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My Sweet Angel

My Sweet Angel
4/6/09 4:45 pm 4 lbs 1 oz 17 inches

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Rainbow babies aren't all they're cracked up to be.

I love my rainbow baby.  I can't imagine my life without her, but there is something to be said for letting what is, be.  More often than I care to admit, I wonder how life would be if I listened to what "God" was trying to tell me by taking Elise.  Maybe I did push the envelope by getting pregnant again and having another baby.
Sure I'd always wonder what if, but looking back, I still do.
What if I never had another baby? What if I didn't take my cheating husband back because I was pregnant?  Where would my older children be now?  Where would I be now?  Who would I be today without that last baby defining me?
Do I wish she was never born?  Of course not, but do I imagine how different my life would be without her... Yes... Just like I imagine how different my life would be if Elise lived.
I read so much about how grateful grieving mom's are and I feel like a total piece of shit for not being 100% sure of my decision to go on and have another baby, but as always, maybe, just maybe, there is another mama out there feeling this way, ashamed to admit it, and maybe, just maybe, she'll take some comfort in knowing she's not alone in her thoughts.
Or maybe I'll just get ridiculed by others for feeling the way I do...
Either way, I'll risk it.
I love you, Elise, and all your siblings...

Friday, July 25, 2014

It's time...

I promised myself when I started this blog for Elise that I would not taint it with this information, but it's time to get it out.  Most people have no idea and I'm tired of pretending.

It pisses me off that people think that Elise's death caused my marriage to end.  While devastating, yes, it is such a small part of why.  It also pisses me off that people think because I stayed married for 4 years after her death that it had nothing to do with its ending.
My husband began cheating on me on my son's 2nd birthday, when I was in the third trimester of my fourth pregnancy (Elise).  It was a difficult pregnancy with physical complications (I had a blood clot in my leg and was on blood thinners among other things) as well as the normal life trials and tribulations of being pregnant with a 12 year old, a 4 year old, and a 2 year old.  I was also finishing my internship for my masters degree at this time.
When I went into labor 4 weeks early, my husband continued on to work that day to see his girlfriend leaving me at home to find a sitter for my small children and head to the hospital to deliver my baby.  Only 30 minutes after she was stillborn, he left me in the delivery room holding her dead body to go out in the hallway to call his girlfriend.  The next morning he again left me in a hospital bed with no baby to hold while he went and called her from Target where he was supposed to be printing pictures of her to show her siblings.  Just 5 days later, at Elise's memorial service, his girlfriend was there.  I found all this out 3 weeks later when I accidentally discovered his affair he told me he was leaving us to be with her.  I kicked him out.  He had no where to go so he stayed at a friend's house while his family was on vacation, but when they returned he again had no where to go so he came back home.  We went back and forth for months splitting up and trying to stay together.  He swore he was sorry and he now wanted to make our marriage better.  Needless to say, I got pregnant.  It was just 3 months after Elise's death and only 1 month after I found out about my husband's infidelity.  I couldn't get divorced now so we gave it our all.  We went to counseling both individually and together.  We implemented strategies to make our marriage stronger and to recover from his affair and deal with our grief over Elise's death.  It didn't last long before everything was back to "normal" the way it had always been.  Mike still insisted he wanted this marriage to work and of course I did too, but every few months we'd argue about how nothing is changing.  Nothing is getting better, in fact as time was going on it was getting worse.  Each year just continued to suck.
I woke up last Spring around Elise's 4th angelversary and finally realized that things were never going to change in my marriage.  It was now long enough.  My husband will never be able to do the things he needed to do to repair the damage he had done in betraying me during the most difficult time in my life.  We would never be able to be happy together as a married couple.  So this time, instead of asking him, I told him it was time for us to separate.  And now here we are divorcing.  Over the last 4 years we had talked about divorce and he always said he did not want to be a part time parent to our children.  For the first 9 months he wasn't.  He saw them at least one day just about every weekend and a couple evenings during the week.  We had a very amicable relationship.  Often he would stay here at "our" house on the couch overnight to be with them.  Then he got a girlfriend.  Don't get me wrong, I was happy to know that he had found another person to spend time with, I had that and it was amazing, but within a month he began choosing her over his children.  He is now content with being a part time parent.  He has said those words to me.  He has chosen to only see the children approximately 20% of the month and nothing more.  I am now working part time for the first time in 10 years and he refuses to "watch" his children unless it is his self selected visitation days.  Often leaving them in the care of my boyfriend.  When his visitation time is over, it's over, he's done and leaves.  It has been a very difficult few months for me juggling the children, household responsibilities, working, etc, but I've never felt better as a woman.  I am a better person and mother than I have been in the last 5 years. I don't know what the future holds for me or my children, but I do know one thing:  I was strong in my decision to finally do what is right and best for all of us and in the end it will all be okay!  We will get through this and not just survive, but thrive!
As with every post I write, I finally decided to make this one to create understanding.  For 5 years now I have been unable to solely think about my little girl.  And I don't know if I ever will be able to.  Without fail a memory of what my husband did to me during the only time I had with my daughter sneaks into my mind.  It's not fair.  It's not fair to me or to her, but it is what it is and now everyone knows and I don't have to hide it any longer.

Monday, March 10, 2014

This year doesn't suck (as much)

Every year as March rolls around I am always so conflicted.  I'm usually working on plans for Ella and Andrew and Elise's birthdays.  2 of them are "happy" and one is the opposite, but I stay busy and try not to dwell.  Then as April comes and goes I tend to reevaluate my life.  I look at where I was in April/May 2008 (innocent) April/May 2009 (destroyed) 2010 (confused) 2011 (some normalcy) 2012 (wanting more) 2013 (waking up) 2014 (moving on).  It was last year that I started to see a glimpse of the "old" me....the me before Elise's death.  I was certainly a much different person, but the fog was lifting.  I was finally craving living again and here I am another year later living!  It will be 5 years since my life changed so dramatically and I'm finally moving in the right direction!  I still miss her so much and always wonder what might have been, but it doesn't consume me.  I was down on myself this year for not going through with my plan for a big fundraiser for her birthday this year. but now I've realized I've given her something even better...a healthy mom, moving toward happiness, continuing to keep her spirit alive and raise awareness.  I know she would be proud and really, that's all I want as a mom...for my kids to know they are loved and for them to be able to look up to me for courage and strength, like I do them every day!
Very strange to be able to write without crying and also having the last few "unprovoked" cries to be "happy" ones. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Stupid glasses

Life has been in fast forward for the last few months.  So many changes and things needing my immediate attention, I haven't had time to sit down and think for more than a few seconds, so naturally I haven't had time to write.  Today I still don't, but I had to...
I think of Elise every single day, some days more in depth than others.  I miss her every single day, some days more deeply than others.  Today is one of those days.  The stupid what ifs, what might have been...
There is a running joke in my family that poor eyesight skips a kid.  I've had glasses since I started school.  My oldest had muscle realignment surgery at 3 and currently wears contacts at 17.  My 9 year old has great eyesight.  My 6 year old has been wearing glasses since 2 and keeps one eye dilated (in lieu of a patch) to strengthen his weak eye.  So the question always was would Elise or her rainbow sister need glasses.  We've taken the now 3 year old for biannual checkups just in case and today it was suggested she get glasses.  It didn't take long for the thought of Elise to rise in my mind.  I tried not to focus on it as my other girls needed my attention at the moment, but any time there was any sort of downtime that's where my mind wandered to.  I bet Elise wouldn't have needed glasses, it would have skipped her, just like we thought.  Stupid thing to be thinking about, I know, I mean really, I don't care about my kids needing them (that 3 year old is gonna be super cute in them!) but just another reminder of my little girl who is not here living life with us, experiencing the mundane adventures that all children get to experience.
Then the guilt sets in.  Why is this bothering me so much, her memory.  Have I been neglecting her?  Of course not.  The 3 year old and I were just talking about her last night.  The kids were just recently fighting over who got to sleep with her bear... 
Her birthday, that's it.  It's coming up soon and I wanted to do a big fundraiser for her, but its not going to happen and that has been killing me.  I'm so angry at myself, but I know in the end, I just can't pull it together this year.  But I should, for her, she deserves it.  It's a no win situation and either way I know I'll beat myself up over whatever happens.  That's part of being a mom, I guess.  Always wishing you could do more, always feeling like you should have done more.  Only it's multiplied when that's all you have and you are the only one fighting to keep your child alive in some small way, if only for yourself.
It all comes back to missing that sweet face and being so damn angry at how things turned out sometimes.  But I refuse to focus on the anger and instead focus on the love that I have for my little girl and all that her life blessed me with.  I couldn't live any other way.
Thanks for the cry, stupid glasses!
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