Tuesday, September 11, 2012


Eliza has been on my mind a lot lately.

Actually, she's on my mind a lot all the time, but lately I've been feeling more emotional about it.  It started with a text telling me about another mom who lost her baby just a couple of weeks ago.  Someone with whom I have many things in common and would likely be good friends with.  I'm glad I could reach out to her, and try to offer her a bit of hope in this awful time, but it does take me back to those early, ugly, dark days of grief.  And the terrible and mind-boggling unfairness of all of this.

It's also that the weather turned lovely this weekend--crisp and fall-like.  For the first time, this made me a little bit happy, the way it used to, as I daydream of riding boots and corduroy blazers (the true academic uniform) and red wine and hot tea, and it made me a little bit happy in a new way, as I thought about pumpkin patch photo opportunities and Halloween costumes.

But it also made me sad because fall leads up to December 6th and oh my God, how has it been two years?

I was talking to a few other bereaved parents about how we are still so shocked and horrified to hear of a parent losing a child.  How it still seems unreal and impossible, even though we ourselves are living that reality.  How we still wonder How will they survive that?  And why would they want to?  Even though here we are.  Surviving.

I've come a long way from December of 2010.  I've done a lot of therapy, a lot of writing, a lot of talking, more crying than I ever thought I'd do in my lifetime.  David and I have gotten to a place where we look at Caroline and look at each other and say, "We are so lucky," -- a sentence I thought I'd never utter again.

But it never escapes me for long, the fact that I should have an almost-two-year-old.  That every milestone Caroline hits is one Eliza never did.  That Caroline has a sister she'll never meet.  That David and I created not just another baby, but another person, whom we never got to know.

Fall has regained some of it's appeal, it's true, and I daresay that even the holidays will get their sparkle back eventually.  But each change of season is another reminder of everything we're missing out on.

I really wish Caroline's hand-me-downs from Eliza had been worn before, you know?


  1. Yup, I do. And as time marches on, I'm worried I don't think about him as much as I used to, but he's never far. I guess that's the way it goes for us. We'll never stop wondering...

  2. Yeah, I know.

    Another person you created but will never know. It's just so... huge. That realization. That fact.

    Just today I put Benjamin in an outfit I thought Andrew would've worn long ago and just now, Benjamin is fitting it. It was a tad bittersweet, because I remember the exact day we bought it for Andrew and how excited we were to buy him a bunch of cute clothes that day. A boy! Our boy will be wearing these! Little did we know, it would never be our first boy, but our second. To my knowledge, Andrew's body was only "wearing" two outfits: the one he was baptized in, and the one the hospital placed him in when we met him for the first time. But he never met us.

    And dammit, is that heartbreaking.

  3. Yes, I do. I wish that too. I wish you were up to your neck in toddler AND baby things with two little girls you can say "we are so lucky" when talking about.

  4. Much love to you and Eliza.

  5. Yep, this time of year is hard for me too. It starts a bit in August.

    It does just suck.

  6. I know. I do. I remember that lead up to two years well. New baby in arms. Coping but still so bloody broken hearted. And tired. And grateful. Yup, all of that and then some.

  7. i understand. the weather has started changing here. and i have found myself more emotional too. we are headed straight towards october, and god, i hate that month now. i'm lucky that i have my rainbow to help me through it, but i wish i didn't have to go through this at all. i wish i had both of my babies here.

    i've reached out to a couple of newly bereaved SIDS parents in the last couple of months. each time, my heart breaks even more. :'(

  8. Absolutely feel this same way. So grateful for the little sister, but so heartbroken for the big brother. Another whole person should be here... If it were an adult that was suddenly gone, there's a realization of the impact they have on your lives, but somehow because it was an infant it's less.


    I hate when I see newly bereaved momma's join our blogs.. I hate that this is still happening... I hate it so much.

  9. So very true Brooke. Every single word.

    There will never be a day when we cease missing "what should have been." The hand me downs that should have been, the chaos the house should be in with a toddler running around, should, should, should.

    Seasonal changes are a reminder of the passage of time. You are not alone in the potency that change brings.

    Sweet Eliza. You are so loved.

  10. I think any new season suddenly shakes you up thinking gosh...so much time has passed but yet something hasn't grown. Just this morning I got the newsletter from amazon mom.."deals for 6 - 9" month babies. Around this time last year we were walking around the neighborhood and thinking to start a photography project to see how my baby bump grows while the trees start becoming prettier day by day!

  11. Thinking of you. My mom would say, "show yourself some mercy."

  12. I hear you. I'm looking forward to season changes that haven't happened here yet. Our daughter died at the end of June summer is a season of sadness for me.
    I was talking to a neighbor friend today whose brother died last September. Another neighbors brother died when he was 16. Another neighbors brother died in may and he was 30. The friend I was talking to this morning who just had the one year anniversary of her brothers death did not know about our other neighbors tragedies. I said I wished more people spoke openly of their grief. We all have a loss in common yet we wave and say hello buy the grief goes unacknowledged. All these neighbors are younger than I am and their siblings were younger. I guess my point is, I'm shocked anytime there is senseless death whether it is of a young adult or baby. There is someone grieving for them. A mother who is crying. A sibling whose heart is broken.

    I wish you had your 1.5 year old Eliza here to Hig and kiss. Int first daughter has been on my mind a lot lately too with the recent birth of her sister. I am glad Eliza existed. I wish you got to know her as a person.

  13. I read this yesterday, and just want to echo everything everyone has said. LJ's hit me. If it were an adult, somehow there's more of an impact on your life in the eyes of others...but a baby? A season can change, and you should be ok by then...

    A PERSON. An entire person is missing forever. And yeah, what's sad(der?) is that we never got to know them. How can that be? How is this still happening?

    All of Alexander's clothes are still folded in his room. Never worn by him. Washed, and organized and very ready. But never worn.

    Yeah, I know...

  14. Fall is difficult for me too. And it's my favorite season. I know it's not the same at all but it took us four years to conceive and in addition to the ghost of the baby I lost, there is the ghost of a four year old running around my house - the baby I should have been able to have if our reproductive organs worked.