Yesterday I was feeling incredibly sad and wasn't able to see much in a positive manner. Today, I woke up with a different outlook and I'm so grateful for that. I've been enjoying my kids today. Going to the bakery for treats and warm yummy drinks for me and my Buzz doesn't hurt either...that could certainly brighten anyone's mood, right? :) But in all seriousness, the waves of grief which I've heard about are upon the shores of our home. And today's wave is very small in comparison to the squall which seemed to cover the home and our hearts yesterday. Thank you Lord for the currently small wave of the day. I really appreciate a reprieve from the intensity of the raging sea.
Friday, March 30, 2012
Thursday, March 29, 2012
It had been a few days since I felt the pit in the gut...the absence of her...but today it resurfaced. And of course it happened while I was at my favorite store with the big red bulls eye. I would have to say that right now I may have a love hate relationship with that store, as it sometimes is a place of zoning out and peace for me and other times a place full of triggers and reminders of my daughter. Those triggers can come for me anywhere and at anytime without warning, but today they were like darts...one after the other...digging into my abdomen...only unlike a dart board, I couldn't remove them like I wanted to.
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
My sweet friend Emily (aka "Sunshine") who I worked with at the Y_M_C_A when we were day camp counselors wrote this amazing poem for me a few weeks ago. I asked her if I could please post it on my blog and she said that would be okay. Thank you so much, dear Emily. Your words are beautiful and touching...and when I read this I weep in gratitude for the way God has allowed you to think of my Solveig. Thank you.
An Angel of Peace
He born her onto Heaven
filled with your love.
Perfect and Precious
He born onto to us an Angel.
She burst from your womb
through Heaven’s open doors
your glorious Gospel.
She knew no suffering,
Only the warmth of your internal home
and the completeness of your love.
What a gift for a soul
to live in your light,
to be filled by your love
To move from your sweet being
to home with our Heavenly Father
We will never know why your years on Earth with her
Must now be said goodbye to
Like water poured on a fire
the promise of this dream has gone out.
And yet, through this unspeakably grief
Which no words can capture
There is beauty
and hope in your future
For she lived within you
Danced in your body
Filled you with love
Just as you filled her
And although you do not have a lifetime
to know her, to see her each day before you
You know her in the deepest sense of knowing
Where there is no darkness or sorrow
No worry or pain
Only the feeling of her little body
Moving in yours
two souls joined
Forever in love
She is with you now.
Shining down on you from Heaven
Taking the love you gave her
And sharing it with our world
And she shares it with you.
In the flicker of a sunset
In Northern lights dancing
the warm smile of her daddy
the laughter of her siblings
she comes to you always
with comfort and love
to continually show you
the beauty you gave
in your gift to the Lord
His perfect Angel of Peace.
Monday, March 26, 2012
Walking through grief is a challenge, and to find people who are willing to walk that road with those who are grieving can also be a challenge. We've been tremendously blessed with family and friends who are journeying with us and upholding us in prayer, love and friendship as well as actual physical helps...like my mom, who has been doing some of our laundry - what a gift...and both of our sets of parents who have been helping with our children some of the time - amazing...and all the people who have brought food or who are still committed to bring food in the weeks to come - we are thriving and surviving because of all of you who are doing these things to help us. Thank you doesn't seem like enough to say. But thank you I will say again and again...
Sunday, March 25, 2012
A walk in the spring air was in order this evening. Bailey and I headed out into the coolish outdoors for our adventure. It has only been 3.5 weeks since I delivered Solveig, so I haven't been walking very long distances...until today. Walking around the loop at the park just didn't feel like enough today, so I decided to take our slightly longer loop and ended up walking for 30 minutes. This was quite a bit for today but it felt so good.
Saturday, March 24, 2012
A window of opportunity arose this afternoon for me to have some time alone, and gladly I took it. Thanks Erik for taking the kids to "training camp" with the grandparents.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
Monday February 27th, 2012 - This was the day that we were to pull everything together at home. I didn't yet know exactly what was to happen, as we were hoping that maybe my body would just go into labor on its own. But since Solveig had passed already a few days prior, it wouldn't be healthy to let her lie inside of me too much longer. My sweet Dr. L called me around lunchtime to discuss a plan. She recommended that we come in the next day to try for a version, the procedure to turn the baby since she was lying transverse, and then induce labor after that. She said it could take a couple of days for the delivery to be complete after the induction began.
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Three weeks ago today, our tiny little Solveig was born. The time has gone by so quickly and there are so many moments when it really feels like she just came yesterday. Last night as I was laying in bed, I couldn't help but remember where I had been three weeks prior...laying in a hospital bed, waiting for our little girl to make her arrival. As I talked with Erik about it, I told him that it was so different than the arrivals of our other babies...for this time we weren't awaiting a live baby, but rather a dead one. We were waiting to hold in our arms the little love whose spirit had already slipped quickly into Heaven a few days prior. That feeling of knowing that her spirit was already gone was so prominent for me - I truly could feel the absence of her life, besides the fact that she wasn't moving. Her shell was with me still and I longed to hold her. That night of waiting was one of the longest in my life. It felt like forever as we waited for my body to fully go into labor, but in reality it really wasn't that long. Here's the timeline leading up to the arrival of Solveig as best I can recount:
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Monday, March 19, 2012
When Solveig was born, the hospital did a great job of helping us to capture her hand and footprints - things which I so treasure now. They captured them not only on paper but also in a plaster mold for us to hang on the wall. Today when I opened my mailbox I was surprised with a most incredible gift. There is a jeweler who has partnered with hospitals to provide necklaces for mamas like me who have lost babies...and my necklace came today. A beautiful, round silver pendant hangs from a silver chain. And on that pendant is my darling daughter's footprint shrunk to miniature size. On the back is her name and her date of birth. I was sort of in a fog at the hospital when we were told about this opportunity to get a free necklace, but I knew it was something I wanted and of course I signed up for it and filled out the paper. I completely forgot about it and it really stunned me today to open the tiny package holding this little memento. Now that necklace is gracing my neck and I probably won't want to take it off for a very long time...and that is just fine with me. I know it isn't my daughter, but it sure is nice to have something special by which to remember her. That and the charm bracelet from her daddy mean so much to me. A big, HUGE thank you goes out to THIS jeweler for creating this amazing piece of love for me, in honor of my Solveig. THANK YOU does not really seem like enough to say. I'll forever be grateful for this treasure. And if you or someone you know has gone through something like our loss or if you are wanting to honor a special girl or woman in your life with one of these pieces of jewelry, I highly encourage you to do so. It will mean so much.
Sunday, March 18, 2012
Big Sister Bug today voiced these words while we were out at my favorite store with the giant red bullseye logo..."It's sort of disappointing that Solveig died. But it's not too disappointing because we'll get to see her in Heaven again, so that's good." Erik said, "That's a great attitude to have."
Moment to moment...that is how some days are. Valley and desert and mountaintop...these are all the places I've been lately emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually. One song which for us has been such a clear picture of where we are at and that we had at Solveig's funeral is called appropriately, "Des_ert So_ng." It is from Hi_lls_ong Ch_urch in Aus_tra_lia and we love it.
Friday, March 16, 2012
There is something incredible about spring time. Once the snow and ice thaw, the grass turns green again and the buds on the trees appear...the flowers peek their heads out of the ground...and the birds come a looking for worms to eat. One art song titled "Spring" is a setting of a poem by Em_ily Dic_kin_son, and I have sung it. The text and the music are sprightly and make a person happy just hearing it, and singing it. "Spring, the sweet spring. The pretty birds do sing...."
Thursday, March 15, 2012
We had our kids make special cards for Solveig using scrapbook paper that I had and stickers that were given to us by the Miss_ing Gra_ce Foun_dation. Those cards were on display next to her casket at the funeral, and upon burial we placed the cards inside to be buried with Solveig. I knew that I needed to write her a letter as well, and I encouraged Erik to do the same - and he did, bless his wonderful heart. We placed our letters in the casket right before it was sealed the day of her burial. I made sure to make copies of the letters for us to keep here. Below is my letter:
Tuesday, March 13, 2012
In a previous entry, I wrote about how we went shopping for a special outfit for Solveig to wear when we were spending time with her and also for her burial. When I thought about what color it needed to be, I just knew that it had to be white. White is such a symbol of purity and cleanliness...and to us, our little daughter was the complete embodiment of those symbols. This was especially true since we knew that her spirit had left her body prior to her physical entrance into this world, and that spirit was caught up in Heaven where all things are made new and clean and whole and pure. After we bought the outfit and she was resting peacefully in it while we held her and when we placed her in the ground, I realized that I had forgotten to purchase a duplicate outfit and for me that was a very important detail. A few days after the burial, I decided to go ahead and order that duplicate...and yesterday it arrived in the mail. Wrapped inside this tiny package was the preemie sized white cotton pointelle knit baby gown that we had bought for our little Solveig. Seeing it again almost took my breath away, but it was really sweet to once again hold that outfit in my hands and to feel its softness next to my skin. I know it's not the same thing as it was when my little girl was wrapped in something similar, but if it helps me remember her and think fondly of her then I think that's great. Tears welled up in my eyes as I showed Erik...and he also had tears.
Monday, March 12, 2012
Many sweet thoughts have been coming out of our children's mouths these last few weeks. Today at lunch, Bug started talking about Solveig and said, "Sometimes when I think about Solveig, I like to call her 'Sissy.' (I know that she means sister, of course.) That's just like when Buzz was a baby and he would call me [insert nickname]." I asked her, "Do you miss Solveig?" Her reply was, "Yes, I do. Sometimes at night when I'm trying to go to sleep, I think about her and about all the fun times that we would've had together." Tears from the mama...unstoppable...leaving me speechless....Then I say to her, "well one day when we're in Heaven together, we'll have a great time together with Solveig." Bug says, "Yes, that will be great. We won't have to live in separate houses anymore."
Sunday, March 11, 2012
This weekend, I was blessed to get away with four of my girlfriends for one night and two good days. I thought it might be too early for me to get away, and I wasn't sure what it would be like to face people and to talk about things...but you know what? It was GREAT. To be surrounded by dear friends who love me no matter what was just what my soul needed. Thanks to my Erik for encouraging me to go away. And thank you dear friends - you know who you are and you are a blessing.
Friday, March 9, 2012
Because we already have one daughter, I didn't need to do much in the way of shopping to prepare for little Solveig. I figured I'd have most of the things I needed to get her started at least, and I would just fill in the "holes" where needed. But every now and then when I was out shopping, something would catch my eye and I would buy it for my baby girl. Just a few special items made their way home with me, and also some essentials such as diapers and a new diaper bag.
Perhaps it is because I'm a worrier by nature, or maybe because I knew so many who had lost babies of their own, but even in my first and second pregnancies I never felt as though things would just be fine and I wouldn't need to be concerned about losing my babies. There was always a part of me which remained reserved and didn't want to expect that my children would be born healthy and would live beyond their birth. Maybe God was just preparing me and giving me some insight that I wasn't yet to fully understand. Well, those two precious children of mine were born, but their lives did not begin without difficulty. With my Bug, I had Pree_clampsia and our lives hung in the balances during the last week and during the delivery. God protected us and that Bug is doing so well. With my Buzz, the pregnancy was fine but following delivery I had a superficial blood clot on my leg and then Buzz was admitted to the hospital just 3 days later for an unknown virus and also dehydration. He nearly died. It was a scary time to say the least. But again, God protected that dear boy of mine and revived him. He is strong and feisty and we are so glad.
Thursday, March 8, 2012
February 27th...this was the day after we found out that Solveig was no longer alive inside of me. We learned mid day from Dr. L that we would need to go to the hospital the next day to begin the induction process and prepare for arrival of our daughter. There were so many details to be taken care of and it was overwhelming. Not only did we need to make sure that the kids would have child care, but the dog needed to have her own arrangements and we needed to pack and prepare mentally for what was to come. That evening, Erik's parents were able to come and stay with the kids so that we could go out and do some last minute shopping. We wanted to buy something special for the baby to wear - we wanted her to be pretty for her pictures. At first I had it in my head that I needed to get a fancy dress of some sort, but it is very difficult to find something fancy for a tiny preemie. After making lots of phone calls to local stores, I decided that we just needed to go out and do some looking. We came upon this beautiful and simple white gown and upon seeing it we both knew that it was the one for our little girl. We found this soft and cuddly blanket and decided we would wrap her up in it. I decided that it would be best if we all wore white for our photos so that we could be coordinated. For Bug, we found an adorable white dress and Buzz had a white shirt at home. I found a white top and Daddy had a white shirt as well.