Tuesday, December 1, 2009

First I was fine

but now, not so much.

I don't know how the day shifted. Right from under me. And actually, as I type this, it has shifted back. Right back to fine.

Last night I drank mulled wine. Decorated the tree. Lingered a long time on the ornaments with some of the only images of the girls that we have.

Do I put them up? How does this make me feel? Do I want to be looking at these every day? I asked M. Do these things make you happy or sad? He said keep them up. He said both.

Yes. Both.

I did the tree. Because when else can you bring an 8 foot piece of the forest into your home and have it be ok? We agreed it is one of the things about the holidays we like a lot.

Tree is up. Lit. Pretty. Now the stockings. No sorry. Can't do it. The image of two stockings - even if they are ostensibly for M and me - hanging in expectation on the mantle is simply too much. No. This I can't do. Those went back in the box.

Lights yes. Stockings no. Tree yes. Cards maybe. Presents - fuck. Presents.

Maybe this is what started it. Anxiety around presents. What to get. Who gets its. Wait. We are close to broke. Now what? Thoughts return to perhaps just skipping Xmas altogether.

No. No. Can't do that. I mean, you can, but Angie said it so well:

"It is like falling off a bicycle, we cannot skip the holiday this year, or we will every year."

I do believe she's right.

But somewhere amidst the wine and the lights and the balls and the baubles I remembered, "this time last year I was full-on pregnant. Blissful. Happy. Beyond happy." By this time a week from now, all of that had changed.

And within that quick realization, that split second, the lights seemed accusatory, the baubles gaudy, the stockings already shoved back in the crate just plain cruel.

I have tried with all my might to avoid the "if only's" and the "if they were's..." and even the "this time last year's...." but they are flooding my brain today and won't go away. Not even some basic yoga postures soothe. They just bring tears.

And then Michael picks me up off the ground, demands a hug, we go back to the kitchen and get coffee and I am back to being fine. Just like that. The phone rings an email comes in, a workman knocks at the door and the haze reshuffles and moves away for a bit. Until the next time.

I think, as so many of you have already warned, I am just going to have to take these waves as they come. Let them happen. Despite all of my logic and rationalization, this week DOES feel different than the rest of the year. It IS different. It just is.

M has off today. I am working from home - not by choice - every once in a while our office tries to see if we can function away from the physical building and if anyone will notice. Its our "emergency testing" plan. Yesterday this was awesome. I needed the peace. Today I'm am in desperate need for distraction. So I am getting dressed and running some errands with my husband. I am walking away from the phone and the computer for a while and hoping no one notices. But if they do, well it just doesn't matter that much.


Sue said...

My water broke on Christmas morning, 2007. 10am. We were sleeping in, not traveling because even at 19w3d I was still dealing with morning sickness.

I'm Jewish, he is not. One twin had died, the other delivered 10 days later at 21w5d.

I used to think I knew how to do Christmas. It is already aching. He will travel this year. I am okay, but I just cannot go yet.

I fear someone will hang two silver, delicate ornaments on the tree in their names and I will fall to pieces.

Someone will visit me, so I won't be alone. But it will not be Christmas.

Sue said...

This is all to say, I am thinking of you. Abiding. And wishing you peace in this season.

still life angie said...

We've been asking that question a lot. How does this make you feel--happy or sad? Because in the beginning of this journey, I just did everything that remembered Lucia no matter how painful it was to look at everyday, and now, we seem to be weighing it more and more. Is this salt or salve? Been thinking about you a ton as you approach the girls' day. xo

Allison (Ali) said...

i feel your pain on not knowing exactly what to do. this is my favorite time of year, but i do not want to put a tree up or decorate this year. i bought an ornament to put on our tree for Cadynce, but that will have to wait until next year because I just cant handle it now.

~~hugs~~ hope it gets better for you

Poppy said...

It's sad that there are so many who simply do not want to do Christmas this year. I'm not at all looking forward to it, for so many reasons.

I identify with your description about how the day shifts right from under you and in the span of a few minutes can shift right back. It happens to me all. the. time. It's crazy making that's for sure.

Here's wishing you peace of heart during this holiday season.

Barbara said...

It IS different now. It's all different.

Let the waves happen.


Anonymous said...

I don't have the right words to say, but want to give you huge *hugs* I can imagine the pain you are feeling.

Tash said...

Gah, for me it's the cards. The damn cards, with the "Joy!" and "Peace" and "Merry" and "Happy" and everyone's live children pictured and I just. can't. stand. it. I used to send them out every year, no fail. I haven't sent a card since December '06.

And you know, I think that's ok. You need to get through it, and do what feels right, and sometimes that means changing things around the edges -- not necessarily dropping the whole shabang. Hang in there, and thinking of you.

Two Shorten the Road said...

Thinking of you SO much.

Nadine said...

I know it doesn't mean much, but, you're not alone.

As you get closer and closer to the anniversary you will have more of this, more confussion, more okay and not okay, and okay. I think you're right not to fight it, you're right to just go with it, not to fight it.

you don't have to give out gifts or cards or do anything you don't want to do.

hugs, and hang in there.

ezra'smommy said...

Just sending love and hugs.

Sue said...

I'm sorry. I will be remembering your girls along with you and M.

Anonymous said...

I'm thinking of you and M as well, sending you wishes of peace and comfort in each other. I wish there was something more I could do or say to help.

mash said...

Something I have learned about grief is that you have to go through it, you can't get around it. That means letting those horrific waves of pain wash right over you, sobbing your heart out if you need to. And another very strange thing about grief is that it gets fed to you in tiny little bite size chunks, that's why you suddenly start feeling OK again! Do whatever you need to, avoid whatever you need to. Strength you both xxxx

mash said...

Hi again, I just thought of something, this is my "grieving" song. You might like it too...

LJ said...

I wish I could help take some of the pain away, but I know I can't. *hugs*

Mo said...

I cried reading your post. It is so difficult that time continues to pass by and the girls continue to be gone. And how do you reconcile that? I have no idea.

We are not decorating for Christmas this year. No tree at least. Maybe we'll do something else on a small level. We're saying it's because of the boxer puppy and our certainty that she would eat any tree we buy plus all the ornaments, and while that's true, it is also a relief to downsize this holiday and all of our expectations that go along with it. All the hopes and dreams that THIS Christmas we'd be at least be close to having a family while instead we feel farther away than ever.

Thinking of you m. and M. as well. I know that the next week and this holiday season are so tough. Wishing you strength.


TracyOC said...

I don't really know what I want to say here other than I'm thinking about you and your husband and your precious girls and wishing you strength and peace this week.

Unknown said...

I wrote a very similar post over at Glow in the Woods (since I've shut down my blog...) I put up the tree, hung the lights but there is no fanfare, no happiness in my heart. I'll go through the motions but the magic is lost on me...

Michele said...

Christmas (well all holidays) are so hard. Crushingly hard.

Sending hugs...

Catherine W said...

I think M is right. It is both, happy and sad. Sometimes I can't bear to look at the pictures I have of G. Sometimes I need to see them, just to see her face again. Even if it is only a photograph.

Sometimes the 'if onlys' and 'this time last years' just can't be stoppped.

And now I'm just crying too much to type anymore. Thinking of you and M and of your girls. xo

Molly said...

Thank you for this post. I myself have felt unable to write, but this is so similar to how I feel. So uncertain about the holidays, everything is all tied up in this time of year and where we were last year. The rest of the world seems to be getting merrier every minute and I just want to stop time. And then in the next minute I go on, have a laugh, keep moving.

I've been thinking of you a lot as the girls' anniversary approaches. I hope you find some moments of solace, peace and laughter. And just for the record, I personally think it's okay to skip any and all aspects of Christmas that you want and that later it will get easier to do certain things.

Willow said...

This post is beautiful and heartbreaking. I know a little bit of that feeling--I learned that my miscarriage was going to happen the day after Christmas two years ago (though it didn't actually happen till right after New Year's), and I do think I'll always think of my loss more at this time of year. I'm so very sorry for your loss.