A quick life update!

The last few days have been such a blur. I’m exhausted, my body aches, and yet I’m also feeling so much joy and excitement. We bought our first home on Friday afternoon, and have spent nearly every second since then cleaning and unpacking. After a weekend of that, I am ready for a break! Unfortunately, there’s no rest for the weary because there’s still so much more to do.

BUT I’m taking a quick break to enjoy a cup of tea and write a little life update.

Yesterday was sort of weird for me, I wanted to really focus on Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day, but I had so many things going on that I didn’t get much of a chance to reflect. I feel a little guilty for not acknowledging it with my own post on social media, but I did see so many of yours and I truly loved the way you all remembered our lost little ones while raising awareness. Thank you for that.

Now that we have officially moved to a new state and purchased our house, I have a restored feeling of hope. I have hope that this home will soon be filled with countless memories. I am looking forward to the holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries we will celebrate here. I’m excited to meet new people, and share our story with them. There is also a hope that I am a little more timid to talk about, out of fear that it may never happen. It is that one day we will be able to bring a healthy baby home, and watch him/her grow up in this house.

But as I look to the future, a piece of my heart is forever anchored to the day Aria left this world. She is such a huge part of the reason we ended up in Texas, and we wouldn’t have any of this without her. It seemed pretty fitting that a photo of her was one of the first things to be unpacked in this house. No matter what, three of us still call this place home – two of us living under the roof, and one sweet little girl watching over it.

Medical Records and Post Loss Anxiety

I spent my day running around town tying up loose ends ahead of our move at the end of the week. It was a really productive day, but there was one moment that knocked the wind right out of me.

I called my OB/GYN’s office to request that my records be sent to my new doctor’s office in Texas. I was hoping they could just fax them over but apparently, there are some privacy laws against that. I was told I needed to come in and get a hard copy of my records, then give them to my new doctor’s office once we move.

Simple, right?

Wrong.

It was then that I was faced with a fear I had worked really hard to suppress over the last nine months.

See, I’m scared that I’m going to open my records and see things that don’t add up. I’m afraid that I’m going to research every single tiny detail and obsess over the things in there about Aria’s health. I’m afraid I’m going to find out she wasn’t really as sick as they said she was.

I know, I know. It all sounds so irrational. They wouldn’t lie to me. We were in the hands of the best MFMs and OB/GYNs in the country. We trusted them then and still do.

But even knowing all of that, I am still afraid.

So I panicked at the thought of hanging onto them for a few weeks before being able to deliver them at my annual exam. I just knew I wouldn’t be able to stop myself from looking (obsessing), and I knew the rabbit hole it would lead me down.

As I arrived at my doctors office today to pick up my records, I still had no idea how I was going to avoid reading them. I was still so annoyed they couldn’t just send them over without involving me. I really did not want them in my possession.

I was relieved when they handed me two large sealed envelopes. “Oh, good.” I thought, thankful that at least a seal was preventing me from peeking. My heart raced as I clutched them in my hands while walking to my car. “Just go home. Put them in a box. Do not look.” I kept repeating to myself, trying not to think about all of the fears staring me in the face.

Then it dawned on me, why don’t I just mail them? The post office was down the street, it wouldn’t take long and once I mailed my only copy, I wouldn’t have to worry about it any longer.

So that’s exactly what I did. I made a bee line for the post office, and mailed them to Texas. The clerk joked that I seemed to be in a rush. I made a comment about being stressed over our upcoming move, when I really wanted to say, “Nope, I’m just having a bit of a mental breakdown.”

I’m still a little shaken up from the whole experience, and wondering if I should have just faced my fears and opened them. The quiet, rational part of me knows my records would just echo what I already knew: Aria was sick. I did everything I could, and it was not my fault.

When it comes down to it, this is really just about my fear that I gave up on her.

But perhaps that’s a battle for another day. Today’s was hard enough.

Back to square one.

(Pictures at the end of post.)

Yesterday marked nine months since Aria’s birth. This monthly anniversary was made even more difficult, because it was also the day we took apart her nursery.

Before I begin to explain my feelings surrounding all of this, I want to say a huge “thank you” to all of the people who supported, encouraged, and lamented with us yesterday. The weight of the day was lightened by your love, and we are so grateful.

It’s such a difficult thing to dismantle a nursery that has never been used. As I took each little onesie, dress, and sleeper off the hanger and placed them into a cardboard box, I thought about how symbolic it all was; packing the 12 month clothing she would never need, nor the six month, not even a single newborn onesie. So many milestones never met. So much to be missed as we endure a lifetime without her.

I listened to my husband’s frustrations as he dismantled her crib, all while remembering the jokes about entering fatherhood that were said when he put it together almost one year ago. The stark contrast between those two moments stung my aching heart.

As I look into this barren room that was once adorned with pink, the words, “back to square one” come to mind. Our home now looks exactly the way it did when we moved in as a couple, and yet we aren’t just a couple. It’s a confusing place to be.

And it hurts, oh how it hurts.

Her room. Gone. Never to be seen again. Just like so many other things I have unfairly had to part with long before I was ready.

It all reminds me just how much I miss her. I miss the anticipation and excitement she brought to our lives. I miss the days when I didn’t constantly wonder how much more I was going to lose.

But at the end of the day, as I told my sister about taking apart her room, she reminded me that we were doing this because we are going on another adventure, and we were not leaving Aria behind. Even still, she comes with us. Everywhere. Always.

“I carry your heart with me. I carry it in my heart.” – E.E. Cummings

Happy Nine Month Birthday, Aria. We love you so very much.