Sunday, August 30, 2009

Honest Scrap Award

I have been given the Honest Scrap Award by Surviving Baby: Confessions of an Aspiring Mommy and from Christy at A Piece of the Pearsons ! Thanks to you both! Here are the rules:

1. Choose a minimum of 7 blogs who you find brilliant in content or design.

2. Show the 7 winners’ names and links on your blog, and leave a comment informing them that they have won the Honest Scrap award.

I hope none of you have already been chose, if so, SORRY!!!
1. Mary Beth @ 3 Pairs of Feet
2. Krista @ J & K
3. Kerry @ Making Coyne
5. Lauren @ Green Family

3. List at least 10 honest things about yourself.

This is going to be tough after reading so many other people's interesting posts. Sorry if it is a little boring, but I guess my life has been pretty normal!

1. I know my credit card number. I can recite it from memory along with the expiration date and 3 digit security code too. I guess that just means that I shop a little too much online!

2. I am super clumsy. My brother constantly made fun of me for this when we were young, actually he still does!!! Oddly enough though, I have never had stitches or a broken bone (except a toe here and there.)

3. I teach at the same school I attended and now my living children go there too. It was kind of weird going back there at first, I even work with several of the teachers who taught me!

4. My husband and I started dating when I was 17. We got married when I was almost 22 and we had Brady when I was 23. After 18 years of being together I still love him...usually!

5. I completed a half marathon a couple years ago. I barely trained for this as we were right in the middle of selling a house, buying a house, and remodeling a house, so needless to say it wasn't a priority. However, I completed it in under 3 hours and received my Tiffany's necklace at the end!

6. I enjoy cooking, but have done very little of it since losing Sophia & Ellie. Now that I am back at work I have just started cooking regularly again since we are back into a routine.

7. I did not plan on being a teacher in college even though I always played school when I was little. My degree is in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance. Sometimes I am still not sure of my choices here.

8. I often eat the same foods over and over again until I get tired of them. Then I will start on something else until I get tired of that. Then I go back to the previous foods...and the cycle begins again!

9. I don't really enjoy talking on the phone very much. Actually I am not a big talker IRL at all. I listen A LOT and take things in, but I figure if I don't have something important to add, then I just don't really need to say anything.

10. If you read my last post you know I make jewelry. But I also try to sew. I am not very good at it, but I still like doing it...sometimes. My sister-in-law is a wonderful seamstress, but I don't think I will ever be as good as her. I also make hair bows, tutus, and photo cards. I wish I was good at photography, painting, and drawing, but I guess a girl can't have it all!

That's it...I warned you it was going to be boring!

Friday, August 28, 2009

My Therapy

Immediately after losing Sophia & Ellie I wanted so badly to have a piece of jewelry to represent them. Two days after delivering them I was home alone for a short time. I went into my craft room, stamped their names on a disc, and after a couple revisions, I came up with this:

It is a necklace made from a silver disc with their names' stamped around the bottom. I have since purchased angel wings to stamp in the center, but I haven't had the courage to do it yet in fear of ruining it. I wear this necklace often and when I do I feel closer to my girls. For me it is something tangible; something I can see and touch; I think of it as a way for me to wear the love I have for my babies.

Since then, I have designed a few other pieces with their initials, and I wear one of the three necklaces nearly everyday. After making my first piece I decided I wanted to make my jewelry available to others; to other bereaved parents like me, and also to parents who do not know my pain; our pain.

A couple months ago I began selling my designs on etsy. I do not want it to seem as if I am trying to solicit my merchandise to anyone, but I think others like me may maybe interested in a piece. If you are, you can check it out at If not, that is okay too (I could never make a living in sales :) this has just become a very big part of my life because it is something I truly enjoy. It brings me peace and comfort and every time I make one, I think of my beautiful girls. I tell everyone it is my therapy.

I hope I have not offended anyone in this post. It is something I have thought about writing for quite some time, but was afraid I would turn some people off because they might think I am trying to make money from their loss. I wish I could send every babylost mama out there a piece of my jewelry to represent their babies, however that is not financially feasible; once I win the lottery though, that is what I will do!!

The Secret Garden Meeting

The Secret Garden is a place that is only open for bereaved parents. It is our garden, our secret place to come to. A place to remember our children with those who understand us. It is a place to just be, without worry or fear of not being accepted.

If you created a bedroom for your baby tell us what it was like. Did you have it ready for them before they were born? If so how did you cope coming home to it without your baby? Did you pack it all away? What is your baby's room now? If you lost your baby after they had come home what is it like going into there room now? If you are trying to conceive again, or are pregnant again how do you feel about setting up another room before your baby is born?

We had decided where we would put our babies, but we never had the chance to get it ready for them. When we purchased our house it was a foreclosure. An addition had been started off of our bedroom, but was never completed. We finished it in November and it was to be my craft room. We found out I was pregnant at the end of December, then found out we were having twins in March. After realizing we were having two babies, we decided the craft room would be the perfect nursery!

I was so busy before having the girls, so we hadn't had a chance to get started on their room. Of course I had LOTS of ideas swirling around in my head, but non of the them were ever executed.

The room is still being used as my craft room and I love being in there. When I am working on a project (which brings me to my next post) I always think of my sweet Sophia & Ellie.

We are TTC again. I have mixed emotions about setting up a room for the next baby if we are so lucky to have another. I hate to not be prepared for ANYTHING, but at the same time I know how badly it will hurt me to have a room set up with no baby to put in it. I guess we will cross that bridge when it comes, but I can see myself setting it up because I tend to err on the side of optimism. I do not think I want to use my craft room for another child. I feel that it is Sophia's and Ellie's room. I almost feel like putting another baby in "their" room would be a betrayal of some sort. Again, I guess we will cross that bridge when it comes, if we are so fortunate.

I have things lying around the house that belong to my girls, and they are still in the exact place as when we lost them. I am unable to move them, to put them away. Sometimes I will look at these items, but I mostly just like knowing they are there. I guess because it makes them real to me. I even have a book about multiples I was reading, oh how I loved reading that book, and it is still in my car...I just can't take it out.

Monday, August 24, 2009

If you build it they will come...

Last week was a very sad week for me. Getting ready to start another school year while I should be home with my babies really got me down. Also, the unwanted changes in my employment status were very hard for me to cope with...None of this was in my "plan."

Today was the first day with the students. I have to say that I was SOOO busy getting ready for the day that I really didn't have time to think about much. I made it through the school day without tears. I ran into a couple parents and many students from last year and I got lots of hugs, but no one asked about the babies...Until recess. A little girl asked me if I had the twins. Without even thinking I answered that I had them, but they were born too early and died and now they are in Heaven. I think I had gone over this question so many times in my head that I was really prepared for it, well as prepared as one can be. There were some other girls around so more questions came: Were they boys or girls? When did you have them? Why did they die? What were their names? The little girl that first asked about my girls kept saying, "That is so sad." I just agreed with her and said, "Yes, it is very sad." Really though I think I did well and answered their questions with dignity and grace.

On a happier note, today was Emma's first day of kindergarten!!! She was so excited! She is going to the school I teach at and I absolutely loved seeing her throughout the day. It totally put a smile on my face every time I saw her. After school, her teacher told me that there is a girl named Ellie in their class. Emma told her that she has a sister named Ellie. Now when I heard this, the tears came to my eyes. I mentioned to her teacher that Sophia and Ellie and a very big part of Emma's life. She talks about them often and she always draws pictures of them and writes their names. I don't want her to be discouraged from doing this, and I know her teacher will accept Emma's sister for who and where they are.

I want to thank you all for the encouraging comments you left me about returning to work. I know so many of you have walked this path before me and I am comforted to hear your words. Today was better than I had expected. We will see what tomorrow brings; it will be 4 months since losing Sophia & Ellie. I am sure it will be another very busy day, but I know my girls will be on my mind.

I love you sweet girls!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

I Will Do My Best

This week has been rough. After nearly 4 months, I have gone back to work. Not only am I back to work, but I am now working full time. Since having Emma, I have only worked part time and it has been so great for our family. Well, due to my administrators, I am being forced into working full time. This is not a decision I agree with, I am not happy about all, and I fought it very hard, but I did not win. I will not go into detail here, just in case someone IRL stumbles upon my blog. I am very angry and resentful that these people can not see my need to stay part time considering the circumstances...I better stop writing about them or else this post will get VERY UGLY!!

So, everyday on my way to work I am in tears thinking about the two reasons I should not be going there...I should be home with my Sophia & Ellie right now. I wasn't planning on going back to work in August, I should be on maternity leave. So I cry pretty much the entire way to work. I get there and keep to myself. I talk to as few people as possible. Today however, we had meetings and I had to be with the entire staff. People are carrying on, enjoying each other's company, catching up, etc. And I am just sitting there trying to hold back the tears, worrying about what will be said to set me off. I made it through the first meeting, barely. I had to listen to my administrator talk about how the staff is one big family, yadayadayada.

A few people asked how I was, hugged me, and were sympathetic to my situation. Others seemed oblivious, like they have forgotten. Last time they saw me I looked full term, so it is not like it could have slipped their minds. Others just stayed away. It hurts though, it is the absence of their words that hurts. I don't know why it is so hard for people just to say, "How are you holding up?" or "Are you doing okay?" Again, some people did, but most said nothing.

Monday will be the real test. It is officially the first day of school. I am not sure if I will be able to make it through the day without crying in front of the students. I feel sorry for these poor kids in my class. Their teacher is unstable. Not only did her babies die, but she is being treated very poorly and is very unhappy. All I can do is my best, but my best today is different than it was 4 months ago.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Back to Reality

Well, we are back from the beach and back to reality...laundry, cleaning house, going to birthday parties, more laundry, etc. Although I felt very melancholy while away, I still had a good time. I think the distractions and being out of my normal routine were good. I missed my girls terribly, but the break from my reality was much appreciated.

Here are a few things that happened while we were away:

I already wrote about the identical twin girl sighting...ugh!

One day we were shopping and out of the blue Emma said to me, "Mommy, I think every night Sophia & Ellie get down on their knees and pray that they can be down here with us." How sweet is that?? Every night we pray that our girls are well taken care of and that they come visit us in our dreams. But she thinks they pray to be here with our family; if only it were that easy...

We visited this little gallery that makes children's' handprint impressions from clay. We had both Brady's and Emma's handprints made when they were young and I wanted to have the same type of thing made for Sophia & Ellie. So we went back to this same gallery and talked to the owners Ross & Hedy. These are the sweetest, kindest, most compassionate "strangers" I have met in real life since losing my girls. I told them what I wanted and what it was for. Ross teared up and held my hands telling me that he is a parent too and understands how hard this must be for me. He said he can't quite understand because he has never lost a child, but he can only imagine. Hedy was just as sympathetic and was so quick to find a way to create my vision. We spent quite a bit of time talking to this wonderful couple and when we left I was very pleased with what we came up with. I can't wait to receive it!!! I will post pictures as soon as it comes.

I ran into someone I used to work with several years ago. She now lives in the town we were visiting and I bumped into her at the Farmer's Market. We chit-chatted for a few minutes and she asked me if we had had more children. Last time I saw her, we only had Brady. I told her we had Emma and we had just had twins in April, but lost them. This is the first person I have ran into that doesn't know our story and has asked about my children. This is the first time I have had that awkward feeling of what do I say. The moment was so brief to make the decision, but I guess I decided to tell her. She said how sorry she was and I must have gone on talking because I don't really remember where the conversation went after that. I feel like I need to contact her to explain, but I know she will ask others if she wants more information.

I tried to emulate Carly while on the beach. I wrote my girls' names in the sand and took some pictures. Lets just say I have a totally new appreciation for what she does! My photos look nothing like her beautiful pieces of art. I didn't think they would, but I had hoped for more. I might try it again next time we visit, but California beaches pale in comparison the the beautiful place where Carly photographs our sweet babies' names.

It is good to be home and back to the familiarity of my life, but we have plans to go again very soon. I just hope that next time all twins will stay at home!!!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Quick Update

Still at the beach. Having a decent time. Have been able to find some joy through all of my sadness. Went to dinner tonight. Who walks in?? Identical twin girls with curly hair (Emma has curly hair and I am sure my girls would have too.) All I could think about is "Would Sophia & Ellie look like this at that age?" and the inevitable..."Why them and not me???" Luckily they sat far, far away and I did not have to see them again. "Sighhhhh"

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Missing My Girls

I am really missing my girls tonight. We are getting ready to go to the beach for a few days and all I can think about is Sophia & Ellie. We shouldn't be going, we should be at home. We should have two beautiful babies in our arms right now, not packing up and leaving. I hate that they are not here; I just miss them so much...

Friday, August 7, 2009


Okay...Something is bothering me. I have this friend "S'. We have been friends for 25 years (wow, I am getting old!) We were best friends all through Junior High and High School. We were each others Maids of Honor at our weddings, we have been there for each other through the births of our children. But, we have drifted apart. We still see each other and talk , but we are not as close as we once were. I still consider her a dear friend, but our relationship has changed.

After we lost Sophia & Ellie I didn't hear from "S". We sent an e-mail to all our contacts stating what had happened and to please give us a few days before trying to contact us. Just thinking of writing that e-mail brings it all back...Anyway, I didn't hear from "S". She contacted my parents to see how things were, and a few weeks later I received a card from her. She wrote that her delay in sending the card was due to not having the right words to say, but then she realized that there was nothing she could say to make things better. She has called a few times for specific reasons, like to RSVP to Emma's party, to wish me a happy birthday, etc. She came over so we could exchange birthday gifts a couple months ago and last night we went to dinner.

Now through all the conversation and visits, I think she has only asked how I was doing once. The first time we spoke it came up, but she said she didn't want to get into everything over the phone, she would rather be there for me in person. So, I am thinking that at dinner last night she might ask how I am, she might mention my girls names, she will acknowledge my loss...Nope!!! She didn't ask, bring it up, or anything. I even mentioned being pregnant with the twins during another story, so she had an opening there.

I don't know how I feel about this. I think she probably just doesn't feel comfortable bringing it up, she doesn't want to hurt me, just like everyone else. But it does hurt me not to even acknowledge my girls. She is still a dear friend to me and I know she isn't doing this out of lack of support. I think I should have given her a "what to say/what not to say" brochure (do they make these :) so she feels more comfortable. Anyway...I just needed to get this out of my head! Thanks for "listening".

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Go Ahead and Cry

I have been wanting to write the rest of our story for quite some time now, but have not been able to bring myself to do it. I finally tried to sit down last night to write, but I just couldn't find the right words. Nothing seemed good enough. I don't know how to describe such heart ache and such joy all at the same time. I know I don't need to describe it because those of you who have lived it know, but I just couldn't find the words to do my girls justice, so I will try another time.

I did however what to share something I read. This is from Empty Cradle, Broken Heart which I know has been read by many of us, but I think this is a good reminder for us all:

"There is research showing that tears are a biologically necessary way of relieving stress-there is evidence that tears remove stress-induced toxins from the body. Holding back tears can induce stress, resulting in a variety of psychological and physical symptoms, including exacerbation of preexisting conditions ..."

So go ahead and cry...I know I have been. I just miss my girls so much and to think that they are not here with me breaks my heart every time.