grandchild that way if it is their only one. They always say “only grandchild” before the child’s name. But do they all have one living grandchild and one dead grandchild? I don’t think so. And they cc’d me on the email, so they knew that I’d see it. Also, the email was sent (and I saw it) on the 2 month anniversary of Jacob’s birth. They didn’t say a thing to me about it being 2 months, no one in my family did, but they sent that email and twisted the knife a little bit more. I am trying to get over it, but I’m having trouble. I know they didn’t write it to hurt me or deny Jacob’s existence, but couldn’t they have been a little more thoughtful about it. My Mom is usually really worried about hurting people’s feelings - didn’t it occur to her that this would hurt mine?

I’m so grateful to all of my babyloss Mom friends who acknowledged his 2 month birthday. I would have been even more of a mess that day then I was if no one had. I appreciate you all soooo much.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Two months

Dear Jacob,
Today is 2 months since you were born. Two months ago at this time, I was in active labour and the pain was so bad and I was so sad. The sadness hasn’t changed. I am sitting here sobbing as I write this. I can't believe that it has been so long. I can't believe that I haven't held you in 2 months, I can't believe that I haven't been pregnant in 2 months. My heart is broken. I miss you so much.

I woke up this morning after having another dream about you. We had already lost you. I was at a ski hill and I sat beside someone who was 5 months pregnant and started crying because I should have been pregnant too. I woke up feeling horrible. I'm having so many dreams lately that have to do with you and it is so painful when I wake up. Usually you are alive in the dreams, but I never get a clear view of your face. How I would love to see your face. I don't want to stop dreaming about you, no matter how painful it is when I wake up.

I wasn't sure if anyone would remember that today is 2 months. I checked my email when I first got up and there was an email from another Angel Mom. She sent it very early this morning and said that she knows today will be a hard day and she will be thinking about me throughout the day today. That means sooo much to me. Now even if no one else says anything (I would still like my family to say something), someone has (THANK YOU CARRIE!). Today is 2 months since her little boys were born too, so it will be hard for her as well. Can you, Caleb and Lucas help us through the day today? It would make your Mommy's feel so much better if you could send us a sign today.

I had so many dreams for you baby. When I was lying on the ultrasound table on May 13th and found out that you were a boy, your whole future suddenly flashed before my eyes. I imagined carrying around my baby boy (I still couldn't believe I was actually having a baby, I felt so fortunate), showing you to everyone, rocking you to sleep, singing you lullabies, breastfeeding, watching you and your cousin Ben grow up together, watching your first steps, hearing your first words, your first day of school, feeling your arms around my neck, having you call for me when you were upset or hurt, taking you to the cottage....all the way up to your wedding day. I already planned to be close to your wife so that we would all see alot of each other. I enjoyed lying on the table being the only person in the world, other than the ultrasound tech, who knew you were a boy. I was looking forward to telling your Dad. I knew he would be so excited (and he was - I remember the call like it was yesterday). I thought about the people who had guessed you were a boy and was looking forward to telling them they were right when most people were guessing that you were a girl. I had that ultrasound because I'd had a little bleeding. After I got the results and they said everything looked fine and they couldn't see a reason for the bleeding, I never imagined that just 2.5 weeks later, I would find out that you had died and deliver you. I wish I could go back to May 13th, I wish I could change something so that things worked out the other way and you lived.  I wish I could live those last few weeks with you again.

Your Dad daydreams about you talking your first steps, shakily walking towards him and how adorable that would be. He daydreams about you jumping into our bed in the morning when we are still sleeping. I always remember him holding you. Sitting on the side of the hospital bed, holding you wrapped up in your Peter Rabbit blanket and just staring at you. My heart was already broken at that point, but it shattered just a little more.

You and your Dad
I'm glad that I know so many of your playmates. I really think that you all brought your Mom's together because you knew who we needed to help us. I am so grateful for every woman that I have met. I never imagined that I would make so many new friends on May 31st and June 1st. I had no idea that such a big community of baby loss mom's existed and although I am so grateful for it, I hate that there is a need for it.

We are trying to have another baby Jacob, and sometimes I feel guilty about that. Trust me, I really wish that I was still pregnant with you instead. I really want you. If there was something I could do to bring you back, I would do it. I will always miss you. I will miss you every single day, I will miss you in every family picture, on every vacation, on what should have been your first day of school (I can already picture myself looking out the window at the school across the road on that day in 5 years and crying because it won't be your first day of school), at every birthday party for Ben, on the dates that should have been your birthday parties, at every holiday......just every single day.

I hope you know how much I love you. I hope you felt it when I was carrying you. I loved you from the second I suspected that I was pregnant. I loved you before I was even pregnant. Despite all the nausea, every second that I carried you was bliss. It was the happiest time of my life. I thought about you all the time, just as I do now, but I was so happy then, so excited. I hope you know how much I still love you and that I will always love you this much. No matter how many more kids we have, I will always love you so much, just as much as I'll love them. They will always know that they have a big brother who is watching over them.

When I do things with your brothers and/or sisters, I will imagine you there with us. When I take them swimming, I will imagine that you are there too. When they have a birthday party, I'll imagine what it would have been like if you were there too....helping me get decorations and plan games. Every time we eat dinner, I will imagine you sitting at the table too. Sometimes I don't know how I am supposed to go on now that you won't be here for all of those things.

I was looking at the little Teddy Bear that the hospital gave us when you were born and I've decided that I want to be buried with it and with your Peter Rabbit blanket.  Sometimes I wish we had kept your cremated remains so that I could be buried with them, but I'm also glad that they are at the garden in the church and that other people know they are there. There were some kids playing on the lawn in the garden a few weeks ago and I liked thinking that there were other kids there near you. I also like that your name is recorded in the book at church of who is buried in the garden. When the page is turned to June every June, people who look at it will see your name and may briefly wonder about you.

I just miss you so much baby. I love you so much. I can't explain just how sad I am, just how heartbroken I am. I love you, I love you, I love you. I would go through the hell that the last 2 months has been all over again if I could just hold you one more time.

Love forever,