Archive for the ‘Grief’ Category

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I am about to tell you something that I couldn’t tell my friends or midwives at the time. I couldn’t even tell my husband, because I was scared if I said it out loud that it would be true.

Before #MissVee was born, I was afraid I wouldn’t love her.

Now that she is here, I feel I can say it out loud. It was a big fear of mine. For those who believe our brains can control our bodies, it could also be why she decided to wait 9 days past her estimated due date to make her appearance.

In terms of big psychological hang-ups, this one was pretty huge.

Last July, an unanticipated pregnancy was confirmed by early ultrasound. Two hours later, I found out that my brother died in a tragic motorcycle collision. My husband and older boys were out of town at camp and on a Scouts canoe trip — unreachable by phone. I was alone with my 4yr old. Frantic with grief, I holed up with my youngest and waited for the rest of my family to come home.

That week prevented me from attaching to my pregnancy.

I didn’t even try.

With my history of recurring pregnancy loss, and this pregnancy following hot on the heels of traumatic miscarriage at 12wks, I didn’t want to try. I steeled myself for another loss and got on with my life. I drove to Nova Scotia with my childhood best friend, her two boys and my three boys (all in one awesome Suburban, I will add) for my brother’s memorial service and to spend some time with my parents.

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Last July, my brother died.

I haven’t written much about him because I didn’t have room to explore those feelings when stressed over my pregnancy. I had to focus on putting one foot in front of the other and, sadly, grief can always wait. Since MissVee’s birth in February, they have been slowly coming to the surface.

My feelings take me by surprise — their ferocity takes my breath away.

I still can’t write about him. I’m not ready. Someday I will be ready, but that day is not today. That day won’t be tomorrow. I need more time to process the finality — the “goneness” — of his death and the impact it has on me.

What I can do is tell you a little story about some glasses.

These glasses:

These glasses have a story.

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As the weeks remaining in this pregnancy diminish, so to shrinks my to-do list. There are still a lot of things left on it but they seem a little less insurmountable, a fraction less overwhelming. As I work through it on automatic pilot, my thoughts wander.

I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about my brother — being too familiar with signs of depression, I spend a lot of time assessing my feelings. I wonder if some of my disconnect with this pregnancy is the juxtaposition of his death against this arrival of new life. Some days I feel a little guilty that I get to have this experience, again, when he never did.

It feels weird and wrong to think this is a year that he isn’t here.

It feels strange to think he will never meet this baby.

Self-care is important and I have been avoiding it lately, in favour of focusing on all the tasks I have to complete before my due date. I know this isn’t healthy. I also know that holding on to strong emotions at this point in a pregnancy doesn’t work well for me — I bottle things inside and end up wound too tight when I need to be relaxing and letting go.

A Grief Observed - C. S. Lewis

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