Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Quotes from a 4-year-old, and other ramblings.

We talk to Ben about Bowie more these days.  He likes to kiss my belly, sing to my belly, blow raspberries on my belly.  He did these things with Lydie too.  It feels like deja vu.  I take a lot of deep breaths.   I pat my belly and will Bowie to stay with us.  I tell Lydie I love her, out loud, multiple times a day.

Ben seems to be becoming a bit territorial of my belly.  Last week, when his 4-year-old cousin AJ tried to kiss my belly, Ben responded with, "Nooo!  My Bowie!"  He then demanded, "Close it!," as he pulled down my t-shirt.

He also has picked up that Mama likes it when Bowie gives her a kick and has tried to kick me himself.  Look at me, Mom, I can kick you too!


AJ made me a clay flower, painted pink, for Mother's Day.  He presented it to me proudly, telling me it was for me and Lydie.  And he said, "Lydie gets all the pretty things."

Thanks, buddy.  I think Lydie is deserving of all the pretty things too.

And soon after, my niece Lane took a bite out of it.


While sitting at the table eating breakfast, I asked Benjamin, AJ, and Lane what we should name Bowie.  "Lane!" answered AJ.

"But we already have a Lane," I told him.  "If we had two Lanes, Pop-Pop might get confused."

"But we have two toilets!" he exclaimed.


Next week will be 8 months without our girl.  Which means she will have been gone longer than she was ever here.  Sometimes these kind of realizations take my breath away.


A few nights ago, I felt more kicks from Bowie than I have felt yet.  Justin put his hand on my belly and felt them too.  It was a nice moment.

A few minutes later while crawling into bed, Justin asked, "Do you think she was moving so much more than usual because something is wrong?"

No.  I didn't.
Until now.

There is just not going to be any reassurance in this pregnancy, no peace to be found.  Until this girl comes out screaming.  Please, please, please come out screaming.


A lot of baby loss mamas say their "angels" are looking out for their siblings in subsequent pregnancies.  I have never once said that.  I don't want Lydia's little sister to be her responsibility.  I don't want to blame her if Bowie dies.  I want to take care of Lydia, not have Lydia take care of me. 


I was reading this article from the New York Times, about stillbirth of course, when my sister called.  The article begins:  Dr. Eleni Michailidis, 38, gave birth to a stillborn son, Alexander, in February. Stillbirth is not uncommon in the United States, affecting 1 in 160 pregnancies, but the experience is rarely discussed.

My sister was calling me to tell me that her coworker's wife had gone in for her 38 week check up.  And they couldn't find the heartbeat.  She will be going to the hospital to be induced tonight.  

It's so devastating and completely senseless, and it keeps happening.  You know all that money that ALS raised last year with the ice bucket challenge?  (I was "tagged," but didn't do it because I was afraid it wouldn't be good for Lydie.  Ironic, yes?)  I want to start something like that for stillbirth.  I want to raise money and awareness and show people that these lives matter.  That 26,000 lives lost a year the United States is unnecessary and tragic and worth talking about.   It drives me crazy when people call it "pregnancy loss."  I didn't "lose" a pregnancy; my daughter died. 

Speaking of, the New York Times is also asking people to share their stillbirth stories here.  I never get tired of talking about Lydie, though the details of her death are hard to relive.  I will share her story and I hope many of my friends share the stories of their precious children.


Oh, and also?  I just won a Boppy and a Boppy pregnancy sleep pillow through Pregnancy After Loss Support.  I seriously don't win things.  I just don't.  There's no point in me gambling because I.will.not.win.  Except for the shittiest lottery in the world, the 1 out of 160 stillbirth lottery.  Lydie and I won that one.

Of course I already have a Boppy, which was a lifesaver for breastfeeding Ben and was packed to go to the hospital for Lydie but stayed home.  But I'm super excited about the sleep pillow.  Third pregnancy and I do not sleep well when I'm pregnant.  And now I am trying harder than ever to sleep on my left side since I want Bowie to get all the blood flow she can, and I will never again roll my eyes and think these things are not a big deal.  

The website asked that I just send them a picture of me using these items so they can publish them on their website.  I am not about to send a picture of me in my jams, spooning a pillow, but if Bowie lives, I will happily send them two hundred pictures of us using the Boppy.


  1. I just submitted my story. Thank you for sharing the link.

    And I hate the idea of Eliza being a guardian angel. It's just as you said--I should be watching over her, not the other way around. She's my baby.

  2. I submitted my story yesterday too--I really hope that they get a huge response to that piece, because I'd love to see all of us be heard.

    And I'm seriously laughing at you sending them a picture of you in your jammies snuggling with the body pillow. Seriously!

  3. You won that rocking horse from Dad's work party when you were 3!
    Turns out my co-worker's daughter was actually 34 weeks along. Troy's wife, Kati, hadn't felt much movement Monday, so they went to the doctor and couldn't find a heartbeat. Augh. They'll meet their daughter, Eloise, today.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Thanks for sharing with Heather, Laura. This blog has gotten me through some really crappy days. To see our story mentioned in it was a surprise, but not a bad one. Eloise eventually was able to rest in our arms on 6-25-15. All 4lbs 8oz of her. One day she will have a rainbow sibling of her own. Until then, Heather, we wish you and Bowie (and Ben, Lydie, and Justin) all the luck in the world. We think of you often.

    3. thank you Kati. We think of you and your sweet family of 3 so often too!

  4. I would love to create something too that raises money and awareness for stillbirth! I game to be a Midwest partner!

    I'm proud of you for putting Lydis stuff in her precious memory box. It is so emotionally draining but also (I think) a good step to achieve in the grief process.

    I can't believe how protective Ben is of your belly! Too cute! He loves both his sisters so much! It's beautiful! Your beautiful family of 5!

  5. I am so in if you work toward more research into stillbirth. There's so little done; there's so much more that could be done. I wonder if March of Dimes would be willing to start a research grant into stillbirth and expand their mission.

    Sending peace today to you and Bowie and all your family, including Lydie.

  6. I can't wait to see pictures of Bowie using the Boppy!


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