Wednesday, February 20

in the club

we're gettin' all personal - real, real dang personal - up in here again.
i'm feeling nudged to tell my story, no matter how messy, no matter that others have told similar stories. and, if it helps just one of you, then that is why i've put finger to keyboard. so, settle in, it's a long one, folks.
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a few years ago, i joined the club. i didn't ask to be a member; no one does. and, it seems this club's rules are kinda similar to fight club - you don't talk about the club. well...i need to talk about the club. and, i'm quite certain there are others out there who need to talk about it, too. because, you know what? keeping secrets tears holes in the soul. giant, life-changing holes.

i joined the miscarriage club.   twice.    and, this is my story.

yea, yea, yea, you thought we never wanted kids. well, when your friends and sister start having kids, and the years speed by to your mid-thirties, and society makes you feel worthless if you're childless, sometimes minds change. try to get pregnant. 

and, i got pregnant in october 2010.

and, couldn't schedule our first ultrasound fast enough. my timing was perfect - right before the holidays, so we could give the gift of being aunties, uncles, grammas, grampas, cousins. then i signed up for all the baby emails (mr man, this week our baby is the size of a pecan!), dreamt up 'how to tell everyone' ideas, and stressed over what to 'drink' at holiday parties.

brimming with excitement at the doctor's office, we glazed over all the statistics and test scheduling, our sole goal being to hear the heartbeat! finally, the machine wheeled in. let's have a look at your baby! awkward silence let me just move around a little more. awkward silence you know, i'm no good at viewing these things. awkward silence i'll be right back.

and, heart hit floor. pieces of it are surely still there. doom. denial. tears. and, mr man had to go back to work. alone, terrified, numb, i was sent off to the big ultrasound, for more awkward silences and...

i'm sorry, but the baby has no heartbeat.

no heartbeat. no heartbeat? wait, what?! nononononoooo. there's NO way. my sister just had a miscarriage. why would god do that to me? after i finally decided to try for a kiddo. when i'd already come up with a clever holiday announcement.

well, folks, there's nothing clever or exciting about calling your mama and sissies to say - thru the ugliest of tears - i'm pregnant...but the baby has no heartbeat. how do you give that much pain to people who never thought they'd hear the first two words from my lips?
how do you process feelings of epic grief, when you haven't even really processed the thought of being pregnant? when your body fails you by rejecting life enough to miscarry, but not enough to finish the process? when you have to make decisions in split seconds, then figure out how to live with them morally, emotionally, physically? when the holiday loses most of its sparkle in the blink of an eye? when your husband doesn't know what to say, much less anyone else you're likely to tell?

if you're me, you cry. a lot. buckets. and, throw stuff. like tantrums that would make a 3-year-old blush. i tend toward the dramatic side, if you weren't aware. 

then, i chugged down a healthy dose of denial (they're totally wrong), made the split second decision required of me (avoidance), and went to my family cocoon for the holidays. holidays that went by in a blur of family get-togethers, anger, more ugly tears, and waiting for the inevitable. all while trying to muster the courage to pretend i felt like celebrating a new year. what was the point?

of course, my body wasn't having any of the inevitable, so i had to face what i'd been avoiding from the beginning. unflattering white gown, legs in stirrups, breathe thru the pain. oh, the pain. and, the helplessness. and, a heart broken in two. it's almost over. we're so sorry. 

i get why no one wants to talk about, hear about, think about it - cuz it friggin' sucks. and there's not a damn thing anyone can do about it. no one can tell you why or how it happened. there are no reasons they can give you. and, life? it keeps spinning madly on, paying no mind to those who are run over. those who would rather stay curled up in bed with a box of kleenexes, than go thru the motions. pretend. smile. 

and, there was a whole helluva lot of pretending and plastered smiles. at least until someone tried to tell me how bad their day/month/year/life was, then BAM - bomb dropped. oh yea? shut it! i can top you. so lovely of me, right? but, my way thru tends toward the angry side, and i was pissed. why the hell did everyone around me get to have babies? why.the.hell were there so many pregnant women EVERYWHERE i turned? couldn't anyone see the pain behind my fake smile? pity party of one, right this way!

oh, but i've been the person ignoring the pain behind the smile. with lines like oh, i'm so sorry. at least you can get pregnant. miscarriages are so common. 1 in 3 pregnancies ends in miscarriage. all while trying to run away to avoid having to feel any more of their pain. how could i expect sympathy when i was so callous?

oddly enough, my faith didn't feel too shaken after. in fact, i sought solace in church, christian friends, christian blogs, and favorite scriptures. sure i was a little perturbed that god wasn't going along with the plan i'd created for myself, but i felt comfort in these words.
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord,
plans to prosper you and not to harm you, 
plans to give you hope and a future. ~jeremiah 29:11
it's taken 2 years for me to see that my story needed to be told. that there may be a lovely lady out there who is suffering in silence, and has no one to tell her this friggin' sucks. if you or anyone you know has gone thru this and is still reeling, i wanted to offer some suggestions for baby steps on that looooong road of healing.

name your baby - whatever your beliefs are, that was your baby. as soon as you saw the +, you started dreaming about your life with a little munchkin. something that's meaningful to you is perfect. my babies are hope and joy, and based on my belief, i find peace in knowing my family and i will meet them one day in heaven.

memorialize your baby - take the time to mourn the loss of your hopes and dreams. paint a picture, write a poem, plant a tree/bush, release a balloon. we chose to toss flowers into the sound (picture above). include family members if that's your thing.

allow yourself - to be pissed. to think this sucks. to cry. to wail. to throw stuff. just allow yourself. it's ok to be sad. sometimes, it hits when you least expect it. allow yourself time. as much time as you need. if you're like me, you won't be able to tell your story 1 and 2 years later without sheddin' a tear. IT'S OK. and, it's possible you'll never get over it. and, that's ok, too.

tell your story - don't be like me and keep a big soul hole of a secret. miscarriage doesn't have to be a dirty word. and, if there are people in our club, we want to welcome them. plus, your story matters.

For everything there is a season, 
and a time for every purpose under heaven.
~ecclesiastes 3:1

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i didn't tell this story for pity or as a bomb drop for those who know me, but not this part of me. i told this story for all the women who suffer in silence every day over this heart break. if you've got encouragement, ideas to add, or feel compelled to share your story too, rock on in the comments, or send me an email. let's be here for each other, sisters.

Friday, February 8

february stars

seriously? no other posts in january? i promise, my three readers, i think about posting, and then forget, or second guess myself, or let's be honest, get too lazy to size the pics, come up with a sassy title, and write the dang thing. I'M SORRY. forgive me? at least you know you can count on me to hip up your airwaves! *snort* (with songs from like 20+ years ago!)

no theme this year, but if you've got a hankerin' for love songs or country songs, i've covered those, and you can have a little listen.

so, mr man and i have been rockin' the late night karaoke lately. from the privacy of our own living room. which means we can sing whatever the heckums we want, and don't have to wait thru stairway to heaven by bobby joe, or teenage dream by suzette, or friends in low places by roscoe, who's outside havin' a smoke, and can't hear his name being called. and, the drinks are free. it's rad. come over?

well, that tangent was all so you can now know that a few of these songs have been tested for karaoke, and some were in my range! but, take it from me - february stars? not for karaoke. you're welcome. what are you listenin' to? what would you karaoke, if you had a set up in your living room?