Saturday, November 9, 2013

I Remember

Most days, I remember.  I remember that Miranda is our rainbow.  Our hopes, our dreams...our beauty at the end of the storm.  Sometimes, in the middle of the night, when she is up for a reason that is only known to her, I forget she is my rainbow.  I get frustrated.  Upset.  Annoyed even.  The guilt that washes over me then is like a tidal wave for how can I forget even for a MOMENT that raising her is a gift?  Each laughter, each giggle, each tear even - a true gift.

My day to day life is to take care of our gift.  We schedule our days around bottles and food and (with any luck) naps.  We go for walks and we meet friends for lunch and we pass the days with laughs and smiles and joy.   It's hard work - way harder than I ever knew.  It's also so rewarding - way more than I ever knew.

On Wednesday afternoon, late in the day, I got word that there were 2 new families attending the UNITE meeting that evening.  I had not been in a year.  I wanted to stay home and just relax.  It had been a long day and I wanted the down time.  

Then I realized how selfish I was being.  What if, on the night of my first meeting, someone was too tired to go?  Would I have had the same experience?  The same support? So I threw on some old jeans, texted my mom that I was going to go (she was planning to go regardless as she has now had some training to help facilitate the group when needed) and off we went.

For 2 hours that night, I got to remember Allie with a group of people who "get it".  I had not been there since Miranda.  In a way, I did not know how to honor and remember one baby while raising another.  Turns out there is enough room in my heart to do both.  But the best part...the part that makes my heart swell even now as I write about it...that was being there for the new people.  Sharing my story and being able to be supportive.  Letting them know that they are not alone.  My baby died, too.  I survived.

We remember our babies while sitting in a circle in the basement of a church.  It's drafty and the lighting is bad and yet it's one of the warmest places I have ever been.  I told Allie's story and it felt good.  I love hearing her name.  I love that others know her name.  I love talking about her.  And at the end of the meeting, I loved going home to my other daughter.

I will never forget Allie.  Those that love Gary and me will never, either.  Miranda will grow up knowing she had a sister.  I want to make sure I honor Allie's memory and I think that I do.  I also want to make sure I never forget that Miranda is our "rainbow".  The burst of color at the end of a ravaging storm.  For both of my babies...I remember.

 What's so amazing
That keeps us stargazing
And what do we think we might see
Someday we'll find it
The rainbow connection
The lovers, the dreamers, and me 
- The Muppets 

We love taking "selfies"

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