Thursday, October 28, 2010

Shiloh's 2nd Birthday

Andreas celebrated Shi’s 2nd birthday in a speccy Barcelona park


This day has come so swiftly
Snuck up on me once again
Everyday you’re gone, an eternity
Yet it feels like just yesterday

I wish you were here with me, Shiloh
To blow out these two pink candles
And fill my heart with love, not sadness
To be on earth, instead of just my angel

I love you sweet baby
Happy second birthday 

Monday, October 25, 2010

I couldn't resist...

Look at that smile!
Oh... and she's totally got my Jew nose (check out that bump)! Craziness!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Bad, the Good and the Inevitable

THE BAD: 
First Betamethasone (steroid) shot at 2pm yesterday (to speed up fetal lung maturity in case of preterm delivery) = slight decrease in fetal movement and fetal heart rate = me scared shitless and annoyed that I was not informed of this earlier = me frantically researching it last night = waking up every two hours to see if she is still alive = humungous headache this morning, but thankfully, a live, active baby.
Second Betamethasone shot at 2pm today = anxiety = another sleepless night


Side note: I think we need to invest in one of those $3000 Tempur-pedic mattresses so my poor, hardworking husband can get some sleep. Ya know, the ones in the commercial where you can jump up and down on the bed with a full glass of wine sitting on the other side?! So, when I'm up at 12, 2, 4, 6 and 8 am shaking my belly, he shouldn't feel a thing, right?


THE GOOD: 
From 32 weeks onwards, the baby should have heart rate accelerations to 15 beats above resting heart rate, for 15 seconds, every 20 minutes or so to show that she is "reactive" (this concept is still a bit of a conundrum to me. Isn't she reactive if I poke my belly and she moves? I guess it's more of a reactive heart rate thing though since heart rate doesn't always increase if she moves.). Anyway, she was uncharacteristically sleepy as I was doing my monitoring yesterday (thank you, steroid shot...), so I told Andreas to come talk to her. The minute he started talking, her heart rate shot up from 145 to 170! Isn't it incredible that she not only recognizes her daddy's voice, but that she responds with an increased heart rate! C'est compl├Ętement incroyable! 


THE INEVITABLE: 
I miss Shiloh profoundly. I wish she were here to experience this all with us (not all of the drama, of course. If she were here, there wouldn't be any drama!). Especially because people are constantly asking if I have other children, how old they are and what sex they are. I always say that I have a daughter, that she'd be almost 2. People never pick up on the past tense though. It's just as well. I always end up crying and running away if I have to talk about her not being here.


I'm in awe of the fact that I'll be celebrating her 2nd birthday- alone (sniff, sniff)- in just 5 days. It feels like an eternity without her, but it also feels like she was born just yesterday. Time is so strange. In reference to the bizarreness of time, I found this quote that resonated with me: "The flower that you hold in your hands was born today and already it is as old as you are." -Antonio Porchia, Voces 1943. It hits home.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Xavier's Fridge Friends

Michelle Swords at Hangin' with Xavier on the Fridge took these cool photos of Shiloh's name in fridge magnets. All part of what I call my artistic grief therapy. What a fantastic idea. I love them! 
If you'd like to have your angel's name done, send her an email.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Shiloh's Candles- Infant Loss Remembrance Day Collage

Here's the collage of all the candles lit in memory of sweet Shiloh (and too many other angel babies) for Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day (Oct 15th). The week of Oct 15 is to remember all babies born sleeping, those we have carried but never met, those we have held but could not take home, and those that came home, but didn't stay. 

Thank you to everyone who remembered to light a candle and take a photo of it! I absolutely love having these constant reminders that Shi has touched so many peoples' lives.

This year, I received candle photos from all over California (SD, SB, LA, SF, Berkeley, Monterey), Utah, Ohio, Alabama, New York, Hawaii, Australia, The Netherlands and Germany. If you still have a photo that you haven't emailed to me, please feel free to do so- I will add it into the collage!

And, if you'd like to check out last year's collage, please click here.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Shi's baby sister

Shi's baby sister is definitely a face toucher. Her hand was in front of her face the entire hour we were at My First Peekaboo trying to get some good 4D shots, despite my calisthenics, constant rolling from left to right and the tech's belly tapping! What a cheeky baby. She's so perfect with her chubby cheeks and her button nose. Ooooh, I just wanna eat her up! I hope to meet her real soon- healthy and alive (I have to keep saying it so it comes true- it's all about the chi.).

Also of ironic interest- the ultrasound tech recognized Andreas and me because she had visited Shi's website ages ago and was so touched by it/our story/our bravery etc. She left us a comment and wrote us a letter (but apparently never sent it!). I'm elated that Shi's left a mark on so many peoples' lives. It's so bittersweet though, and never fails to bring tears to my eyes, in addition to a smile on my face.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Oct 15th- Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day

Dearest Friends and Family,

Today, Oct 15th, is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day and we are missing our Shiloh intensely. Please join me and Andreas and light a candle tonight from 7-8 pm, in memory of Shiloh and all of the other angel babies. Our sweet angel Shiloh was only with us for 9 months, but she touches our lives everyday, inspiring us to love more deeply, live more gratefully and cherish every moment.

I would love if everyone could take a photo of the candle they have lit and send it to me for my Infant Loss Remembrance collage.



Love to you all,
Rachel

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Broken

I feel so broken inside
Torn into miniscule pieces
By the lack of your solidity
The barrenness of my arms

Nothing erases the pain of your loss
And day after day
I wish I could go back
        back to two years ago
      To protect myself from who I am today

Because now, it’s as if I
      see with only one eye
      breathe with only one lung
      feel with only half my heart

I am only half here
I am only half gone

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Blobity blob.

Ach. I just feel like such a blob. Like a large vat of pink, blobby jello. I can barely make it up the stairs. I feel really useless. Screw teaching, screw research, screw cleaning the house. All I wanna do is eat, sleep and mope! Blahhhhhhh.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

It's all good.

I'm feeling really tired again lately. Maybe lethargic sums it up better. I finished up my teaching over the last two weeks and it seems that now, since I have a bit of free time, my past insomnia is hitting me like a ton of bricks. It's OK though, as I have a week to recoup before I start teaching again. 

Things have been going well, luckily. I had a bit of a scare the other day because I couldn't comprehend what I was seeing on the monitor (continual acceleration in heart rate up to 195 for about 10 minutes), but I had it explained to me by two very competent doctors, so I'm relieved. Originally, I believed the monitoring was stressing me out more (due to episodes such as the above), but I now realize that it's actually allowing me to sleep more soundly (and less fitfully). 

I had my two ultrasounds and NST on Friday. The baby is in the head down position and the cord is only between her legs. She has been having a few, very mild cord compressions, but nothing compared to what it was when the cord was draped around her neck. I'm hoping that she stays head down so she doesn't create any new loops. I'm currently 31 weeks, which means that I get my steroid shots next week (32 weeks). 
I'm thrilled. I'm still taking things day by day, but it seems to be going more quickly now. I can't wait to have her healthy and alive in my arms. Let's see if I can make it to 37 weeks.

Monday, October 4, 2010

A break from all the negativity

I've been feeling pretty good the last few days. I was told that the nuchal cord around this baby girl's neck has been resolved, for the time being at least, so I'm not currently having cord compressions during monitoring (although the cord is still between her legs). I really hope it stays this way. Dr Collins did say though, that the critical time is 32 weeks where she goes into the head down position. We shall see. I'm attempting to stay positive.

I've also been really distracted with teaching over the last week and will continue to be until mid November. I've been going full force: Mondays to Thursdays 12-5.30pm, and on Fridays, I have my standing doctors appointments. I find that this distraction is beneficial to my sanity, and I'm still able to pay attention to the baby's movements during the day. So, yea, things are looking on the up and up. I've been reflecting on the concept of chi/qi lately: "with our energy, emotions, intentions, we can directly influence our environment", and trying to incorporate it into my everyday on-goings. I think it's working for me.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Non-stress testing is so stressful

I started my non-stress testing today at the peri's office. It's pretty much exactly like the home monitoring I do at night, except she also does an ultrasound to look at amniotic fluid levels. I asked her to look at the cord as well (which is what I care about the most). Long story short, the nurse seems not to know her ass from her elbow. She attempted to evade my questioning with smiles and positivity. I let her off easy. This time. I feel so frustrated. Silly me. I thought I'd get more comfort from these weekly tests. I can't seem to catch a break. Or maybe my expectations of the medical community are just too high. Whatever it is, I'm so tired. 


*On a positive note, I've been feeling kinda sexy lately. Sexy at 30 and at 30 weeks. I'm trying to come up with one positive thing a day, however small. Here's mine for last week and for next: sexiness. Check me out. Bow chicka bow wow.