Journal entry Jan 02, 2007

Well, my due date passed, pretty uneventful until later in the day. It crossed my mind only once in the afternoon, then my mom called and asked if I wanted to go to the cemetery. It reminded me that Charlotte was there. Not like I had really forgotten that she was there, but it stung.

Then a few hours later I was clearing out my room and the boy's room and when I opened the door to place the bag of old clothes and toys outside, there stood the Funeral Director. It took me a few seconds to realize who she was/where I knew her from, but then I lost my breath. I didn't know if I should invite her in; it was so strange to see her outside of the funeral home. I knew she lived nearby, but to see her on my porch....

Thinking now, I guess I wished that she came by to give Charlotte back to me, handing her over like we'd made a mistake, but she didn't. Instead, she handed me an envelope with clippings of Charlottes' hair, a paper template of a headstone and her death certificate. I studied that dumb piece of paper for a long time. Each neatly typed box, spelling, noted time, Doctor's signature. Cause of Death. Like there was going to be an explanation or some information I wasn't aware of. The last line said there was multiple cysts on her brain & possible Trisomy 18. Not even a note about her heart problem. I suppose this is a way for Satan to tempt me. Maybe I should've asked for testing or an autopsy. To get more "answers". To not trust God.

When I went over to my mom's she bluntly asked me if the days date was bothersome. Well, gee, not until you asked. I was somewhat surprised that Brian's mom didn't call. She probably didn't want to upset me.

So, in the mail the other day I received a book called "When a Baby Dies". What was so surprising to me was how "normal or "text book" my feelings are. I feel like I'm experiencing them somewhat at warp speed. I guess I somehow thought I was different. I was ( I thought) stronger, more able to deal with it. But I'm right in line with a typical grieving mother. I suppose there is a lot to analyze in that one. 1.) Christ needs to be my comfort and I am beautiful to Him when I have a broken heart & 2.) I need to remove my pride and realize I can not do this alone. Nor am I any different/special that I could ever do it by myself.

A scary thought is that the hard part of this process doesn't usually come until the fourth month after. It is hard enough but now it may get even worse? Another "thing" that got me in the book was the description of a baby's skin after in utero death. It was just like Charlotte's red shiny flesh on her torso where it was starting to pull. Not pink delicate skin. This too reminded me of a "natural process" it wasn't only her that it happened to. But yesterday, as I was cutting an apple for the boys, the skin peeled off in the midsection. There she was again.

The gravity of losing Charlotte hits at the strangest times. I was sitting at the desk, putting things away and realized that I have a baby that died. I've become one of "those" women. Who are they? Now it's me.

Brian told me today that he is depressed and stressed out. I don't know if it's only work or not. I hope he's sad about Charlotte. I hope he never forgets her. I went to the cemetery today with my mom. I was excited and nervous. It almost felt wrong to go with out Brian. So we stopped and got roses. I used a coupon from one of the arrangements that had been sent to us. I felt so cheap. We arrived at the cemetery and I walked to where I thought she was. My mom was not too near me when I spotted Charlotte's plot. I remembered she was next to two "Infant Hall" children. I expected to see freshly turned dirt. I almost missed it. I barely eeked out: "There she is." My mom was talking about something and I interrupted her. I don't even know what we had been talking about , I was so preoccupied with looking ahead of me that I didn't recognize that she lay just 2-3 plots to my right. It felt like the wind was in my face and it took away my ability to speak. All I could say was "there she is" mom stopped and asked where and I pointed to the flower can thing. Immediately I started crying and so did she. She hugged me tightly and whispered "I'm so sorry baby." She was hugging me so tight that I thought that I shouldn't move, like she needed the hug too.

So we placed our roses in the can. I noticed how the dirt was pulling/caking around the can. I saw the outline of the grave in dirt, but the rest was grown over with grass. We walked over her area, over to the northside fence. There were a lot of other babies buried there that I hadn't noticed before. Sounds lame, but it felt good to know other mom's and dad's had placed their babies there too. Then we left because it was so cold.

On the way home, I told her how Zachariah woke up yesterday morning. He was all misty eyed and he said he was crying for Jesus. When I asked him why he said it was because he missed Charlotte. That caught me off guard; big time. I told him that it was ok to cry to Jesus and that Charlotte was so lucky to be with him. That was the first time he's mentioned her. I thought maybe "it" was over with for him, but I guess not. Even this afternoon, when we were buying wipes for Mathias, Zach asked if they were for Charlotte too. Later, on the clearance rack, he asked if we could buy some food/formula for Charlotte. What do I do now?

At lunch, my mom asked what we were doing about birth control. I was knocked off kilter when she asked. So direct. But while the boys and I were shopping later that day, I had to pick up a few things and we saw her again at the store. I was worried that she would see the condoms in the basket and ditched the cart. I feel funny talking about sex with other people right now.
Do they think it's too soon? How could I? I keep thinking about what came out of me. A dead baby. The morbidity of it all. I don't want to say too much about that stuff to Brian. Don't want to freak him out. I mean part of me (physically) wants to be with Brian; but another part of me feels guilty. I know that's only a part of my grief, but it's still there.

One of the things my mom said to me was how tiny Charlotte's nose was. That all of her features were so petite and perfect. She says she thinks Charlotte would have looked like me, but with dark hair. Ooh, that burns. Finally, one that could've looked like me. Oh well. She also said she thinks that I'll have one more. I don't know if I even want to, but I can't explain how comforting it is to hear that. Karen said that before too. So warm, can't describe it.

But after re-reading this entry, I see how I can be wrong. About a lot of things I suppose.
But today I asked Brian's mom how her day was on my due date. It was fine. She actually didn't even think about it. Good for her.

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