Monday, October 21, 2019

HOME and moving forward

I returned from my jet-setting adventures through NY about 16 hours early, late Saturday night.

Viking had a cold.  A head cold sure, but I could tell, this put him out of his depth.  Based on looking at some red-nosed, glassy eyed pics sent to me of Samantha, she had one too. So while I was having a surprisingly good time walking down memory lane with classmates on Saturday, I skipped out on  the evening drinking portion of the reunion and hopped on a train back home that night.

When Sammi woke up on Sunday morning I assumed she would be happy to see me.  Yeah, she was, but....

This is also the week I chose to wean her. So she repeatedly cried "NA NA" while closing her hand in a fist (her sign for milk) and yeah, kid, that was rough.

I have to say, I have some very mixed emotions about weaning her.  See, I used to always joke that as soon as a kid could use words to request a specific food, that would be it, they're cut off.

The truth is that I loved the quiet time we spent every morning and night. She wasn't getting a whole lot out of me, yes, I was really functioning as a human pacifier. But I honestly never had an issue with it.

So why did I wean (besides being away for days and effectively killing my milk supply)?

I need a mammogram.  I can't get one.  No matter how hard I try through my doctors, I can't find anyone to give me one unless I'm no longer lactating for at least 3 months. And I have super dense breast-tissue, so I am already bracing for the hell of getting red flags on my mammograms.

I also currently know three women my age who have recently been in treatment for cancer. All of them I know through our kids.  There's a voice in my head that won't quiet.  Call it an intrusive thought, call it my general anxiety about always expecting the bottom to drop. But I have to get a mammogram and this is honestly the only way I will get approved for one.

My baby isn't taking to losing our nursing bond very well. There were some loud screams and big tears last night, and this morning.  It's a shock to her system in a way that it wasn't for her sister (Nibble was weaned around 14 months, and the best word for her reaction was ambivolent).

We'll get through it quickly I'm sure.  I now spend about 5 straight minutes just holding her and snuggling in those moments we used to nurse.  But yeah, the sense of loss is mutual kid.  It really is bittersweet.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Remembrance Day

October 15th has snuck up on me again. This miscarriage and infant loss Remembrance Day has a way of doing that.

I’m gonna be all up in my feelings because I am flying off to upstate NY today for a work conference. Then on Friday I fly into NYC for a school reunion.  Today is Tuesday. I won’t be home with my living babies and husband until Sunday afternoon. This is the first long trip I will have taken away from Samantha and Niblet since Samantha was born. Oh. Wow

I’ve been trying to focus on the positives. My kids are in good hands with their dad and our nanny. I will finally have the opportunity to wean the almost 2 year old. I might get some nice sleep and adult conversation.

But my heart actually aches for my kids, and I’m only en route to the airport. And I will be sharing a hotel room with a nice but chatty colleague who I will probably have to flee from repeatedly, especially at 7 pm this evening when I try to find a candle to light in my babies’ memories.

I am sending peace and solace to everyone who is finding themselves deep in thoughts about their babies tonight. So much love to everyone in this community of motherhood.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Happy New Year

In the Jewish Calendar it is now 5780, we are celebrating our New Year.

The Rabbi of our congregation gave us an exercise to ponder as we approach Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.  For my non-Jewish readers, this is Easter Sunday for the tribe - meaning that those of us who never show up for services DO attend on this day.

I offer some of my off the cuff introspection below:

Something I regret from this past year:
I would say not calling my parents enough, and viewing it with grim trepidation when I do (which in case you're wondering, is roughly a few times a week).

Lately, we've had to have some carefully narrowed conversation to avoid arguing, it's exhausting when we're arguing. I should add, this isn't new. They also felt it's appropriate to freely criticize the Viking for the last decade.

(But I want to be clear, they will never say anything negative about him in front of our children, they've told me that and they honor it. Still their willingness to trash talk him to me has always been, sigh, exhausting).

Something I realized this past year:
People say that time heals - but I really think it's that we are given the opportunity to have love fill some of the broken places. A lot of grief is love that needs a place to go.

Something that brought me joy or gratification this past year:
This one's easy. My daughters and the way they interact with each other. Niblet calls her sister "Yammy" (like, uh, a sweet potato). Her sister calls her "DeeDee because she can't pronounce her name. They really do stare at each other with wonder sometimes.

L'Shana Tovah