Thursday, April 13, 2017

One more time

If I could hold you one more time,
I would breathe your smell in so deep. 
Knowing full well the memories of you would fade and hoping just maybe the scent of you would stay with me. 

If I could touch you one more time, 
I would hold your hands against mine. Memorizing each little wrinkle and crease. Feeling  your skin against mine hoping just maybe the feel of your skin would remain with me. 

If I could see you one more time. 
I would stare into your eyes. Not caring if they were grey or blue. Just knowing that I was looking into the eyes of an angel. I would stare so hard, that just maybe you would see me. 

If I could be near you one more time. If space and time and this Earthly life didn't separate us. If God and I hadn't had such different plans for you. If you had been whole and you had taken a breath.

 If I could be near you just one more time, I'd let your daddy hold you tight. I would take in each moment and know it wasn't just you and me. 

Connor,
 It's been 8 years since we went to the hospital.
 8 years since we saw your heartbeat on the crappy ultrasound machine they brought in.
 8 years since you and God worked your own miracles in your timing and delivery.
 8 years since you made me the mommy of a son.
 I miss you everyday. I am thankful for my time with you, each hiccup, kick and craving. The moments I was able to hold you and the memories I have of you. As time moves on the memories fade. Your blanket has lost its smell. My heart has healed a little. Eight years ago seems like a lifetime.  I love you and miss you so incredibly much. More than I could ever say. I am proud to be your mama. 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Green bag

 When Tj and I were engaged, I found a bag I loved. My mom and I were shopping when I saw it and she bought it for me as an extra gift. Something to use as a carry on for our honeymoon. 
All of these years later this bag serves a far different purpose than it did. 

Today this is my bag. 
I lovingly refer to it as my dead baby bag. 
It holds some of my most most prize possessions. 

The shirt tj ordered before we knew Emma was sick, it came in the mail the day after her diagnosis. 
The shirt I wore to both of my babies funerals. Cards, letters, chromosome reports, funeral Mass cards, poetry, newspapers and obituaries.

Clothes my babies wore

Clothes my babies never got to wear. 
Connor's blanket and shoes. 
Footprints and pictures. 
Their names in print. 

I have this bag in my closet. So if there is ever a fire or a tornado I can grab it and take it with me. I know my things are safe in it. 

Days like today, when Emma would be 9, I sometimes like to take it out and empty it.
 Sort through each item.
 Smell the blankets, knowing full well they no longer smell of a baby, but rather a bag in a closet for 8 years. 
As much as it hurts, sometimes you just need to feel.
 Remember the hope.
 Remember the loss.

 Remember the pain. 

When I took my new bag on my honeymoon, probably full of sunglasses and magazines all of those years ago... little did I know the purpose it would serve me now. Even on days when I don't open the bag, I can look at it and feel comfort just knowing what it holds. 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Nine years

Emma, 
It is so hard to believe that in just a few days you would be 9 years old. 
Nine Years. 
Nine years ago I learned what loss felt like. 
Nine years ago I became a different person. 
Nine years ago I lost you. 
Looking back there are so many things I don't remember. I guess that is time's way of letting me heal. Some days I only think of you once or twice and others you never leave my mind. 
You are the baby who made me a better, stronger woman. 
You are the baby who made me a little crazier than I already was. 
You are the baby I expected to be healthy. 
I expected to raise. 
You are the baby that taught me I am not in control. 
You have given me strength and helped me advocate for all of the children in my life. 
You have made me live a life without regret. 
You have changed my views on so many things. 
It is hard to believe that Anna was the same age as Sam is now when we lost you. At the time she seemed so grown up. I remember her dress and the shoes I had to have her wear. I remember watching through tears as she walked around the funeral home just before the service having everyone smell her carnation. I remember thinking how big she was. That is my memory of the two of you. The closest I ever got to having the two of you together. 
I wonder now, who would you be? Would you be sweet and low key like Anna or a funny stinker like Sam. Curly hair or straight? Maybe somewhere in the middle of my other two little girls. 
Life changed forever when we saw your face on that ultrasound. 
When we found your fate. 
I cherish every second of carrying you. 
I cherish every kick, hiccup and craving. 
You will forever be a part of me.
I take solace in knowing God is holding you in His arms. 
I take comfort in knowing you are whole in Heaven. 
I like knowing you are with Connor.
Take good care of your baby brother up there. 
I imagine you fight with him, just as Anna and Wy fight down here. 
And that you love each other unconditionally, just as they do. 
Nine Years. 
Nine Years of loving you. 
Nine years without you. 
I will always and forever love you, Emma Jean. 

Friday, January 27, 2017

Choice

I wrote this 6 1/2 years ago. As the March for Life takes place today I feel it is an important time to share my experience. The heartache that changed me. 


4-13-10
In the past, I can't say I ever took a side on the pro choice/pro life debate. I thought of it as a decision that a woman would come to, that extenuating circumstances would play a major factor in. When I had a child with a fatal birth defect, I didn't even think of myself as someone having to make a “choice” into one of these groups. I remember my mom saying that my Aunt had mentioned it to her, but really didn't even get the concept at the time. It was in the months after that I realized that “termination” is a medical term that lead me into the “pro choice” realm of thinking. When I lost Emma, I never thought of her as “aborted”. She is my child and I love her with all of my heart. T.J. and I made the best decision for ourselves and for Anna. We thought we made the best decision for Emma.

All of the months I grieved for her I sat at the cemetery and looked at the other stones. If only I had thought of the Mothers who lost their children because they didn't stay in their wombs long enough. These babies that came too soon and couldn't be saved. What their mothers wouldn't give to have carried them longer. What I wouldn't give to have carried Emma longer.
I guess there is a turning point in every persons life. A place where they can stop and realize that they have changed. Sitting on a hot Summers day in that cemetery I changed. It was Emma's due date July 28. I had made it to when she should have been here. I was able to heal a little that day and I was able to see things a lot clearer. That was the day I changed my mind on what I thought was a “political issue”.
As I sit here and type this it is the day before Connor's birthday. The night I went into the hospital was one year ago today. I can sit here and think that I did everything for my son to give him as much life as I could. I can look fondly on my time with Connor. I was given such a gift to carry a baby for 9 months who was not able to survive outside of my womb.
 How can anyone not believe in God or in Miracles....without these things what was this experience! I felt every kick and hiccup and helped him to grow into a perfect baby boy. I was able to deliver him, hold him, kiss him, love him and he went to be with our Lord in his own time. I wish every mom faced with a diagnosis like ours could step into my mind for just a few minutes. I wish I could go back 2 years 1 month and a few hours and step into my own mind today. Would I have done things differently? I guess I will never know. One thing I do know is that my life has been forever changed by my two precious babies. I thank God and Emma everyday for the things they have taught me and the strength they gave me to carry Connor. What a gift to be given.

Monday, January 23, 2017

One day left of One...

It is hard to believe that two years ago you were getting ready to make your entrance into this world. I have never been so scared in my entire life. So ready to meet someone. You made quite the long and dramatic way here in your own time and you have kept us on our toes since. What an incredible blessing you are to us!
You are a sweet and sour, naughty and nice, amazing baby and we are all more in love with you now than we were 2 years ago. You are wise beyond your years and act much older than 2, except for the random fits over the wrong cookie or someone else hitting the light switch! 
You are sassy and funny and you love to laugh. You love your nana and Wyatt and love to be with them. You repeat about everything and always use your manners- you have even mastered the puppy eyed "pease" when you really want something! 
You can count to ten, know your colors and your letters and sounds. You love to watch "Ryan" on YouTube and love peppa pig and Mickey. You love playing with potato "heads" and legos "blocks". You like play doh and baby dolls too. You are super fast and can sprint with the big kids. You have excellent balance and can jump and land on 2 feet (Nate Granny says this is a kindergarten milestone). You love to ride your "bike" and chase Brutus all over. You would live on fruit snacks and juice boxes if I let you! You love "toclate" and "pops" too! 
You have a way of making everyone around you smile, even when you are giving them a dirty look for looking at you!  You call yourself "Mimi" or "baby" and love to say "me turn", "mine", "I got it", "thank you mommy", "I go mommy's room", "I go downstairs", "Wuv you", and so much more! 
You are finally starting to give hugs and kisses and talk to people! Just on your own time. You love to dance and sing. You are a pro at wheels on the bus! You have been to Disney World and can't wait to go see "Mickey moush" again soon. You are so full of personality and an independent little thing! We are proud and so thankful that you are ours. I am so excited to see the little person you turn into! 

Sammi Grace.

You are my rainbow.
My miracle
The baby I never thought I could have. 
You are the hope that I had lost.
You are so much more than I ever dreamed.

You are the baby.

You are our baby. 
Sam I am

Sam Sammerson

Sammi Sam

Little Stink




We love you to the moon and back. 
Happy 2nd Birthday, Sam.
Love, mommy