Tag Archives: missed experiences

A visit from Santa

Last night, my dear friend L (who was pregnant at the same time as me and had her son the day after Hudson was born) and her hubby C stopped by with some Christmas treats. And guess who they brought with them? Their little five-month old baby boy, all dressed up in his Santa suit.

What a sweet, mellow, chunky-in-all-the-right-places little man. I got to hold him for the first time, and only briefly did the thought cross my mind: “This is how old Hudson would be.” He was very fascinated with my sweet Hudson memento necklace, the one with the ceramic heart that also can be a bracelet. He got it in a baby vice grip a few times, and I was impressed with his grabbing/choking me skills.

The Hubs held him too, for the majority of the visit actually. The little guy was super intrigued by Jungle (aka the Hudson Ruth Walter Memorial Beard), again with the baby vice grip but this time on hair that is attached to skin. I swear my husband is like the Baby Whisperer. He patiently held the little beard grabber in various strategic positions that made the beard less grab-able.

Side Note: I love to watch my husband with babies.

We caught up with these friends who we haven’t seen in ages, people with whom we were supposed to be embarking on this parenting journey at the same time, people we shared birthing class embarrassment with, even went to the same doctor. And you know what? I enjoyed it thoroughly. For whatever reason, it feels like more progress, more healing. That we got to love all up on their little baby boy, this little guy who would/should be one of Hudson’s favorite playmates, and that at no point did I feel on the verge of tears or even really preoccupied with the comparison to Hudson… well, that seems like a good step. That we got to listen to these friends share their parenting journey a little bit without even a tinge of envy… that seems like a good step, too.

I am so thankful for the wonderful people who are in our lives. And I’m so thankful that good people are parents. For this holiday season, we are parents without our child, and that is truly heartbreaking. But I really believe that next year, it will be our baby in the Santa suit, “ho-ho-hoeing” around with plates of delicious treats.

That’s all I want for Christmas.

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Happy 5 Month Birthday, Baby Girl

I cannot believe that it has been five months since our girlie was born, just under five months since the world as we know it got smashed to pieces. Have I been this person for five months?

This person.

Heartbroken.
New priorities.
Heightened feelings.

Most importantly: a mom.

We’re sneaking up on what would have been Hudson’s first Christmas. And while I imagine this particular holiday season will be rough, I do like to allow myself the luxury from time to time of imagining what she’d be like right now.

Chubby all around. Cheeks, thighs, arm and neck folds. Sticky sideways smiles, no symmetry to Hudson’s expressions quite yet. An obscene wardrobe – the most stylist 5-month old on the block, thanks to Momma Sue and Grandma Dub and crafty Aunties. Giggles. I imagine what our daughter’s giggles would be like, and it makes me ache for a sound I never heard.

I won’t lie to you, Hudson and I would be wearing matching Mrs. Claus outfits this holiday season for some kind of a photo shoot.

I allow myself the luxury of imagining our house with a baby in it. Slowly but surely, the assorted baby paraphernalia we brought home with us from the hospital has made its way back to Hudson’s room, and we’re down to just her heartbeat teddy bear, a photo album, a box of Hudson’s Heroes teeshirts, and the biggest size of this picture that Costco would print up on our wall.

I miss laying kisses on those sweet feet.

I miss laying kisses on those sweet feet.

But if Hudson had lived to come home with us, the joint would be awash with rattles and tummy time mats and jumpers and her black and white zebra and a whole wealth of toys I don’t even know about yet because we only made it as far as newborn toys. I’m confident at one point or another, the Hubs or I would have stepped on one of the toys strewn about, resulting in a torrent of loud words that end in *** that would have us then concerned that our daughter’s first word would be a four letter one.

In a way, I’m grateful that Hudson didn’t come home with us only to die some other way. How could I ever be in our living room after spending hours of tummy time with her there? How could I step foot in her nursery knowing she’d spent hours in baby dreamland in there? How could I lay eyes on the rocker knowing I’d fed her in that rocker?

Except of course as I imagine those experiences with our daughter in our home, I have to take every thing I said up there back. I wish for any world where I spent time interacting with our daughter, even if it were still going to end this painful way. We are missing out every day on some kind of a milestone or achievement that our little overachiever would have been delighting us with. What I wouldn’t give for memories of staring contests with our googly eyed little newborn! I would trade a thousand restful nights for one interrupted by my baby’s screaming and fussing.

And I know these experiences await me, when Baby Dub Dos, Tres and Quatro arrive on the scene (did I just predict triplets? Dear me!). So when I step on those baby toys, in the future, I’ll remember today and I’ll grit my teeth but I won’t swear. Those sleep deprived nights will be a dream come true. The world will stop for baby staring contests.

Nothing in this life is a guarantee. The only thing in life that you can truly control is how you view your life – the gratefulness with which you greet each day, the choice to smile instead of frown, the decision to be brave and to take risks and to love all out. I’m working on these things, and life is more full. I’m choosing these things, and I feel rewarded. It’s the worst thing in the world that I don’t have a 5-month old today, but my day is not ruined.

A huge hunk of my heart is gone forever, but I don’t feel incomplete. Because that’s what I choose.

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