Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Guess who answered his phone tonight? Why do I do this to myself???!???!!!!?

But I got to say some things I've been wanting to say. About how he chose not to grieve after we lost the baby. He immersed himself in his work, and I told him I understand that, but that that was a choice. It had nothing to do with taking care of me, as he claims. He was--is--angry about the way I left. My parents had offered to help me leave, but I told them I was taking care of it. I told NAWP I was going away for a few days on a Friday. On Saturday I told him I was leaving for good. My parents had come to help me drive back to their place. He doesn't know what changed between Friday and Saturday. He never asked for an explanation. He just wanted to be the one emotion he can feel--anger. I do see why he might be angry about the way things happened. I apologized as it all unfolded the way it did. Tonight I got to tell him that too. And I got to tell him how confusing it has been for me that he said he was worried about me, but he never reached out to see how I've been doing. That's when he said he was still angry.

I find it preposterous that he is angry about the day I left. What about everything else? What about everything I have to be angry about? But I'm not. Mostly. Instead I feel hurt. I feel the sting of rejection. The way that he said maybe we shouldn't break up, and then just let me go without any sort of fight. I don't know what I want him to do or what I want him to say. I woke up sad today, and I was just thinking of him, and I just wanted to call him. I've been feeling a bit better the past few days, visiting wonderful, supportive friends in Colorado and Prozacked sufficiently. But today was one of those backward-stepping days. I went to visit my second cousin's six week old twins. It was good, really, but tiring. And of course, it was a reminder of all I'll be missing come November. God, this hurts.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Kindness of Strangers

The last morning in East Hampton I woke before sunrise to take pictures of Blue's name in the sand. My friend who hosted, OG (a nickname I secretly used for him when we were dating for about a month last fall), had originally offered to go with me, but when he heard what time I was leaving the house, he blanched. He offered his car instead. It was okay; I actually wanted to go alone.

The weekend was so intense emotionally, almost too intense. The films we saw during the festival were depressing at best, disturbing at worst. I walked out of our Saturday night film after the two ladies on the end next to me did the same. I went across the street for some tea, then spent the next 30 minutes sitting outside on a bench, sobbing into the phone with my mom on the other end trying but failing to console me. OG's girlfriend came to collect me. The tears were still streaming down my face uncontrollably as I met up with the others. She had filled them in, for which I was grateful. My eyes dried as we drove to dinner, and OG's girlfriend stayed by my side as we all had a much-needed drink at the bar. It turns out she lost a pregnancy a few years ago. She and her husband, who had a vasectomy reversal, lost their IVF twins when their doctor detected that the embryos were not growing into fetuses. By the end of their IVF experience, they were exhausted, and had realized they did not want the same future together. She, too, was on her own after baby loss. And she was so generous with her support, with sharing her story and with listening to mine. When OG said I was "freaking out" about not wanting to see the movie with the pregnant protagonist, she told him I was not "freaking out," but that I was in pain. She was such a good friend, and I had just met her!

After I'd taken all my pictures, I sat in the sand staring at the ocean. A woman and her companion walked by, not too far away, and I'd wished they weren't there. I didn't turn my head or say 'good morning.' When they walked back, she stopped to ask me if I was okay. She said she was a psychologist in town...did I need help? I looked up at her to say I was fine, unable to keep the tears from my eyes. She told me that whatever it was, it wouldn't stay the same. It couldn't stay the same. Nothing ever does.

I watched one tear roll down each of her cheeks. I wondered how desperate I must have looked. To myself, and for the sake of my own sanity, I suppose I pretended things weren't that bad. But I wasn't fooling this woman. I told her a little bit of what I was going through. I patted the sand next to me and she sat. I told her I noticed her crying, asked if I reminded her of someone. She told me about her sister who had been disabled at her very premature birth. She did not hesitate to give this explanation, but the thing was, she cried before I told her my story. She cried at the sight of me.

She wanted to make sure I wasn't thinking of going for a swim. I hadn't been, but the suggestion didn't seem half bad. As we stood she told me it would be okay. That I was a good person. "How do you know?" I asked as she embraced me. "Oh, I can tell." She offered her full name and her email address, and told me to call her anytime. She gave me another hug. I stood on the sand for a time after she left, contemplating what she'd said, contemplating what made her reach out to me. When I finally turned away from the ocean, a part of me was content to believe her.

Friday, October 21, 2011

A Whole Blue Sky

Today I cried for Blue. And only Blue.

This business about getting the ashes back from NAWP, I let it go. I realized that I just want to hurt him, I just want to take something away from him. And that has nothing to do with Blue.

And I know now that it was only our grief that kept us together. I do not want NAWP at all.

I am visiting my dear friend MP in Telluride, CO. In college I would say MP knew me better than I knew myself. As we made the three-hour drive from Grand Junction, I learned an important lesson. MP told me that only Blue could see the future. Not me, not NAWP. Blue decided to be here for as long as he wanted. And Blue chose me. Those "extra" 12 weeks, he chose to be with me. The tears were streaming down my face, as I realized that I could love Blue for what he was. Not for what I wished him to be.

MP told me not to lose that message. Love yourself, she said. Love yourself as you are. Love everyone as he is, not what you want him to be. See him as he is. Do not see what you want to see.

The sky here is an everlasting blue. I took a picture of pure, pure blue. I looked up and told my baby this whole sky was his. The whole sky was him. And I cried the purest tears for Blue.


Big blue sky, little blue star.
Night or day, I am where you are.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Half My Baby

NAWP has half my baby. In a jar.

When we talked about breaking up, NAWP asked me what we should do with Blue's ashes. And I said I wanted him with me. When I left, NAWP said we would have to split the ashes. I thought it would be cruel to deny him that tangible piece of our son. I watched as he poured them out into an empty jar that used to hold jam. I thought he was taking more than half. But I didn't say anything.

I have been trying to reach NAWP for over a week. We have some loose ends to sort out. I want to actually talk, too, about us, about what happened, about what is going through his head. When I left he said he thought we should talk, that we should keep in touch. When I called him the day after I left, he told me he was worried about me. And yet he has not reached out to me once. I find it cruel that he has not returned my calls. I am not talking about a boiling bunnies type of phone stalking, I am talking about two brief messages, a few more tries to get him on the phone, one text. He is cruel for ignoring me, for acting like I don't exist. And I want Blue's ashes back. I want NAWP to know that he doesn't deserve them. That he doesn't deserve to be the father of my son. Yet I know that I am the one who is suffering, not NAWP, in his stupid little game of cat and mouse. But if I just go away, it's like he's beaten me into submission. I can't hurt him, I must know that by now, but can't I still try?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Pregnant In My Face

A friend of mine is having people out to the Hamptons this weekend for the film festival. I lived in East Hampton last summer and I absolutely love it out there, so I am/was really looking forward to it. Until my friend sent out an email about the film we are seeing on Friday night. It is something about a pregnant woman who questions her readiness to be a parent, with some other stuff mixed in, blah, blah. So it's not really a big deal, I don't have to go to that movie. But when I replied to my friend that I would skip the movie, he wrote back, "Why?" I don't know if he is having amnesia or if he thinks this shouldn't bother me.

Today I went to get my hair cut, thought maybe I would add some color, do something to spice it up. The last time I was there I was 20 weeks pregnant, and was chatting with the stylist about it of course. She predicted I was having a boy. She didn't do my hair today but she was working two chairs away, with about a seven-months pregnant belly. I should be eight months pregnant now. She must have known she was pregnant then but hadn't told anyone at work yet, or was just being nice by not talking about her own pregnancy. I was just so envious! I tried to remember if she is married, even though she is young, early 20s. I don't feel so jealous of married pregnant women; married women are supposed to have babies. I think she is. I may as well keep thinking she is.


I am realizing how much it hurts that NAWP didn't want the baby in the beginning. That he didn't want to be with me. How many 40-year-olds who say they want kids freak out when their girlfriends get pregnant? I know, it's not me it's him. I know, he is not the person I want to share my life with, or share a child with. I can think that. But I can't feel that, because if I feel it, then it's like Blue died for a reason. Anytime someone suggests that I wouldn't want to have kids with that asshole, I want to remind them that if my baby weren't sick, I would be having kids with that asshole.Women whose boyfriends aren't dipshits like mine make me more jealous. Stupid Seth Rogin and Katherine Heigel in Knocked Up make me jealous. I guess because if NAWP weren't a dipshit, we could still be together, supporting each other, and trying to get pregnant again. I know that his dipshittedness had nothing to do with Blue having CF. But it did have something to do with my decision to let Blue go. Overwhelmingly, we made the decision we made to spare Blue the pain and suffering he would surely endure. But I also knew that NAWP would not take care of a chronically sick child. And we had to be together on that. I don't know what I would have wanted for my own life. Right now nothing is worse for me than not having Blue.


I do not expect not to see pregnant women out and about. I am even okay around pregnant friends or friends with new babies. I don't want their babies, I want my own, and really it feels nice to fill my empty arms with a baby. But I do feel like it is in my face A LOT. Like today. Twice. And on the first interview I had after Blue, the woman interviewing me, who was wearing jeans and a loose button-down shirt for casual Friday, asked if the room was warm or if it was just her, since she was six months pregnant. I did not get that job. The day I went to the doctor for anti-anxiety drugs (not recommended, by the way), a week or two after delivery, the office assistant was pregnant. I went back to the dentist the other day to fill the cavities that he said could wait until after I had the baby...and discovered the office assistant was pregnant. All married pregnant people, but all pregnant in my face.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Last night as my dad was going up to bed, iPad in hand, he asked me the web address of my blog. Realizing that I had mostly written about sex in that day's post, I hesitated, then finally offered a disclaimer: It's really personal!

I began to wonder if this blog should or should not be my public diary. And I also questioned whether I should go on about NAWP when the blog is supposed to be about baby Blue. But let's be honest, this blog is about ME! That's what every blog is about, the blogger. And that's the whole point. Here is where I will say what I need to say, and though I will try to be tasteful when discussing TMI-inducing subjects, I just might offend my dad. And embarrass myself.


Many babyloss mamas have their older children. Many have their husbands, and with them a hope of getting pregnant again soon. Many have loving husbands, though I suspect many experience the same double-loss that I have, losing the baby and the relationship too. I don't know if it's harder for other people. I only know what is harder for me. It is harder to not know, to not have any sort of idea, when I will be in the relationship where we're having a baby together. It is harder to be in the home of my parents, rather than in the arms of my boyfriend, who wouldn't be NAWP but would be the loving, supportive variety of boyfriend. It is harder to not know if this accidental pregnancy was some fluke of fertility and maybe I will never have another pregnancy. It is harder to not know if perhaps there was some complication from the procedure and I have lost my fertility. It is harder to be part of the babyloss community, and to now know of all the possible things that can go wrong in a pregnancy. Until I deliver a healthy, living baby, it will be harder to live without that baby. 


Back to the subject. I want my experience to maybe, possibly, help someone else through a similar experience. I have a cousin who is a much better talker than listener, so I was surprised when she offered this insight: You may find someone whose circumstances were just the same, but her experience will not be the same, because you are different people.

That is true, and I take comfort in it, but still I seek a woman just like me. NAWP and I broke up about six weeks after Blue's death. And those were six difficult weeks. There were times when he held me, when he made dinner, when he let me cry, when we talked. But I cannot forget the times he turned his back, literally, on my tears. When he couldn't stand to be near me. When he used his "angry voice," a way of speaking so filled with venom that my reaction was visceral.

This loss on top of loss is part of my experience, and if it is your experience, too, well here I am. I want to help. So maybe I am sharing too much, but none of us should feel alone, more alone than we already feel. And when your bottom drops out, when your boyfriend or husband or partner in his or her own way disappears, this is what it feels like.

It is more like loss on top of loss on top of loss: hope fades too. I will never find someone. If I can have my baby, I will have the baby alone anyway, and it will be expensive. I will be pitied. And no one will remember I almost had it another way. I almost had Blue.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Not What I Meant

I have nothing to wake up for. No job, no other children, no husband or boyfriend...nothing. The anxiety of lying alone with my thoughts keeps me up later than I plan. And then I sleep later than I plan. No matter what time I finally drag myself from bed I spend the day physically exhausted. This is depression. I know. But I still hate my life right now in all its meaninglessness.

Last week, before the Prozac kicked in, I was telling my mom how badly I wanted to have another baby. And she started in on a lecture about how a baby doesn't solve anything, and how I'm not settled and I can't have a baby right if I were a lonely, angsty teenager looking for someone to love her. I held a pen in my hand and I was a moment away from drawing on my other palm when I realized that what I really wanted to do was drive the tip of the pen deep into my skin. I yelled at her that I just wanted it. That didn't mean I was going to do it. Just like I didn't shove the pen through my hand.

There was one time since the procedure that NAWP and I had sex. I was already on birth control and he didn't finish. Still I was hoping I had somehow gotten pregnant, and I was a little more hopeful when I felt little cramps two weeks later. I've been through another month, started another pack of birth control pills, but since I haven't gotten my period yet or lost any of that softness around the back of my hips, I am still sort of hoping. I feel pretty ridiculous even writing that.

NAWP stopped finishing sometime back in March, I think. There was one weekend after we found out I was pregnant that we were still connecting sexually, romantically, but soon enough he completely withdrew. I would have to ask him for a kiss. With tongue? That was really hard. And of course none of that went over well. We would have sex once in a while but it was always for me. Which doesn't sound too terrible except actually it was. It was hard to believe he had impregnated me once. I asked him if he was afraid of hurting the baby. "No." He said he was "getting used to" my being the vessel for our child or something like that. He was "trying" to get back to a place where he was attracted to me. I have no idea how he was "trying" to do that. I gained nine pounds in 25 weeks of pregnancy, so there was nothing I could do physically myself. Not wanting sex was just another way he withheld emotion and a true connection. "Having sex" after you lose your baby is like one of those well-meaning but completely inappropriate comments people say when they hear your baby is dead. I try to remember if we ever "made love," but the realization that the answer is no is no more comfort than not making love at all.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

My New Star

Surely I am not the only one to change her mind about getting a tattoo following some life-altering event. Here it is!

My Blue Star, on the pulse point, bringing him back to my heart.

I never thought I would get a tattoo. I never thought I would like something long enough to have it forever etched on my skin. I got it exactly eight weeks after I delivered Blue, accompanied by my childhood friend whose very-tattooed husband sat in the chair next to me. He said he wouldn't hold my hand, but he also promised it wouldn't hurt too much. It hurt a little but it was nothing compared to the hurt on my heart.

The next day I asked my sister if she noticed anything different about me as I gestured awkwardly and obviously with my hands. She slightly shouted: "Did you get a tattoo? Don't get a tattoo! Tattoos are gross!" Um, you're gross. Later that same night she asked over the phone what I was doing and I said I was reading babyloss blogs. And she said, "Why do you want to do that? You don't know anyone from anyone on the Internet." When I asked her not to criticize, and why was she shouting, and told her I did not want to have an argument about it, she said "bye" and hung up. Apparently I should not be looking to her for support. But it's a huge disappointment. Four days after the procedure she found me crying in a quiet room of our parents' house, and she asked why I was crying. Nice. I'll give you ONE guess. She said she was trying to get away from her kids. Nicer. I calmly told her to forgive me if I did not have any sympathy for her at that time. And she said, "I wasn't looking for any!" Nicer yet.

So I feel like, I already lost my baby, why do I have to lose my friends too? My sister was my friend. But for now she is just my sister.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

The Story in Black of Blue

Blue was my first pregnancy. My boyfriend, NAWP (for Not A Whole Person), and I were dating about two months before I got pregnant at the end of February. I figured at this point in my life (I was 33, now 34) I could handle an unplanned pregnancy. In fact, I kind of wanted one. That said, I wasn't trying to get pregnant, or trick him into it or anything. But NAWP didn't want one. He was 41, now 42, and I guess I just will never understand his thinking. He said he wanted kids. He said "fuck" when he saw the pregnancy test. He kept saying it was "too much, too soon" for us. I wasn't completely sure that he was the one either, but like I once told him, "You're good enough." We would make the best of it. But really only I was trying to make the best of it. Once he realized I was NOT having an abortion, he pretty much checked out then. Withdrew physically, emotionally...sometime in June told me he liked the way we'd become friends. Um, what? I didn't want to be his friend.

So, I know it wasn't going to be the sweet little life I imagined. But I didn't care. I wanted the baby SO MUCH. The thought of even a medication abortion was unbearable. Okay, so I didn't have a job or health insurance and I'd known this guy two months, but I didn't care. I was even prepared to have the baby alone. It wasn't really my first choice though, and when NAWP talked of how his "sense of personal responsibility" wouldn't let him walk away from his child, I was relieved. Even if I had had to convince him this life would be okay. Even if I had to basically beg him to have sex with me anymore. Even if I knew that other guys would have been happy even in this same situation.

I know NAWP was hoping--hoping!--I would miscarry. I told him I had a dream about it, and he asked how I felt when I woke up. This was still early enough to have the abortion. Thinly veiled! When I saw the heartbeat at 8 weeks and my doctor told me miscarriage was very rare at this point, and especially once you make it to 10 weeks, he seemed kind of resigned. So we started planning for me to move in with him in Washington, DC, and I applied for health insurance there through the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Program (do not get me started on how pregnant women cannot buy health insurance in most states in this country!). I didn't get any of my lab work done until 17 weeks when I had the insurance, because my doctor told me the labs were "pretty expensive." Cue ominous music, right?

Well, my first doctor in DC ordered all regular labs except one. I didn't like that practice and the hospital was not recommended by friends so I switched for the next appointment, at 21 weeks because July 4 weekend was 20 weeks, otherwise I would have tried to get back on track with the appointments happening in the right weeks. We had the "big" ultrasound and watched the little alien kicking around in my belly. It was a boy alien! And this doctor had me screened for cystic fibrosis (CF) carrier status. When she called the next week and left a message about something, I was actually hoping it was the CF result, rather than something she saw on the scan. And it was the CF test; I was positive.

Big fight with NAWP about how urgent it was for him to get his screening test. The doctor was like, "hey, whatever, don't worry, it's highly unlikely you're both carriers, it's just in case, because you're pretty far along." But since NAWP was soon going out of town for work he went for his test right away. Positive.

Now we had one in four odds the baby would have CF. I was 23 weeks pregnant. And though people kept telling me the odds were "overwhelmingly" in my favor, I just kept thinking that the possibility he would have blue eyes did not seem remote. Those were the same odds.

The amnio went fine and we got the diagnosis a week later. I had been preparing for the worst, pre-grieving as they say, but as the week went on I started to imagine the short, sweet text I would send to NAWP, still away for work--"He's healthy!"

But he was sick. Two mutations on the CFTR gene, two f508 deltas--the "regular" kind of cystic fibrosis*. We could have known about this 12 weeks earlier with CVS. I just can't get over that, whether it's pointless or not. I didn't have to love my baby so much (as if I didn't from the very beginning), I didn't have to feel him move around for weeks. The whole process of learning the diagnosis, learning about the disease, deciding whether our baby would live or was agony. It IS agony. (At least that is what I remember feeling, f'ing Prozac!)

I have the tiny comfort and luxury of believing there is nothing to indicate that a future pregnancy will be problematic. All I want is to get pregnant again soon, but since NAWP is not a whole person, I have no idea when that can happen.

It's like NAWP got what he wanted--no relationship and no baby. He cried a lot too but he didn't feel even a fraction of what I felt. And I guess that's just how it is--the guys don't get it. "I want to be there for you," he told me as we discussed whether we would stay together. "But you can't," I said.

"But I can't."

He always said "I do love you," like he was trying to convince the both of us. He didn't want to try. He thought things would just go back to "being awesome" by themselves. That we'd stop being sad one day and then we could pick up where we left off when I got pregnant. As if I would just forget everything in between. He wanted me to get a job right away, he didn't seem to want me physically around. I suppose I was a reminder that our baby was dead, and maybe even a reminder that that's a little bit what he wanted. Now that I left I feel like he's gotten his way. I don't care if it's not really true, if he's sad too. He doesn't deserve to be sad the way I am.

I am staying with my parents for a bit. My patient, loving, understanding, generous parents. I don't know what I would do without them. And I am trying to recover from this nightmare, and trying to see a way to move forward. I am trying not to miss the life I wished for, because when what you miss is a fantasy, everything you miss is so fucking perfect.

I would take the reality, the surely sometimes ugly reality, with NAWP, if it meant I could have Blue. 

* For information on CF visit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation web site at

Why I Am Here

Because I am so, so sad. Because I don't know what to do without Blue, without the life I imagined with my baby boy. Because I want to find hope amid all this hopelessness. Because maybe I can offer that to someone else. Maybe not yet.