Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Two Years Gone

I wrote the following on January 11th,  and I'm just never going to hit publish if I don't do it now. Bah.
In re-reading this, it's highly emotional and I'm crying so if you're not up for reading it or you're having a bad day, I don't blame you for skipping this one. Not at all.

---

I never really know when to grieve. Of course I grieve everyday, and it's in everything I do. I grieve as I make Grace breakfast, thinking I should be putting her in the high chair, and wrestling Jack into a chair to feed him, too. I grieve wiping crumbs from the chin of a little Blondie boy as he attempts to make his sister smile. I grieve giggles I never heard him make. I grieve all those things which should make up my life, and don't.

The grieving part I struggle with is the conscious decision to grieve on his January 1st birthday, January 9th when he was declared, or January 11th when we last physically held him before his donation surgery... That kind of grief comes along organically. 

So far I can say the 1st seems to take the brunt of my grieving, or at least the anticipation of it. Today isn't much better, and I keep having fits of sobbing while I should be smiling at the things Grace has done.

I just can't believe he's been gone two years. That it has been that long since I held him, smelled him, and kissed him all over. It feels both like ten years and two weeks, all at once.

---
January 11, 2013 is infinitely better than 2011 or even 2012 when I was half way though my pregnancy with Grace. It takes only a moment to go back to that time in my mind... I remember handing him over to the nurse and they put him in the isolate and we walked with him past our parents as they stood in the hallway (as far as they could so), and then with the nurses to the elevator, on the elevator to the OR, and then to the door of the OR where we kissed him and touched his hand before walking away. I made it about five steps before I stopped and dropped Scott's hand and told them I needed to touch him one more time . One more touch to last for the rest of my life. And they told me absolutely, and to hold his hand and so I did. I kissed it and with that it was it. I remember breathing it in, knowing this was the last time I would EVER touch him. And it was.  We walked back to the private room where Jack had been , and there was no more beeping, and the room was empty of our boy and the sweet nurse Jenny had put together all of his things in a box. The bereavement coordinator hugged me and she may as well have lit me on fire because it was painful and suffocating... As we walked out, she asked me whether we were sure we didn't want an autopsy, as though she were asking if we wanted fries with that.

I remember feeling as though we were being smothered and how the fuck did this all happen? How did my happily ever crumple to the ground and how the fuck was I ever going to survive without Jack? Why would I even want to? I remember Scott repeating constantly that he was going to make this better, that he would fix it. And I remember knowing then as clearly as I do now there is no fixing this, no making it right.

I still don't know how I physically left the building. I know we didn't have the cash on hand to pay for the $80 in parking and my MIL handed us a wad of cash from her purse. I remember my parents wanted to follow us home and pack up baby things and I called them while watching them in our rear view mirror as we were driving and waved them off at Scott's request. We were exhausted both emotionally and physically and we just didn't want to talk about it at that time.

I remember we got home and fell asleep, Jack's clothing still scattered around our basement as I had left it when I went to the lactation clinic with my newborn baby for help just a few days before. It still smelled of him. There was a dirty diaper tightly wound up beside the change table and I remember opening it and seeing yellow baby poop. And I cried because we had celebrated each one of those poops in the days preceding his loss. And now I was grieving the poop which was never to come.

19 comments:

Caroline said...

I don't know what to say. There's nothing really other than I'm sorry. I'm so very sorry and I wish so badly Jack was here with you.

Brooke said...

Oh, Laura. I don't know how you survived it. I don't know how any of us does. I'm so sorry he's not here. It's just impossible that you had to kiss him good bye and let him go. It's the most impossibly unfair thing and it makes me cry, too.

kidsakeeper said...

Oh my darling...if I could wish a wish for you, for me, for all of us.

Wanting so badly to stop feeling like some how we lost the path were supposed to be on for this strange overwhelming new direction.

How does a person go on??? It's a question I ask myself almost every. single. day.

Love you

Mama Bear said...

Oh how the love pours out of every word. Xoxo

Veronica said...

Oh Laura, I absolutely lost it as you knew you needed to touch him one last time. My god, ...how? For anything you've been through after his death, but for that last embrace, how? How do you go on thereafter...?

I remember the drive home, gutted, and yes, crowded and smothered. I wish I had done what you had, and just waved them off. My house was full of visitors the days following my sons death, and then birth...and I look back, and can still feel how excruciating it all was with everyone around, "trying to help".

The missing and ever lasting love is in your every word.

I'm so so sorry. I wish he was still here. And it's a sentiment you've probably heard by many...but I know no one can ever really feel those words like you do.

Sending my love

B. Wilson @ Windy {City} Wilsons said...

After two years of being friends with you through this, I still get a knot in my stomach when I read about Jack. It's like knowing the end of the story, but wanting somehow for the plot to change. I know it won't, but dammit if I don't want it with all my heart.

I didn't know some of these details and they're just so raw. I am thankful for shock because I really, truly think it's our body's way of protecting us from the absolute impossible. Without it, I probably would've died when they took Andrew away for the last time.

This whole post was so painfully visual. I know those moments are burned into your mind. You're not alone. Not that it makes the situation better as we're all much worse off, but just know I mourn Jack with you and will always.

And now I'm crying.

Tiffany said...

grieving the poop, and everything else that is never to come. so true. how the eff did this happen? why? i still search for the answer i know will never come in this lifetime. i miss my boy (and your boy) so much. i desperately wish with every single fiber of my being that things were different. and now i feel as though i am going to vomit as i sit here and think about how *that* day played out for me (and must have played out for you). i can still feel the place where my heart literally broke in 2 that day. it was such a physical/literal break for me. sending you so much love.

Melissa said...

Such agony. With each line I wanted the plot to suddenly change, I wanted to scream no! No! No! Oh I don't know where to get the strength to survive such sorrow. Sadness. Horror. Pain.

To walk in and see a diaper balled up, his clothes smelling of him, I want to scream at the thought. Oh sweetheart. Thank you for sharing, I have learned so much of what we can survive from you.

Kelly said...

Love you friend. So much of this I understand and feel right along with you.

Party of Three Heads said...

Xoxo

Renel said...

I'm totally crying. It's just so sad. Soo sooo sad. Jacks little clothes and diaper on the floor. Our nurse asked us after we said she could take Camille away if we wanted one more kiss and we did and I still do and in glad I did and it's just so fucked up. You can't ever fix this there is no fixing never no never. I have been crying so much lately and I can see you with tears over the empty chair and the wiping of one face and not two. The joy in our living children makes for a striking absence of the one we miss. I never knew jack before his death... But I love him and miss him and wish he was here. Sending you my love.

Darcey said...

Tears...I can't even begin to imagine how that day truly felt. I know your writing only portrays a 1/millionth of how painful it was. You are so right, it can never be fixed. There isn't anything that can ever be done to make it better.

I so wish Jack was here causing you all sorts of trouble, and loving on his sister with you guys. Sending many hugs your way.

Lara + Chris said...

XOXO. Anniversaries are always the worst. We remember him all the time.

(P.S. - I know this is so the wrong place but I don't have anywhere else to ask...do you have an email or any contact info for Kelly from Natalie and Adam's journey? Email me at largirl at yahoo dot com)

katie illingworth said...

I hate this for you. I hate that you don't have your little boy. I am right there with you reading this and I can't stand it. I feel as chilled reading about his little diaper as I did when I looked at my little Georgie's hospital blanket for the first time and realized her little body had peed on it. And I wept on that blanket and still have times when I hold onto it for dear life, those last little spots of her urine, proof that she was really alive, if only inside of me.

I imagine you felt that way about that little dirty diaper. And my heart just breaks for you, my friend. And I feel closer to you than a sister, because I know. But I don't know at the same time, because this is your story, and it's different, but thank you for opening your heart and sharing with me.

Sending you love across the miles. Hug your sweet little girl tonight.

Natasha said...

So much we will never get the chance to experience. It's so unfair. My heart hurts so much for you......for all of us. I miss our babies. I long so much for a chance to experience the time we had with him again. And I long for more time. It will never be enough.....but just some more time.

Sending lots of love my friend.

Nicole said...

There are really no words. As you said, nothing can make it better or fix it. I hate that Jack isn't here with you, being a mischievous little boy, making his sister laugh. I hate it so much. I wish none of us had to know that kind of pain. Your story is beautiful, though very painful. Thank you for sharing it with us. Down to the dirty diaper...I think we all understand that grieving too.

Lots of love, friend.

Daisyjulia said...

We'd like to mention your brilliant blog and quote a paragraph from it in a piece we're running in The Times on grief bloggers. We're going to print at 6pm today so please let me know if you're not happy with that.
Thank you so much,

Daisy

AlwaysMy ThreeBoys said...

I'm sorry your Jack isn't growing alongside his siblings. The grief in your post is so raw, the rawness of fresh grief, loss. It's so familiar, so awful.

www.alwaysmy3boys.wordpress.com

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