Grief Strikes

Okay, I admit it. I’m not hanging in here too well

When did the weeping start again? A few days ago, I guess. Now I’m crying every day, many times a day. It’s been eight years, a web site, several versions of a bulletin board, e-cards and surely several thousand emails, and yet here I am, practically at square one, like it all just happened yesterday.

Tonight I expected some upset. I’ve been printing out the emails and comments in batches, then every few days  I read them all at once, highlighting things that strike a chord. This often upsets me, reading so many sad stories. It’s okay, I roll with the grief. I manage it okay. It’s important to feel it all, take it in, so I can draw it out again when I start writing the book.

I found mention of pregnancy loss bracelets, so I googled them, and found a site where a woman had lost her baby around the same time as I lost Casey.

But she had a lovely framed copy of her baby’s tiny hand and footprints.

That was it. I couldn’t take it.

Jealousy surged. The misery spouted through me like a geyser. I could have had those too! I made a stupid mistake! I didn’t get to see my baby! I didn’t get those footprints! I didn’t even get to find out the sex! If only I could go back, do it again, make different choices.

But I can’t. And it’s awful.

Well, ladies, one thing I’ve learned tonight is that precious little of this pain eases. Eight years and I still get overwhelmed with remorse and grief.

Yep. This is going to be a long road. I better duck my head and start weathering the waves.

9 thoughts on “Grief Strikes

  1. My losses were 3 years ago and the other day in the shower I got all weepy again. It came out of nowhere and was really unexpected. I guess it just happens from time to time.

    I’ve also had 2 friends lose babies in their second trimester within the last month. It not only brings back my own grief, but my heart breaks all over again for them.

  2. Oh, Deanna, I’m sorry this is hard! I think it shows how much you love your babies, and are not meant to be apart (not the way God intended). I know that at least the lives of my babies matter because I mourn.

    Recenlty, some friends of mine who are very conservative people found out their baby was not going to survive. They had a miscarriage in a previous pregnancy. The mom is a medical worker who was stuck and got hepatitis, and the father has low sperm. When they got pregnant the first time they were so excited, but at about 11 weeks, my friend no longer had morning sickness. The baby was gone. She resigned herself to a life without birthing babies, and eventually became a marathon runner. She continued her practice, and she and her husband adopted a baby from China. After getting their new baby home (a beautiful one year old baby girl) they found out there were pregnant. This appeared to be their little miracle, and they decided to be very careful. My friend dropped down on the workload, and she took the best care of herself she could. She became very ill (as she had been in the first pregnancy). She is a small person, and lost weight with the pregnancy. With testing, it was not long before they found out something was wrong. They had a sonogram that confirmed the baby was not doing well. They were given the option to abort, but decided to wait until amnio could make some confirmations. They had the amnio, and then decided to abort. Their baby was near the age of mine (mine was 16 weeks…theirs was 18 at the time of the termination). This killed me, literally. Their baby was already in heart failure, and they decided to end her pain, then delivered an intact baby. I called to talk with them expressing my sorrow for them, and accidentally called them on the way to the hospital for the induction. Oh, that was very hard for them, and embarrassing for me. I prayed for them, and was glad they got to see their child, but yes, felt a sense of jealousy. They got a lock of hair, pictures, foot prints, and got to hold their baby. They had a church service memorial and cremation/burial. What did I get? I got bills, a hospital bracelet, and a stupid copy of a femur and outline of the top of the head. I never asked on the day of the sonogram about a copy. This part of me thought I wasn’t allowed a copy since my baby was dead. I remember meeting with the doctor, then walking by the sonogram room on the way out and seeing the image still on the screen (the doctor must have been reviewing it), and I still didn’t ask for a picture. When I was thinking of the upcoming D&E, I assumed I had no option to deliver. Finding out that my friend delivered made it so hard. On the phone I remember saying, “I’m glad you decided to deliver” and my friend said, “well, yeah, I mean, the baby’s at least 6 inches long. I want to hold her.” I wanted to hold my CJ, to see him. Instead, my doctor was the first to see him as he took him from my body. A room full of strangers in medical masks saw him, but not me. A pathologist knew he was a boy (I was fortunate they did find this out), and knew his genetic make up before I did. And my friends chose the moment the heartbeat ended for their baby, and this made me so sad…and again…they got to hear the last heartbeat! I heard nothing when the doppler was placed on my belly. I was angry…and it wasn’t fair as I saw it. Now, I’m sure it’s not about fair. It’s sad, we lost our babies. I just didn’t think I would feel this way. It’s true, it’s not fair our babies are not with us and we are left with barely anything to show.

    Deanna, I think if it gets to hard, it’s okay to take a break from this. It’s pretty intense to go through all this again! This is why I can only read the miscarriage stories once in a while, I just cannot take it.

  3. Oh, have you read CS Lewis’s book, A Grief Observed (I hope I got the title right!)? He writes about the loss of his wife. Now, I could only handle reading some of it, but it talks about the spiral of grief. We all come around it again, not in the same way and not as frequently, but it just spirals around again. I think you are on that spiral as are many others out there….

  4. Deanna,

    I’m so sorry. I don’t have a lot of words to make you feel better. I know that it has been a while, but it’s amazing how, like waves, grief can just wash over you again, and again – particularly when you least expect it. In some ways, it validates our children – that even after they are gone, they still have an impact on our lives, on our souls.

    Thank you so much for talking about, and sharing yourself. For providing a place for grieving women at all stages to bond together and support each other. You are a truly remarkable person.

  5. Deanna,
    My 2nd loss was 2 years ago, and I feel like I’m not going to get over it easily. How do you get over something like that. I didn’t get to see my babies, but I do have the bracelet and I did register them with the church in NYC so I could have their life certificates. My mom has given me several “memory” gifts. It makes me feel better for a time, but it never takes away the pain–ever. Not even my husband’s comfort does that for me, nor the dreams that I have of them in Heaven with their 2 grandpas. I gives me a moment of peace before the loss settles in again.

    I never know what it is that will set me off. Sometimes it’s a baby born into my family. Sometimes it’s seemingly nothing. The latest one was on Sunday when I lit the candles to remember my two little ones. I also lit a spiral of tea lights, and they went out one by one until only two were left. Those burned for quite awhile, but when they went out, I cried and cried as if I had lost my two little ones again.

    One thing I have learned is not to protect myself from the hurt. It will only hit me harder later. Thanks so much for giving us a way to share our grief, and thanks for being so strong so many times when we couldn’t be.

  6. Hello Deanna

    I dunno if it helps but what you are doing here is incredibly cathartic for those of us who have suffered a miscarriage. Talking or at least writing about it on here really helps me and I’m sure I’m not the only one.

    It costs but you’re doing an amazing thing. You’re channelling negative emotions grief, sadness, maybe even anger, to make something positive – a document which will support others going through the same thing and a website which allows them to talk about their grief in a supportive environment.

    That’s no small feat.

    Looking back on losing your little one will rake it up. It’s only natural but hang in there.



  7. I too desperately wished I would have asked for ultrasound pictures even though my baby had already passed away. It was my first ultrasound and the baby looked absolutely perfect, I had no idea anything was wrong until I started asking questions and the ultrasound technician didn’t answer me and then finally said she couldn’t find a heartbeat. My husband wasn’t there and didn’t get to see the baby, part of why the loss didn’t “seem real” to him. I wish I would have been brave enough to ask for pictures both for him and as a momento for me.

  8. It is OK to cry. That is part of your grief. You have to let it all out. Find someone who will understand your pain. And don’t let anyone tell you that it’s time to move on. Take your time. It is a daily process. At, I pour out my heart by writing. Keep a daily journal. Write about the things on your mind and about the good memories that you had with your loved one; no matter how young or old they were. I will be praying for you.

  9. I dont know if this is going to help me, but I have been searching for some comfort on the web of women who have gone through the same as me. I had what was unsympathetically called a missed miscarriage. Here is the story of my baby’s short life.

    I found out I was pregnant at about 6 weeks. I thought I had a nasty virus as I felt unwell but then a friend told me to take a pregnancy test. It was positive. To be honest I didnt know how I felt – I have never been maternal and never really thought that having children was for me. I spent the next 7 weeks trying to accept my pregnancy as a potive in my life. I continued to feel unwell with sickness (why call it morning sickness when it lasts 24 hours?) and tiredness and the usual ‘normal’ symptoms of pregnancy and was looking forward to the trimester where I was supposed to blossom…

    It was time to have the first scan to confirm the due date. I was with my husband who was very excited about the prospect of being a daddy… At first I was confused as I could not see anything on ultrasound and I could tell that the sonographer was a little worried herself. Then she said – ‘ah there you’ and I began to relax… I did not say anything as I saw this little shape hiding at the very edge… After a few clicks on the PC and moving the probe in several positions on my belly, the sonographer said ‘I’m really sorry I cannot find a heart beat’… I cannot explain the shock that I felt. I just lay there paralysed staring at the screen along with my husband. Finally she asked me if I was okay – all I could answer was ‘I don’t know’… I then took my husbands hand and told him how sorry I was… and that was when I first felt the loss of my small child.

    We are coping I guess, which for me means putting on a brave face and going to work with a smile, when inside I feel crushed with the loss. At unexpected times I realise tears are falling down my cheeks and I cannot stop them.

    I was happy to read on this site that a lady has a momento that she keeps and that it can at times bring some comfort – I have ordered a discreet bracelet with gem stones on the months that my baby was conceived, died and would have been born… I didn’t know if this was an appopriate thing to do but I want something tangible I can hold on to. I did not get the opportunity to ask for a picture of the ultrasound and to be honest I dont think I would want it… No – that is not the right phrase – I don’t think I could cope with it…

    I miss my baby eventhough I was not pregnant for very long. I dont understand why I feel like this when I was very unsure of how I felt about being pregnant.

    Thank you for setting up this web page and for the comments that have been written. This is the first site I have found where I felt I wanted and could write something.

    My baby has died and I mourn my loss as only a mother could. I have learned that even though childless – I am a mommy…

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