A few short months ago I wrote a letter to my baby.
A letter to my first-born about how I felt guilty that our time with her as an only child was going to be cut short.
Explaining our love for her, in hopes that one day when she was old enough that she would read it and not totally detest her little sister, but instead feel the love, compassion and hopes that we had both for her and her little sissy.
I remember writing about my guilt, nervousness and about how scared I was to have two under two.
I wrote about the changes that were happening in our house, about my growing belly and how the room on my lap had become smaller with her growing sissy inside of me.
The week before we lost Willa, Oak and I went to our doctors appointment alone, she loved hearing sissies heartbeat on the doppler and loved all of the attention she got at the clinic.
She loved “helping me” get everything ready for her baby.
I read a quote today that tore me.
~Ernest Hemingway once won a bet by crafting a six-word short story that can make people cry.
Here it is: “for sale: baby shoes, never worn.”
I once worried about explaining to Oak where babies come from, why we had to pick up her small toys, why Willa couldn’t eat the foods that she could eat and that Mama’s breasts are for babies to eat from.
Now I worry about explaining more about who the picture of the baby on the wall is.
Why the dresser that they shared got emptied and solely filled back up with her clothes and instead replaced with a tiny turquoise box with a cross on it.
Why the swing that was in the living room suddenly disappeared.
Why we had a gathering where Mama was distant to everyone and in the end we ended up with a big garden.
Grief… fucking sucks.
Today we spent the afternoon in Willas garden weeding, the whole time Oakley sat with a little statue of an angel… just talking.
When she was done her conversation she kissed it and ran over to Willas swing laughing wanting me to lift her up.
I continued weeding, listening to my first-born beautiful baby girl babble to herself.
I was filled to the brim and thought it would be a good day, until I went to bed.
That’s when grief EATS you the worst.
So here I am, almost five A.M. trying to function, knowing that I will have a grief hangover tomorrow, just wanting to sleep all day but still having to be a Wife, Mom and member of society.
My Dad always told us when we were younger “life’s a bitch and then you die.”
Sometimes life does feel like a bitch, but I am going to make it my mission to LIVE before I die.
I am in the grieving phase of being mad at the world and that’s okay, its normal.
As much as I feel happiness for my friends, family and acquaintances that will have babies this year, I always feel a pang of hurt, jealousy and wanting.
Empty arms but a very heavy heart.
Finding the positives in each day is a struggle but our Oak always brings a smile to our faces.
When you are reading this down the road, I just want you to know that I am documenting our grief so that when you are feeling the pain at five, ten and twenty years old longing for the little sister that you only got to meet through the fetal doppler and the kicks on your back as you slept beside me… we get it. We wanted her just as much as you. There is nothing that we can ever do to take your pain away and for that we are sorry. We wanted to watch you play together, to see you kiss each other and to fight with each other just as you see other close in age siblings do on an everyday basis. We wanted and still want to watch you giggle together and for you to show her everything you know just as my big sister did for me.
We know you are hurting, you have been acting out and showing a dire need for attention. We know that you knew, you were going to be a big sister and you my girl… are a big sister. It will always be Oakley Elsie and her little sissy Willa Hain. You are our saving grace. You have helped Dad and I through this terrible tragedy each and everyday. Daddy, you and I didn’t do anything wrong, all we did was love our sweet Willa. There is nothing we can do to bring her back to us, for that I am sorry. If there was a way that I could take this pain from you, I would. You are such an incredible blessing. Know that we love you more than anything and when people tell us to just be “grateful for the child we have” it makes us sad, not because we aren’t thankful for you… but because if these people had to choose one of their children that they could live without…they wouldn’t be able to pick one to sacrifice.
One day we will all meet again, I promise.
Into the garden of dreams we go, my girl.
I love you, Oakley.