Despite all the happiness now in my life, sometimes the loss of our little girl is still too much for me to bear. It comes out of nowhere, when I least expect it. Being able to hold Ian while my heart breaks eases the pain, but only so much.
I was holding Ian while I was knitting last night and I was thinking about a baby sweater that I knitted a few weeks ago that I ended up not really liking. I was thinking about throwing it into our Goodwill bag, and then for a second, I thought about putting it on my childhood doll, Andy. Andy is sitting in Ian’s closet. When we found out Jillian was a girl, I bought a new outfit for the doll, and a couple of weeks later washed her hair and curled it, attempting to make her as pretty as she was when I received her as a birthday gift over 20 years earlier. I wanted her to be beautiful for when I passed her down to Jilly.
I thought of that last night, and I remembered the anticipation of our daughter’s arrival. I forget sometimes that we’re not still waiting for her to arrive. She’s already been here and is gone, and there’s a tiny part of my brain that can’t process that she isn’t coming back. I don’t wan to believe it, and part of me can’t. I sat here knitting, staring at her urn and picture, with tears running down my face, while Ian was passed out in my arms, laughing and smiling at something in his dreams. It reaffirms that no matter how blessed we are, no matter how happy I am, there’s always going to be a hole in my heart. It sucks. It hurts. As much as I cherish my little boy and wouldn’t trade him for anything, I still want my little girl.
Mother’s Day was very different for me this year. Last year, I woke up with a pit in my stomach, feeling about as lonely as I’d ever been. Today, I woke up to a hungry little peanut who greeted me with a huge smile. I did feel some twinges of sadness throughout the day. I still think of Jillian every day, and it’s hard not to think of who isn’t here on days like this. On top of that, I had to deal with questions and comments about this being my first Mother’s Day all week. It was mostly strangers asking if it was my first, and I didn’t lie. It made things a little awkward for some people, but whatever. Somebody in this house accidentally bought me a card that said “Happy First Mother’s Day” on the front. I’d be giving him a serious guilt trip if I knew he didn’t feel bad enough already. He made sure I had a very nice day, though.
Our March for Babies was yesterday, speaking of days being different. First of all, it wasn’t a constant downpour of rain like last year, which was nice. It did end up pouring, but most of the day was nice. I finally met an internet friend who was so supportive when Jillian was born (hi Sam!). We missed each other at least year’s walk, and somehow she managed to find me this year despite the giant crowd.
One of the other highlights of our day was seeing one of Ian’s primary nurses. She about ripped him out of my arms, which was lovely. He gave her some smiles and told her some stories. My heart melted when she gave him a kiss. We also saw one of the doctors we met while we were there, who happens to be married to the leader of the support group we went to after Jillian died. It’s such a small world.
So it’s been a good weekend. Ian’s going to be four months old on Saturday, which completely blows my mind. We’ve been getting out more and more now that the weather is getting nicer, and he’s more fun to play with every day. In other words, life is still fabulous.