Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The in-between time

This time in-between the horrible and the getting-back-to-life...well...it sucks. It's better, clearly, than dealing with the actual physical loss of a pregnancy/baby (the hospital memories from this one will haunt me for a very long time). No, it's the time in-between...when you're not strong enough to go back to your life...but you no longer have a direction or a place to be. Adrift, I guess, is a good word to describe it, though I'm sure the experts would call it a "necessary grieving period," or something excessively clinical.

Whatever.

You know what you actually do during these days?

You wake up to antibiotics and painkillers...
rush your kids out the door wearing dirty pants...
feed them chocolate donuts in the car...
drop them at school and daycare...
go to the funeral home and sign paperwork to have your baby cremated...
hear the funeral director trip over the word "baby" and opt for the awkward safety of "fetus"...
see the tiny marble urn they will use to bury the ashes in...
rush out of the funeral home without saying thank you in order to avoid having yet another person see you cry...
drive to the lake and walk along the beach, freezing your ears off, and obsessively looking to collect seven rocks that look similar (because if you can't create the family of your dreams, at least you can find a family of seven rocks, right?)...
go home and eat potato chips...
take more painkillers...
fold towels...
go out to the garden and chop the heads off every pretty flower you can find (to created the ugliest spring bouquet ever...to stick in a vase in your living room)...
change your mind about the marble urn...
ask your husband to call the funeral director and ask him if you can sit your dead baby's ashes on your nightstand for a while...
look at the handprints of your dead baby...
cry because nothing in the memory box provided by the kind people at the hospital is relevant to the end of your baby's brief life...
surf the internet incessantly looking for something...ANYTHING...that you can put in that damn memory box that will mean something...
pack up pads, pain killers and tissues in your purse...
go pick up your kids at school and daycare...
take them to Toys R Us and buy them toys...just because they're alive and you want to...
return a baby blanket you had your husband buy when you foolishly thought you would get to hold your dead baby and take pretty pictures before you laid them to rest with it in a pretty little coffin...
lose your appetite...
avoid a restaurant you visited just a week or two ago...BECAUSE you visited it a week or two ago and you can't handle the memories...
go to another restaurant and let your children eat crap for dinner...
take more painkillers...
come home and attempt to help your seven-year-old with homework that makes you want to inflict serious pain on his teacher...
note that it took exactly two days for your gluten sensitivity to return...
drink...
blog...
take more antibiotics...
try to watch all the shows you have saved on your DVR, because you're switching to cable in the morning...
drink some more...
hope to pass out into at least two or three blissful hours of dreamless sleep before the nightmares come.

Yeah...fun times.

At least there are pretty flowers...and beach rocks...

11 comments:

kate said...

they indeed are beautiful.

Kathy McC said...

Those rocks are actually really cool. Don't have any wisdom (that's a tough one for my petite brain), but of course sending lots of love.

Beruriah said...

No real words. The flowers and the rocks are beautiful.

Pipsylou said...

this sucks.

LawMommy said...

I am sorry.

I like to walk Lake Erie beaches...sometimes, on a hot summer day, you can look out and the lake feels as big as the ocean.

I am wondering (and feel free to tell me to p*ss off) if you might want to write the baby's name in the sand, and take a photo...some night when the sun setting or some morning when it is coming up. That might be something you could put in the box. Just a thought.

marcia said...

Hmmm...I was going to say something, like the other three did, about the rocks and flowers, then Rach comes along and just tells it like it is...can always count on her for that!:) I agree with her...but also really appreciate your idea with the beach stones! Maybe that's because I have always lived within about 25 miles of Lake Michigan, and there is just something about being at the beach, no matter what the weather, that just never fails to bring some sort of order to my life and soul, no matter what is going on. Can you relate to that, Catherine? I hope you know what I mean....and that you felt just a tiny bit of that, searching for your perfect stones. Maybe it's some sort of sense, with the majesty of the Lake as far as the eye can see, with all of its changing faces and personalities, that life is so much bigger than the moment I am in. Even in November storms with 15-foot waves slamming into the shore and over breakwaters and piers, there is some solace in the knowledge of the sunny and calm July days that will somehow come around again. Gosh, I hope this just isn't too philosophical and downright insensitive!!! I sooo hope that somehow it will strike a chord, and perhaps have some sort of meaning to you. The Great Lakes just do that for me....and my prayer for you today, is that somehow you have experienced a taste of something similar! Much love!

Bon said...

between the grief and the trauma of what sounds like a particularly brutal experience this go round, i am glad you have a beach to walk on and am damn impressed you're just getting out of bed.

i know you have to, i know you don't get that break, whatever break it would be...but still. that you are doing it is itself pretty courageous.

my heart goes out to you, Kate. to all of you.

three minute palaver said...

I'm really sorry you don't have photos of your little Bug. I'm really sorry you and Steve chose a blanket hoping to be able to hold Little Bug only to return the banket and not have that chance. I agree with Bon, this time around does sound particularly brutal and traumatic. I am just so sorry things turned out this way. Rachel is right, this does suck.

Holley said...

The rocks and the flowers are lovely. I'm sorry you have so little to hold of Little Bug.

My heart is with you all.

three minute palaver said...

Hi again,
ok, went away and had a think about your memory box and what will mean something to you and I thought instead of looking for objects and mementos what about getting either another tattoo or adding something to your original tattoo so it incorporates Little Bug into your history and story? JUst a thought. xC.

Kendra's mom said...

Oh, Catherine, I am so terribly sorry. I haven't read your blog for over a week, then read all this. My heart is breaking for you. You will get through it, I know you will, you are a strong person. I wish I could take away some of the pain but I know only too well that nothing does. I like the tattoo idea of the commenter above. I still want to have one done for my kids.
{{{BIG HUG}}}