My Momiversary

Yesterday was my angel Colby’s 10th birthday, no cake though. No birthday cake. Although he’s not here to blow out the candles, I thought about getting a small cake to celebrate his birthday. Not exactly my idea of a birthday party, but I love cake and my baby so whatever. There was no birthday cake though.

Honestly, yesterday was somewhat of a disaster for me. I may have subconsciously planned a day of busyness to avoid dealing with the memory in my reality, but nothing went right. So the memory became my reality.

I decided to take my 3 year old on a play date. A day of fun. But, it was storming in Atlanta yesterday afternoon and the rain greeted us at every turn. It was a disaster! As I avoided having a mommy meltdown, my son giggled. We ran in the rain and he giggled. He was loving this play date. While buckling him into his car seat he yelled, “Mommy hurry! Get out the rain!!” So I ran and jumped in the driver’s seat… he responded with a heart full of excitement, “YAY! Mommy you did it!!”

I did it!

In that moment, I exhaled – Yes, I DID IT.

But what exactly did I do to warrant this celebration?

I’ve often thought of motherhood as my adversary. It was once my pain point. A place of conflict. It’s held horrible memories with severe scarring. On top of the obvious pain, my journey of healing after infant loss includes a myriad of health issues. Issues introduced at the onset of my becoming a mother.

My body has been in crisis mode since the emergency birth of my first son. An ongoing crisis. I lost all of my hair and I have excessive scarring of my uterus that leaves me in great pain on many days. My heart, my blood… they sometimes turn on me. My body is in a constant fight, against itself. A crisis. I often look in the mirror and wonder how I do it. But I smile back at the mirror, and somehow I do it.

I attribute my faith and my family as the core of my strength. I do it.

So yeah, there was no cake on yesterday. No birthday cake. It's my MOMiversary!

I sat on the sofa at the end of my day gone wrong. My 3 year old rainbow cuddled up next to me and I fell asleep. I had one of my best days of sleep. Suddenly my day was all right!

Yes, I did it!

I did it because I’m a mother. I do it because I’m a mother. Mommy magic is a real thing and I have it. God has given me an undeniable strength. I did it! 10 years ago I became a mother. It is my reason to celebrate.

No birthday cake. Happy MOMiversary to ME!

 


Number Nine

It’s June 10th and I’m in party planning mode, preparing for my son Keegan’s 3rd birthday. I enjoy this time of year. It’s early summer, school is out, the weather is nice, and people are generally happy about it all. This wasn’t always the case for me though. Had you asked me 4 years ago, I would have said that I dreaded summer. Hated it!

My angel Colby was born July 5, 2006. My father passed August 19, 2006 (his birthday was June 19th). June, July, and August no longer held fond memories for me. All of the loss that I experienced in the summer of 2006 made me not look forward to the season. I always became sad reflecting on the death of my son and father. Not a happy time of year for me. Just miserable!

So anyway, as a part of my birthday prep I like to start teaching my son the number of his age. Prior to Keegan’s 2nd birthday I would ask him his age. He was just a baby, barely talking, so I didn’t expect him to really know. When I asked, he would smile and remain silent. I would say TWO then he would laugh and run off. This went on for about a week or so. Then one evening I asked and to my surprise he yelled “NINE.” He said it with such conviction, he was sure. He gave the same answer every time. He was nine. My husband and I looked at each other and with an awkward silence acknowledged, Colby would be 9.

I often speak of how God planted Keegan in our lives at the perfect time. In the bible, 2 represent a union. And 9 symbolize divine completeness. For me, for my husband, for my SON, God was faithful to his promise. It all worked together. We are complete! I've always known that my son was a gift, they both are. My gift is perfect. And it's the perfect time of year. Summer is my season of birth. Thank you, number NINE!  

 


Where's My Rainbow

It’s hard to believe that I ever lived in hopelessness. I have such a free spirit that’s often bright and energetic. My natural energy is pure joy. I can’t imagine being any other way. But I once wallowed in darkness. A life filled with hopelessness. In the pit of my grief I often wondered if I would ever receive my rainbow.

In the pregnancy and infant loss community, we refer to “rainbow baby” as a baby born after experiencing a miscarriage, stillbirth, neonatal death or infant loss. Rainbows bring hope. This beautiful, bright, ribbon in the sky signifies life after a storm. My storm was over. So, when exactly would my rainbow appear?! 

My husband and I went 6 years wondering if we would ever conceive again. I didn’t have any confirmed fertility issues, so what’s the hold up?! We were stable and secure, why the wait?! I tried various conception tactics and still nothing, what’s the problem?! So I gave up hope and accepted that I may never give birth again. My rainbow was clouded by hopelessness during the storm.

Part of my healing from loss, is accepting that my life did not go as I had planned. In that acceptance I learned to let go. In letting go, I made room for healing. And in my healing, I found hope. Not hope that I would conceive again. But hope that I would thrive again. I wanted to live.

Last week I spoke in front of a group of women and told of my story from hopelessness to healing. Healing is a journey. It's a conscious decision to live. Every day I decide to live. I want to thrive... and live. Besides, I received my rainbow. I must live!