Friday, May 13, 2011

My birthday, then and now

I wrote and posted this on May 11th, but blogger had some technical difficulties and deleted it.

May 11, 2010

A Tuesday and my birthday. I had a nice day, until dinner. Jessie took me out to lunch to a crepe place and they were delicious. She gave me 2 maternity tank tops and a blue blouse that wasn’t maternity, but worked well for it just the same. My colleagues had taken me out for lunch the day before, I think, to a sushi place. I had cucumber rolls, being as careful as I could not to eat anything that I shouldn’t.

Ted took me out for dinner to East Side Mario’s. As we were turning into the parking lot of the restaurant, I was having some lower back pain, similar to the pain I get when I have my period. I thought it was strange, but was relieved that I didn’t have any cramps.

We got into the restaurant, ordered and then I went to the bathroom because I just had to check. I was scared when I saw some brown blood in my underwear. I washed my hands and was drying them when I felt more come out and a wave of nausea and fear went through me. I went back in the stall and saw some bright red blood, about a teaspoon full. My hands started shaking, but I tried to reassure myself that there wasn’t much blood and I wasn’t having any cramping.

I didn’t tell Ted about the bleeding until after dinner. I didn’t want him to worry. I didn’t enjoy the dinner at all, because I was just so worried the whole time. As we walked to the car, I told him and he said that his ex had some bleeding with Keshia around the same time and she was/is fine, so he wasn’t worried. That helped reassure me a little. I also didn’t have any more bright red blood come out again.

We got home and I lay on the couch until it was time to go to bed. I had a terrible sleep. My heart was racing all night.

May 11, 2011

Last year on this date, I thought I would have a baby in my arms for my next birthday. Then he died and I couldn’t even see as far into the future as my next birthday. Most of the time, I couldn’t see as far as the next week. Then I was pregnant with August, which ended before I even knew it. Then I was pregnant with Cub and thought that I would be pregnant on my birthday, not going through a bunch of tests to figure out why I have now had 3 losses.

Even so, my birthday this year wasn’t as bad as it could have been. As I thought it would be, thanks to all of the people who reached out to me.

I received a gift in the mail a few weeks ago and through an amazing feat of willpower, didn’t open it until the morning of my birthday. It is a beautiful garden stone with 3 butterflies on it.

We had an appointment with the genetic counselor, so I spent my lunch hour there. There was, of course, a pregnant woman in the waiting room…around 5 months pregnant. The worst stage for me to see. She looked mad in general. She pulled out her ipad and she was called shortly after and looked annoyed as she put it away. That annoyed me and I wished I could tell her a few things.

The genetic counselor, Allison, was nice, soft spoken and easy to talk to. She went through a detailed family history. I mentioned Jacob’s name once and a few minutes later, she said his name again, which I loved. When I first told her about him, she asked how we were doing and I said that it is day by day. She told us about some genetic causes of recurrent loss, including translocation. When she left the room to see if the lab was ready for us, Ted said he was now even more amazed that any of us are here, after learning about more ways that things could go wrong. We had some blood taken and left.

Jessie sent me an email around 1 and asked if I would be around for her to drop off a gift. She came around 1:30pm and we went outside to a nearby courtyard. The card she chose was perfect. It said how we have been through good times and bad, laughter and tears, etc. She made it more perfect by mentioning Jacob in it.

She got me a pink shirt from Jacob, wrapped in tissue paper with “JACOB” stamped on it, a small gumball dispenser (because I had one when I was a teenager) and some candy she knows I like. Jessie is also the cake maker in the family because she decorates them so well. Since she hadn’t made a cake, she bought a really cute cupcake and brought that for me.


Melanie, my coworker, had asked before if I wanted to go out for lunch with the department, but I had said no. So she bought a card, had everyone sign it and then brought me into the meeting room for a “meeting”, which I knew was a ruse. They were all there and we had cupcakes. It was nice.

I told Ted I didn’t want to go out for dinner since we were in a retaurant last year when I started bleeding. Just the thought of going to one filled me with anxiety. We picked up the car from Canadian Tire, got some take out Swiss Chalet and went home to eat.

A little later, Mom called and asked if she and Ben could come by with a gift. They came about 30 minutes later and Ben walked in the house and announced “We got you a present!”. He was fun to have around, all smiles and questions.

My Dad emailed me a few days ago and said that we should do something extra nice for my birthday, like going to the zoo, Toronto Island, the museum or Niagara Falls. I think it is so sweet that he is trying to plan something special, but all of those places will have pregnant women and babies. I told him this and he was understanding. I think we are getting together at Laurie’s house on the weekend and will BBQ or get pizza or something. That will be a lot of hours around the baby, but maybe I am strong enough for it now. Time will tell.

I talked to Jacob, as I do everyday. I managed not to cry.


Anonymous said...

We share a birthday...Happy Birthday to you, and may your every birthday wish come true.
I will be thinking of you and Jacob tomorrow.

Olivia's Mom said...

Happy Birthday! I'm glad that so many caring friends and family surrounded you on your day and Jacob was remembered in such sweet ways! :)

Anonymous said...

Happy birthday mamma...

car said...

I wish there was an alternative greeting to Happy Birthday, because it has to be hard for you to associate your birthday with happy after last year. It sounds like your family and friends did their best to take of you today and that clearly means a lot.

Rhiannon said...

Happy belated Birthday, Dana! I know that I am totally dreading my birthday this year since that is the day that everything started going wrong last year in my pregnancy with Harper.

I am glad that you had so many people do such thoughtful things for you and Jacob on your birthday. You are loved by many. ((hugs))

Elaine said...

I'm glad you were able to enjoy your day, even while missing your boy so much. MMM the cupcakes look delicious!

Drew's Parents said...

I hope today is gentle on you, Dana! I will be thinking about your this afternoon and sending you lots of strength and love. I am glad that your birthday was a little easier than expected. It looks like you received many sweet messages and gifts. Yet another indication of the impact you and Jacob have had on so many. <3 <3 <3 I love you!