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Showing posts from September, 2010

To be present

"Let us not look back in anger, nor forward in fear, but around in awareness." James Thurber  Feeling lost, a little lonely.  Choosing to spend a lot of time alone, and it feels right, but I am human and I miss people.  I did go to Aquafit today.  The instructor introduced belts this week (I much prefer these over the standard noodles).  Well, she has used them before, but this is the first week I have been there for the fun.  It was a tough workout.  My abs hurt, as do my legs, and my arms.  It was a good change, though.  No quick soak in the hot tub after as we are thinking about pregnancy again and I don't want to inadvertently boil something, or someone.  I've spent the past few days in quiet contemplation, trying to be thankful, and grateful, for everything I have.  I am doing my best to accept that I am here, living each day in an intense emotional state of grieving, learning, and growth, and that here is where I need to be though I wish I were somewhere, anywh

Dreams and nonsense

The dreams came fast and furious last night.  I rarely remember my dreams, but I woke up this morning with two of them stored in a memory pocket in my brain that I wasn't aware existed. First Dream: An earthquake is coming.  No one knows how big it is going to be, or when exactly it will hit, but it is coming tomorrow.  I am in a panic, running around, not sure what to do, and the husband is calm.  He is certain the earthquake won't come.  I keep watching the dog, because when she starts to act strangely I am going to follow her cues and find a doorway or dive under a table.  A day goes by, no earthquake.  Then the husband prepares to leave.  I follow him around wherever we are (it's not a house, more like a random building and a lot of barren land in the desert) frantically asking why he is leaving me now  when I don't know what to do when the earthquake hits.  There is talk of me being lost and not knowing what to do in a crisis without him.  He leaves.  I stay.  

Questions on a Monday morning

I am in bed, and I know I need to get up, shower, walk out the door, drive 45 minutes, settle in at the desk at the bookstore, and work.  I always feel better when I go, but she sun is shining and all I want to do is pull the covers over my head and disappear. We went to a friend's house last night to hang out and play games.  I've been avoiding these friends most of the summer.  They are three bachelor boys, and I love two of them dearly, and kind-of know one of them, and they are sweet, and kind, but not what I needed this summer.  The husband needed them.  He spent a lot of time at their house, and he still goes over at least once a week.  One of the bachelors has a girlfriend and he wanted us to meet her.  Or so the husband told me.  That's how he got me out of bed and over to their house.  I threw a fit an hour before we had to leave, because I wanted to stay in bed.  He eventually wrangled me into going by saying, "You made a commitment," and "T wants

Sometimes we have fun around here

This is our new version of hide and seek  Isabel isn't too sure about it, but I like it.  She prefers it when we hide around the house and she has to find us.  I accidentally grabbed the old camera so the quality isn't great. Hide and Seek from Angela Rodman on Vimeo .


I made a mistake on my blog award post!   Transient Zeitgeist is not  a private blog.  Go give Laurie some love. I have been told by many people in my life that they have watched the video of Charlotte multiple times.  To make it a little easier I added a page on the right side of my blog underneath Charlotte's birth story.  Now it is easy to find and can be watched as many times as a person desires.  Thanks for the love; it took me a long time to create that little video. We have now received four donations for our walk on October 16th.  Thank you to everyone who has donated so far.  We have enough for five memorial boxes for grieving families.  I am sad there will be five families who will require these boxes, but it is good they will have a few sweet memories of their babies.   Faces of Loss, Faces of Hope now has merchandise !  I just purchased a sweatshirt with Charlotte's name and date of birth on the back.  I love it and can't wait to wear it.  I also purchase

You Deliver Me

I received a bill in the mail yesterday.  Nearly $1,200.00 for a physician in the ER.  The bill was for Critical Care - 1st hour - and CPR.  I think it's wrong to be charged for an hour of critical care when Charlotte died shortly after arriving in the ER, but that's medical bills for you.  A few days ago I put all of Charlotte's medical records and bills away so I wouldn't have to see them sitting on the coffee table every day.  After ranting and raving for a while I went upstairs, hauled out Charlotte's medical bills, and called the company.  I was so mad that I had to go upstairs, take the files out, and revisit everything all over again.  There was a lot of stomping, many sighs, papers were flapped about, and slapped, and I wanted to throw something heavy out the window, shattering glass and scattering fragments of wood, so the whole world (or at least my little neighborhood) would know of my sorrow and anger. I called the company in a panic because the bill w

Blog Award

Thank you to Alissa at On KK's Butterfly Wings   and  Elaine at Waves Over Stones for my first blog award.  I'm not sure if it counts as two since it is the same one, but I feel very loved.  This blog award is flying all over the place so if you receive more than one, I apologize.  Here are the rules: 1. Accept the award and post it on your blog with the name of the person who has granted the award and his/her blog link. 2. Pay it forward to 10 other bloggers that you have recently discovered. 3. Contact those blog owners and let them know they have been chosen. It was hard to choose, but here's my ten: 1. Emmett & Everett Forever Our Little Buddies (This is a private blog, but Leslie is wonderful and I had to nominate her. 2. Owl and Leaf  3. Pinkskys and Dragonflys 4. Transient Zeitgeist (This one is private too - sorry). 5. The Story of Ethan James 6. Life After Benjamin 7. daily amos 8. For the Love of Harper 9. Memories for Molly 10. The Peeks  


I am feeling a little better.  The husband came home with chocolate and eggs so we had breakfast for dinner and I spent the evening in bed watching the first season of Friday Night Lights and eating chocolate.  (It is said that the only way out is through, but I think my way out, or at least to a more stable place, because really there is no out, just may involve 15 or more pounds of chocolate).  This is also how I spent my day, but I did get out of bed to make French toast and shower (as I mentioned in my last post - probably wouldn't shower if the husband wasn't around). I think, no I know, I am having a hard time right now because we are standing at the trying to conceive crossroads and I don't know whether to go left or right.  How do I go forward from here?  How do I make the decision to try and bring another life into this world when I failed so spectacularly the first time around?  I can't wrap my head around it.  I know my decision, I know what I want to do, b

I am so tired

It's cold today, but tomorrow it's supposed to warm up again.  I am ready for fall, I think I've made that clear, but it's not ready to settle in yet.  I woke up this morning and thought, The house is too cold.  The baby must be freezing.  We are terrible parents.   And then I remembered there is no baby to worry about.  Charlotte is dead and we never had the chance to be terrible, or good, parents.  She never lived here outside of me so why do I imagine she is here four months after I birthed her and she died? I'm tired of this - the grieving, the sadness, the guilt; the feeling of never really being happy, but merely existing because I cannot wrap my mind around the other alternative: to not exist.  I am tired of running into people and pulling out my stock answers every time, because I don't know what else to say.  It goes something like this: It's so good to see you! Yes, I'm up, I'm out.   I usually throw my arms out at this point.  It'

"You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you."

I told myself I wouldn't write here today.  I posted twice yesterday so I thought I would take a break, but I just can't quit daily blogging.  I think a lot, I write a lot, and most days some of those thoughts and words end up here.  This will be a short one though, I promise. I am not writing as furiously as I was a week or two ago, but I am still writing a lot.  I've combined some of my earlier writing, from those initial days of loss, with my current writing, and I am beginning to wonder if it is something I want to share.  I am circling, circling, circling the idea, but not yet ready to commit to anything.  It feels good to write.  My wrists ache, my shoulders hurt, but the pain stems from creativity, and I am unable to stop writing so I will work through the pain.  When I am sitting immobile on the couch and suddenly get hit upside the head with the urge to write it feels wonderful.  Perhaps the words I write will never leave my living room, but each sentence I finis

Mary Poppins & Grief

This is what happens when I can't fall asleep.  I lay in bed tossing and turning, I start thinking about Mary Poppins, or some other random thing, and then I eventually throw off the covers and wander out to the couch to write because I won't be able to fall asleep until I do. Have decided we need someone to take over our lives for a while, because we are not managing the small things very well.  On Saturday we received a water shut-off notice and I instantly went into crazy hen mode (running about, flapping my arms and screeching - so maybe it’s actually crazy owl mode).  The husband calmly informed me he had missed one payment, but had rectified the situation and the letter was probably sent before the payment was received.  This did not stop the freaking out; once that gets going I am helpless to turn it off. A couple weeks before the bright yellow water shut-off notice appeared in our mailbox (still recovering from that, it was really bright.  As soon as I saw the color

I don't think you ever get over it

This is a whole lot of rambling and wandering, but at the end, the final paragraph, there is something I really want to share.  Feel free to skip down to it, I'm not making much sense tonight. I worked at the bookstore today.  I want to sit at home and be sad day in and day out, but it is good for me to pull myself together and show up at the store one day a week.  When I walk into the office there is a pile with my name on it.  I love having something I can do that is helpful.  I carry a stack of catalogs, or as I did today a box of catalogs, to the desk that used to be mine and I sit down and begin inputting data.  Some days that is all I do, transfer data from the catalogs to the computer.  Then there are days like today.  I am handed a big box of catalogs and the option to buy what I think is best for the store.  The owner flips back through, and makes the final buy, but initial decisions are mine, and I love being the first to turn the pages of a book catalog and circle titl


Today has been a pajama and couch day.  When I woke up this morning I lit a candle for Charlotte and it is still burning all these hours later. I am going through candles at an alarming rate; perhaps we should purchase stock in a candle company.  I needed a quiet day to recover from the weekend.  We had two birthday parties for three wonderful people we love very much, but that is a lot of social interaction for this sad mama. I am still recovering from the terrifying moment when I had my first encounter with a baby girl since Charlotte died.  The moment when I jumped off the couch, dashed through my friend's bedroom, into her bathroom, and then into her closet.  I huddled there, listening to the party happening in the living room, sobbing, and trying to find the courage to pull myself together and rejoin the party.  Without thinking I ran as far away as I could without leaving the house.  My run to safety was instinctual and I scared myself with how quickly I moved; without

A Change of Seasons

I am finally sitting down and writing a post for the Monthly Writing Challenge over at Faces of Loss, Faces of Hope.  September's topic: How has the changing of seasons (from summer to fall) impacted you in your grief journey? When Charlotte died on May 14th I didn't see myself living until the fall.  I couldn't see myself living in a world without her and my initial instinct was to hold very still and hope to join her in heaven.  But then the need for food, love, companionship, a breath of fresh air, seeped into my life and I got out of bed and decided to live for her; as a means to carry her memory forward.   After living through spring and summer, when the grief was so fresh, fall feels like a calm respite, a coming home of sorts.  Of course the feeling of relief is tinged with bitterness, after losing her all feelings, even the good ones have a hint of bitterness and sadness.  There are also bittersweet memories from last fall.  Charlotte was conceived at the end o


Attended a daddy/daughter Western themed birthday party tonight.  There were cowboy hats, and Western shirts, and fun was had by all.  Then one last family trailed through the door well after everyone else had arrived. They had a baby girl.  Not very young, but not walking yet.  I shuffled off to my friend's bathroom just as fast as I could go.  I cried in the dark until she came in and exclaimed, "Oh!  I didn't know you were in here."  It took me a long time to work up the nerve to rejoin the party.  The husband sat with me for a while and said we could leave if we needed to.  I managed to get myself together enough to sit through the presents, cake eating, and game playing.  Sitting in a darkened bedroom, head in my hands, sobbing, I could hear the guests in the living room singing happy birthday and I couldn't believe that this is my life now.  When I emerged from the bedroom I curled up on the couch next to another dear friend and she helped me limp through th

How does it feel?

I was going to write about the change of seasons for the Faces of Loss monthly writing challenge.  However, I have way too many thoughts floating around in my head to sit down and calmly, or not so calmly, write about the seasons.  So let me rant and rave today and then tomorrow I will write about seasons and how I feel about them.  Or maybe it's a double post kind of day and the seasons post will follow soon after. I went to Dr. B's office today to talk about the results from my thyroid test last week.  I met with Dr. K this time around instead of Dr. B.  It didn't go very well.  I am used to Dr. B.  She knows when to ask questions, when to leave a topic alone, what to say, what not to say.  This other doctor, Dr. K, does not.  She was trying to be helpful, she was doing her best to help me handle some of the health issues that have cropped up recently (so tired of the nausea and random throwing up) but she failed to consider, or notice, how hard it is for me to talk abo

Wherever you are, my love will find you

I love Nancy Tillman.  Her books always make me cry.  When I flipped through her latest book I thought of Charlotte.  I won't share the entire book with you, that would be crazy, but here are two of my favorite sections.  And one gorgeous illustration.   In tears.  Missing my baby, but my love will find her, wherever she is.  

A Heavy Heart

Another post.  More to say.  My heart is heavy.  I was up late last night.  I don't see sleep happening anytime soon tonight.  I may be sleeping on the couch again.  I am so restless and I hate to keep the husband up, or wake him up, when he has to work tomorrow. I am struggling with the idea of unfairness.  Everyone has something they are dealing with, but my loss, my sadness, seems so huge and unwieldy.  I don't understand how I ended up here.  I get so caught up in wondering what I did wrong and why I am the one who has to walk this path.  I wouldn't wish this on anyone else though.  I think of friends, of sweet babies who are here, living and breathing, and I don't want them to disappear.  I just want Charlotte here too.  All I have is missed opportunities and lost dreams and I don't know how to reconcile that with faith, hope, fairness, truth.  She was here, then she was fighting, now she is dead, and I am left behind spinning in circles and desperately seeki

4 Months

Charlotte, I miss you.  I can't believe I have lived four months without you.  I am worried about you fading, baby girl.  I remember holding your sweet foot in my hand and pleading with you to fight, to stay with us, but your face, your sweet baby face, flickers in my mind, fading in and out of focus, and I worry I will wake up one day to blackness, no picture, no ghost of an image, only a blank world full of sorrow and loss.   I am sad for so many reasons tonight, baby girl.  I miss you intensely, but the sadness isn't only for me tonight.  I stayed up late last night reading through stories on Faces of Loss, Faces of Hope.  It takes me so long to edit one story.  I start reading, get completely lost in the story, wander to the mama's blog, read there for a while, and then realize an hour has passed.  I am sad for all the parents who are missing their babies tonight.  Whether it's been four months, four days, or four years this loss hurts.  That is a universal trut

Crazy, irrational rage

Here I go again.  Stepping out and being honest even though it's embarrassing and shameful. This evening I had an incredible rage fit.  And I do mean incredible.  It was like an out of body experience.  I have had a few of these moments since Charlotte died.  I don't know where the rage comes from.  I think it may come from the dark place where the feelings of unfairness and unhappiness moved in the day she died.  This rage has to stem from something, and it's only been around since she died, so I'm pretty sure my feelings of hurt and anger about her death are the root cause. There was one night, maybe two months after she died, when I lost my temper and kicked our bedroom door in.  Wood splinters flew everywhere, there is a small, but not very noticeable crack in our bedroom door, and every time I see it I remember that moment of incredible rage.  It was not my finest moment.  And tonight wasn't either. I screamed at my husband on our front porch, never mind


I don't know what's happening to me.  I sat down last night and began writing.  Three hours later I was at fifteen pages.  Today I'm at thirty-three.  Words are pouring out of me and I have no idea where they are coming from. I feel Charlotte sitting next to me on the couch.  I have pushed most of the cushions to the far end and so there is plenty of room for her little soul to curl up next to me.  The husband can fit next to me on this gigantic couch when I sit like this, so I am sure she is snuggled in no problem.  Charlotte is cheering me on, clapping her chubby little hands and saying, "Go Mama!"  The words I am writing may never live anywhere but on my computer.  It feels good to write them anyway. Last night I wandered upstairs to tell the husband (yes, I know most readers know his name is Jonathan, but I call him husband around the house and that tends to carry over to this space) about my sudden burst of creativity.  I was sitting on the old green futon,

Remembering her even when I find it hard to speak

I woke up feeling fine this morning.  I thought the nausea was linked to anxiety and nerves, like I originally thought, and then felt stupid for having my hCG levels checked.  (I hope my midwife and Dr. B know they are not dealing with a rational person and don't mind obliging my crazy moments).  The past hour the nausea has slowly been creeping back in and now I am feeling very ill again.  I'm eating small amounts, making sure to take my tinctures at regularly scheduled times, and hoping for answers on Thursday.  I don't think my thyroid levels are off, because I don't feel like I have in the past when my levels have been off.  I'm usually pretty good at pinpointing thyroid symptoms as soon as they crop up. Now that I know I'm not pregnant I feel I can admit I didn't want to be.  Having another little one due in May would've been too hard for me to handle.  I hope to be pregnant in the near future, but I need the next one to run on a different timelin

I'm Confused

Well, AF showed up this morning so I am now trying to ascertain what my issue is.  My body and I have been in a protracted fight since Charlotte died.  Random spotting, 28 day cycles, 32 day cycles, lots of cramping, and not much sense.  Woke the husband up at 1 am because I was crying.  I couldn't sleep because my stomach hurt, but I was exhausted and desperate to fall asleep.  I don't feel anxious, and anxiety sick is different than this kind of sick.  Have decided this is my body's way of making me even more miserable and angry with it.  Still in bed.  Haven't showered or brushed my teeth.  Had a protein bar, some raisins, don't really feel like eating much.  I don't feel depressed, but perhaps this is a failure to cope.  I keep asking my husband if crazy people know they're crazy.  I feel very calm, but is my perspective trustworthy?  

I think I may be losing my mind

I went away for a little while.  I went to Seattle to see family and try to clear my head.  No head clearing happened, I just don't think that's possible for me anymore, but it was good (and necessary) to see family.  Went up on Wednesday, returned this evening.  It's not as easy as it used to be, but my sister did all of the driving so my only job was to stay awake and talk to her. That thing I couldn't talk about has been resolved.  I knew it would be, but waiting for it to happen was stressful.  Someone filed claims about Charlotte's birth with the Oregon Health Licensing Board.  My midwife and the birth center were investigated, we had to provide Charlotte's autopsy report (which was difficult for me) and I nearly lost my mind.  I'm not going to say too much here about what was said.  It's over, I don't want to think about it anymore.  But I will say this: to claim that someone in the health care field didn't do everything in their power to

Wide awake and missing my baby

Charlotte, I should be curled up next to your daddy right now, sleeping the night away, dreaming of your sweet face.  I feel like I am on the precipice of something huge, baby girl, and I cannot find perspective right now.  There has been lots of worry, much tossing and turning, many tears.  The reassurances that everything is going to be okay, that all will unfold as planned, bounce off me and shatter on the ground.  I am continually reminded that people can be cruel, and heartless, and that formulating any sort of plan, setting down any ground rules, is futile.  I feel you slipping away, baby girl.  In a week the 14th will be here again and I will have one more month without you etched into my heart. Peace is elusive.  Right now I would give anything for a small bit of relief.  I don't need the adrenaline rush of peace, of feeling like all is right with the world, but a small measure of calm would be welcome.  I think tonight is a couch night, baby girl.  I'm too restless


I believe one of the reasons I am struggling so much right now is because things are happening that are out of my control.  That's life though, right?  What we can control is so little, and really, when we think we are in control, the Lord doesn't fret about reminding us that we're not.  At all.  Those reminders are at times gentle, and at times so very harsh. Today I heeded my midwife's clarion call to get my sad little self out of bed; even though putting my feet on the floor required anger and a bit of attitude.  I grumbled to myself all the while, but I threw back the covers, got up, and began making bread.  There is so much going on right now.  I'm worried I may be playing mind games with myself.  Instead of sitting around, staring at the ceiling, and thinking, I have decided to try and do something with myself each day.  There are a lot of unknowns in my life right now.  By the end of the week I hope there will be resolution on one or two fronts. I'm t

Still Standing

Three days ago I was standing strong, not going to let anything bother me, being brave, blah blah blah.  The next day I rolled over, curled up in a ball on the ground, and started whimpering about life being unfair and too hard.  Yesterday I spent the entire day in bed watching Project Runway.  I was so overwhelmed I decided to bury my head in the sand and check out for a while.  I'm really not very tough at all, but it sure sounded good on paper. Last night I had a level four meltdown.  I'm not sure how high the numbers go, but level four is up there.  I'm not going to put a cap on my meltdown numbers, because if I have learned anything in the past three months it's that life (or meltdowns) can always get worse.  The husband tried to reason with me, and tell me to stop taking things so personally, but I was beyond the point of logical reasoning.  Honestly I'm past that point most days, so to try and force the issue when a level four meltdown is happening was not

Anxiety, Acupuncture, A Moment of Rest

I had a fine day, maybe even a good one.  I am a walking bundle of nerves, and the anxiety is at an all time high, but I saw Dr. B for acupuncture today and that has helped me stay in a manageable place.  Although, before Charlotte died, this so called manageable place would've been viewed as a crisis state. Now it's 7:30, I'm eating dinner, and I am so close to crying I know tears are inevitable sometime tonight.  What is happening to me right now is overwhelming, and so far out of my control there is nothing I can do to resolve it.  I know this is cryptic.  I wish I could say what is happening, but I'm scared of consequences and repercussions, so I am being very vague. I know I am so upset right now because I was busy all day and now I'm sitting here, going over things in my head.  (I may have to stop writing and sit on my hands soon so I don't inadvertently say something, or begin spewing rhetoric about how unfair and cruel people can be).  I am also upse


Tonight I find myself in a very sad place.  I can't say what  I really want to say, for various reasons, but soon  I will be able to talk about it.  I am in a very vulnerable place right now.  I feel exposed and not very safe.  At a time in my life when I am exhausted, when grieving has worn me down, I don't think it is fair that I have to rush around frantically building fences around myself, my daughter, and the people I care about.  I received some news today, (and really, right now, I cannot share what that is) and my first reaction to it was anger.  Now though, after a good walk with a BLM who lives nearby (thank you, I needed that) I am sitting in my darkened living room, thinking about what was said, and I'm hurt.  My heart hurts for my baby girl and the short life I find myself fiercely standing guard over.  I just can't go to sleep with this sitting on my heart.  I don't think the person who is trying to break me down (unintentionally, I hope) reads this, b


Before Charlotte died this would've been my ideal life.  I don't work.  I have very few responsibilities.  I spend a lot of time in bed, or on the couch, watching movies or reading.  Before, when life was normal, when I expected to have a baby at this time of year, I thought lazing around like this was something I would never get to do.  Now that I'm in a place where I can do this I have to admit it's not as fun as it looks.  This is what it is to be too sad to move.  Without her getting out of bed is useless.  Three months out I'm still struggling to figure out what I am living for, what my purpose is, if any. I have been blessed to have so many appear next to me and say, "I will walk with you for a while.  I will sit with you for a few minutes.  Tell me about your daughter."  Friends, both old and new, are all around me, but I want them to disappear so I can have her.  Without the loss of her, I would not have them, and if I had to choose I would choos