Sunday, April 25, 2010

What do you say when you can't find the words?

Really, I don't even know where to begin.

In preparation for my SIL, J's baby shower, I offered to help my SIL, K with the dessert that she was going to bring. She is admittedly not the best cook, and so I thought I would help her out. I went over to her house Friday afternoon so that we could get them done.

K is also pregnant. She has been the only one of my SIL's that I felt actually cared about my feelings. She hasn't flaunted her pregnancy, and has only brought it up if asked. She has been really awesome, so I didn't mind at all being around her. The sting is still there when I glance at her just-now-emerging-belly, but I have managed to push the feelings aside. K is the one that found out recently the gender of her baby. A boy. While making the desserts I asked her (probably for the 10th time since finding out she was pregnant) if they had a name picked out. Her eyes dropped to the table and she told me the name they have chosen. "C_____ ______ ______"

My heart stopped.

"No!" I yelled, mostly out of shock. K, giggles and says "what?"

"That's our name." I tell her.

K giggles more, and replies "oh, sorry."

I think she's joking. I have been VERY verbal about our use of that name. Whenever the topic has come up, (as all of us girls know happens A LOT, especially in a room full of preggos) I have told them all that we will name our son C. Not "We really like the name C", or "We are thinking of naming our first son C" but "We ARE naming our son C" and "The ONLY name we have decided on is C."

I waited a minute to see if she says anything. She doesn't. Then it sinks in. She's not kidding.

"I totally thought you were joking." I say.

More giggles, then "Sorry." Silence. "So, are we going to go pick up something to eat?"

I am devastated. In complete shock, and ready to melt into the ground.

I take her to pick something up, but I am too nauseous to eat. I brought her back to her house, quickly showed her how to make the dessert, and then excuse myself to come home. I didn't say anything else about the name. I not only needed time to process it, but also wondered if maybe she had forgotten, or somehow didn't know about us using the name.

When I walked in the door, DH was on the phone... with his mother. He was visibly frustrated. Apparently, when I had left K's house she had called her husband, DH's brother, and told him that I was upset. He then called their mom, who then called DH. (can you say "SPINELESS?")

My MIL told DH that they had known that we were going to be upset, and had been scared to tell us. She said that K has really liked the name C since she was a little girl, and that if we really like the name, there is no law that says we can't use it, too.

ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?!?! Not only did they know we had chosen the name, but they knew we'd be upset. AND THEY DID IT ANYWAY!!!

If K had liked the name so much, why is it that in all the times we had discussed names, she never mentioned it? It's not because I was unapproachable about it. Another SIL spoke up when we were discussing names and said that she really liked that name, too, and that it was high on their list of possibilities. She and I discussed it, WHILE EVERYONE ELSE WAS AROUND and found that there were actually 2 names that we both had interest in. I told her that C was more important to me than the other name (it was a girl's name) and that I would happily give up the other name, if she'd do the same with C. She agreed. (Which works out well, because she is having a girl and has actually chosen that name for their daughter.) So, I know that K knew that I was willing to discuss these kinds of things in a civil, and polite manner. I am all for compromise. I am one to always try to meet in the middle, but not now. I KNOW that this name isn't nearly as important to K. She obviously likes it, but still. She should have known it was off limits.

I don't have the words to express how deeply hurt, and offended I am. It is not just a name to me. C IS MY SON. Whether on this earth or not, that is my son's name. It has been for years. I cannot fathom seeing their son, and calling him C. It makes my heart hurt. We have placed soooo much hope into that name. It is beyond comprehension that they would take that from us. This baby that we have tried so hard for, have gone through so much to have, and continue to work for has had his name stolen. And by people that we love.

The thing that gets me the most is that there is NO DOUBT that they knew. They know how much that name means to us. It is the ONLY name I have ever used to refer to our son. As in "When we finally get to bring our little C home..." or when asked about a cycle or pregnancy, "I hope we finally get our C."

As for my MIL's suggestion that we both use the name... yeah right. The babies would have the same first and last name and although they would have different middle names, we don't want to call our son by his middle name. It's not a possibility with their son either since his middle name will be my BIL's name. Too confusing. And we all know that full names are reserved for when you child is in trouble. It wouldn't be so bad if his family weren't so close, but that isn't the case.

I will never forget this and I will never forgive them. When they chose that name, they chose to end our relationship. Plain and simple.

I don't know what else to say. I have NEVER been more hurt... BY ANYONE, than I am over this.

How would you handle this?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


So, here's my week:

Monday, SIL #4 finds out she's having a boy. I'm slightly deflated, but happy for her.

Tuesday, find out that of course, I'm still not pregnant. Cycle #84 soon to begin.

Wednesday, Start the day with a series of flashbacks and fear of leaving the house. It feels like fall outside, and we all know how well my Fall season went. SIL #1 announces that she'll be induced Saturday. (let the unforeseen meltdown commence)

Thursday, Meltdown bound to continue with the anniversary of my first loss. Two years since we said goodbye to Baby Topaz.

Friday, figure out how to pull myself together enough to finish the 4.2 million baby blankets and hooded towels owed to beloved friends and family and their precious Wee Ones. If I can block out the fact that they are for babies, I can probably get through it. I love giving them, so I'll just have to suck it up.

Saturday, Meet my new nephew. Try not to resent the hell out of my SIL (whom I am truly soooo happy for and excited for this next step of her life) and plaster a smile on my face. Try not to throw up when they ask if I want to hold him. Remember what a blessing he is, and how amazing he will be.

Sunday, stay in bed ALL. DAMN. DAY. (Except of course when I have to start the NEXT diaper cake.)

Today I am not feeling okay. I am not feeling like there is something better around the corner. I am not feeling like I can survive this. I am feeling like a shell of a human being, and that this will never end.

Today, I feel lost. I don't want to be home, but I don't want to be anywhere else either. I don't want to be around anyone, but I can't stand the thought of being alone. I feel nauseated, exhausted, and completely defeated. And yet I feel fiercely confrontational; like I can snap at any second.

Please let me get through this week. I'm not sure how much of this I can actually handle, but I am sure that I'll have to "handle" all of it. What other choice do I have?

Not sure I'll be posting much for a while. I need to collect my thoughts and try to keep my world from completely collapsing. Or, at least figure out how to fake it some more.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Praying for Amnesia

It has been 5 months since my ectopic. Although the emotional and physical pain that was caused is less searing than it originally was, it still hides deep down inside waiting for the perfect time to remind me of just how horrible it was. I have yet to find the proper words to describe the extreme sense of chaos that I felt at the time.

Every once in a while, my thoughts drift back to our baby. Not as often as you might think, though. I think all the medical drama that surrounded us, preceded heavily with thoughts that the pregnancy was doomed from the beginning made it hard to connect that there actually WAS a baby involved. Even when I was pregnant, my mind was always focused on the future. "We are going to have a baby in June." "Won't it be fun when our babies get to play together?" I don't remember thinking about the baby in the present tense. Even though I made statements beginning with "this baby", it still felt like I was saying, "this pregnancy." It wasn't until a few weeks after my second surgery that the reality started to set in. I lost a baby. Not only that, but I was assured by my physicians that it was a "healthy" baby, simply too restricted to survive.

I have tried so hard to move forward, but I am finally realizing that I am going through phases of this grief. The first part (which has taken nearly the entire 5 months) has been to deal with the medical fall out from this experience. I still have nightmares about waking up from the anesthesia, and sometimes flash back to the mindless, heart-wrenching pleas that I expressed after the first surgery. I remember hearing my husband, father, and best friend cry. I remember the sweet kisses that my Dad so loving placed on my forehead, when I was hardly awake enough to appreciate them. When I remember these things, it is hard for me to realize that those horrible screams, and those begging prayers came from my mouth. I remember the sheer pain, and overwhelming sense of urgency that echoed in my voice. But it is just that. A voice. There is such a disconnect. I am dreading the day that my mind connects to my heart, and I am forced to deal with those emotions. Today is not that day, but I felt a glimpse of what it will be like.

Today a woman with the Perinatal Bereavement Department from the hospital called. It is the second time they have called, but it has been months since I last spoke to her. I missed the call, but later listened to her message. Before the entire 1 min. 20 sec. message had finished, tears were streaming down my face. She said nothing offensive, and expressed genuine concern for how my husband and I are doing. But I think what got to me was her wording. "Hi, this is W. R. calling from the Perinatal Bereavement Department at the University just calling to see how things are going since the loss of your baby..." Her tone was gentle, as she offered to put us in touch with support groups in our area, or to just be available if we needed someone to talk to. It took me off guard. No one talks to me about what happened. Aside from this space, I hardly talk about what happened, and when I do it is with such lack of emotion, you'd think I read about it in a book. I think subconsciously I have tried very hard to forget. Or at least to not feel connected to it. Something about this message made my skin crawl. It was a reminder I didn't want. Her acknowledgment of the "loss of [our] baby" made it hurt again. I started hearing my voice plead with God to "please let this be a dream!", and before I could finish the message, my memories drowned out her words.

I have decided not to return her call because quite frankly, I don't know what I'd say. I don't want today to be that day. I want to just let my mind push this experience down to join all the others that are too painful to feel. I'm just not ready.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

No trip is perfect, right?

I wanted to tell you about Texas, but I think I will get the bad part of the trip out of the way first.

Tuesday night I started to get a pain in my ear, but didn't think too much of it. It was tolerable, and it wasn't causing too much trouble. On Wednesday morning, it was AWFUL! I couldn't touch the side of my face, and my ear felt like it was on fire. I started taking 800 mg. of ibuprofen and that seemed to keep it under control. However, by Thursday morning, my jaw had shifted to the left, I had a huge lump on the side of my neck, and pains shooting into my face and down my neck. Finally, I had DH take me to an Urgent Care center where the Dr. diagnosed me with "the worst ear infection [he] had seen in 10 years." He asked if there was any way that I could reschedule my flight, and suggested that I stay a little longer in order to let the antibiotics relieve the pressure on my eardrum. My lymph nodes in my neck were so swollen, that they had pushed my jaw out of alignment. Because there was no chance of changing flights, he gave me an injection of Rocephin, and prescribed a 10 day course of a very strong antibiotic as well as vicodin for the pain. He commented that my ear canal was the cleanest he had ever seen, and told me that my self diagnosis of "Swimmers Ear" (Otitis Externa) was wrong. His official diagnosis: Otitis Media (middle ear infection)

Friday morning, after approximately 3 hours of sleep, I woke up in just as much pain as I had been in. After I took the vicodin and the ibuprofen, I was able to get ready to fly back home. Friday was pretty uneventful, but I started using Dr. Google to try to find how quickly all these antibiotics should work. I couldn't imagine why it wasn't getting better. The Dr. had said that the Rocephin would knock out the infection pretty quickly. Friday night was the worst yet, and I ended up with 1 1/2 hours of sleep broken up between many bouts of crying and whimpering before getting up to catch my 6 AM flight.

When we landed back at home, I had DH take me back to an urgent care. On the flight I realized that not only was my jaw still out of place, but I now had a lump on the side of my face, similar to the one in my neck. It had been 3 days since I was able to eat something solid (I couldn't chew), and the vicodin wasn't touching the pain anymore. I had HAD it! We went to the Dr. and he took one look in my ear and told me that the other Dr. was treating me for the wrong thing. He said that my canal was very swollen, and that from what he could see, my eardrum looked fine. The antibiotics I was on would not cure this infection. It wasn't a middle ear infection, it was an infection in my ear canal. Otitis Externa, Swimmer's Ear. He gave me some antibiotic/steroid ear drops, and sent me on my way.

Well guess what?!? It is working! I still have some pain, but it isn't shooting down my neck, or into my face anymore. It still sounds like I am underwater, since the canal is still pretty swollen, but the lymph nodes are going down and I can actually sleep! Hallelujah!

Oh, and Dr. Dick? I'm not sure I can tell you his actual name, but it looked very much like "P.Enis" I left out his first initial, and a repeating letter in his last name. It was actually displayed on the door by his first two initials followed by his last name. Nice.

Next time I'll tell you about lovely Texas. I even have some pics to show! :D

Sunday, April 4, 2010

I'm baaaackkkk

I am completely exhausted, but I wanted to let you know that I am home from Texas (although I would have LOVED to stay longer) and I will be catching up soon.

Points of discussion may include:

1. Lots of pain, hearing loss, and lack of sleep followed by a trip to the Urgent Care
2. Why the physician that I saw at said Urgent Care will forever be known as "Dr. Dick"
3. Miscellaneous venting items (like why my mother should consider becoming mute), and why I hate dealing with financial institutions.

Missed you!