Sunday, September 23, 2012

When Will It Ever Feel Okay To Let Go?...

Friday came and went without a word.  I think I was the only one who knew what day it was.

Friday, September 21st, would have been Darcy's 2nd birthday.
Last year's birthday didn't go very well.  I had a miscarriage that morning, was home alone with two sick boys and a broken heater that needed repair.  I wrote about the whole day HERE.

This year, I thought in advance about what I should do.  Just off the "getting rid of all of our baby things" extravaganza, I didn't know if I could handle much, to be honest.  That was hard enough.  To celebrate the daughter I birthed and held and then handed over to a funeral home on the heels of that?  It seemed too much to bear.

There are a few things of Darcy's that I just couldn't part with.  Her Madeline doll.  Her Mary Janes.  And her cherry blossom bedding set.  They still sit in the corner of our dining room staring at me every day.
I guess it shouldn't have been a surprise that my body was so twisted up and in pain all last week.  As Friday got closer and closer - I felt worse and worse.  I decided to do some happy things on that day - things that might make me feel better.  Getting in with Dr. Trish was a perfect way to start the day.  And then taking Brian to meet Ed for lunch - that was very fun.  The movie?  It couldn't have been better.  My sweet boy and I were the only two in the theater.  He was mesmerized and never moved an inch except to hold my hand now and then.  And I was able to shed a few tears under my 3D glasses.

(As an aside:  The lunch date and movie were not a reward for Brian's whining.  And yes, I do discipline him.  But I'm also aware of my children's emotions and respond to them. I sensed that Brian's recent acting out was him needing some one on one time. A lot of the time the focus is on Gavin around here.  Brian doesn't know how to vocalize his needs or frustrations. He's three!  I don't believe in constant punishment without trying to figure out the root of the issue. We had a wonderful day bonding together and he's been great all weekend.  I sure got a lot of mail and a few comments here reprimanding me for spoiling him.  Several notes from people who don't have kids, but still had advice. But now you know what was going on with ME that day - the day was probably more about me than him, to be honest.  It's a good lesson to take a breath before you judge someone - you never know the whole story.)

Ed went out for some after work fun to a local casino that night.  As I sat alone in the kitchen, with the boys asleep in their beds, I grappled with whether or not I had made the right choice.

Was I selfish for not celebrating her because of my emotional fragility?  Or is there a time when I should just stop talking about it?  Should I have to remind everyone around me about special dates?  Or should I not expect anyone but me, her Mother, to notice?  These are all rhetorical questions - and I don't have the answer to any of them.  I felt a lot of guilt going to bed on Friday, that's for sure.  And a slight bit of resentment that I had been so "alone."

The truth is, she is a big part of my life and our family.  I think of her every single day.  Talk to her all the time.  If you know me and you ever see me holding my heart pendant - the one I wear around my neck that holds her ashes - I'm saying a little prayer for her.  I do it all the time.  I even represent her each year in our "Scarecrow family" outside of our house.  In my eyes, we will always be a family of five.
Ed and I watch the show "The X Factor" together.  Every time I see a young girl sing on stage in front of the judges...and they flash to her Mom and Dad backstage...I can't hold back my tears.  Many moons ago I sang.  I wasn't half bad.  I always dreamed that I would have a little girl who sang like me.  Or was musical in any way.  I just feel so robbed - I had a daughter and just like that she was taken away.

When I think that each year - each birthday - each "Darcy Day" when we celebrate her actual birth - will get easier, it doesn't.  I don't think it will ever feel okay for me to let go.

And part of me doesn't want to.

Happy 2nd Birthday, Darcy Claire.  Mommy misses you so much.




10 comments:

  1. What? People want you to beat your kid for acting like a kid? Brian is just trying to figure out his place in this world and like you said, its not easy when you're only three. I think a regular date night is a good idea for Mommy and Brian AND Daddy and Brian if possible. I think its a good idea to do that in any family. Any kid needs that to develop a solid relationship with their parents. If he has that with you...he'll have a better time dealing with people and figuring them out when he's older.

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  2. Kate, year 17 is coming up for me really soon and I still get irritated when people don't remember or dont understandblame why I'm just not myself. As a mom it's not in our blood to let go and really....why should we? Those angels are a part of who we are just as much as our children that remain on earth. (((HUGS)))Love from one mom to another.

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  3. it is better to be who you are with the memory than to stuff it and 'pretend' losing D never happened. Pushing that pain down will make your soul sick--and as you said- your body, too.

    Knowing she is perfectly ok in heaven helps, but doesn't take away the fact you miss her,

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  4. I think back to when we were TTC35 on iVillage and it seems like yesterday. So much has happened. I dont think you need to justify your feelings to any of us. My heart goes out to you still today on the loss of your little girl. It will soon be 7 years since I lost Matthew and I still hurt every day. You are one tough chick and Lord knows stronger braver that I will ever be. ((hugs))

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  5. Well, I've never had the opportunity to have kids but I felt like you did an awesome thing in reading Brian's emotions and spending some extra time with him. Sometimes people who don't have children...through no fault of their own or of their own choosing...are able to view things from a different perspective. I've been a preschool teacher for years and many times I have heard, "Well you don't have any children so you don't know...". That's right. I don't know what its like to spend Mother's Day with a child. I don't know what its like to experience having a child grow inside of me and then get to hold him in my arms nine months later. I don't know what its like to hear a child exclaim, "Mama!" when I pick her up from preschool. But, I am able to provide a haven of nurture while parents head off to work after entrusting their child to me. I'm able to hug a mom who has been up with her child all night and tell her, "I'll take care of him. You go take care of you." I would never presume to know what its like to be a parent. I just wish that parents wouldn't assume that everyone who doesn't have a child has nothing to offer those who do.

    Susan

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    1. Susan...wow.
      You are absolutely right. I stand corrected and I thank you for expressing that so eloquently,
      I won't soon forget your comment. And I apologize for being such a cliché.
      Thank you.

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    2. Oh, Kate! Bless your heart! You are so sweet! I was tired and cranky and "having a moment" :) A good cry and a pint of ice cream and I was good to go! I wish your kids were in my preschool class! I'd make you Room Mom :)!!

      Susan

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  6. I am so sorry you felt so alone. I don't think most people know how to approach this. I don't think they intentionally don't remember but instead don't want to hurt you.

    I know that if it wasn't for following your blog, I wouldn't know to remember my cousin's son whom she lost at 23 weeks due to premature labor. Because of all of your posts, I knew that it would be more hurtful to ignore it in the hope of not causing her more pain. Instead, I acknowledge Elijah and remember his birthday and due date. Thank you, for helping me to better understand the pain a family goes through after such a loss and be able to better support someone who is very close to me.

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  7. I feel that I can't just let the day that my mom died go unnoticed. But I try not to expect the others around me to feel the same way. They are in their own world and grieving (or not grieving) in their own way. The day is really about me and my relationship with my mom and how I want to remember her. Because I loved my mom so dearly and she made me feel like I was a part of the best family ever, I choose to remember her that day by making the day a tribute to her. I choose to do this by spending time with my kids....just me and the kids...and I focus completely on them. No laundry, no cooking, no working, no errands. Last year we went to the Philly zoo. We took whatever path they wanted and lingered at each animal however long they wanted. My kids felt so special that day and we had so much fun that I couldn't imagine a better way to celebrate my mom. I didn't want to sit around crying and feeling sorry for myself because my mom would never want that for me. She would have been thrilled to be at the zoo with us. In my heart she WAS there with us all that day. Maybe you could think next year about doing something with the kids that day that you think Darcy might have liked to do. If you do this every year, the kids might start to associate Darcy with fun and happy thoughts. It should help seal her in their memory in a positive and uplifting way. Who said remembering somoene has to be sad? Just a thought. It's really up to you though and what feels right to you.

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    Replies
    1. Kim,
      You are so thoughtful. I love your idea of thinking of something fun that Darcy may have wanted to do! I'm going to give that some thought for May, when I celebrate the day I met her. It would be good for the boys to do some girly things with me, right?? :-) So far, every anniversary has been positive and happy (which is usually my style) with cake and balloons and singing happy birthday and talking about their sister. But this year, right after giving up trying for another baby and getting rid of all of our things - I just didn't have the energy.
      I love that you took your kids to the Zoo. And thinking of you following their lead and letting them experience the zoo in their own way - that's just how I picture you as a Mom. They are two lucky kiddos. And you are lucky that you had such a wonderful teacher for as long as you did. I just wish it had been longer for you. It's never easy and I'm so sorry.
      Thank you for taking the time to write such a thoughtful comment, Kim!
      Xo

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