After a Week

It’s been one week since the bleeding, the call to the doctor, the over-the-phone reassurances and the “if you want to come in I can check, but I’m sure everything’s okay.” It’s been one week since the picture on the screen, quiet and unmoving– one week since “your baby is gone.”

It’s been one week since the holding it in till we got home, the phone calls to loved ones, the numbness and the shock and the beginning of the grieving.

I have a blue bruise, about the size of a nickle, on my hand, and a little red scab from the IV.

I drink coffee that tasted wrong for six weeks. It tastes good now.

I stay up too late in hopes that when I do lie down, my mind will quiet and I will sleep.

I make dinner for the kids, and I change diapers, and I do flashcards with the boys.

I peruse blogs, and update my facebook, and read On the Banks of Plum Creek aloud while the boys do silent contortions on the couch and Squeezy empties out the container of baby wipes and pretends to blow her nose on each one.

I procrastinate laundry and I take a hot shower and I correct spelling words and I pick up my daughter and tickle her and laugh with her infectious hilarity.

I make plans. And then I remember I am not planning around a summer baby anymore. I do not know what to do with that information.

I wonder at myself, at the tears that have been so slow to fall. When the nurse pierced my flesh to put that needle in my hand on Tuesday, it broke the dam and the crying started. I collected myself a little, and then found myself on a table in the operating room, surrounded by strangers, with drugs flowing down into my hand and tears flowing again. The nurse was kind. She said she would take good care of me.

I feel like I haven’t cried enough. I feel numb and still in shock, now, a week after no heartbeat.

I don’t know what it means.

Maybe tomorrow everything will crash in. Maybe it won’t.

I feel guilty for enjoying coffee, for appreciating aleve after three months of only tylenol, for not lying in my bed and weeping like I did before.

In the three years since we lost Elijah, I have told many people there is no wrong way to grieve. And now, I find myself not sure if I believe my own advice. I am okay. It feels wrong.

Stinky watches the shuttle lift off for the final time, and Bubs goes to his piano lesson, and Squeezy fusses at the bandaid on her finger. We eat popcorn and the boys watch Wall-E. I make scrapbook pages in Photoshop.

Life goes on.

I’m okay. But I guess I’m not.

I don’t know what I am.

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16 thoughts on “After a Week

  1. I understand. It’s a weird emptiness. A loss of something that you never even had the chance to have.

    And if you’re like me, you feel guilty for the moments you thought “oh, this will be a lot” or “they will be too close in age” or I’m not sure I’m ready”…

    …and then it’s gone. The hope, the love, the promise. And you didn’t realize how much you were ready to make it work.

    Hugs help a lot. And so does chocolate.

  2. It sounds pretty normal to me. It’s just been a week, remember. Remember Kubler and Ross: Stages. And you do not just march neatly through them on a schedule, either. You bounce back and forth, step forward, step back.

    This is a very fresh wound for you. Don’t expect too much of yourself.

  3. You are here. Breathing. Existing. For now, that is enough. I know that is enough. The tears, they don’t come easy sometimes when the hurt goes so deep. Sometimes they come when you know you’re loved, when God answers the questions that haunt you with Himself and His, “It will be okay.”

    Sending a hug, and my own tears for you, Erin.

    Love you.

  4. I am so sorry. I have been there. It’s so hard. I wish I had the perfect thing to say, but I don’t. It will take time, and there’s nothing wrong with that. {{{hugs}}}

  5. grief takes on different forms. how grief was expressed before isn’t how grief is expressed for me now.

    i grieve in bits and pieces. grief hits me unexpectedly, and when it does i break for a moment; into “no God, and how, and why, and i want mine.” and then i remember He is the Sovereign LORD, i rest tin the things unseen, and begin again..laundry,home schooling, taxi’n my life here, and fix my eyes on Hope.

    may you continue to live in Grace and in Hope.

    you are beautiful.

    i am sorry it’s been a week. i ache for you for your loss, but also rejoice with you that your child was born into heaven, and for your great gain in Glory.

  6. I think it’s ok just to let yourself be, just to let yourself feel whatever you’re feeling, good, bad, angry, numb. In time, as you lean on Jesus, it will all come out. And in the meantime, there are lots of us praying for you, extending hearts and hands where we can. xx

  7. Hard to imagine I didn’t know you just a few months ago, before you started visiting Hearts@Home. . . My heart hurts so much with you. Know that you and your family are in my prayers.

  8. believe what you know… that there is no wrong way to grieve. you’ve been in my heart, words for your heart always on the tip of my tongue. and… i make a cup of coffee and think of you. i’m glad it tastes good. there should be something that isn’t awful about all of this. xoxo

  9. I’m sorry! I know it doesn’t change anything, or fix anything, and I don’t even know you, but I’m sorry. I wish you didn’t have to go through this loss and pain.

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