Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas, 19 weeks, 27

Christmas is always tough for most parents who have lost children. This year was a little bit easier and more bearable than last year in some ways, and harder in other ways. Last Christmas, I was *supposed* to still be pregnant...this was supposed to be Olivia's first Christmas and she would have been almost one, it was hard to think about all of the stuff we were missing out on with her.

We went to Olivia's grave and left a little stuffed Winnie the Pooh. I wrote her name on the tag, in case it gets blown away and someone wants to go to the trouble of returning it, and realized how few things there are to write her name on. We were pleasantly surprised to find that the teddy bear and pink birthday duck that we had left there on her birthday in September were still there even now, because she's buried in a national cemetery, the only thing you are really technically supposed to leave is flowers, and there are even rules about the kinds of flowers (can't be fake after April or something like that.) So, we never really expect the things we leave there to last long, but it's always nice when they still are there.

We survived the rest of it okay. It's still a struggle. There are things I wish we had done differently this year and I think next year we will hopefully be better at finding a better balance of what's right for us. Our first Christmas without Olivia, we did mostly nothing, just wanting to pretend Christmas didn't exist and for it to be over with (we did go to her grave, I think we always will.) This was our second year, and we did the normal things that we did before Olivia and added visiting her grave around the usual schedule. Next year, I'm not sure about yet, but we'll figure out what works for our family, I hope, finding the right balance of missing and remembering Olivia and celebrating with her little brother. There aren't really rules for this, but what I do know is that the usual routines don't really work for us very well anymore, even now, that became very apparent this year.Next year I won't try to force it so much.

Today I turned 27 and also 19 weeks pregnant. I got lots of sweet birthday wishes that I really appreciated and had a nice time with my family.  I'm not really in a great mood for celebrating or doing much, the holidays just make it kind of draining. Raja the elephant turned 18 today, which makes me feel really freaking old, because I remember when he was born (it was sort of a big deal because he was the first Asian elephant ever born at the St.Louis zoo and elephant pregnancies take like 2+ years.) It's been funny how many people have mentioned Raja's birthday (he had a birthday party that they featured on the news, apparently, Joe said he wished he had taken off work so we could have went...I'm okay with not going to the zoo today, it's pretty cold out.)

I've been pretty calm this week, relatively speaking, about this pregnancy. I guess my focus has been more on missing Olivia than making up things to worry about. My blood pressure has creeped up a little bit, but not alarmingly high or numbers I've never gotten before, they are still well within my normal range, just a little bit higher than usual. I think I'm chalking it up to the holidays, my blood pressure was up a bit around Thanksgiving too. I've had a tiny bit of really mild heartburn too, not even bad enough that I need to take anything for it to be comfortable, and I know it's normal to have heartburn during pregnancy. Still, it concerns me a little, because with Olivia I was having really bad heartburn one week and in the hospital with my liver on the verge of rupturing the very next week. I'd feel a lot better if the heartburn would just go away for 10 more weeks or so. Lucas is moving a lot some days, and others not so much though I'll still feel him at least a few times every day. I think I've felt a few kicks a couple of times, but nothing blatantly obvious yet and nothing that Joe can feel just yet. Hopefully that comes soon. This week will hopefully be rather uneventful, no appointments or anything until next Friday when we have our next growth ultrasound.


MrsH said...

Happy Birthday! Even a bit of heartburn is a scary symptom, isn't will be over at some time in the future, and then we'll be able to breathe. For me the lack of nausea today makes me feel so worried, totally unlike my previous days of laying in bed sick. Every day my attention is so tuned on my body, and I see yours is as well. We need to relax a little

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