Friday, July 18, 2014

Right Where I Am: 3 Years, 2 Months, 3 Weeks & 5 Days

On June 16, 2011, I wrote this blog.  The directions were simple:  You talk about right where you are in your grief and what it is like now, so new people can get an idea of the experience of grief further down the road, and so people further down the road can reflect on how far they have come in their grief."

I thought it was a great idea and could not wait to participate.  For a long time after losing Allie, I thought about that blog in particular.  How it helped me so much to write it and how I read others and they helped me tremendously.  I remember reading about some women who had suffered the same agony and yet they were ok.  Years later, they had found a way to move on.  I longed to be one of those parents.

Three years later, I am.

I no longer yearn for Allie the way I did in the beginning.  I no longer have the time to devote to mourning her.  In the past I wrote about wanting to get better but I lied.  To you.  To me.  I did not want to get better.  I did not want to heal.  For if I did, I was afraid I would lose my daughter. And in some ways, I have.

Allie's feet forming a heart
I can no longer remember what Allie felt like in my arms.  I can no longer remember what it felt like to deliver her.  I remember the hospital and the pain and the sorrow, but I cannot remember her actual being.  Just yesterday, I let myself look at her pictures.  I looked at her tiny nose and her little fingers and toes and her full head of hair.  Damn was she beautiful.  And damn was she real.  Sometimes I almost think she was a dream.  A beautiful dream.

Allie gave the permission to live my life the way I wanted to.  If I wanted to grieve, then grieve. If I wanted to cry, then cry.  If I wanted to write, then write.  Now writing is what I do for a living.  

Allie gave me permission to open my heart.  If I wanted to love another child, then do it.  If I wanted to be a mom again, then be one.  Allie gave me permission to adopt her sister.  Now motherhood is also what I do for a living.

I no longer believe that things happen for a reason.  What reason could there be for me to only get 37 weeks with such an amazing being?  What reason could there be for my heart to be ripped out of my chest like it was?  So that I would be a better mom when the time was right?  That's total crap.  So that I could appreciate parenting when it was finally my turn?  Uh, no. 

3 years later and I believe in survival and strength and perseverance.  I believe in all of those things before I believe in fairy tales or happy endings.  Although I am just now starting to see how my world can have them all. 

Love and compassion have been ever present these past few years and I would be remiss to not mention them.  In many ways, love and compassion are the very foundation of fairy tales.  So maybe there is room for fantasy and reality in this life that I am living.

I recently met someone through Miranda and she and her daughter and Miranda and I had a play date.  When the kids were on the swings, she asked me about my loss.  She read my blog via Facebook.  She was one of the first people I met who did not know my story first.  I was able to talk to her about Allie and it felt good.  Healthy.  Not as sad as in the past.

So where am I? I am right here - laughing, learning, writing, thinking...doing all the things that I never thought possible when my first child died inside of me.   

Tomorrow we are going to a picnic with a bunch of other parents and their rainbow babies.  I cannot wait to meet the people that before just existed on Facebook or via their blogs.  I cannot wait to celebrate the children that are in our arms as well as the ones that only exist in our hearts. For it does not matter if I can't physically feel Allie anymore - she is a part of my soul, my heart, my being - and that will never change.  Ever.

I am in a good place, more or less.  I am happy most of the time.  I am a survivor.  I have to be.  I want to be.  For both of my girls.  That's Right Where I Am.

July 4th Family Selfie

Our Rainbow

My new sparkly reminder

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