Another Early Morning

Two nights before our son passed away, I had what I guess you would describe as an epic melt down.  I was border line hysteric.  Well not really but I was completely overcome with fear.  I had been discharged from my hospital room and was staying in a Parent room attached to the NICU.  It has a single bed, and a night stand.  Just enough room to walk around.  My husband, who had not left us since driving me to the hospital in preterm labour, had to sleep on a pull out couch in the waiting room for the NICU.  I knew what was coming.  I knew what we were facing.  I had been keeping my composure for my husband.  I knew that if I lost it that he would lose it.  That night I lost it.

When we came home from the hospital the evening our son passed away I was exhausted.  It was the first time in 19 days that I was not going to be pumping or going to the NICU to check on him.  I had slept a total of maybe 8 hours in 4 days.  Yes, I would say that guess is about spot on.  I no longer had a reason to be up in the night.  I was still facing how I was going to get my milk to stop as well.  I had absolutely no idea what I was going to do with myself.  I should be still pregnant.

At this point exhaustion took over.  The thoughts of meeting with a funeral director, our pastor, the florist, and picking out our cemetery plot was ever-present but yet I slept.  As time went on, I slept here and there. It was as if my body was still programmed in Mommy mode and knew it should be getting up numerous times throughout the night.  I would be up until 2 sometimes 4 am every day.  Sleep until 7 or 8 at the latest any day.  I was off work for my “maternity” leave.  After returning to work I would often be up until all hours of the morning.  But yet I was not really exhausted.   I just needed to keep my mind busy.

My Doctor asked me about meds the last time I saw him before returning to work.  He had wanted me to go on meds when C passed away.  (I saw him 5 days later) I said no.  That if it got to the point that I could not handle it I would be back.  Please do not mistake this for me not agreeing with meds.  That is absolutely not it.  Make no mistake.  If ever you need help, medication, or to talk to someone by all means seek out the help.  You will not regret it.  It was just at the time that I was still functioning.  I am blubbering.  Back to topic.  During this conversation with my Doctor he said are you crying every day.  I said yes.  Well is that normal he said.  NORMAL!  What the hell kind of question is that.  I looked at him and said `My son died.  I would say that crying is pretty normal.“  I am sleeping (some) getting up every morning having a shower, putting on clothes and looking after our daily life.

I have found other things that have helped me.  I have read no less than 300 books in the past 20 months.  Nothing earth shattering.  Drama, smut, the works. Something that I did not have to think much about but kept my brain occupied and entertained.  Bahahaha I can hear a therapist now asking…now what do you think you are using this time reading to do……  Read…..

As I have said before in one of my posts, I saw a counsellor for a time after our son passed.  It allowed me the freedom to agree with my inner voice (the same one that told the Doctor that I was quite normal because I cry) that I was well within the boundaries of what society considers normal.. Hahaha..  I think that Doctor would be scared to know that guess what I still do cry almost every day.  I am an emotional person.  I still cannot understand why some would think that having these normal emotional responses would warrant a second look .  I cry at random TV shows, hearing people talk about pregnancy at work, driving by his grave.  You name it.

I guess is it because society puts a time limit on grief.  So who gave them the right to limit how I feel and what length of time.  Not I.  You see.  (And I do not mean this in a negative way as any loss of a child is devastating)  I did not just pee on a stick one day and find out I was pregnant and lala 2 weeks later delivered or miscarried.   End of story.   We spent 2 and a half  years between waiting for OBGYN appointments, blood work and TTC to get pregnant with him.   28 weeks later I gave birth to him.  19 days later he passed away.  He very well may be our only  child.  The only child my husband and I will ever hold.  It encompasses our entire life.

I read somewhere how when you lose a spouse you loss your past and present.  By this they meant you lose the one that you made your memories with, your experiences.  When you lose a child you lose your future.  There will be no memories made.  All you see ahead of you is the lack of things you will be doing and or experiencing as a family, as a parent.

As his birthday  approaches my periods of rest are more sporadic.  Tomorrow is mid week.  I have to be up in about 5 hours to get ready for work.  Guess it is time to dust off the Kobo and load up some new books!

November 3, 2010

November 3, 2010

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8 responses

  1. Normal. Mmmm. It isn’t, or well it shouldn’t be, ‘normal’ for a parent to loose their child. I don’t even know what normal is anymore. Everyone grieves differently, I actually think it’s healthy to cry as it’s a way of releasing some of that heartache and pressure that builds up, only for it to refill again ready for the next day. If that’s what you need to do to get through your day, that and reading random books, then it makes it your new ‘normal’ x

    February 19, 2014 at 4:22 am

    • Jo

      Yes I agree. It is healthy to feel. To have emotion. With emotion comes pain, joy, grief, sadness and yes tears of joy and tears of sorrow.
      Thank you for accepting my normal!

      February 19, 2014 at 9:44 am

  2. I don’t think I’ll ever be “normal” again, if I ever really was. Losing a child changes everything. It changes how you perceive the world. 5 years after our 8 year old daughter died, the idiot doctor looked at my husband and said “does that still bother you?”. My head nearly spun around like the exorcist. Are you kidding me? Of course it still ‘bothers’ us! People who haven’t been through this kind of loss can’t understand it. For those who do understand, I’m so sorry that you do.

    February 20, 2014 at 6:43 am

    • Jo

      You are so very right! We do not want people to understand because that would mean you have lived what we have lived. But at least respect our actions and say that must be what they need to do.
      Sorry you guys are part of our club…….

      February 20, 2014 at 3:30 pm

    • A doctor asked you if it still bothered you? Awful!! There is so much lack of understanding in general…and in the medical community…about the length and depth of grief following the death of a child.

      February 23, 2014 at 11:29 am

      • Jo

        There are ++ people friends, family and even co-workers that just do not get it. Last year the Monday morning after Father’s Day. A co-worker asked me how my weekend ways (I decided a long time ago it was more healthy for me to speak the truth….instead of what the person wanted to hear) I said it was not good and glad it was over… She looked at me and said. Well what is your problem? Oh nothing lady my son passed away year 3 days after Mother’s Day.. I had a Mother’s Day my husband did not get to spend Father’s Day with his son and although it is not my fault and cannot be changed you still feel guilty as a wife as you want those special times for them…. Oh well I just keep speaking the truth!

        February 23, 2014 at 5:20 pm

  3. Jo, I want to thank you for sharing your beautiful, tragic, heartbreaking, inspiring, “normal” story. Your voice is so genuine. I truly, deeply, and achingly hope Carter is not your only child. You are a wonderful mother. Please keep writing.

    February 22, 2014 at 11:17 am

    • Jo

      Thank you for your kind works and I wish baby dust for us all!!

      February 22, 2014 at 6:24 pm

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