Here again

Hi Ella,

I’m here again in the midnight hour. I’ve carried you with me through out the day, in little thoughts, little glances at your things, little what-ifs, and little sighs. Everything is so quiet now. I hate the word quiet. I hate the quietness. Not in noise…or sounds…or music. The quietness of my soul. The quietness in never hearing the “right” words, the quietness in never hearing your voice. I doubt you ever wonder where you are, if I am still grieving you and missing you–but if you ever did, I still am. The second year is different than the first. Less grief on the surface, less exploding into tears and tantrums…maybe. The other night all of my rage and sadness came flying out at your father. I attacked him with the brutality of all my pain. I was a mess of flying limbs and tears…cussing and screaming and just utterly out of control. I know this would not make you happy in any way…but I don’t know how to grieve for you in a clean and neat sort of way. You meant so much to me, and that is never going to change. 

A few good things have happened lately, in the fact that I don’t think I’m angry at God per say anymore. I’m just angry at life. I feel like I’ve learned that God heals our hearts and our souls…but not our bodies. Outwardly we are wasting away, but inwardly we are being renewed day by day–I think I kind of get that now. A few bad things have happened too though. All the fear and anxiety that I had while I was pregnant with your brother caused me to lose my appetite completely..I hardly gained 15lbs during my pregnancy. Now that he is here and safe my appetite has come back with a vengeance.  But I binge eat now, when I feel at rock bottom. I’ve never been a binge eater in my life…it’s very different for me. The other night when your dad and I were fighting I ate a whole box of chocolates. I ate them like they were literally going to fill the ginormous void, and magically take me away from my cold reality. They never do. 

Another bad thing about my grief lately is feeling alone. Your dad grieves for you in a different way than I do, and that is very painful. It’s painful to explain my grief to him. I hate doing that. I hate the fact that he can’t be in my head and my soul…I hate that alone-ness. 

There are lots of little triggers that make me think of you through out the day. Sometimes they are happy…like when your brother smiles at me, and for a second I see you. Some triggers are incredibly disgusting, and gut-wrenchingly grotesque. I feel sick that they remind me of you, and I’ve never really dared to say them out loud. Sometimes raw meat reminds me of you…because of how pink and fragile your skin was, and the fact that we had to keep you on ice. This picture is horrific to me. Little baby dolls remind me of you. These triggers are very traumatic for me. I usually immediately tell myself that you are not that helpless frail little baby I held, but for some reason I can never imagine you now as you are. I hate that. I told your Gigi the other day that I only use my imagination for evil, and I fear that is true. It’s not fair that I have to imagine you. Maybe someday I will see my imagination as a gift again, but for now it is held ransom by my mortal fears and the trauma of losing you. 

I know that you know so much more than I do. You are already in glory, and light, and love. You don’t even need me or miss me at all…and I am glad that you are complete. I don’t have to worry about you not breathing at night, like I do with your brother. I don’t have to worry about you meeting the wrong boys, or having your heartbroken. I don’t have to worry about losing you to childhood cancer, like so many parents. I don’t worry about you, but sometimes I wish I could. 

If I’m honest the trigger that has sent me here tonight is the pain of feeling like you were never here. I often think about what I would grab if there was a house fire, and I am always depressed at the only things I would have to grab of you are your footprints and handprints. A parent should have more. It’s hard still to see baby girls. I cried at your cousins dedication because I knew I’d never get to see yours. I hate bows. I hate dresses. I hate pink. I hate it all right now. I really hate it when people talk about these things without any sensitivity or mention of you. I hate it when people act like you were just something sad that happened to us. It makes me feel alone, and a little crazy. Crazy to love and miss someone so much–someone that no one ever remembers or acknowledges. My family talks about you all the time, and we all still cry for you–and I know I should be grateful to at least have them. I am.

 sometimes I wish others would be able to slip on this shawl of pain for a second, so they would know the burden and sadness I carry with me always. Maybe they would say less, and listen more….

 

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5 thoughts on “Here again

  1. Your words are a gift to those of us seeking to grow in compassion and understanding for all those who wear a shawl of grief. Thank you once again for opening up the deepest part of you so bravely. We are changed because of you. We are changed because of Ella. We are deeper, more noble people. Let us help you carry the vision of her life through the gift of our imaginations, when you cannot. Trauma is real and you need not feel guilt for what is etched in your mind. But as God heals you there will be new insights, new imaginings, new vision. She is my firstborn darling granddaughter and I see her in your eyes, in Jason’s smile, and in Beck’s chubby little neck. I will always love and miss her and wish to see glimpses of her in my everyday life.

  2. You aren’t alone. I have triggers too. I walked into a shop the other day, one I hadn’t been in since just before our Kiernan died, when I was incandescent with joy and peace, and suddenly, I couldn’t breathe. It took me back to how I’d been so happy and now, everything is shattered into a million bent and warped pieces that don’t fit together at all. I had to quickly leave before I broke down. I won’t ever go back to that shop again.

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