Twenty-Two Months.

Another month has passed; twenty-two to be exact.

When I woke up this morning, I felt the fifth. I know I’ve used that expression before, but all I kept saying is, ‘it’s Jensen day. It’s the fifth.’ Honestly, I thought this would pass. I wouldn’t even be telling people his age in months if he was here. Sometimes when I talk about him, I’ll say he’s almost two, yet when this day comes I could probably tell you the months, weeks, and days probably down to the minute.

His loss still feels so fresh.

Today, I checked the prompt for the What’s Your Grief Photo Challenge: pain. I’ve felt all types of pain since Jensen’s birth. Heck, I feel like I’ve been through all Dante’s nine levels of hell. When I read it, I didn’t want to focus on any more pain. Even though I tried my best not to focus on it, I was stuck at my three-hour glucose exam for Jensen’s little sister. I had to give blood four times, twice from both arms. It made me feel weak and sick to drink whatever they put in that. The three hours went fairly quick, but when I got home, I crashed on my couch after getting sick. I was in pain and usually on these days I celebrate Jensen.

In some ways I did. I told the lady working  and the other girl in the waiting room about him after they asked if this baby was my first. It stung. No, she’s not my first. She has a big brother in heaven who watches out and protects us both. I’ll never deny him, even if it would seem easier to random people. Somehow I would rather make every person in the world ‘uncomfortable,’ if it only meant for me to say his name. Maybe that makes me selfish, but that’s the only way I know how to mother my son.

Jensen’s absence has brought me so much pain and longing. I want to end the day focusing on what I wanted to give him: life experiences and love.

After I woke up, the first thing I looked at was the hands on my wall that we did on Jensen’s first birthday. I think the last time I shared them was that week. It forever shows me protecting him. Today, I felt like it showed me that he’s had my hand throughout my journey through hell and back. That he’s been right there through it all. It also has our family surrounding us. This reminds me that whenever I am drowning in pain, there’s hands reaching out to help me back up. To pull me out of the pit of despair. There’s twenty hands on the canvas today, but there’s two more inside of me, holding me up on another hard day.

Grief journeys bring their own individual pain and trials. In my twenty-two month journey, I’ve realized we don’t have to do this alone. Nor does the love and memory of those who have gone ever have to go away.

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Memory.

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I’ve relived those thirty-eight weeks over and over.

The joy of finding out there was a baby growing inside of my belly, getting the news he was a boy, and seeing him grow at our weekly scans. I remember picking out the colors for his nurseries and painting his wood wall. His baby shower took a huge chunk of my time planning. Every game I created myself and choosing what was on the registry was such an event. I remember how much he loved mac and cheese and chocolate milk or that I couldn’t eat anything before ten. So many happy memories that replay in my  mind.

There’s also the memories that play even when I don’t want them to.I’ll never forgot my stomach dropping when we found out about Down syndrome and my persistent worrying of being a good enough parent to him. That brought me so much stress through the second half of my pregnancy that I never thought anything else could go wrong.

When I go through my pregnancy, I feel like everything slows down and speeds up at the same time when I get to the end of March. I know what’s coming next. That week leading up to his birth are so vivid in my mind. Sometimes I wish I could pinpoint what went wrong or what more I could have done. The emotions and reactions from those memories hurt. Each time I get to the fourth of April, my body can feel what I was feeling under the numbness . I honestly try not to go to that day and his birth. If I let it all play out, I feel as if I would never get back to the surface. That’s the hardest part about these memories and PTSD. My body remembers. It’s sort of like a blanket that falls over you and you cannot escape it until it lets you out.

Memories can be such beautiful images and they can be the worst ones too.

I choose to honor both, but would much rather go to those that make me smile. For the rest of my life, I’ll try to make new memories with Jensen, but they’ll never be the same as the months he was with me. I miss him so much, but for as long as I live, his memory will never fade away.


Inspired from the What’s Your Grief Photo Challenge. 

Hello February!

Since announcing my sweet, little rainbow almost two weeks ago, I haven’t had the right words to thank all of you for your kind words, thoughts, and prayers. Each was read and taken to heart. They lifted my spirits and let me know how loved this baby, her brother, and I are loved. I am truly grateful for all of you for your constant support.

For February, I wanted to be able to write more and let you all know how I’ve been with my pregnancy after loss while preparing for Jensen’s second birthday and his sister’s birth. I found this photo challenge on Instagram and thought it would be perfect to take on.

Mood: tired and thankful. 

Today has been absolutely crazy. Throughout this pregnancy, I haven’t been able to sleep well at night through the morning. I cannot get comfortable and she moves all the time. When she moves, I always just pause so I can capture every moment. Jensen never moved as much as she does and I continue to cherish all those memories with him. If anything would happen to her, I want to be able to do the same.

Anyways, I had to go to a doctor’s appointment and felt the anxiety of it as soon as I woke up. It was an okay morning and I was trying to be positive before I went. This past Tuesday I took the glucose test and would find out if I passed or not today. Other than that, I just worried about hearing her heartbeat. Long story short, I found out I failed the one hour glucose test by a few points and have to go to the three-hour one… I was so angry. After I got back to my car, I just kept telling my mom I was fine when I had Jensen. I wasn’t even close to the number. Why was it different now?

Immediately after (and for three more hours), I pouted and felt like my body was going to fail her too. Of course, even if I would fail the three-hour test and would be diagnosed with gestational diabetes, I’d just have to monitor those levels. Logically I knew that, but hormones and the fear of losing her whipped around my head.

When I got home, I just kept thinking about the appointment and my reaction. I was so caught up on the negative that I couldn’t appreciate the positive. Her heartbeat was strong and I’m measuring right on schedule. She has moved all day and tomorrow I’ll be twenty-nine weeks. I made some tea, while I looked at Jensen’s pictures. If I had this type of appointment with him, I would’ve been so happy. So I decided instead of being upset by something I can’t even control, I wanted to be thankful.

I picked out one of my favorite mugs and saw this…

My whole world.

Yes, I am so tired. Tired of feeling so much worry and the weight of grief on my shoulders. I was tired of being angry today and honestly, I’m just physically tired in general.

On the other hand, I am so thankful that words would never be able to describe. Thankful for your support, the baby thriving in my womb, and the boy who I’ll forever carry in my heart.