Sunday, December 31, 2006

Christmas Wrap Up (a few days late)

So that was Christmas. That was the Christmas that I held so much anticipation and hope for in my heart as I packed up the decorations last year. It, of course, wasn't the holiday that I had imagined last year, but it wasn't completely terrible. And I think that it was because I had absolutely no expectations for it. I didn't try to make it anything that I didn't feel like making it, and I know that is because I had a "heads up" from all of you. I just wanted to smile, get through a couple of days and then take down the damn decorations, putting them back in the boxes with just the simple hope that next year is better.

The big morning at my house was nice. My family came over for breakfast and my sister stopped by without my nephew. As much as it hurts me to think it, I'm glad that I didn't see him that morning. I'm not sure that I could have held it together. That afternoon, we went to Tom's family Christmas and it wasn't baby-free, much to my chagrin. I'm not exactly sure who this girl would be to me...step-cousin-in-law? She and I were pregnant at the same time last year, and she had a little girl in March, I think. Anyway, she was there and she kept giving me these scared sideways looks, like I was completely mental and she didn't know what I was going to do next. Maybe steal her baby and run out the door or something. Oh I'm being dramatic. She probably was feeling the same way I would feel if I was seeing someone who had a dead baby while I held my live one...really fucking bad and uncomfortable. Also maybe a little guilty. The last time that I had seen her was at my mom's house after Nate's burial and I'm still pissed at her for being pregnant at my son's funeral. I wish that she had just sent a card. That sounds nuts and I don't care. I was a total bitch to her after the funeral and I don't care about that either. I was nice to her at Christmas and that's what's important. I even held her kid. How's that? (Actually, if it was a boy I probably would have had to leave. I have a terrible time around baby boys. Duh.) Other than that, the day was absolutely great. As long as I put myself on auto-pilot, didn't think too hard about anything and put lots of Bailey's in my coffee.

Do you know what would have been nice? For people to acknowledge that we had a son and that possibly this Christmas was going to be really difficult. No one wanted to upset me, I guess. I'm so tired of people tiptoeing around me. Like I'm a timebomb. Oooh, don't make her cry. But really, if the last time you saw me I was greatly withchild, don't fucking act like it never happened. Just say...something. Like "I'm so sorry." It 's not like I want to be coddled and I don't want a lot of attention drawn to it, but say something. I don't have much, and the acknowledgement from someone that he exisited means a lot. Because sometimes I think that I made up the whole thing.

Friday, December 22, 2006

As of yesterday, I’m a card carrying member of Catherine’s "Fake it ‘till ya make it" campaign! And it wasn’t so bad!

My sister dragged me out of the house, practically kicking and screaming, and made me go shopping with her. I had yet to do any Christmas shopping. Honestly. The most I had done was to sneak off to the fabric store and come home and sew a few things for people. That’s it. I just could not bring myself to actually shop. Really, I couldn’t bring myself to shower and put on decent clothes before 3 in the afternoon.

We went down to Branson to the outlet malls then had some really good barbeque for lunch. I hadn’t realized how badly I needed to just go do girl stuff and laugh. I’ve been walking around like a zombie and really being quite a bitch to everyone. It was really nice.

Three weeks ago, my mom and the same sister put my Christmas tree up with me. I knew that I’d never do it by myself (Tom was in Chicago), and I had kind of decided that I didn’t care if one was up or not. So, we assembled the big, fake, ugly tree that is definitely on its last leg and decorated it with lights and ribbon. It was then up to me to put the ornaments on. Fast forward to three weeks later—still no ornaments. Hmmm. What a Scrooge I am. I did have ornaments on the little, bitty tree that I had bought on a whim for Nate, except most of them had fallen off and it was all smooshed because the damn cat kept knocking the tree off the table. Anyway, yesterday my sister finally got me off my ass and I dragged out the ornament boxes. We finally decorated the tree, and okay, I admit it looks much better now. I don’t know. I’ve gotten so weird about things—I’m always thinking when I run across stuff: I bought this tea when I was pregnant, I’m not going to drink it; last time I was here, I was pregnant, I don’t want to go in there; the last time I wore these socks, I was pregnant, not going to wear them; when I packed up all of these Christmas decorations, I was pregnant and excited and never so happy in my life—these decorations are staying in their fucking boxes. But now my halls are all decked and stuff and it really looks pretty damn nice. When my husband came home from work he said, "Yay! We have a real tree!"

I was feeling so good, I even went and had my hair chopped off and highlighted! Nothing like a new hairdo to lift your spirits, I say. My hair was truly awful—really mousey and dull and flat. I had lost a ton of hair after I had Nate and it was growing back, giving me these weird little punk rock bangs in my formerly all one length hairdo. And then when I would get sweaty, the inch and a half long bangs would curl. Not the cutest thing in the world. So there was that, and then my eyebrows were growing together. Picture me slumping around my house with ugly ass flat hair, curly bangs and a unibrow, wearing jacked up yoga pants and a holey t-shirt. What a sad sack. (I’m also going clothes shopping, by the way.) Now my hair is chin length and I’ve got real bangs and two eyebrows. I like it!

And for today—more shopping and some Christmas baking with my mom where I’m going to attempt Kristin’s mom’s ribbon cookies!! Faking it ‘till you make it works! Thanks Catherine!

ps--I also went to Walmart this morning at 4:30 to buy stocking stuffers. I'm on a roll now!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Cracked Nuts

So, at about 5:30 Thursday night I was making sweet and sour chicken (which turned out kinda yuck, I think) and the phone rings. It was the personnel manager from our city's big symphony. She said, "Laura! Hi! Symphony! Can you play tonight? We're doing the Nutcracker and the Governor is going to be there." Like a big idiot I say, "Sure", threw on my black clothes and ran out the door.

There is never an opening in this symphony, so I auditioned for on-call a couple of years ago. I got it, but hadn't gotten a call until Thursday. My audition was also the last time that I really played piccolo. My picc had half an inch of dust on it (I'm serious) that I brushed off before tossing in my bag, praying that there wouldn't be many piccolo parts. I have never, ever played the Nutcracker before and I was going to be sight reading it at the performance. I am such an idiot. (And it's all piccolo, as it turns out.)

Anyway, I've played at the theater where they were doing it a million times for musicals. It's over one hundred years old and the orchestra pit is really, really small. They had shoved I don't know how many people in the pit for this show. It was the stupidest thing that I had ever seen, not to mention the most uncomfortable I'd ever been (well, playing anyway). I was practically under the director's stand so I could never see his beats, resulting in me getting lost--a lot. I had a viola scroll in my ear and I can't believe that I didn't lose an eye on her bow. I am not kidding. So there was that, coupled with the sheer intimidation of playing with my teacher from grad school and being so close to the director that he could hear every single mistake which made for an evening of magic for me. And then I did it again last night.

I think, for the most part, I did okay. As it turns out, I was much less nervous the night that I was sight reading than the night that I had actually practiced. I think that was because I was putting more pressure on myself last night. But I realized something about myself, I'm afraid. I'm not back to normal and I'm not able to take the pressure that I used to. I didn't fall apart and I only really screwed up one part last night (which in a two hour show isn't bad, I guess), but I wasn't able to focus very well and I was extremely nervous and wasn't able to shake it like I used to. I don't know. It's frustrating, but I'm not sure how much I can do about it right now. So, that's my Nutcracker story. Not that interesting. I do have something more interesting to talk about (I'm not pregnant, that I know of)--I just need to sit down and write it. We have had some major developments here at the K. house and I'm quickly trying to adjust the best I can to the new changes. Which isn't super easy seeing that I'm completely wacka-doo right now, but I'm doing my best. So...more later.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Happy Birthday to Meeeee!!

Yah-hoo, I'm thirty-two!
That's kinda of a dumb age. I can already do everything, except run for president. Or get the reduced movie ticket price.
My step daughter gave me a card this morning that said:
Happy B-Day to you,
you live in a zoo,
You look like a fluterino (?)
and you smell like one too.
Then she drew a picture of a little dog (evidently the "fluterino") with his body made out of a flute. Very silly. A little Italian musical dog, I guess.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Monday, December 11, 2006

One Down...

At the concert Saturday night, the friendly oboist leaned over and said,

"Hey, didn't we play in [so and so] orchestra together at Christmas last year?"

"Um, hmm. We sure did." (please don't be interested, be totally uninterested.)

"How's the baby?" she asked with a wide smile.

"He died in February," I replied, probably a little too quickly.

The emotions crossed her face that I was so used to seeing--an inquisitive smile, turned to confusion, then embarrassment, then concern.

"Oh my God, I'm so sorry. How did it happen?"

"Well, it was kind of a birth accident. He lived for four days, though." (No one knows what a placental abruption is, so I say "birth accident", which I think is better than "miscarriage"--my former OB's suggestion.)

I babbled some more, like I do when I'm asked this question. I think I ended with, "Yeah, I was really pregnant at Christmas last year, so..."

She said, "I think that I'm going to cry." I've spent the last 10 months making weird smooshy faces to push back tears. Go ahead. I'll probably join you.

Somehow the subject was quickly and mercifully changed and we spent the rest of the time before the concert laughing our asses off at a music professor we both knew who would talk about orgasams in class. A guy that you would never want to picture having sex.

I was laughing, but my heart was pounding and I felt like I was going to puke for the rest of the evening.

Monday, December 04, 2006

5 Things about Moi

Yay! I've been tagged by Artblog! I've never been tagged before, so I'm excited. I feel neato and important, but I also terrible because it took me for-ev-er to do it. I'm so slow on the uptake these days...

Okay, if you are reading this and you know me "in real life", you probably already know most of this stuff.

1.) I think that I've mentioned this before, but my husband and I met on We always joke that when our kids asked us how we met, expecting something like "on a train to Paris", I'll just say "Daddy double-clicked on my face." (Which actually sounds filthy as I see it written out.) After a few emails back and forth, we had a couple of dates and I still wasn't really sure about him. I'm so shy and he's so shy that we both kinda sat there. After our second date, he sent me a gorgeous arrangement of a dozen red roses. I was so shocked! (And no, I didn't give it up on the second date, you dirties.) I thought, potential stalker? Potentially the most perfect boyfriend ever? I went with the latter, obviously and it was true. I came to rely on the florist van pulling into my driveway the morning after a date. And if it wasn't huge flower arrangements, it was gourmet cookies. ~sigh~ The thing was so great because we literally lived less than five minutes apart from each other but there is no way that we ever would have met otherwise. I could go on and on. That could be a whole other post. He's in Chicago right now and I really miss him.

2.) Here's a short one. My nostrils are two different sizes--one long and skinny, one short and fat.

Let's see, what else? This is tough.

3.) When I was a kid, before I started doing crazy color treatments to my hair, I had a big streak of platinum blonde on the underneath portion of my hair. It's naturally dark blonde. I'm not sure if I still have it-- I might be able to see it now that it's been so long since I've highlighted my hair. After Nate had his first ever shampoo, a streak of platinum blonde was revealed in his auburn hair. Right on top of his head. The nurses called it his "skunk stripe". (Not really sure how I feel about that.) I like thinking about that little stripe. I wonder if my future babies will have it. I hope so.

4.) I smoked pot a couple of times and thought it was stupid and didn't work. Then we went to Amsterdam. Tom was fine, but I spent the whole time with a death grip on his hand for fear that I might float away. We walked around and around and around the same block for four hours because I was terrified that we would get lost and miss our bus back to the boat. I've never felt so god-awful in my life. I felt like my face was was melting off. Our pictures from Amsterdam consist of: one windmill, a stoned self portrait of the two of us, a stoned Tom recreating the Mentos commercial and 143 pictures of the Bluebird Cafe.

5.) This one's kind of heavy. When I was 20, my friends and I got hit by a drunk driver. We were coming out of a movie theater and when we turned on to the main road, we got nailed. My friend Rachel was driving and she didn't see the guy coming because he was going over 100 miles an hour. He rear-ended us. I broke my pelvis and had a concussion, Rachel broke her neck and Chris, in the back seat was hurt the worst. We were in a hatchback Civic and he was ejected out the back, flew over three lanes of traffic and landed on his head against a curb. His entire face was crushed and he was in the hospital for a very, very long time. But he recovered really well and I think he's a teacher now. I haven't talked to him since we all graduated. The guy who hit us was 17 years old. Seriously. I met him about a year after the accident. I was asked to speak on a victim panel to a group of convicted drunk drivers and there was an article in the paper about it the day I was supposed to speak. He had read the article and showed up, listened to me speak and then stopped me in parking lot afterwards. He apologized and cried. I told him that I could forgive him, because I figured that it would be easier to forgive than let it eat me up forever. I spoke to groups quite a bit for awhile and I really think that it helped me heal emotionally. Physically, I still get really sore and my left hip gets swollen when the weather changes. But I'm okay. I'm still amazed that all three of us lived through that accident. Somebody's keeping me around for something, I guess!

Ta Da! Five things about me!

Saturday, December 02, 2006

A Nutjob in a Pear Tree

Okay, I should probably write something.

I go through these sucky blogger phases, where I don't write anything and I can't think of any good and helpful responses to leave for my bloggy friends. I've even been tagged by a fellow blogger, and I haven't done it yet. I have emails to return. I'm terrible! I'm not being lazy--I honestly have tons to say--but I'm not doing so hot right now. In fact, I'm kind of hanging by a thread. I've been trying to keep busy and not think about anything or I'll have a complete meltdown (which I've already done twice since Thanksgiving).

Speaking of Thanksgiving, mine was great! In an effort to circumvent any emotional disasters on my part, I decided to have it at our place! This is a new thing in our family--to have one of the "kids" do the dinner. I thought that everything went really well and we had the Best Turkey Ever. If you haven't tried Alton Brown's Good Eats roast turkey, do next time. It's awesome, awesome, awesome. So, my evil plan was to keep impossibly busy so that I didn't have time to cry. And it worked. But.

Christmas has hit me like a bus. I expected to be really bummed out, but I didn't expect panic attacks. I wish that I could just not be a joiner this year, but I can't. And not because of my family (because they would understand) or because Nate would have wanted me to have a wonderful, magical Christmas (whatever). It's because I have to because of my job. December is the busiest month for musicians, except for maybe June weddings. I could just say "no", but then no one would want to hire me anymore and then there's that extra thousand dollars I'll be making this month. I'm a musical prostitute. Ha ha. Momma wants a new sofa, what can I say?

Some of the same people are calling me for gigs this year. Last time they saw me, I was greatly withchild, lugging my flute bag and dragging my music stand, shuffling along with swollen feet shoved in ugly shoes. No one has asked me anything when they've called, but I haven't played the gig yet and I'm preparing myself for another round of "ooo, how's the baby?" Yeah. Good times.

We haven't really decorated inside. We've gone a little crazy outside--we have the most Christmas lights on the block, and I have to say that I've enjoyed that. That's fun. My husband is the Rembrandt of Christmas lights and he's also really competitive. We've put up lights, gotten in the car to drive around and look at other crazy husband's light schemes and come home and put up more lights. I imagine that our front yard will be a work in progress for the duration of the Christmas season. I'm cool with that. I'm just not in a huge hurry to deck my indoor halls. I just don't really care, you know? If I was decorating the tree, I'd probably just throw a big ol' ball of tangled lights on it and call it done. Since you didn't know me before, I should say that this is not like me. Most things I do these days are not like me. Whatever. I'm not going to apologize for it--it is what it is. My child is not with me and excuse me for not bedazzling my house with baby Jesuses this year. I'm not in the mood, pass the egg nog. No, the one with whiskey in it. Thanks.

Thursday, November 30, 2006


Congratulations, Kate!!

Congratulations, Kate!!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

I just realized that I would have had my big ultrasound around this time. I don't even want to think about it--this is so... awful.

Channeling My Inner 50's Housewife

Last night, after dinner my husband said,

"You know how guys sometimes will talk about how their wives don't cook as good as their mothers?"


"Well, I just want you to know that you cook better than my mom now."

Is is completely wrong that I felt a thrill of excitement with this conversation? His mom is a damn good cook. While we're on this topic, here are some highlights from an article that we have on our fridge. It's a photocopy from the May 1955 edition of Houskeeping Monthly. It's on or fridge because, a) it's hilarious and b) our house was built in 1955 and I imagine that the first lady that lived here read this article and hopefully was appalled. I give you highlights from:

The Good Wife's Guide

  • Have dinner ready. Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal ready, on time for his return. This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking of him and are concerned about his needs. Most men are hungry when they come home and the prospect of a good meal (especially his favorite dish) is part of the warm welcome.
  • Prepare yourself. Take 15 minutes to rest so you'll be refreshed when he arrives. Touch up your make up, put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh-looking. He has just been with a lot of work weary people! (so the same pj pants four days in a row isn't hot?)
  • Over the cooler months of the year you should prepare and light a fire for him to unwind by. Your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order, and it will give you a lift, too. After all, catering for his comfort will provide you with immense personal satisfaction.
  • Greet him with a warm smile and show sincerity in your desire to please.
  • Listen to him. You may have a dozen important things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first--remember, his topics of conversation are more important than yours.
  • Make the evening his. Never complain if he comes home late or goes out to dinner or other places of entertainment without you. Instead, try to understand his world of strain and pressure and his very real need to be at home and relax.
  • Don't complain if he's late home for dinner or even if he stays out all night. Count this as minor compared to what he might have gone through that day. (Huh?)
  • Arrange his pillow and offer to take off his shoes. Speak in a low, soothing and pleasant voice. (Oh, ha ha ha ha ha ha !!!!)
  • Don't ask him questions about his actions or question his judgement or integrity. Remember, he is the master of the house and as such will always exercise his will with fairness and truthfulness. You have no right to question him.
  • A good wife always knows her place.

Holy Crap. I don't care if this was fifty years ago, I don't believe that a woman actually wrote this. And if she did, she probably went batshit crazy shortly thereafter. Maybe she looked like this:

"oooh, what do you think of my knife collection?"

Monday, November 20, 2006

This is a beautiful birthstone bracelet made by Catherine. (We did a swap--a purse for a bracelet.) It has a strand for Nate and one for Chip, too. Hopefully, I'll get to send it back one day to have another strand added for a happier outcome. Thank you so much, it's gorgeous! Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

An Interview with Myself

What do you want?
I'd like a baby, thanks.

Well, aren't you scared?
Sure. Of course I am.

What if you have another miscarriage?
The miscarriage was horrible, awful. But...I need to try.

What if you lose another full-term baby? Could you handle that?
Well, I'd have to, wouldn't I? Shut up, don't talk that way.

You've got your head in the sand.
No I do not. Believe me, I'm keenly aware of what could happen.

Why even try again?
Because I know that there's happy endings out there. Because I know that even people who have had total abruptions like I did, have gone on to have more than one beautiful, healthy pregnancy. And because I think that my biggest regret of my life would be not to try again just out of fear. I'm hoping that someday, I'll look at my children and be thankful that I tried again.

You could adopt.
Yeah, I know that. We've done research, we've talked to people, we've thought of finances. It's something we plan on doing whether or not we're able to have kids of our own. It's just that right now, with the agency that we like, it's almost a two-year wait for a little girl from China. I just can't wait right now. One year, yeah. Two years, not right now.

What if you lose another full-term baby? Could you handle that?

I think so.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The Sucky Post

I received an email yesterday from one of my former flute students from when I was teaching at the University. She was at a different life stage than my other students: she was married, she had a two year old little girl and she was pregnant with a boy and due at the same time I was. She must have taken the spring semester off, just like I did and returned this fall, just like I didn't. She had just heard what had happened and wanted to know when I was coming back. (I'm not.)

I don't know what the point of this post is. There is no point, probably. Just a big, huge cosmic "Huh?!" from me. I'm probably just like tons of people that you know. Your sister. Your friend. But now I'm an example, and not the kind I wanna be. Now I'm "look what happened to her. goddamn." I'm reproductive equivalent of going to the super buffets just to "people watch" to feel better about your own body image. [Insert here what I nice person I am and I didn't ask for this bullshit and I've never hurt anyone and I'm married to a nice man and have a lovely home, blah, blah, fuck-ity blah] If I don't get some good news soon, then I just don't know what.

**edited to add**
I know that I'm preaching to the choir, here. Maybe I just need an "amen".

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Veteran's Day

My mom and I went to see Nate yesterday. That makes it a grand total of three times that I've been there for him: the funeral, Easter and now Veteran's Day. My son is buried in the Missouri Veterans Cemetery and I wanted to see how the place looked with American flags everywhere. I hate that it's still so hard for me to go there. Why would it ever be easy to visit your child in a cemetery? Even so, I feel like a sucky mother.

They did have flags raised on the several flagpoles that line the drives, and it was very pretty, but they didn't have flags on each grave like I hoped. Maybe that's Memorial Day. I don't know. I never paid attention to these holidays until my son ended up in a veteran's cemetery. This particular one is brand new, and several rows of graves had been added since Tom and I had been there at Easter. Here, all of the gravemarkers are identical--more military uniformity. It's easy to find Nate's row, though, because his granddad is buried in the very first grave, 16 spaces down.

Tom's dad died on January 15 of this year. He was very sick, but he died very quickly and went much sooner than anyone expected. We all believed that he would be here to welcome Nate into the family and even have some time to enjoy him. After he had died, I had so much hoped that Nate's birth would bring some happiness back to the family and be a welcome diversion for all of us. That day of the funeral, standing in front of Tom's father's flag draped casket, I never imagined that we would be back there in just over two weeks, in the same freezing interment shelter but this time, a tiny white casket in its place. It was surreal to say the least.

It had been so long since I had been there, I was happy to see that grass had finally grown over Nate's grave. Time marches on and nature takes it's course no matter how I'm feeling and how much I feel as if it's standing still. New baby grass growing over my son's grave like new skin that covers a bad wound. It's not as raw anymore, but you can still see where you've been hurt.

My sister-in-law had already been there to place pretty arrangements on both graves. (Tom's mother and sisters always keep flowers on the graves, and I'm so grateful for that. They always make a little arrangement for the baby.) Mom and I arranged our flowers in the militarily uniform vase that we are required to use, and I stood back and took a couple of pictures. The marker reads-

Nathaniel Guy K.
January 31, 2006
Februrary 3, 2006
Son of
SPC Thomas K.
Our Sweet Baby Nate

I always laugh a little when I read "Sweet Baby Nate". It sounds like the name of a barbeque sauce. "Sweet Baby Nate's Lip-Smackin' Sauce". But that's what I called him when I was pregnant, because he was sweet. He was sweet and considerate and polite. He never kept me up all night and he never even had the hiccups. He just gave me wicked heartburn, but I'm sure he didn't mean to. It sucks that this is all I know about him. "Nate was a baby. He liked grape juice. The end."

We walked sixteen spaces down and carefully arranged some purple mums (in honor of the Purple Heart that he received) in another militarily uniform vase for Tom's dad. I stood up and looked over the rows and rows of identical headstones. In my direct line of sight was the grave marker of a 21-year old man that died last November. His stone read: "Rangers Lead the Way". My husband was an Army Ranger, and reading the Ranger motto on a headstone made my hair stand up. I thought about all of these men buried here. This young Ranger and all the others, these veterans--what did they see in their lifetimes? I thought about Nate, surrounded by these tough men and felt a little better. I felt a little proud. Many of these men were buried with their medals pinned to their chest, and my boy is right there--all seven pounds and eleven ounces of him--his hair combed across his forehead, his chin tucked to his chest, looking very stern. My little soldier.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Closer to Fine

I used to sing in my car. I used to be the girl rockin' out at the stoplight, getting embarassed when she realized that someone noticed. Most days now, I cry on my way to work or I cry on my way home. Usually both. I'm definately not a trained singer and honestly, I'd have to get pretty drunk to get up in front of people to sing karaoke. I've always thought that this was a particularly weird thing about me--one of my favorite places to be is on stage with my flute, performing. I love playing to an audience. There is absolutely nothing like a standing ovation, and boy I could sure use one these days. But ask me to sing, and I clam up.

I got into my car tonight, heading home from orchestra, and despite the frustrations of this particular rehearsal, my heart was feeling pretty light. I noticed that I was singing along to Panic at the Disco. That wasn't doing it for me, so I started searching for my Joni Mitchell CD with Big Yellow Taxi, my favorite drunk karaoke song. I try a few bars a capella, but couldn't remember the words. I had to find something--I felt happy! I felt like singing! This was a big deal. At the next stoplight, I dug through my cd wallet and found the holy grail of singin' at the top of your lungs--Indigo Girls.

Ah, the Indigo Girls. I've seen them in concert three times and in college, my girlfriends and I would sit around and just sing, sing, drink and sing with IG in the stereo. To me, their music isn't just great stuff to listen to, it's my college soundtrack. It's friendship, roadtrips, bad break ups and just the plain awesomeness of being a girl. Every track was our anthem.

I haven't listened to a single song since Nate died. I used to sing Indigo Girls songs to my baby. But tonight, I sang. I sang my heart out with Amy and then switched to Emily's parts on the harmonies, like I always did. I sang all the way home, and when I parked in the garage I sat there and sang some more. I sang with a happy heart full of good memories of girlfriends and my sweet baby.

Tomorrow may be different, but tonight I got a glimpse of the old Laura. The singing and dancing and hooray for everything Laura. Tomorrow may be different, but tonight I'm alright. I'm learning not to take these moments for granted, but to celebrate them when they happen.

Friday, November 03, 2006

aaaaaaaand, scene!

Okay, the offending clothes and books are folded neatly in a Zingerman's Deli mail order box, minus dead skunks or dog shit. I had 3 tops, 1 pair of okay pants and 2 pairs of ugly-ass pants that I never wore, and a couple of books. Most of it from Target and none of it haute couture. (Not that there's anything wrong with Target clothes. I love Target and most all of my own maternity clothes are either from there or from second hand mama stores. I'm just being a jerk.) Tom helped me dig out those clothes last night. He was so sweet, he said, "Let's do it now and then we can watch The Office to cheer you up." I was so glad that he acknowleged that it would be hard for me to do that, we think of things differently most of the time. Left brain, right brain couple.

So, Tom's gonna dump those off for me today. I've yet to send any type of communication, she's probably really got her knickers in a twist now. Awesome. I think, in the end, a short version is sweeter. Like, "They'll be on your porch." Just knowing her like I have for 13 years, the short version will piss her off even more and I need to nip this thing in the bud NOW. To answer Jill, yes, she's always been very self absorbed. I could tell you things that would make your hair curl, but spill it all here wouldn't be nice....

Thank you for all of your great advice--both bloggy friends and in real life friends--it was great therapy for me to get all of that out and to know that I wasn't being a big baby about it. I have 13 years of built up garbage about this woman. So, while I would never, ever, ever wish her a dangerous pregnancy with a horrible outcome, I could wish her some discomfort. Like:

  • May she have hemorrhoids that swell to the size of dinner plates.
  • May she be so constipated that her eyes are bloodshot for the duration.
  • May she have acne so bad, her face is like ground beef.
  • With every chuckle, may she pee her pants.
  • May she pass gas publicly. Often.

Feel free to add.

p.s.--my period started again. 19 day cycle. I wish that my body would just get back to normal, if it even knows what normal is anymore. Also, baby-making sex sucks and we're not doing it anymore. Sex for fun and leisure only. Then we'll see what happens.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

and more maternity clothes B.S.

Okay, one more post on this, and then I'll drop it. This is just so yucky, I can't get past it.

I got another message from the maternity clothes nazi. She wanted to know if I've found them yet and that she would also like her Pregnancy Week by Week back. And that she doesn't have the money to go and buy all new stuff. Oh, I'm very sorry. When she said that she needed them this winter, I didn't know that she was in such a hurry. I thought that I could at least have a week or two of wiggle room. Some people have told me not to send them at all and another said I should shit on them and put them in a garbage bag. (Okay, actually I thought that was pretty funny.)

I feel like since I told her that I would return them to her, I need to. But I really think that she should know that this isn't cool. My husband and I have decided that he would just drop them off on her porch (thus saving both postage and my feelings), but I wonder if I should just leave it at that. I am so mad and hurt. I haven't talked to her since right after Nate died, so I don't consider her a friend anymore, but still. I wrote this letter, but haven't sent it:

I was all sunshiny in my first response, but I really need for you to understand how difficult it is for me to even open a box of maternity clothes, much less sort through them. I fully intended to get those things back to you. I planned on doing it as soon as I was comfortably pregnant and emotionally able to go through baby stuff. However, in addition to mourning my son, I just had a really bad miscarriage. Yes, I know that you had no way of knowing that. I'm just not in the best place emotionally to deal with maternity clothes and other people's pregnancy announcements.
So, yes I will return those things to you. But just understand why I'm not in a hurry to do it. To be pushy about it is just cruel.

That may be totally writing a check that my ass can't cash. (She can be mean, and I am notoriously a huge weenie.) It think that it helped just writing that down. I'll probably just say--You'll have them this week. (piss off) Okay, maybe not that last thing. What would you say? Feel free to add to my letter.

On the 31st

Nine Months Old.
What a big boy you'd be today.
Your cousin has taken his first steps.
He's one month older than you, but
I bet you'd be right there with him,
my genius child.
You'd just be fitting into the little
St. Louis Rams uniform. Daddy
and I hate football, but you'd still
look awfully cute in that outfit.
I miss you so much.
I still can't believe that we had such a
beautiful boy. And then you were gone.
I wonder what we would have dressed
up as today? It's so hard knowing that
I'll miss out on your...everything.
I love you sweet boy.
Two years ago today I got engaged. I had a huge Halloween flute recital with another studio and I was the director of the flute choir. We all dressed up in costumes--I was Hermione and Tom, my stage hand, was a farmer. He wouldn't dress up as Harry Potter despite my pleadings.
The concert was a huge success, and as I was thanking the audience, Tom came on stage. I gave him a puzzled look--I didn't need him to move any more stands, the show was over--but he got down on one knee and proposed to me in front of a big audience and 40-50 flute players, most of them teenage girls. I love him so much for doing that. I was just the perfect engagement. (I said yes, obviously.)

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Show & Tell

Stuff that I've been making to keep my mind off of being knocked up:

I just finished the purse yesterday. It's for my mother-in-law's X-Mas gift. I'm really getting hooked on making purses--it's my new thang. And then I had to show you my sushi pillow. I think that everyone needs one of those.
Thank you for your support RE: crappy friend/maternity clothes. I really thought that maybe I was just being overly sensitive. The more I think about it, if I had a friend whose baby had died and I had loaned her my mat. clothes, I really don't think that I would even ask for them back. I've still yet to look for them. She's probably only like five minutes pregnant anyway. Whatever.
Oh, and the costumes: I was a major poop-in-the-pants and didn't go to the party. Kaitlyn and I stayed home and ate Chinese and watched kid-friendly You Tube. I didn't even pick anything to be for Halloween, which is totally weird because I usually pick out my costume way in advance. I had fun just making costumes this year. But the good news is--Tom won first prize in the costume contest!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Halloween Costumes!

Yikes!!! There's a stealthy ninja in my house!

Tom in attack mode. Please note the aluminum foil throwing star.

Kaitlyn as the Rock N' Roll Witch. I'm so excited that I actually sewed something to wear!

Fall on our street.

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Saturday, October 21, 2006

My Saturday.

I read my email first thing this morning and in my mailbox was a note from someone who I used to be friends with. She's always been such a huge bummer to be around and honestly after everything that happened, I didn't want to constantly be having a "my life sucks" measuring contest. I've got her beat by a mile anyway.

So, I open up my mailbox and I see her note with "maternity clothes" in the heading. Evidently, she would like to have her maternity clothes that she had loaned me returned as it seems she will be needing them this winter. Well good for her. Way to breed. So now I get to go dig through my tubs of maternity clothes and I would much rather dig through tubs of say, someone else's dirty underpants or something equally horrible. OOOOHH I'M SO MAD AND I DON'T KNOW WHY!! She ruined my whole Saturday. What a snotty way to tell me that she's pregnant. "Oh by the way, I'll be needing my maternity clothes back. La dee da." I'm going to mail them to her. I don't want to see her.

Today, other than feeling sorry for myself and being a complete bitch to my husband and stepdaughter, I sewed some stuff. I actually sewed my first "mom" thing--a Halloween costume for Kaityln. She wanted to be Gwen Stefani, but I talked her into being a "Rock 'n Roll Witch". Yes, I made it up! She's nine! I can still talk her into stuff. I think that it turned out rather badass if I do say so myself. I also fashioned a ninja costume for my big studly husband out of his college graduation robe and a black t-shirt on his head for his cool ninja face mask thing. He was very excited. He and Kaitlyn sat on the floor cutting out cardboard "throwing stars" and covering them with aluminum foil. It was very cute. The costume is for a Halloween party--he's not like wearing it around the house or anything. But I won't be surprised if he does. I will post some pictures of Tom and Kaitlyn in said costumes soon.

In other news....we're applying to be on Trading Spaces with our neighbors! Further updates as events warrant.

That's all. Man, I am so aggravated. Why do I let stuff like this upset me?

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Oh Jesus.

Just now, I was sitting at my computer, reading blogs and minding my own business when the sound of an airplane drew my attention out the window directly in front of me. Flying behind the small airplane was a huge banner and on that banner was what I assume was an aborted fetus and the words "This is Roe vs. Wade." I feel sick.

CD 1

Like I mentioned in my last post, I've been peeing on a lot of sticks lately. Lots of sticks. Like seven in a three day span lot of sticks. My boobs were hurting--actually they were killing me, they hurt so badly. My boobs don't lie (insert Shakira song here). They only hurt when I'm pregnant. I just couldn't figure out why all of these HPT's were turning out negative and since I hadn't had a period since July, there was really no way that I could tell if I was testing too early. But my boobs hurt, so who cares, I was probably pregnant.

My period started on Sunday and it scared the hell out of me. That miscarriage shook me up so much, that the sight of any blood--even from my period--made my heart stop. I'm scared of my own uterus, apparently. So my period started, and I cried and sobbed for a couple of hours. I also had that horrible panic that I wasn't pregnant and that I had to be pregnant and I must be pregnant RIGHT NOW! And then, of course, I diagnosed myself as being completely nuts because I was having symptoms of a non-existent pregnancy. Good times.

But here's Logical Laura:
1.) My boobs probably really did hurt. They've never hurt when I wasn't pregnant, but I've also never had a miscarriage at 12 weeks. Who knows what my hormones were doing. They probably hurt after Nate was born, too, but I was more concerned with stopping my milk supply. (By the way, what a cruel thing that is, huh?)

2.) Yeah, my doctor told us that we could start right away, but honestly, the idea of getting pregnant before at least one period creeped me out a little. At least now we can have a timeframe for things.

3.) Here's someting interesting that I just thought of: My first period came 4 weeks and 3 days after Nate was born. This period came 4 weeks and 3 days after the D & C. Weird.

I've been thinking a lot about things. I had this empty, cold feeling inside that wasn't there before. As I've grieved for my son, there was still a little something in me. I picture it in my head as a candle--a little hope candle. After the miscarriage, the candle went out. That's a very scary feeling. Being hopeless.

I prayed so hard for a pregnancy. When we were in Europe, I obsessively hunted down any church and cathedral that I could find, shoved my Euros in the little tin boxes and lit candles. One for Nate, one for his brother or sister. At St. Peter's in Rome, I went into the heavily guilded and incensed room that was especially for prayer and offered up the best plea I could think of. I mean, this was St. Peter's, it was like the Big Red Phone to God. This one had to count. Hm. Maybe He's saving it for later. I hope so.

So, we're going to trudge forward. I'm more terrified than ever. This reproduction thing is turning out to be a little more difficult than I expected. But I can feel my little candle returning.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Another Tiny Angel

I want to send an enormous amount of love to Emma's Mum. I'm so sad to hear this news--it's just not fair. And that is a huge understatement. If you could, please drop by to give her some support.

Monday, October 09, 2006

In the News

Okay, I think that I'm ready to come out from under my rock. Time has helped and I have a lot to talk about. Especially today--this has been kind of big news in my town for the last couple of days and here's the story from today's paper. ( I had a link but changed my mind. And then I took out eveyone's last names for fear of being linked back to. I don't know if that helps or not. Anyway.)

Mother gets 5 years for drug use
Stacey S. admits to using meth, pot while she was pregnant.
Marcus K. The Associated Press

In the third such case in four years in Webster County, a Marshfield woman has been sentenced to five years in prison for using methamphetamine and marijuana during pregnancy.
Webster County Assistant Prosecutor John A said his office pushed for prison time rather than probation to send a message that it is unacceptable for addicts to force their habit on an unborn child.
Stacey S, 26, pleaded guilty to endangering the welfare of a child and was sentenced Thursday.
She gave birth in February in a car on the shoulder of Interstate 44 while being driven to a Springfield hospital by a girlfriend.
When she finally made it to the hospital, blood tests detected methamphetamine in the bodies of both the mother and the baby girl, investigators said in a probable-cause statement.
The child was immediately taken into state custody and now lives in a foster home, A said.
S. told investigators she was already addicted to methamphetamine when she discovered she was pregnant.
She said she tried to quit by switching to marijuana but was still using methamphetamine once a month.
She said she went into labor at a friend's house in Marshfield after smoking methamphetamine there.
She said she smoked marijuana to ease the pain of labor.
The sentence was two years short of the maximum of seven years that could have been imposed, A. said Friday.
He said similar sentences had been imposed in the two previous convictions of mothers who used meth during pregnancy.
"It's an egregious offense. When you make a decision as a drug user to subject yourself to all the negative impact of methamphetamine, you're doing it as an adult. But when you start making it for an unborn child and afflicting that child with methamphetamine addiction, that's a whole other level," A. said.

She actually gave birth on Februrary 3rd. Let's see, what was I doing on Februrary 3rd? Oh yeah, my husband and I were waiting on the results from the tests that would definitively tell us that our son was completely brain dead. Also on our agenda that day was to authorize the termination of Nate's life support and then we held him as he wheezed like a little squeaky toy and then finally died in our arms. The news of this roadside birth was all that I heard in the week following Nate's death. That and shots of Britney speeding down the road with her son on her lap behind the steering wheel. I think that's when I started to get a little pissy.

I hate this woman and I hope she rots in hell. I eat too many filet o' fish sandwiches and my baby dies. She takes metham-fucking-phetamines and her baby lives. But most of all, I hate her for what she did to her baby. That child will suffer for this for the rest of her life. I'm sure that she did irreversible damage to her daughter. It's horrible. And you know, the worst thing is that she probably will do it again. And she's probably done it before. She has other kids--it's just so sad. My heart is just broken for that little girl and her other children.

Well that was my big fat rant for the day. Ahhh, I feel better. I'm going to get caught up with everyone--I knew that I needed to come back when I started waking up in the middle of the night and talking to myself again. In other news, I am very bummed that T & T got kicked off of the Amazing Race last night. I was really hoping that the Barbies would go. I also can't stop peeing on sticks no matter how many times they turn out negative. Must. Stop.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Stand by

I don't have anything to say today.

I think that I'm going to take a break for a little while. I've had the wind knocked out of me. Things that used to be cathartic just aren't right now. Maybe it's just how I'm feeling today, in which case I'll be embarrassed tomorrow when I'm like, "Just kidding." I don't know.

Here is a picture of a fountain in Bruges, Belgium, which was one of my favorite places in Europe. I just love this fountain--I wish I had one for my backyard.

Talk to you soon...
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Friday, September 22, 2006

Doc Visit

Back from the doctor. Once again making that defeated walk down the hall to the exam room.

Here's the deal:

We can start trying again immediately. As in today, right after lunch if we want to. I asked, and yes, I could get pregnant before I have my first period. It would be pretty damn confusing when they ask when my last period was and I would say, umm July. But that is silly and it would have to just be tremendous luck because there is no way to even predict. But there's no harm in doin' it just for fun!

And he did kinda tell me who to call for counseling. I was hoping that he would have some specific names of people who might specialize in infant loss, since he was a high-risk OB and all. No, he just referred me to a place. Oh well. He scored so high with us in so many other areas, I'll let him slide on this one. I wouldn't have even known to call that place, so he helped a little.

So there's that. The rest is up to Mother Nature, I guess. I just want to get this over with. I just want to be pregnant and scared to death for 37 weeks and bring home a baby, for christssake. My sister and I were joking earlier that when and if this next kid ever gets here, he better not be a little jerk and pull stuff like, "You have to buy me that car, Mom, I'm a miracle baby!" Hmm.

Thursday, September 21, 2006


There you go again. Thank you so much. I felt like you were all right here in my family room, patting me on the back and saying, "It's going to be okay. Come on, let's go eat cheesecake and french fries."

I go to the doctor tomorrow and I'm excited and dreading it at the same time. Maybe excited isn't the right word. I don't know. I'm dreading it for the obvious reasons. I don't know why OB offices don't have a special waiting room for women who have lost babies. No little kids, no parenting magazines and if there are any pregnant women in there at all, they know exactly how I feel.

I'm just very interested in knowing what my doctor has to say about this miscarriage. I also am very interested in knowing when we can try again. And I am very interested in learning the names of some psychiatrists. I don't know why I've waited this long to do this. Maybe part of it is because Tom and I started relationship counseling almost immediately after we heard that a huge percentage of marriages end after the death of a child. We only go now when we need a "tune up". I think that I didn't want to talk about it with someone all by myself. A lot of times, Tom will talk for me.I just didn't want to think about it that hard. Even most of my posts are all hearts and flowers.

But these are the changes that I've noticed in myself:
  • I don't read books anymore.
  • I don't want to see "smart" movies anymore. I thought yesterday that the new Jackass movie might be funny.
  • I'm not keeping up with politics. I hate the man, I just can't tell you why, okay? He's a doody-head, how's that?
  • I don't listen to Classical music anymore because it makes me sad. Which means:
  • I haven't properly practiced my flute in months. I just don't pick it up anymore, except to play with my students. Now I officially suck.
  • I'm obsessed with keeping a perfect house and I get entirely bent out of shape when dinner turns out crap or Tom doesn't like the way I've put away his boxer shorts. The old me would have just said "fold your own fucking underpants" and served hot dogs cut up in Kraft Mac & Cheese for dinner.
  • I'm a perma-bitch. Julian's Mom called it a "constant cranky bitchy neurosis" and I think, "Ah-ha!!" That is me! I'm afraid of becoming the mean old lady on my block that smells of cat piss and screams at little kids to get out of her yard. Or even worse, the mean 31 year old lady who smells of cat piss and screams at little kids. Either way, it's no good.

I'm sure that there's more--I'm just tired of thinking about it. I'm not doing anything that requires a lot of thought. I can drive to work, feed the dog, shower and shave my legs (shave my legs? Ha!), not burn down the house. If you want to have an intelligent conversation about, well, anything, I'm not your girl. Let's go see Jackass.

Maybe for the past seven months, I've felt that I have to be sad all the time. If I'm not miserable and wallowing, then I'm not missing my son enough. It's not an act--I really am so, so sad. It's like I've just resigned to the fact that I'm the mother of a dead child and that's all I am. I should change my name. "Hi, I'm Mrs. Deadkid. Would you like to see pictures of my dead kid? Do you have a dead kid? No? Then you can't be in my club. Go away." That is no way to live. I'll go tomorrow and see what I can do about this. I just miss Nate so much and I'm so mad at Chip the Zygote for leaving. I'm so angry, I feel like I need to kick the shit out of everything. And I'm sick of this quiet house.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Little Miss Sunshine

Edited to add:
I wrote this entry last night, posted it and then took it down after about 30 minutes. Last night, when I got to thinking about it, I became worried about scaring my Mom (who reads this blog) or offending someone with my Zoloft talk. I thought that this stuff wasn't what I wanted people to associate with me. But this is my journal. I started it so that I could write it down and let it go and maybe even come back months or years later to better understand this journey I've been on. Like I say in my header--it's a pensieve.

I recently read this comment left by Delphi for a fellow blogger and it really struck a chord with me:

"EMOTIONS ARE NOT RIGHT OR WRONG, THEY JUST ARE. And the healthiest thing that anyone can do is express them - and a blog is the perfect forum for that."


I really don't have one particular thought or theme for this entry. I just feel like writing something and that's what blogs are for, right? This one will probably be all over the place, so just walk with me, ya'll.

I've just been thinking about this blogsphere support system that we have here. I've been thinking about all of the support that you have given me here as well as in email and in your own blog entries. I have a wonderful support system in my family and friends, and I don't know what I would do without them, but I don't know what I would do without you, either. In my town, the only support group that we've been able to find is The Compassionate Friends. I think that it's a great group that does so much good for people, but in our particular chapter Tom and I are the only parents who have lost a baby. Most of the people in our group have lost adult or teenage children. Not that that isn't every bit as horrible, it's just horrible in a different way. And as for people close to my husband and I that haven't lost a child, as much as they love us and as much and they are hurting because we're hurting so badly, I still can't help but think that they can go back to their own lives. What I would give to just go back to my own life. And now we've had this second loss. I'm afraid that people are thinking, "Poor Tom and Laura. Damn, I'm glad we're not them."

What am I getting to here? I think that it's this--I've been using this blogging thing as a psychiatrist. In the past 7 months I've been working so hard to get to a good place. To be able to be around my 8 month old nephew without crying. To be excited for my pregnant friends. To just be half-way normal and not define myself by my loss. But I was walking a fine line--it took everything I had to stay together most days and try to remain positive and happy like the old me. This miscarriage has pushed me over the edge--I'm bonafide. So when I go to the doctor on the 22nd, I'm going to ask him to refer me to someone. And maybe even give me a prescription for something.

Reading back over those last few sentences, it sounds like I'm saying that people who see psychiatrists and take meds are nutjobs. Good Christ, I don't mean that at all. After we lost Nate my OB gave me a prescription for Zoloft. I didn't fill it. I was so terrified that once I got pregnant again, I would have to go off it and I just didn't know what would happen. And this is just my ignorance about medications. I wasn't sure what I would be like coming off of the Zoloft coupled with pregnancy hormones. Both my husband and I controlled our grief with lots of exercise, and it did help. We both had a ton of baby weight to lose anyway. I guess that I just did what I thought was right for me at the time.

But I think that I had an anxiety attack yesterday. We went to an arts and crafts festival and I knew that I shouldn't have done that. Those dumb festivals are absolutely saturated with pregnant women and babies. Everybody wants to dress their baby up, plop them in a sling and go look at pottery and crap. Well I did anyway. I thought about it all the time when I was pregnant. Plus, I think that there must have been a baby boom this past December, January and February. There were babies Nate's age all over the place. And I can't believe that I'm even writing this, but I would look at these babies and I all could see was Nate in his tiny coffin with his little fist closed around a daisy and wearing his only dress-up outfit--blue Ralph Lauren feety overalls. And how Nate was buried so far underground and enclosed in a concrete vault. All I wanted to do was to go to him and claw at the dirt until I could reach him and hold him again. Is this my life, now? Where every baby and pregnant woman I see reminds me of how I have failed and what I don't have? Those were the thoughts that went through my head so furiously that I had to sit down and stare at a tree until I calmed down. I would like to be able to leave the house, you know? But I probably should avoid places that I know are going to be baby-filled. I just wanted to see some pottery.

This is such a sad post. If you've made it this far, thank you. That last paragraph was pretty heavy, I know. I don't quite feel like I'm starting over again, but I do feel that I've stumbled back several paces. Before I got pregnant this last time, I at least had the thought of being pregnant to hang on to. I've said before that having one loss doesn't make you exempt from having another, secretly believing that I really was exempt. I wasn't.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Square One

I'm just overwhelmed by all of your wonderful, comforting comments. Really, thank you so much.

**This might be kinda graphic. Just warning you.**

Pregnant, not pregnant, pregnant, not pregnant. I'm not a drama whore, honestly.

I spotted early in this pregnancy, which sent me to the emergency room to have the bad ultrasound, which led me to believe that I had a blighted ovum. So naturally, when I started spotting again on Monday afternoon, I chose to ignore it, even though this time I bled through my panties onto my pants. 24 hours later, still ignoring it, but Tom was getting more concerned. I just didn't want to spend another six hours in the emergency room and get another hamfisted ultrasound. I mean, really! After dinner, I started seeing these tiny, little clots and 30 minutes later when I went to check again, I had bled into the toilet. We left for the hospital and by the time we had gotten there, I was bleeding very heavily. We tried to go to L & D this time, but they turned us away because I was less than 20 weeks pregnant. That's the second time that I've been to that front desk, bleeding like crazy and they treated me like shit.

We walked the long way around to the emergency room, right past the NICU. Just in case I wasn't feeling bad enough, that was another kick to the stomach. When we finally arrived at the emergency room, they checked me in pretty quickly and put me in a room, thank goodness. As I was changing into the gown, blood was running down my legs and pooling on the floor. I think that this would be tramatic for anyone, I'm definately not denying that, but this is how I lost Nate. In a spectacular bloody mess. This was just too much, just too fucking much.

The emergency room doctor walked in, saw the blood on the floor and said, "Uh-Oh!" In a voice that was a little too sing-songy for my comfort. I think that he realized that he was being an asshat, especially when he asked what the outcome of my first pregnancy was.

After a pelvic exam and a blood draw, I was taken to ultrasound again. This time the bad news was delivered by the OB on call instead of the asshat ER doc. I think that I scared him off. The result was as expected, no hearbeat and no growth. He recommended a D & C. I told the doctor that because of my past experience with ER ultrasounds, I'd like to wait until the morning to have an OB ultrasound, thank you very much. But as soon as I stood up, I knew that I couldn't go home. There was too much blood and too many clots, and honestly, I was scared to death to pull down my pants and see for myself was was happening. I knew that there was no way that this pregnancy was viable at this point. I was faint and crampy. The pressure in my lower abdomen was horrible--another bad memory of Nate's birth. I had to have a D & C. So I did.

I told my Mom yesterday that I just can't put how I'm feeling into a word. It changes hourly, almost by the minute. Part of me is relieved. I didn't feel good about this pregnancy since conception, almost. I just had this terrible feeling that I would either miscarry or there would be something wrong with this child. I just knew. I had to talk myself into feeling pregnant with this one, and as much I heard that every pregnancy was different, I just couldn't shake the bad feeling that I had about never being sick. I never felt pregnant and yet my belly kept growing.

I feel old. Beat up. Tired. I feel like one of those pioneer women in old pictures, where they are only 30 but look 70. I don't recognize myself anymore and I don't know who I am anymore. I can't keep doing this. My heart hurts. So badly.

According to when I'm positive that I conceived, I was about 11 or 12 weeks pregnant. I was just getting my maternity clothes back out, and on the day that I miscarried I had finally gotten up the nerve to wear the cute, little top that I had bought in Paris. It was pink and said "fruit de passion" across the belly. I didn't feel so cute when I had to wear that shirt home from the hospital. I felt like a failure. Stupid people have babies every day. I mean, my god, Britney had her baby the same day I miscarried. Where is the fucking justice in any of this?! What did I do, anyway? And if there was a point to be made, I got it with the first one, okay?

So now I'm just playing with my new sewing machine--I've graduated from dog bandanas to cloth napkins. Still working on sewing a straight line, that's hard. I'm also making cupcakes today and playing with my new Pampered Chef toys that arrived yesterday. Neeto. Just playing with my new toys and feeling sorry for myself. You know, through all of this I've been imagining that I'm the heroine in a movie or a book. And I'm rooting so hard for this heroine, and I just know that there has got to be a happy ending to this story. There's just got to be.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Another little soul has passed in and out of my life. I miscarried last night. For real this time. D & C and everything.

My love bought me a new sewing machine today. I'm teaching myself how to sew by making bandanas for my dog. While I drink beer. Cheers.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Worst. Cookies. Ever.

I've been eating so much sweet stuff lately, which is kinda weird because I really don't have a sweet tooth. Actually, I ate a lot of sweets with Nate, so never mind. Yesterday, we ran out of cake, (oh horrors!!) so I ran to the store to get stuff to make another one as fast a possible. While there, I decided to just make chocolate chip cookies instead, since there were less groceries involved with that. I was even going to go old school and use the recipe off of the Nestle bag. I never do that, because I think that there are a million better ways to make chocolate chip cookies. But me, the cookie recipe snob managed to eff-up the Nestle Toll House recipe. I am humbled.

See how flat? What the hell? But you might say--I like me a flat, crispy cookie, Laura. Well, my friend, these flat, crispy cookies also taste like...soap. Yes, it's true. I didn't rinse the Silpat that I baked them on very well. So they taste like apple blossom Dawn dish soap. Mmmmm. Of course I had to eat three to make sure that was really what I was tasting.

Round Two: chucked the Silpat ( I guess that I could have washed it, but I was pissed at it and put it in time out.) Lowered the temp of the oven and refrigerated the dough for awhile. Still flat and this time they stuck like crazy to the pan. BUT--the essence of apple blossom Dawn was gone.

Round three: Ahh, fuck it. Have a giant cookie.

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Thursday, September 07, 2006


I saw this taped to a telephone pole on the way to work today:

Large black dog
Missing one eye
Needs insulin
Answers to Jo Jo

Man, now I'm worried about a dog that I don't even know. Godspeed, Jo Jo!

Friday, September 01, 2006

Title goes here

So, I'm kind of a mess these days. I just can't even bring myself to write anything anymore, even though I've got enough material to post twice a day, no lie. But I don't have the energy to talk about it--any of it. I'm not sleeping at night. After I wake up for my 1:45 am pee, I just lay there, thinking thinking thinking, talking to myself, crying, flopping around like a fish in the bottom of a boat. I eventually fall asleep at about 5:30 after listening to the grandfather clock bong, bong, bong for hours. I can't do this for the next 7 months.

And then there's this concern that I have--I'm not sick. Why? I wish that I would just puke already. I was barfy until exactly 16 weeks with Nate, and I'm not even nauseated with this one. Part of me thinks that the universe is cutting me a break with this one--"Okay people, Laura's pregnant again. Now, we really dropped the ball with her last kid, so let's go easy on her this time. No puking, no acne, and for christssake, no constipation this time. Oh, and let's make sure that she can still eat biscuits and sausage gravy and find it delicious." The only reason that I know I'm pregnant is because occasionally, very occasionally, my boobs feel like they're going to explode. But that's it. So my worry is--where in the hell are the hormones that are supporting this pregnancy if they're not around to make me sick? Maybe they're around, but they are what's keeping me from sleeping at night, crying all day, not wanting to leave the house and completely avoiding my poor husband. Maybe? I never thought that I'd ever be wishing to puke.

I'm just scared. Bringing home a baby is so out of the scope of my imagination. Actually bringing home a live baby and using all the cool baby stuff that I already have, some not even taken out of the packages, is about as unfathomable to me as leaving the hospital without my son was the first time I was pregnant. Ugh, I hate that. I've always been such a ridiculously positive Pollyanna type of person. I guess that this is what fear does to a person. It's ugly. I'm going to work on this, though. There is no way that I'm not going to celebrate this baby. He or she deserves all the hope that I have. I have to be brave--that' s what moms do for their kids.

Anyway, my point was, I'm sorry that I've been such a crappy blogger. I'd say that I was going to take a break for awhile, but who knows, I might have a ton of garbage to get off my chest tomorrow. Or maybe I'll just post pictures of stuff that I bake. Or flowers. Whatever. I'm hoping that here in a couple of months, when I can finally feel Chip moving around in there, I'll start feeling more connected and positive. I'm sure I will. Now that I've written this, I really think that my formerly barfy hormones have changed duties and are turning me into a horrible, weepy, whiney hobgoblin. You think?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

The Roller Coaster

This is a post that I had not intended to write today. I had already planned what I would write, a completely different one, but I wanted to wait until after my doctor's appointment on Wednesday.

Sunday morning, I was spotting. It was really faint and brown and was only there when I would wipe after I peed. I checked Google of course, and decided that it was normal. No big deal. But as the morning wore on, I started feeling uneasy. I didn't spot at all in my pregnancy with Nate, and since I was considered high risk with this one, we decided to go to the ER.

At the ER, they tested my beta levels and (hours later) I was given an ultrasound. I was taken down to ultrasound on a gurney and put in a room next to a screaming two-year-old. The ultrasound tech gave me a regular ultrasound and not liking the results from that one, she switched to the dildo cam. She dug around in there for awhile, talking to herself, then she started measuring a large black spot. I squinted at the screen, trying to see what kind of measurements she was taking. Was she measuring one of my ovaries? No, it was of the place where the little embryo was supposed to be. It was empty, and I knew right away--it was a blighted ovum. Oh shit.

So, back in the exam room, waiting for the stupid doctor, I'm laying on the gurney in tears. Finally the doctor returns after my ultrasound had been reviewed and blood tests were ready. He says to me, "What's with the tears? Do you know something that I don't?" and then he gets serious--"I'm very worried about this pregnancy." I put my hands over my face and start to sob. Why in hell did I think that the universe was going to cut us a break this time? The doctor went on to explain that it looked like a blighted ovum (duh) but he couldn't figure out why my beta levels were so high. So, I was told to go in for another beta on Tuesday, another ultrasound in a week, was given a RhoGam shot in my butt and sent home.

We decided that we wouldn't tell anyone about this right away, only family and close friends (and internet friends!) knew about this pregnancy anyway. We'd wait until after what was supposed to be my first OB appointment on Wednesday, where I had an ultrasound already scheduled. When we had a clearer explanation, we'd tell everyone. And I'm kicking myself for opening my mouth so early in the first place. I made it to Monday morning and I had to talk to my mom. She spread the word with a few family members, and I figured that we'd break the bad news to everyone else on Wednesday

The rest of Sunday, Monday and Tuesday were weird. I went back and forth between feeling sad and then pissed off and then peaceful about it. On Tuesday, after I had gone back for my second beta, I struggled with extreme guilt about the death of my son and blaming myself for my abruption. I obsessed with how close I was to having my little boy. My pregnancy was perfect until that last 15 minutes. I was pissed off that I even had to be pregnant again--I should have a six and a half month old and way too busy to even think about being pregnant. I felt almost as dark on Tuesday as I did in those first few days after Nate died, those days where I don't even remember seeing things in color. I remember them in black and white. I knew one thing for sure, though--I wasn't going to get my hopes up. No more disappointments! I knew that there was an weird, empty sac inside of me, and now all I could do was to sit around and wait to miscarry. Lovely.

Wednesday morning came, and I was dreading my appointment. The last thing that I wanted to do was to get another ultrasound and see that little nothing inside of me. The last time I had been inside my OB's ultrasound room was under much happier circumstances. It was when we found out that I was having a b-o-y. How cool. The ultrasound tech asked me why I went to the ER. I told her that it was a possible blighted ovum and went into the bathroom to to get ready for another transvaginal ultrasound. Up on the table, feet in the stirrups, in goes the dildo cam and then...a heartbeat. I saw what I had been looking so desperately for on Sunday. Instead of the empty black hole, I see the little strobe light. Oh God. The tech said, "There it is! That's a viable pregnancy." We were in shock, and couldn't say anything except, "Are you sure?! are you sure?!" Of course we asked what the deal was on Sunday. She just said, "Never get an OB ultrasound in the ER." I was completely stunned. Five minutes ago I wasn't pregnant--I was planning to have a glass or four of wine when I got home and clean out the cat box. Now I was. My brain is still trying to get around this one.

After the ultrasound, it was business as usual. I met my new doctor and I love him. More on that later, probably.

Oh man, I can't believe this.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006


I had my first doctor's appointment last Friday. Well, it really wasn't with the doctor, it was that first appointment when they tell you what your insurance covers, the nurse does the history write-up, and then they take 12 ginormous vials of blood our of your arm.

I called the office as soon as I got the postive test, and when I requested an appointment with my own OB, I was informed that he retired. Just that week actually. They were in the process of distributing his patients to the other doctors in the practice, so I requested the doctor who did my emergency c-section. It turns out that he's the high-risk specialist, so that's good. And it's probably good that I'm going with a new doctor, too. I know that my doctor had nothing to do with what happened, but still. I don't know.

Tom went with me to the appointment, thank God. I almost wish that I had picked an entirely different practice, so I wouldn't have to sit in that same waiting room, but it feels a little better now than it did at my post-partum exams. Most of the time was spent waiting in the lab anyway. Another much more pregnant chick was waiting there too, just having had her "big" ultrasound (it was a boy). She was chatty--"Is this your first?" she asks. "No", I say, secretly daring her to ask for more details. I don't know why. I think that she was just getting on my nerves, and I wanted to shut her up. Instead she asked if my Crocs were comfortable. So that makes me think--I'm not going to spend this pregnancy fiendishly scaring other pregnant woman with my story, am I? Because that's just mean. And kinda sick. I'll have to keep an eye on that.

Tom wanted to know if women are always that chatty in this place. (Small talk from strangers annoys the hell out of him.) I tell him yes, they always are. Women use this one common denominator as the reason to ask a million questions. He said that it was like being on vacation again--Where are you from? What do you do? Is this your first cruise? Yeah, it's totally like that.

The meeting with the nurse was laid back and brief. Of course the only difficult part was when she asked how many pregnancies I've had and how many resulted in a live birth. And I had to say that the pregnancy lasted for 40 weeks but no, he wasn't stillborn but brain dead, and he was on life support for four days.

I wish that I knew what the "plan" was going to be. I think that I would just feel a little more at ease if I did, but I won't know that until I meet with Dr. W on the 23rd. The good news is that I'll get an ultrasound at that first appointment. I think that's already a positive sign of things to come. I didn't get my first ultrasound with Nate until 19 weeks, and the nurse told me that I would have lots of ultrasounds with Dr. W, which makes me feel better already.

So--I've had the stomach flu for the past two days. I wish that I could write something more profound--I've got lots of profound thoughts swirling around in my head--but I should probably go have some toast. Ugh.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

There are do-overs in this game, right?

Okay, so here I am again. I think. It's still so freaking early--my feet just hit the floor, as my mom would say--so anything could happen. I've been trying to get my brain around this for several days, being hopeful and detatched at the same time.

I had taken a test last Saturday (fair pie day, actually) and there was a super faint pink line. I waited until Monday, Nate's six month birthday, to take another and it turned positive quickly. Kind of a neat coincidence, I thought. Made the day easier, that's for sure.

So, I'm really battling with how to feel right now. I think that "cautiously excited" would be a good term to use. Things are so different now, I'm not doing the same things that I was last time at approximately six weeks. (Other than sitting here in a cloud of semi-nausea.) At six weeks last time, I had already hit Barnes & Noble to buy a stack of baby books. We went there the other night, and I headed straight to the knitting books. I had no desire to peruse the baby aisle, and I don't know why. I think that it just made me sad--we had spent a lot happy moments reading the back covers of books, Tom having to lug me off of the floor because I had gotten too big to haul my ass off the floor by myself. And the last time we were there, we were two pale, swollen-eyed new parents reading the backs of different books--The Bereaved Parent and On Death and Dying. So anyway, I left Barnes and Noble the other night with Knitting Rules. (She has a good section on socks, and I've constantly been knitting mine wrong side out.)

Things just feel so strange this time. I'm not joining one of those Due Date Clubs this time, that's for sure. I hunted a couple out yesterday, and I just couldn't do it. I started running across too many women that had January/February 2006 babies, and were pregnant again. Or just the first-time preggos, bubbling over with excitement. Or the chick that was bitching that she almost had to have a c-section last time. (That must have been so traumatic for you, sweetie. Gosh.)

I just read what I have written, and it sounds so negative. I don't mean that at all. I'm so thankful, it's everything I want to have a baby to bring home. And while I'm a little freaked out, I also feel a little more peaceful at the same time. This is my analysis of myself: six months of grieving my son has instilled in me such a fear of running across all things baby, that I can't, even though pregnant, bring myself to look at books. Either that or I've read all those books, and I already know all that crap. But I think that my theory still holds water for seeing/talking to pregnant women and people with babies.

People might be wondering if I got pregnant on our trip. We're pretty sure that it happened on the last day of our trip, in London. So in keeping with the theme, Baby Spice might work, but I think I'll call the zygote Chip. That's what I ate for dinner that night. (With fish, of course.)

So, little Chip, hang in there. If we can both make it to the end, everything is going to be okay.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Friday, August 04, 2006


I guess that my boobs really did hurt.

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Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Lala vs.The Old Ladies

"Hey Laura, what'd you do this weekend?" I baked six freakin' pies for the fair. I do this to myself every year. In addition to pies, I also entered a chocolate cake, brownies and cinnamon rolls. I'm entirely too competitive. I get myself all worked up like a madwoman, foaming at the mouth, trying to find THE recipe that will kick the asses of little old ladies from all over the county. Never mind that they've been baking for like, 75 years, and their recipes are probably handed down from their mother's mother. Never mind that I've been baking for like, 3 years, and I haven't even tried half the recipes that I entered. In hindsight, that was a very bad idea. My apple pie was truly vile. And of course I don't know this until after the pie is judged. (It was the recipe for the winning apple pie in the American Pie Council cookoff--why even test it? It had to be good!)

My main objective in the pie bake-off is the beat that one woman. The One Who Cannot Be Beat. Her name is Nancy and she strikes fear into the heart of every exhibitor in the pie and cake category. No one can beat this woman and it's becoming ridiculous. But I had a secret weapon this year--her pie crust recipe! Bwhahahahahaha!! I used to work with Nancy at the music store before she retired. She's just the nicest lady ever and very generous with her recipes. I had never used her crust recipe before because I thought that it would be cheating, but this year I was taking no prisoners, by God!

Well, it turned out that it didn't matter anyway. Once again, Nancy smote all of us. It got to the point that people just stopped clapping when the judges would announce Nancy's first place pie. One woman just got up and left. Now, it would sound like we are a bunch of sour grapes and maybe we just need to learn to bake more proficiently. Yes, perhaps. However, the judges are the same obese, roly-poly, ex-home-ec teachers every year and know Nancy's pies! Once after taking a bite they said, "We know whose this is," in a sing-songy voice. Last year they opened up the whole competition with a five-minute monologue on how great Nancy is and how wonderful her pies are! Bullshit!! Foul, foul, foul!!!

So, you know what? I'm going to practice and feed my family pie all year, and then I'm going all the way to the top, baby. That's right--the Missouri State Fair. I demand justice!

Oh, here are the final results:
Chocolate Cake-3rd place
Brownies-3rd place
Cinnamon Rolls-2nd place
Peach Pie-2nd place
Blackberry Pie-3rd place
Blueberry Pie-3rd place

I was a little lonely baking this year, thinking about who should have been my bakin' buddy. I was about 10 or 12 weeks pregnant at the fair last year, and of course I was thinking ahead to how different it would be the next year.
Yesterday was Nate's six month birthday. Six months is such a cute age for a baby, and they change so much from when they are just born. It's so hard for me to imagine what he might look like now. Hmm..
Hey, Good News! I heard that Milo entered the world this morning! Congrats to Justin and Laura!!

Monday, July 24, 2006

So, for those of you that are participating in Babywatch 2006 , we are officially "trying" now. This is our first month or cycle or whatever--we were supposed to wait 6 months (Doctor originally said 1 year, but settled on 6 months later) and we thought that five and a half months would be okay. So here we are and I can tell already---this sucks. My boobs hurt and I'm exhausted, but I think that I've talked myself into those symptoms which is a total crazy lady thing to do. I took one of those early pregnancy tests this morning, because according to my little ovulation calendar and a 24-day cycle, today should have been the first day that a test could work. Negative. You know I think that there should be special tests for people that actually want to get pregnant. So instead of saying NOT PREGNANT, there should be a little scrolling marquee through the window--"Okay Sweetie. Now listen, you're not pregnant this month, but I have a really good feeling about next month. Don't freak out, everything will be fine. Also, you're beautiful and everybody loves you."

Okay, it sounds like I'm upset, but I'm really not. This is our first month trying, and it's still kinda early to test anyway, but dammit, I've been waiting to bring a baby home since May 2005 and I'm sick of waiting. I thought that nine months was a long time. I never thought that I would have to pile at least another year on top of that. Ugh, this is such bullshit.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Last ones, I promise!

Holy Crepe!

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Okay, just a few more.....

Here we are in Amsterdam, in front of the Bluebird Coffeeshop. Draw your own conclusions.
(This was also our first wedding anniversary.)

Hooray! A beer tasting in Belgium!

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Thursday, July 20, 2006


Did you know that Gibraltar had tons of monkeys wandering around?
This momma monkey bit a lady on our tour. The dumbass lady tried to put her arm around the nursing monkey while her husband took a picture.
Monkey Attack!

St. Michael's Cave at Gibraltar
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Monaco, Monte Carlo and a naked chick.

Monaco had GORGEOUS flowers!

The Casino in Monte Carlo where we won 125 euro :)

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Okay, I was busted on the naked chick. Tom made me get rid of it. So here are some mushy peas from London.