Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Three months

It's July 21st. It's been exactly three months since Aidan was born and died. Exactly 13 weeks. Exactly one quarter of a year.

I should be 36 weeks and 3 days pregnant right now. But I'm not.

Actually, in all reality there is a good possibility that I might have had Aidan already even if my pregnancy had proceeded perfectly. With my heart condition, my OB told me that I could expect to deliver between 35 to 37 weeks just due to my body's response to the pregnancy. My uterus and heart would have hashed it out and eventually would have made the joint decision: "Okay! Let's get this sucker out of here ASAP!". I was actually hoping for a birth date of July 17th which would be not only my favourite month of the year, but my favourite number AND it was my grandfather's birthday and he died 6 years ago. I thought that would have been neat. Aidan was due August 15th which was my grandmother's birthday (she died 3 years ago). It would have been a cute tie to both sides of the family...

But, c'est la vie. Can't cry over spilt milk. Put the past behind you. And so on and so forth...

I've also come to another realization, probably it has to do with starting my new job in just under three weeks...but I'm having a really hard time contemplating the future. I use to be such a planner and a dreamer about 'things to come'. See above where I'm 'planning' out the best date for my slightly premature baby to be born (sheesh! I know, I'm crazy). But honestly, I used to LOVE to plan. My husband and I got engaged almost two years before we got married...and I had been planning the wedding for over a year BEFORE that. I planned our Europe trip for MONTHS ahead of time. I was the type to pour over course books in University as soon as the following year's schedule was released. I loved looking forward to the future. At 12 years old I loved baby books and read them endlessly...I loved trying to come up with the 'perfect' name for my future child.

Now, I hate thinking about the future. I can do okay thinking about today. I can do okay thinking about tomorrow...but anything beyond that makes me a little sad and kind of panic-y. I think my major flip out at the cottage had something to do with this fear of the future. I just couldn't imagine thinking about 'in the future' deciding when to plan another pregnancy.

I've come to realize it's because "today", I can deal with Aidan not being here. He's not here, which is incredibly sad and disappointing, but it's 'bearable'. However, it kills me to imagine my future without him. To imagine next week, next month, next birthday, next Christmas, next baby, next job, next ANYTHING without him. I know in my head of course that he won't be here for any of those things...but imagining how they are going to work out with out him is hard. How I'm going to cope?

It also scares me to imagine the future because 'this' is not the future I planned for. My first baby dying was not part of the why bother planning anything? If I get too attached to anything that I plan, especially 'the next baby' (pleaseohpleaseohplease), and it doesn't happen, then how will I continue to function? I've been finding it hard these days to deal with even the minor-est of disappointments or things 'not going' the way I planned. Like when I planned to go and see a movie with a friend a few weeks ago, and I ended up having to go with my husband the following night because plans fell through I WAS IN TEARS! It wasn't a huge deal...and there were extenuating things happening around that time that also made me sad...but I felt awful. It would have been something that would have been sad in 'my previous' life, but not enough to garner an all out cry-fest. And you'd think having the most horrible and disappointing thing EVER (my baby dying) happen only a few months earlier would some how protect me from any further disappointment, you know like "well, missing a movie one night...gee doesn't even register". But nope, I'm even easier to disappoint than before.

So best not to plan anything.

Oh, and I've had a few requests to write about what my new job is. So here it is:

My new job is at the hospital where I'm currently employed. It's a children's hospital so it consists of (duh) all children up to the age of 18. I will be working on a unit that deals generally with day procedures. Children will come in for things like certain tests or minor surgery and we will prepare them and recover them afterwards. Children may come up from the ER for monitoring before being sent home. Kids may need certain injections or other minor procedures that are too complex for a doctor's office, but the kid doesn't need to be in over night. My hours (after orientation it seems) will be from 2pm until 10pm. It will be 4 days a week, Monday to Thursday. Children's ages will range from infant to age 18. Most of them will be in the 'well' category and will be sent home the same day. If they need overnight observation then they will have to be admitted to the 'real' part of the hospital because our unit closes at 10pm.

Things I think I will like about this job are: the hours (I HATE early mornings), the fact that patients are generally well (not likely to have to deal with much death or life threatening things on a daily basis), the autonomy (myself and another nurse will be the only two working after 8pm until 10 when we close up shop. we will be large and in charge!!), the fact that it's still in the same hospital I have become quite fond of over my life (it's where I've had my own heart surgeries and where I've been working since I finished nursing school) etc etc.

Not so great things: That my husband will likely be in bed when I get home Monday to Thursday nights, so I might not see him a whole bunch. This is somewhat counteracted by the fact that in my old job I worked part of or all of 1 or 2 out of every third weekend. There was whole weekends where I would barely see him and would miss out on the 'weekend' fun that inevitably the rest of the world enjoys. Also, we will likely have to get a second car as my husband isn't fond of me coming home on the subway by myself at 10pm at night. And the orientation hours seem to kind of suck so far as well.

So yeah. That is where I am at these days.

Question du jour: Do you find there are parts of your personality that have gone by the wayside since your baby died? What do you think of when you contemplate the future...or do you just avoid thinking about it like I do?


  1. I didn't realize we had the same due date (8/15). Thinking of you on Aidan's three month "birthday."


  2. I'm with you. No thinking about the future because it sends me into a panic. One day at a time is the way for me right now.

    Love to you and Aidan on his three month birthday.

  3. Thinking of you and Aidan.

    Your post coincided with some thoughts I have been having recently. I've realized that I don't think about the future much. I am also a planner, I have been picking out baby names since I was a kid, I always planned for things in the future. Now I just don't do that. I can't think ahead more than a day or two, unless it is a doctor's appointment that somehow involves Jacob, but I don't have any of those lined up right now. We are moving at the end of August and I can't even plan ahead for that.

    I am dreading Jacob's due date, Thanksgiving, Christmas etc. We were supposed to have a baby for the holidays this year. There is even an event at work on Sept 20th that was supposed to be the last big event I work on before my maternity leave. How can I not be hugely pregnant at that event now? I know it is coming up, and I have to plan some things for it, but it is hard to imagine myself there, so I don't.

    I have also had smaller things disappoint me and I wonder how I can let them disappoint me. I have had the ultimate disappointment of my baby dying. How can I be upset if someone doesn't call me when she says she will? When we found out that Jacob had died, I thought to myself that never will anything disappoint me again because nothing could touch the pain I was feeling/feel. But, here I am, being disappointed by small things again. I almost feel guilty about it. Although I have become stronger through all this, I also feel more fragile.

  4. I HAVE to keep planning for the future because the present and the past make me want to cry. I feel like if I want to remain sane, I MUST plan and hope for a better tomorrow.

    I think personality-wise, I am a LOT more relaxed as far as "drama" goes. I think I used to have a pretty fiesty personality; it was easy to get me riled up. That hasn't died, but I am definitely not as easily ruffled now. I think a whole lot more before I react to situations. I'm a lot calmer.

  5. Thinking of you and Aidan. I still tend to look at the future in only small increments most of the time. I plan a little more now but somehow I feel like when I plan too much I'm tempting fate.

    I hope the new job turns out to be good and interesting and that your coworkers are kind.

  6. the idea of planning for the future doesn't bother me but i have no interest in it anymore.

    my personality.... deep down i'm the same person, but there is a huge fluffy layer on top of me, holding me down.

    i don't like it. i want the grief to be done by now. it's been eight months on sunday. shouldn't this be over? can't i pack it away in a nice neat box now?

    apparently not.

    i understand that intellectually, but not in other ways.

  7. I can't picture the future. I feel like I'm stuck in the mire, and I can't deal with anything else except what's keeping me stuck.

    I fear I will always be stuck.

    I've changed a lot, personality-wise. I used to be pretty positive and confident. Not any more.

    On a happier note - the new job sounds like it will be a pretty good thing. Apart from not seeing your DH as much, of course.

  8. Sending hugs your way. Congrats on getting this new position.

  9. the past, present and future all seem to hurt equally these days. often i find myself wishing i could go back instead of forward. a lot of times wishing i could skip the entire thirty-seven weeks of pregnancy all together. skip back to the days of being silly and young and fun. not this new person i am today.

    deep down i know the future can be great. that there are so many more wonderful things life can offer me and all of us – but as you said – avoiding it is so much easier. soooo much easier.