Saturday, September 28, 2013

Winter Clothing and Swings

So here we go again. Enter grieving Mom into normal parenting tasks.

I had to buy warmer clothing for Paiden. I have largely used Perry's clothes as hand me downs, but Paiden's size is different- at least for a few months. I knew it would be.

I used to be the Mom that had entire wardrobes bought at sales a year or two in advance. It wasn't that I didn't have a chance after Paiden was born and all the winter stuff that remained was very cheap, it was just that I couldn't. I felt like I had somehow spit in the face of fate by buying clothing in advance. I was afraid to now.

I both hate and love that I do not take my children for granted. On the one hand it is the horrible knowing that nothing is guaranteed, on the other hand it is notes on school supplies telling Emily I love her, and moments captured that I might have simply let slip by before.... Like swinging.

The everyday details are miraculous when you see them for what they are.

Photo: Paiden swinging for the first time

Paiden swinging for the first time. Emily insisted. I was hesitant, in some ways I wanted Dad to be there.

He laughed, She giggled. No apathy here either.

And before we left a butterfly drifted around the play equipment, circled us for a while, and was gone.

Sunday, September 15, 2013


I have started doing something since I lost Perry. I look at every date I see and it becomes classified into my life in one of a few ways.

Before Perry
Pregnant with Perry
Perry's Birthday
The Golden Age of Perry
Perry's Death
After Perry

Even after Paiden, I still do this.

I find receipts in odd places, expiration dates, or pay stubs. My mind looks, does the math. I found a paystub in my pump bag. It was during the golden days, days worked around October. I paused and memories flooded back. If I could go back and relieve those days, I would. Perry in his carrier, baby leggings, silly excitement over new cloth diapers. Fall was wonderful then, pumpkins and candy, costumes and memories of college days and football games with cold nipping at my nose. Sundays with little boy sweaters, and the serious question of daycare that approached. A future that folded out before me, wonderful and bright. I wanted to see Emily and Perry in happy holiday pictures, proudly shared as 'firsts'. They were so close I could feel the anticipation as these moments hung before me like heavy fruit... in a short time, I was sure, they would be here... I had just to reach out and take them.

I paused. I remembered this paystub- I'd placed it in my bag to go home. But when I got home, it was so insignificant compared to what I saw that it stayed there forgotten. It stayed through the worst days of my life, through initial shock, through days so hard to live that it was a victory to get up and go into the bathroom a few short steps from my bed. It stayed through days of trying, frustration and grief at further loss. It stayed as Paiden formed. It just now emerged...

Tears fall as I remember.

These days it is a confusing jumble. Days or hours of joy, then sadness and loss returns all over again. Even that joy still has a weight with it that never lifts.

And I put it back. Do I toss or keep? I defer.

I return to facebook, but find myself looking and dreaming as I see the dates on friend's pictures... and I categorize again, quietly.
I guess I should tell you, unless you wonder. The joy is still a wonderful surprise, even with the weight. Emily and Paiden have been jewels to me in my darkest days. It is just that you can't undo losing a child or untie the string of longing that binds you still. It isn't depression, it just is.