Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Chapter Ten

During this time, we called a funeral home and made arrangements for them to pick up our daughter. Gary and I had never talked about funeral arrangements for ourselves and now we were faced with what to do with our baby. I am Jewish and Gary is Catholic, but we were planning to raise Allie in the Jewish faith.  We were in touch with a family friend who called a local rabbi looking for guidance. Neither Gary nor I wanted a funeral so we decided on cremation. I think funerals tend to be for the living and I wanted the people in our lives to remember our daughter as we had talked about her for the past 37 weeks - with excitement and joy and wonder and love. I did not want anyone to think of her and think sorrow and caskets and misery. I wanted the love we had for her would be what everyone would remember.

When I decided to turn my "story" into a book, I did not realize how painful it might be for me to live through my tragedy all over again. I also did not realize how much love and laughter I would have when I got up close and personal with that time in my life and the person I was then.

Allie made me a mother but I did not feel like a true mother until we had Miranda. Looking back now, five years later, I see how silly that was. I was a mom the day I knew Allie was in my tummy. It's as clear as day to me now.

I sometimes forget how much excitement there was around my pregnancy. I was creating a life and that was nothing short of a miracle. To have that life taken away for no reason whatsoever, ughhhhh. No wonder I grieved the way I did.

If Allie were here, we would be shopping for back-to-school items as she would be starting kindergarten this year. That's a big girl! She would be potty trained (unlike her stubborn and sassy sister) and she would be ready to ride on a school bus. She wouldn't need me to brush her hair but maybe she would want me to anyway. She might not need me to pick out her first day of school outfit, but perhaps she would allow me to anyway. I will never know.

It's the unknown that haunts me. I miss her with a part of my soul that is so deep. My longing for her has become a basic need like eating or sleeping. It's just a part of who I am.

Miranda often tells me that Allie is her best friend. When she sees a butterfly, she squeals that it must be Allie. She does not understand death but she tries to process our grief in her own way. Soon we will have to explain more to her, but I am not sure she is ready yet. Or is it me that is not ready? 

One day I will have it all figured out. Maybe. For today, I will keep being a mom, writing our story and doing the best that I can. That's really all I can do.

Olympic Headband - a sign of things to come?

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