Sunday, February 22, 2009

You Come Back to Me

The other day, in our bereavement group meeting, we were talking about how our children come back to us. Some babies come back as light, some as wind, some as the full moon. To me, you come back as insects. I don’t know... maybe it has to do with my tendency towards all things biology! So, I was inspired to write this poem.
Every night
You seem to come back to me
As your insect of choice
An ant, a spider, a moth, a bee.
You sit on the wall at night
Ushering me into sleep
Or visit me in the shower
Along the ceiling you creep.
I can walk along the beach
And find you beneath the sand
Or on a warm, moist night
Landing so gracefully on my hand.
I can grab a piece of fruit
And see you hovering nearby
So small and meek
Today you’re a fruit fly.
Even in the dead of winter
When no bug is in sight,
A butterfly flies behind me
All nimbly and bright.
I see you now,
Peering at me with so many eyes,
Who would have thought
You could live so many lives.
Yes, everywhere I go,
A four or six-legged creature follows
I can’t help but think that it’s you,
So in your memory I wallow.
You’re always here with me, Shiloh
In one way or another
And it’s so funny to feel
Like an insect’s mother!
But I’ve come to love
These special visits from you at night
Because you are the last thing I touch, I see
Before I turn out the light.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


It is so unfair,
This heavy burden we both must bear.
My future stolen from me in the blink of an eye,
Your life stolen from you, no chance to say goodbye.
Why are we subjected to all of this pain?
I do not know, I cannot feign.
But in all things we seem to meet constant adversity,
They tend to always end so awfully.
Are we just doomed people? Am I too fatalistic?
Or are our experiences just randomly tragic?
The answer to this, I may likely never know,
But it doesn’t matter anyway because woe is woe.

Monday, February 9, 2009

They Say There is a Reason

They say there is a reason,

They say that time will heal,

But neither time nor reason,

Will change the way I feel,

For no-one knows the heartache,

That lies behind our smiles,

No-one knows how many times,

We have broken down and cried,

We want to tell you something,

So there won't be any doubt,

You're so wonderful to think of,

But so hard to be without.

- Author unknown

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Daddy's Letter to Shiloh #2

What am I going to do without you, Shiloh? Wherever I look, I see your little face, your closed eyes. You look like you are dreaming. But you are not dreaming, Shiloh, you are dead. The realization of this and what it will mean for mommy and me becomes heavier by the day. Heavier, because I know I will never get more from you and I will never be able to give more to you. The pictures of you will be the same forever. There will be no new memories, no family vacations with silly pictures of us, no milestones in your development to document and to share. I know so little about you, but I want to know it all.

What will I tell people about you? What do I want to remember about you? You are my child, but to remember you just hurts so damn much. The good memories- CRAP, the plane just shook- is this you, sweetie, telling me that you are here with me?

You are right, there are good memories of the pregnancy with you- 39 weeks and 5 days worth- your development in mommy’s tummy, your kicks and punches, buying things for you and picturing you wearing them, reading about being a daddy and dreaming about being one for you, the summer off- just getting ready for you. Is this the way I should see it, glass half full- I had you and you will always be my child, rather than glass half empty- I will never have you fully. I think I need more time to see the glass as half full, but I may never see it that way. I miss you. I miss myself. And I miss mommy.

Your loss changed us forever. So what am I going to do without you? I will have to learn to live with it. I will have to reserve a part of me just for you. This part has to be really strong. I will also have to learn to find myself again. This means that I will have to separate my life and yours. But I also know that I don’t have to be miserable, angry, absent-minded, directionless, and unhappy, to miss you. I love you. You are my child, and I hope that, with time, I can see it this way without losing the ground from under my feet every time I think about you.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Just Those 39 Weeks

For just those 39 weeks
I had you to myself.
And that seems too short a time
to be changed so profoundly.
In those 39 weeks,
I came to know you...
and to love you.
You came to trust me with your life.
Oh what a life I had planned for you!
Just those 39 weeks...
when I lost you,
I lost a lifetime of hopes,
plans, dreams and aspirations.
A slice of my future simply vanished overnight.
Just those 39 weeks...
It wasn't enough time to convince others
how special and important you were.
How odd, a truly unique person has recently died
and not enough mourn the passing.
Just a mere 39 weeks...
And no "normal" person would cry for months
Over a tiny, dead baby,
or get depressed and withdraw day after endless day.
No one would, so why am I?
You were just those 39 weeks, my little one.
You darted in and out of my life too quickly.
But it seems that's all the time you needed
to make my life richer
and to give me a small glimpse of eternity.

- (Adapted from) S. Erling

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


I’m sifting through the wreckage that is my life
I can’t seem to find what I am looking for
A pain-free existence?
Everything is in jagged pieces
A veritable mess
Almost unrecognizable
There’s nothing to turn to
Nothing to lessen my pain
Nothing to take it away
Your time has come before it has come
Because of this, I am furious
I am holding my breath
Why was I denied my happy ending?

Monday, February 2, 2009

Letter to Shiloh #6

Daddy and I just got back from a visit with Dr. Collins in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He is a G-d send. This man really cares and is willing to spend all his free time talking about what happened to you and what to look for next time we have a baby. I was worried about being in such a public place, and talking for so long, because I was afraid of being too emotional. Every time I think about you, I cry uncontrollably. I haven’t yet made it to the point where I can feel bittersweet about your memory. I don’t think that this will come for a long while though.

Nevertheless, I didn’t break into tears until, in the middle of our conversation, Dr. Collins received a call from another woman who just recently lost her baby due to a UCA. He asked if I wanted to speak with her. In hearing the pain in her voice, my own came rushing back, unrelenting, unforgiving. My three-month-old wound had been torn open yet again.

The feeling of helplessness and emptiness is renewed and more palpable, and all of the sudden, it happened just yesterday. How unfortunate for my body, which has such short respite between powerful bouts of sorrow. I felt myself crawling inwards as I visualized, for what must have been the hundredth time, pushing out your lifeless body. With every memory, the edges of my agony get a tiny bit duller, but it’s still enough to rock my world.

It is so difficult for me to comfort other women, even though we’ve had the same or similar experiences, because my pain is still so raw. I am lost for words, I think because, no matter what I say, it’s not going to bring their child back. But I feel like I owe it you Shiloh, to attempt to console others. I feel this sense of entitlement to the unwanted wisdom that goes along with such an experience. It’s somewhat selfish because I want everyone to know your name, to know what you look like, to know just how much you are loved. And I want these women to reach out to me and tell me about their lost sons and daughters. You are people. You lived. You loved. You are loved.