Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Are we losing it?

So things have been going better with Rosabella lately.  She is eating well and sleeping well and generally a much more fun baby to be around.  There were a few weeks there that were just rough, when we came to the realization that our baby cries much more than most, although not like a baby with colic.  It was hard and not very fun and made me wonder how people ever have more than one child?  I now think that just like you forget the discomfort of pregnancy and the pain of labor you also forget the constant crying of a 4 to 12 week old baby.  Here we are just on the better side of the crying and thinking about a third child.  Yikes!  My DH is more the driving force for this than I am, but about 80% of the time I am thinking about another baby.  My cycle has not even come back yet, we may have fertility issues again, but I am thinking about it and even planning for it (not getting rid of baby clothes Rosabella has outgrown, not getting rid of boy's clothes that were given to us in case our third is a little boy, etc).  As hard as caring for Rosabella has been I cry when I think that this may be the only infant I get to sleep curled up with at night, the only sweet baby I get to dress and kiss and watch learn about herself and the world.  Would I feel this way if we had Grace here?  A 17 month old and a 2 month old?  I don't know.  I just know these are the crazy thoughts in my head.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Degrees of Loss

Losing your child is hell and you feel like you are the only person in the world whose heart has broken like that.  Then you meet others in the baby loss and child loss community and you hear of other hells that seem just as bad or even worse than what you have lived through and you start to measure degrees of loss.  At first I was jealous of those parents who got to see their child breathe and live only to have them die later.  They got to hold their living baby and whisper sweet words to them, I only got to hold my daughters' body.  Then the parents who had their babies for weeks or even months before they died, I was so envious of the time they got to spend.  Was their loss less than mine because they got to have those amazing minutes, days, weeks or months?  At the time it felt that way, but now having Rosabella for not just minutes or days, but 9 weeks I cannot imagine the hell of losing her.  A new perspective on loss has reached me, having those memories does not make it easier, it makes in harder.  Rosabella has brought me so much understanding about being human, just like Grace taught me how deeply you can love another person, even before they are born, even before they have taken a breath, even if they don't.  What I know now is that losing your child whenever, however is hell, there are no degrees of loss it is all hell, different hells, but hell all the same.  We have all lost our babies and no matter how long we got to know them for they are still gone.  I wish kind thoughts to all those mamas I was jealous of before, I just did not know and I am sorry.

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Empty Place on my Walls

We got the prints from the professional photographer of Rosabella's newborn shoot and the print from the hospital photos a few weeks back.  After a trip to IKEA for frames they are now all matted, framed and hung in our living room and foyer.  They look great, but they also make me sad.  We have some small pictures of Grace in my office, in the library and in Mark's studio, but none in public areas of the house.  I have thought about having her pictures displayed more publicly, but would that be too emotionally difficult for us?  Do I want all people who come into my home and be able to see her?  Then I started thinking that we already have so many more pictures of Rosabella than we do of Grace and that will only increase with time.  Even if we hang more pictures of Grace those are the only pictures that we will ever have, whereas we can take as many pictures of her sister as we want.  There is and always will be an empty place on the walls and in our hearts.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

The Learning Curve

The truth is you can read all the parenting books that you want once you have a baby, all that crap gets thrown out the window.  Poor Rosabella has been subject to our learning on the job.  We finally have the breast feeding somewhat down, she is not taking any formula and is doing well.  My nipples are surviving, not perfect, but not bad either.  Now she is refusing to nap so she gets super cranky and cries.  We watched the video "Happiest Baby on the Block" and have been using those techniques to settle her and get her to sleep and so far so good, but it has been a ton of work.  I am tired and so is the DH, but we are happy.  I keep waiting for her to grow up a little more so that she is easier to take care of, but I know that I will miss these early days.

Especially the co-sleeping, waking up with her tiny body curled against mine is one of the nicest things ever.  We never planned to completely co-sleep, we have a side bassinet for the bed that is now used to store blankets.  Now that I think about it we have been co-sleeping with Grace since we got her ashes back.  Her Bear sleeps with us every night.  The missing her just never changes, just like my love for her, it is always there even when I am happy, even when Rosabella takes every bit of energy I have (plus some), it is there.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Praying for naptime

What a crazy time.  My girl is fussing and crying up a storm.  Yikes!  What does she want?  Food?  Comfort?  Basically she only stops crying when she is nursing and my poor nipples cannot do that 16 hours a day.  I love her, but I can't help dreaming about when she will take 2 naps a day and I will have a moment to do something, anything like fold laundry.  How to women doe this who have more than one child?  They truly are super women.  When I start to get really frustrated I just imagine that she is Grace and wouldn't I do anything for Grace to be alive and fussy and crying.

Now there have been good moments, a few, she was a smiley happy baby the morning of the fourth and we got some great pictures.  She has started to play a game I call "Faces."  It started with me mimicking the faces she makes at me, and has progressed to her mimicking the faces I make at her.  The play sessions do not last long, after all she has a busy schedule of crying to maintain, but they warm my heart and give me some patience for the next few hours of screaming.

The truth is I am a tired mom to a beautiful, living, baby girl and I would not trade one tired moment, but I can pray for those naps.....

The strength to keep going.