Saturday, August 6, 2011

Leaving yesterday.

Well it wasn't as easy as it has been in the past. Moving that is, but we did it. As we drove down the road after locking the doors to our house one last time, there was that burning feeling in my throat. Any women reading this, knows the feeling I'm referring to. It's called the, "I am not going to cry" reflex. In turn it burns your throat. You hope you don't actually have to speak a word in this moment, because then all it is, is a quivery shaking sound.

Okay, I am probably the most horrible crier in the world. Anyone who knows me would tell you, and that is just because I do not wear my heart on my sleeve and put on a "I can carry the weight of the world all on my own thanks," attitude. When in all actuality I am very sensitive. {Where the blog writing comes in handy.} When I DO cry though, I'd probably describe it as a high pitched air raid siren to alert people of a crisis. :) Most people cannot even make sense of what I am saying when I am crying, which sends people into a state of panic. See the air raid siren and I have a lot in common.

As our house sat empty, not surrounded by the sounds of chaos and life's mess, I stood in her room one final time. It was quiet. I thought back to my pregnancy when we first moved in. I stood in the same spot picturing where her nursery furniture would be placed, and I sat in the middle of the freshly laid beige carpet. The smell of new fabric was overwhelming, and I touched my belly imagining sitting in that very spot with a wiggly baby laying in the carpet before me.

That image never became reality, and now sitting in that spot I was only reminded of her short time with us. The feeling of wanting so badly to be awake all night in that room. I must say, I do not appreciate the new mothers who make comments about how hard it is having a baby who doesn't sleep much at night. Or who cries all the time. Who has colic. Not trying to sound like your typical mom who lost a baby, because I DO know how tiring other children can be, but I would wake up in the mornings after Savannah died HATING that I slept through the night. I would have given anything to be with her all night long. To hold her in my arms for the rest of my life if that is what it took to have her here.

This morning, I sat showing my mother "The Moby Wrap." It is a safer "sling" that allows you to cradle your baby close to your chest however often you'd like so you can still manage everyday tasks. I've had the cheaper version of baby carriers from the stores but was not impressed enough to use them regularly. Especially being the last one I had with Brody ended up on recall after he was a year old. But I love the sense of closeness the Moby Wrap offers. "Baby wearing" is what they call it. Well, I can assure you Moby Wrap or no Moby Wrap, you won't find me without baby wearing.

I've heard a lot, "you will spoil your baby." Can someone classify this to a mother like me please? Spoil your baby in the sense they will want to be held all the time and will demand too much of your attention? Spoiled in the sense they cry because they desire the touch of their mommy? That bonding experience? If that is spoiling them, I think I will take those chances. I have a baby that I carried for nine months I was not able to hold. I held a baby as she passed away. My baby never got to cry for me, and I've spent too much time crying for her. I was never disturbed to feed, change, or love on them.

Now when I see a baby, or infant longing for their mother's arms I have a hard time seeing them turned away to their independence. These unknowing bystanders are clueless to the effect it has on my heart. Socially acceptable. This is a word I must remind myself of. It is not "socially acceptable" to yell through tears, "please hold your crying baby, I never got to hold mine and I would give anything for that opportunity again." Not socially acceptable.

Now have I turned into a Saint of a mother? Ha, hardly. There is no such thing. Even in the event you loose a thousand children. {And Heaven forbid.} Children are difficult. They are loud, can be slightly obnoxious at times, nagging, tattling, bickering, mess making, and down right frustrating. For someone to not say any of those things have been in their list of descriptions would be lyyyyyying. They will draw on your walls. YES, THEY WILL. Even if you stare at them. {Add sorcerers, to that list.} They will break your favorite decorative figures. {My ceramic little girl that was given to us after the funeral to represent Savannah in heaven.} She will now always remind me, that Savannah was not perfect, but we LOVED her anyways. Children will sometimes even lie to your face. Even if you saw them commit the "crime." More so my beloved three year old, but again it is all apart of the learning process of life. If you do not ever find any of these things irritating, I would have to wonder if you were possibly in a coma. {I pray someone is protecting your oxygen from the small children in your house as well. And if anything your tank will probably be drawn on.}

So no, I'm not a perfect mom.

My hair is not always perfectly neat. I do not make homemade cookies everyday. I do not have boys that don't try and pumble each other at any given opportunity. I have on occasion thought bedtime was the most beautiful part of my day. {Oh I ADORE the sight of peaceful, quiet, sleeping children.} I get upset when long tentacle beetles are brought in to say "hello mommy." I don't understand why the floor under my table looks worse than the aftermath of Pearl Harbor after every meal. I've considered taking every one of my children in for hearing tests because of their incompetence in listening. I sometimes forget that my children are only seven, six, and three. I admit there are times that I have expected too much from them. I've lacked patience at times, when I shouldn't have. I've raised my voice.

But...I've questioned every decision and reaction I've ever had. I've wished I could start bad days all over. I've said my fair share of sorry's. {Mommy's can and should be sorry too.} I've said no, and yes. I've given punishment when due and praise where deserved. I've slowed it down. I've experienced the feeling of life if any of them were no longer with me. I miss them the second they are away from me, and would live in constant missing them if their life slipped away. {Even the constant questioning.}

Loosing a child doesn't make motherhood any less frustrating. It doesn't make it "easier." It just reminds you of what is really important. The things you don't want to take for granted. The things you would miss. In a sense maybe it makes it harder. Being a parent to a child in Heaven and children on earth, there is always a hidden fear. A fear that you cannot protect the ones here from everything. The fear you didn't protect the ones gone, enough. A constant reminder that we are not guaranteed a tomorrow. It makes the "hard" days harder I think.

Just don't ask me if the baby keeps me up at night. If I'm lucky I'll answer, "thankfully yes."

Don't "suggest" that I hold my baby too much. Because only if I'm feeling socially acceptable, I'll refrain from saying,

"your right, I should have just held my dead one longer." 


Jennifer said...

I LOVE this post and so,so,so feel exactly the same way! I felt horrible after I did this, but I actually told my boys that I was past ready for bedtime the other night. I have kicked myself a thousand times for doing that but I was frusterated. I also felt like a horrible mother for sleeping after Eli died. After my first night home I woke up sobbing and told my hubbie how awful I felt because I slept and I shouldn't have. If Eli were here I would not have...How could I?...That is an awful, terrible feeling. I also get down right irritated for people to tell me I am spoiling Amelia. I am very quick to tell them that she is mine to spoil and I sure with that I had had that chance with Eli. Great post!

John and Allie Fields said...

Beautifully written!
I wore both of mine and it was an awesome experience getting to be so close to them. It didn't turn them into spoiled brats either. Those moments are to be cherished and not wished away. You never know what day will be the last.

I can't wait to see pictures of you in the moby wrap!

Mattie said...

You cannot spoil a baby under 9 months old (and probably much older). Psychologically speaking, this is when the baby needs the reassurance and comfort the most. I considered carrying around the research journal that supported this stand with me to hand to "those people" who suggested I was spoiling my son by baby wearing. My husband and I both carried our son in carriers/slings/wraps until he was just too heavy to do so. And he is now 4 and fine by the way :)

Holly said...

I love babywearing! I used to believe you could spoil a baby but not anymore. And I have heard the spoiling thing a lot w/ both my girls and I tell people I don't care. Like you, I know what is like not to get to hold your baby and I don't take it for granted.