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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day, whether I wanted to or not.

October 15th rolled around again: Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. I haven't mourned my loss of Evan Michael in so long I can't remember. (If you want to read the backstory, here's my post on The Day My World Came Crashing Down.) There are lots of reasons, I guess, but primarily because I've been too busy with responsibilities, deadlines, and other emotionally demanding issues that I haven't devoted any time to grief. I think I mistakenly tried to convince myself that I'm "making progress" or "moving forward" or some such baloney, since I haven't cried about it in so long and I can almost always talk about what happened calmly and with a level voice, as if I were recounting something that happened to somebody else, or maybe something I read about. On the anniversary of my loss this past April, and on the anniversary of burying Evan's remains in May, I didn't even get out my memory box or photo album.

It might have been October 15th last year when I last cried about Evan. I didn't pay much attention to October 15th coming up today. I didn't make special plans to memorialize his short life, light a candle during the Wave of Light around the world, or even post anything in particular about it on my Facebook. In fact, I rather wanted to avoid the subject altogether because I felt that if I ignored it, I'd be able to go along with my weekend as I have any other weekend.

Today snuck up on me and overtook me. Part of the difficulty of October 15th, for me, is that it coincides with Evan's due date/week, October 21, 2007. I feel on edge and melancholy from October 15 through 21, most years. Maybe I'm hormonal, at just-now 30 weeks pregnant. Maybe I needed a release valve for a number of other (unrelated) stresses. Or maybe I'm *still* ignoring the obvious: it was time to remember Evan, whether I was ready to or not.

I cried on and off all day. I managed to busy myself doing laundry, re-organizing the laundry room, culling outgrown kids' clothes, changing out seasonal clothes and new sizes for some of the kids, and using my label maker to get my laundry room and kids' dressers better organized (on the off chance that we could have people helping us with laundry after the baby comes). Anything that involves using my label maker substantially brightens my day. Additionally, Rick took me and our two older girls (ages 9 and 7; the 2 youngers are at their aunt's house tonight) to a Japanese Hibachi for dinner, which is a great show and an amazing meal. It was the girls' first time at a Hibachi, and they thoroughly enjoyed it. I felt much better once I got out of the house. I was too afraid to leave the house earlier in the day because I was afraid I'd have a blubbering meltdown, completely unprovoked, in the middle of the grocery store, at 7.5 months pregnant (but looking full term). I couldn't risk it.

Today, it felt like my emotional dam burst. I wanted to get it over with and move on with my day, but it kept resurfacing. I couldn't control or contain it. I just had to ride the waves.

I'd like to say, "Tomorrow will be better. Tomorrow is a new day," but I know that I won't truly feel the shroud removed from me until October 21 has passed, which would/could/should have been Evan's 4th birthday.

I guess I'm not immune to grief. Few are, and the odds were against me. It's part of the process, so I may as well embrace it, rather than feel like a failure for crumbling, for revealing vulnerability.

4 comments:

  1. So sorry you had to go through this Sarah... I hope you find some peace for the next few days...sometimes I think its even harder for those of us involved in birth work to wrap our heads around how we are supposed to deal with our losses. Since we are constantly surrounded by happy families and healthy babies it is easy to lose our own emotions especially it is our job to care for others, even at the expense of ourselves sometimes. Never feel like a failure for feeling love, because THAT is what overcame you today. Love for your son.

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  2. I am so sorry for your loss. I spent a whole year mourning our angel, and was granted a miracle exactly a year after his passing. I am so thankful to God, that I can appreciate what I do have because of what I have lost, and what I have lost because of what I now have. It is so hard, do what you need to do even if it means setting yourself aside a little time alone to think about it.

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  3. Thanks, ladies. <3

    Whitbit, I'm sorry for your loss as well.

    Casey, I appreciate your kind words. I think that it has given me a better understanding of the range of experiences families have when experiencing babyloss in any form. I feel that some day I may be called to doula losses/stillbirths/miscarriages. I'm not currently in a life season where I can count on childcare at any time to be on call, so I can't reliably be a labor doula or loss doula... but likely in a few years.

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