Friday, June 22, 2012

Guest Post: Right where I am - 3 months, 3 weeks and 3 days

Veronica sent me a beautiful email describing the birth of her first son and about what her life has been like since Alexander was stillborn February 27, 2012. She was 41 weeks and two days pregnant. So much rang true to me in her words, helped me connect with Lucia's birth, again. That is what is so beautiful about this community--someone else's story helps you grieve your own story. I was so humbled and honored to bear witness to her experience. (Kind of keeping my fingers crossed that Veronica starts her own blog.) She also included a guest post for Right Where I Am. She describes herself this way, "I'm Veronica. I turned 28 this past December while I was pregnant.  I was thrilled to be having a baby before my big 3-0.  I live in southern Ontario, Canada, and have worked meaningless, well paying jobs for the majority of my adulthood.  I own a home with my ..boyfriend, or no…partner, or ahhum… MAN who I spend my life with who I’ve been with since...forever..." 

Wherever it is, I am exactly there.  And with every day that has passed and with every day that will come, I will be right where I am.  I have often mulled over where I could be or should be, but in looking at this process, I with all my heart accept myself right where I am, all the time. 

I think about him – my son who died – every day, every second of every minute.  I feel like he exists alongside me in exactly where he is supposed to be and where he actually is – sometimes in life, and sometimes in death.  He is here, as the growing infant he was supposed to be and simultaneously he is here, always dead and only almost born alive.  Sometimes I feel him nowhere, as my missing him takes his place.  If I let it, the missing lives heavily in my heart, and throughout my day.

My emotions on a page seem microscopic in comparison to what they really are.  They are enormous and uncontainable.  I have wicked day dreams of jarring them all up, and sorting them all out, and placing them in the proper place in my life… one day I’ll label them when I figure out what they’re all called.  But instead, they whirl around me, sometimes causing havoc, and other times letting me sleep soundly.

Today, three months, three weeks and three days after he died – it doesn’t seem too heavy.  Today, it seems more a part of me than something that was done to me.  My observant self can attest that this feeling is fleeting.  But myself that sits here in front of this computer tells me it is how I feel today.  I’ve never known of someone who has the ability to take part in my every waking thought – but he does.  I didn't know someone was able to be the life behind every emotion, every smile and every tear – but he is.

We just picked up his ashes last weekend.  Horrible, I know.  Three months to pick out an infant urn.  I’d say if I had to do it again… but then I stop and hope that I won’t.  So three months to pick out my first born dead child’s urn is exactly right.

We got the full autopsy results back the week before the urn was ready.  Seemed fitting how the timing worked out.  From the outside looking in, it could seem comforting to have his remains knowing why he died.  Closure if you will.  Nah, still just shitty “to-do” aftermath.

A love note slips out of my subconscious…

My heart belongs to you.  You have it without my will.  You have me in true love with you.  I long for the time where we’re together at last, but I’ll try to enjoy this in between.  I’ll love you to my death, as I loved you to yours, and forever and ever after that.

I’ll meet you on the other side.  I promise I’ll be there, but we’ll both have to wait patiently.  I love your mid night visits in my dreams, as you rest on my chest.  I’ll see you soon my baby boy.

Love Mommy

I am light-as-a-feather… floating … floating … curling in the light wind.  I am a speck of something mixed with nothing all wrapped up in mystery and clarity for all except everyone to see.  My extensions are followed by glowing dust… I didn’t know I was so magical.  If I touch it, it will sparkle … so go on, turn the moss into emerald green.  Do anything you want.  He must be here with me now, because I could not be doing this on my own.  I didn’t posses this power before.  I thought, one day maybe I would, maybe I could, but now I truly can, and I truly am.  I had magic in my belly, all that time.  Why should I be sad?  It was only the human expectation that got let down.  But not me, not now… now, I can finally fly.

Who was that?  My spirit talking?  Or just a childlike emotion bubbling to the surface who wants out?  I don’t know.  But who ever that is, she is right where I am too.

I know how simultaneously liberating and captive losing a child can make you feel.  I walk along side both all the time.  Right where I am now is looking to have this inactive state transform.  Looking to have all of my everything finally channeled into something that means something to me, and maybe to someone else.

I am sad.  I am sad he is not here.  But everything that’s been said about the feeling getting lighter, and softer… I can concur.  I do face plant every now and again into really hard emotions, and sometimes the turnaround feels harder than it did in the early days.  But when the turnaround comes, it feels less foreign.  And staying in the turnaround feels, dare I say, normal.   It’s ok to DO things I like, and not just go through the motions.  My creative side is budding up again.  I don’t know when it was originally planted (at my conception I assume), but I haven’t seen it in bloom since long before I was even pregnant.  Even if my release these days is ignited by grief, and my will to create is steamed in losing a child, I’ll take it.  Because I love her blossom, and I haven’t seen her in a while.  And it’s been a real shitty road to get to her again, but right where I am, I’m glad to have her back.

I’ve made a promise to myself to not do the things I know are not worth my while.  When you know better, you do better, right?  I’ve always known that – but it’s time for me to start acting like it.  I know what kind of work makes me happy – so I’ll do that.  I know what kind of social life is empty and pointless, so I’m not going to take part anymore.  I know what kind of emotions are not healthy to dwell on, so I’m just going to feel from now on… no more dwelling.

I don’t look ahead these days, right where I am.  I don’t plan.  I let go of timing things in my life according to the way I’m supposed to live.  I’m not going to live recklessly!! (Even though sometimes the urge is there) But it seems exhausting to plan out what I’m going to be doing in the years to come after my baby died.  My plans got pretty turned around a few months ago, and I didn’t have a back up.  So maybe it’s better to just NOT HAVE A PLAN at all.  Today is Wednesday, in the month of June, the year is 2012, and I’ll probably have dinner later, and would like to do some more writing tomorrow, and I’d like to see D when he comes home tonight, and maybe I’ll go back to school one day, and I look forward to when I’ll be spending more time with kids when they’re at a cool interactive age telling me about what they like about school and baseball games, and man wouldn’t I love to have Alexander here while I think all these things… but right where I am right now, that’s about it – and I don’t consider any of it a plan.

I didn’t plan to become pregnant, and there I was.  I didn’t plan to have a baby boy named Alexander, and there he was.  I didn’t plan to have him die while I was 41 weeks and two days pregnant, but there it all was.  And I didn’t have the slightest plan as to how the hell I’m going to come out of all this, but here I am, right where I am at that.


  1. You are a beautiful writer. I'm so sorry you lost Alexander.
    Since my loss my perspective has shifted so much also. I am taking a job that in the long run will probably pay me less but that I know I will love. I want to squeeze as much happiness out of this life as I can. But I also don't want to plan. I want to feel free and released from the ticking clock and pressure to do or to be.
    thank you for sharing where you are right now.

  2. Wow - three months. There was so much here that I want to comment on, things I nodded at ... but I'm three YEARS out. For you to be able to articulate this at three months with such grace and eloquences. Just WOW. The love and the magic that is in your life because of Alexander poured out of your words. Thank you for sharing.

    I agree with Angie, you need a blog ... or a book.

  3. Beautifully said. This captures the conflict and the complications of life after loss so well.

  4. wow, this is an extraordinary piece of writing that captures many of my own thoughts and feelings. Thank you.

  5. This was a stunning piece of writing. I so wish you didn't have the need to write this though, and that Alexander was snuggled up beside you, right where he is supposed to be.
    I could relate so much to this. I lost my first born daughter past her due date, and I was 28 when she was born and was glad to have been having a baby before I turned 30 as well. I felt so god damn lucky. Everything was going so well, until everything turned to shit.
    Three months is.... so incredibly tough. I am thinking of you, and like Angie, hope you start a blog of your own because your writing is captivating.
    I'm so sorry for your devastating loss.

  6. Beautiful beautiful, beautiful. I'm so sorry for the loss of your sweet boy, Alexander. Wishing you peace and healing

  7. Veronica, this is absolutely beautiful. It just knocks the breath out of me, with exhilaration and gut wrenching sadness. There is so much that I would like to comment upon and echo.

    I feel like he exists alongside me in exactly where he is supposed to be and where he actually is Sometimes I feel that our babies have simply escaped the laws of the physical world that binds those of us who are still alive, as though they slipped free. But I am so deeply sorry the missing, I know it lies heavily upon the heart.

    And I think I might know how those emotions actually are. I crumple up my own, pin them to a page and they look so tiny. But they don't feel small, they feel as though her death unleashed something all consuming. At least at times. None of these things appear to be fixed maybe?

    That feeling of splitting, of observing. Some dry, wry part of my brain sitting and commenting upon my own behaviour. That feels familiar to me.

    And I could write something about every paragraph but perhaps I had better stop there. I'm so sorry for the loss of your son, your Alexander. Magic. They leave us here, simultaneously captive and freed, and sometimes I do believe that they leave gifts.

  8. Oh and hoping along with Sally and Angie, if it feels right for you.

  9. This is beautiful, Veronica. Thank you for sharing your Alexander with us here, and for sharing the magic of your words. I related so much to your post - maybe the parts about planning/not planning especially.

    Much love to you.

  10. Sending you lots of love as you remember and love Alexander. Three months is so close, yet so far, it seems. Thank you for sharing this, and him. xo

  11. Thank you all for you loving words, support and acknowledgment... It all means so much during this tender time. I am reaching out more and more, comfortably talking about Alexander and his birthday with more and more people. I don't know where I'll go from here, but I'm happy to step out into this community with all of you (beautiful parents) by my side.


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