Thursday, March 1, 2012

another birthday . . .

It seems I have started a new ritual of posting here on Mila's birthday. Today our sweet angel is 8 months old. I miss her so much. So, so much.

This week we are also celebrating the birth of my sister's daughter, Adelyn. I was honored to be present during her delivery and the effects this experience have had on me are profound, to say the least. Being there for Baby Addy's birth brought back memories I thought I had lost forever. I remember pushing Mila out, having no idea that our baby would be stillborn. I remember Chris cheering me on the same way my brother in law encouraged my sister with enthusiasm and humor. I also remember feeling so much weaker than my sister was. Infection was taking over and I grew weaker and weaker by the minute.

When Adelyn arrived she was full of life; screaming, wiggling, vibrant life. She's beautiful, like our Mila was. Our traumatic loss caused all of us to worry and fear the worst, but little Addy made it. I'm so relieved, so grateful that she is here. My sister is too. In a way, Addy is the baby girl we all need right now. I feel drawn to her, like she and I share a special secret. When she was crying on the warmer, my voice calmed her. My touch caught her attention. It was quite magical.

It seemed as if Mila and I were a team that day.I prayed that she help bring my sister's baby into the world safely. I prayed that God surround me with courage, strength, and peace, knowing my baby girl was near.

My sister means everything to me. When our baby died and I was fighting for my life, she stepped in and helped take care of my family. She was my advocate and spokesperson. She fed me my first meal, spoonful after spoonful of ice chips, and held my hair back when I couldn't keep anything down. I will never be able to repay her for all she did for me. I'm not going to lie, however. I am so jealous of my sister. She gets to hold and feed her newborn baby. She gets to bring home this new life and enjoy the blissful exhaustion a new baby brings. I'm not sure how I'll handle this joy when my heart is so broken. I feel so bad that our experience casts such a shadow over this otherwise wonderful time.

Today I was driving home and I heard a song on the radio that spoke to me. Lots of music touches my heart lately. I've uploaded most of it onto my phone, of course. So many things inspire me, comfort me, and stir up the emotions inside me.

When you’re dreaming with a broken heart,
And waking up is the hardest part,
You roll out of bed and down on your knee,
And for a moment you can hardly breathe.
Wondering was she really here?
Is she standing in my room?
No she’s not. Cause she’s gone, gone, gone, gone, gone.

When you're dreaming with a broken heart.
The giving up is the hardest part.
She takes you in with her crying eyes.
And all at once you have to say goodbye.
Wondering could you stay, my love?
Will you wake up by my side?
No she can’t, Cause she’s gone, gone, gone, gone, gone.

Dreaming with a Broken Heart by John Mayer

I dream of one day having another baby, somehow. While we've started to look forward to the next journey, we can't help but wish we didn't have to be in this place. I've had a lot of moments lately where I just can't believe what happened to us. I beg God to let me wake from this nightmare. That's not to say we don't have good times and good days. We do. It's just so hard to understand, still, why this happened to us. My therapist has helped me understand that we were victims of a horrible tragedy. I read recently, however, that we have the choice to be victims or victors. Maybe one day I will feel victorious over my loss and heartache, but not today. Today I feel like a victim. A grateful but very fragile victim. Happy birthday Baby Mila. I miss you more every day.