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Our big girl!

Our big girl!
Growing so fast!

Kylie 1 day old

Kylie 1 day old
Curling up

Bryleigh Addison

Bryleigh Addison
Our youngest miracle


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Monday, January 31, 2011

A Conglomeration...

So much is going through my mind right now that I'm not sure where to begin, where this will go, or where or when it will end. All I know is I am so, so super emotional. I think that is partly to do with the clomid, since it makes you a nutcase and hormonal. Well, the rest is self-explanatory.

I have not yet addressed the issue of the anonymous poster that has gotten me to this point in my FB and blogging situations. Due to the fact that the anonymous poster made it clear that she has a lot of ill feelings toward me, and due to the fact that she made it clear that she is very close to my family and friends, I feel the need to respond now. I have had several days to stew over this information, and I have some things to get off my chest.

First of all, you, anonymous poster, are a coward, a bully, and an overall heartless person. You want to blast me publicly, while spelling incorrectly and getting your facts all wrong and mixed up, and sharing personal information that not everyone knew. Thanks to you, I know that I am a much better person than that. I don't go "anonymously" on a "friend's" blog and blast them and say hateful, rude, distasteful things.

I don't care about attention for me. You know who I want attention for? KYLIE. I want KYLIE to be remembered by everyone. I want Kylie to have a positive impact on every single person I can possibly contact. Seems like you're a little jealous of the attention that Kylie gets. What a sick person that makes you.

Second of all, if my doctors felt that my weight was the issue, they would not be prescribing me medicine and helping me to achieve pregnancy. Thank you, I conceived Kylie all on my own without the help of fertility drugs. I have a condition called PCOS that causes my body to over-produce insulin, which creates excess body fat. It is a difficult condition to control, and a difficult condition to treat. Doctors are still trying to find the best diets, medicines, and treatments for this condition. Losing Kylie had nothing to do with my weight, and it had nothing to do with me. My placenta did not form completely, due to the insulin resistance that was created by my condition. Kylie also died because my OB/GYN did NOT give me the care I deserved and did not listen to the warning signs a specialist would have found. I know what I can and can't do, so I don't need you to pretend you have a medical degree to "diagnose" me.

And of course, no one appointed you speaker of all, because my friends and family (my REAL friends) can speak for themselves. And I will be DAMNED if I will let you think I am not a mother to Jaycee. Jaycee has two mommies and one daddy, and it works for us. I don't always call myself her mommy, and I don't have to. Jaycee knows how much I love her and how much my every day life revolves around her. No one who sees me with Jaycee can say that I don't love her or treat her like she's my own. She is such a big part of our lives, and Chris and I parent equally. If it weren't for Jaycee, I would not have made it through the past 16 months.

As for my teaching... well, let's just say that it is none of your damn business. I do my job, and I have a good repor with my students. I do not ever post blogs while teaching. I do it before school or after I am done with kids. I am done with kids at 1:45 each day, so it's not really up to you to tell me when or where I post. You don't know me and my teaching abilities.

I know what you tried to do. You tried to plant seeds of doubt in my mind. You wanted me to doubt myself, my family, my friends, my children. You wanted me to doubt my ability to teach, my ability to do positive things, and my ability to be a friend and a mommy. You tried to tear me down just to make yourself feel better. Well, I hope that you are happy. I think you achieved the opposite of what you wanted. My true friends and family rallied around me, and it has made me a stronger person.

I just wish you would come out of hiding and tell me who you are so I can officially write you out of my life forever. I won't argue with you, I won't fight you, I won't do anything. I will just be done, because you are not a true friend. The truth WILL come out. It will.

I know where I stand, and I am a mommy, a teacher, a friend, a wife, a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a cousin, a writer, an advocate. I am important as a person.

So what if I am still grieving? The experts say real, heavy grief can last anywhere from 18-24 months. I am not even to 16 months yet, so it's okay for me to be sad when I want, negative when I want, and depressed when I want. It is normal.

Seems like I am having some success with my body cooperating this month, and I go for progesterone check on Monday of next week. I am anxious to see what my numbers look like, as it has been since December since I had my numbers checked last. I hope the medicine is doing the trick, because it surely had me in some pain this weekend.

So, to my true friends and family, thank you for standing by me no matter what. Thank you for defending me, and thank you for standing up for me. Thank you for loving me and for not being a heartless person. Thank you for being you.

To my Kylie: I love you more than any words can say. You are so beautiful that you make people jealous of you, and I think that's pretty special! I miss you sweet angel!

To my Jaycee: You have brought me so much joy and happiness since we first brought you home. You make me smile every single day, and I am forever grateful for that. I love you with all my heart.

To my husband: You have been such a rock for me through this huge ordeal, and your comforting words and hugs have been so important in helping me heal and deal with this I love you. I love you. I love you.

To my Murphy: You were truly the best dog in the world. You always knew how to give the best kisses, and you always knew the right way to make me feel loved. I love you and miss you so much.

To my REAL friends: You guys are truly amazing. You are my rocks, and I don't know how I would have gotten through the past 16 months without you. For friends old and new, I am thankful for your friendship and your love.

To my family: I think it goes without saying that I love you and care for you so much. Your unconditional love and support is what I desperately needed to make it this far. I have a long way to go, but your love for Kylie, me, Chris, and Jaycee will definitely get us through it. I love you.

Friday, January 28, 2011

My sweet Murph

Today, Heaven gained another angel. My sweet Murphy, the best dog in the entire world, left us today to go be with her baby sister, Kylie Brielle.

Murphy is not just any ordinary dog. Murphy is family. Murphy is like another child to me.

Murphy was 6 months old when we found her in the newspaper in Auburn. We met in the Winn-Dixie parking lot, where they brought Murphy and her sister Peanut. Murphy's hair was shorter, softer, and slicker, and she just looked at me with those deep brown eyes, and I was hooked.. we gladly wrapped her in a towel and headed to Wal-Mart to get our new puppy settled.

Not long after, Murphy tore up every single present under the Christmas tree, and we decided that maybe we weren't ready for a dog. We called the people, and they took her back. Every day, I thought of my sweet little puppy, and within a month, Murphy was back home with us where she belonged.

When we traveled home, sometimes Murphy would go to her former home and play with her sister Peanut and all the other dogs they had. Sometimes, she would come with us... it was always an adventure. Murphy used to get very car sick, and so we would have to buy a huge tarp from Wal-Mart, and cover the backs of the front seats, as well as the entire back seat, with the tarp. We had to give her dramamine, and she still drooled the entire trip from Auburn to home and back, and she would throw up numerous times. Thank goodness, she eventually grew out of that...

Murphy was a fast learner. She knew how to sit already, and it took literally no time to house train her. Murphy would come inside with us, and then would go out at night, when we first had her. By the time we left Auburn, Murphy was a fully inside dog.

Murphy loved my daddy more than any one else (outside of me and Chris). She would tear the door down when Daddy came to visit, and even to this day, she would have a fit of whining and tail wagging and lots of kissing to give my daddy. He was her favorite person.

We taught her early on: "Who's here, Murph? Who's here?" And she would go to the door or window and look out, and bark if someone was here, and fall to pieces if it was someone she knew. How smart is that? We taught her to shake in a day. In another day, we taught her how to high-five--- one of her favorite tricks. She even did 'taters", which is when you show your fist.

If we said, Murphy, go to bed, she would go to the bedroom door, push the door open, and crawl under our bed. If we said Murphy, you wanna go outside? She would walk to the door or dance in front of it, wagging her tail with such enthusiasm that I thought sometimes she would knock me out.

Murphy was truly one of a kind. Everywhere we took her, everyone gushed over how beautiful she was. "What kind of dog is she?" "She is just so gorgeous!" Murphy looked like a half-sized doberman, with perfect brown markings...

All the time, I could look into those watery brown eyes and just melt. I babied her so, so much. Chris would get so mad at me sometimes, because I would just baby her. She would curl up in the recliner with me, curl up on the couch with me.. or just sit at my feet and nudge me until I pet her.

And of course, there was the singing... I loved singing to her one particular song... "You're my... brown eyed girl... you're my... brown eyed girl." she loved the part "sha-la-la..." she would wag her tail and lean against me. I know she knew this song was special for her... I never sang it to anyone else.

Murphy-Murph, Murphy, Murph-Murph, sweet girl, momma's girl.. they were all names for her. Murph was so good with kids, so good with everyone.

Bless her heart, with all her good, she had some faults. My beautiful dog loved getting into trash, blinds, and kitty litter. I know my friends won't forget the day I brought them to see our new house, and we had left Murphy at home for less than 2 hours, and when we showed up, every blind in the house was destroyed! =) Boy, she knew she was in trouble then.

Murphy always had a way of avoiding punishment, because she would sit and look up at you with those eyes, and my heart would just freakin' melt. I would get so mad at Chris for getting on to her, because she's a dog, and she's a baby, I would argue ...

Yes. Murphy will always be my baby. Murphy is the best dog ever. Murphy is missed so terribly right now...

The house is so quiet, so empty. There's no dog to look over at, no one to say "Murphy, go lay down.. Murphy, you're under my feet... Whatchu doin Murph?"

The hardest part was telling Jaycee that Murphy was in Heaven with baby sister... her question was "Why?" ... "Well baby, Murphy was sick.." "But why Mommy?" Well, I guess I didn't have an answer, because I want to know the same thing...

In the past 36 hours, my life has gone through so much heck. I get personally bashed and attacked here on my own blog, so badly that I must now take precautions to protect myself and save myself from that kind of nastiness. I then come home and my beloved family pet is gone... and I feel so guilty about it.. and then some crazy man who thinks we're someone else wants to come and cause problems. The cops have been at our house twice today because he has shown up and wouldn't leave... and yet they can't arrest him or anything...

For my Murphy:
You will always be my sweet girl. I miss you so much already... you should be at my feet, snoring away. You should be following me as I walk to the kitchen, and you should be busting in the bedroom door when I go to the bathroom. You should be here... and it is killing me inside that you are not. Sweet Murph, you are so special, and you will always be my baby girl. I love you so, so much... I hope you know that. Please take care of Kylie in Heaven-- I am so glad you finally get to meet your baby sister. Just don't lick her to pieces, like you always do to everyone. I would rather her not get bombarded with Murphy slobber. Please come visit me often... I miss you terribly and am going to have a hard time going through this with everything else. I love you, Murph-Murph. Be good.


Thursday, January 27, 2011

I can be negative if I want to...

So the anonymous poster on my last blog just really set me off. I understand people are trying to help, but my God, could you be any LESS supportive? The last thing anyone in my position wants or needs to hear is "You need to be positive. Maybe the world doesn't want to bring another child into your life if it is so negative."

Do you know what that makes me feel like? That makes me feel like I am unfit to be a good mother. That makes me feel like you think that I am not capable of being a good mother because I am so upset. Did you lose your first born child? Did you watch your child suffer through an agonizing, painful disease and surgery? Did you watch your child die in your arms? Did you try everything you possibly could to keep it from happening? Don't you dare judge me. This is MY BLOG, and I can write whatever I want. I shouldn't have to worry about people who try to bring me down even more. I am entitled to feel any way I want, and it is really hard to be positive when your life has been completely ripped out from underneath you.

If you don't want to read my negative posts, then don't. If you don't think I'm in the right state of mind, condition, or position to have another child, then keep it to yourself. I have enough on my plate to worry about. I can't be upset even more by people putting me down more. I look to my comments for solace, comfort, and support, not for putting me down and degrading me and making me feel worthless, which is what you have done.

I guess I'm just not mother-material. I guess it is not meant to be. I guess I'll just accept the fact that I am not going to be a mother again, and just live my life in silence, since I can't even be free to post what I want here. Everything is so crappy. If you lived my life, you might understand. I wouldn't wish this constant pain and agony on anyone, not even you or my worst enemy. Do me a favor and don't be helpful if all you have are comments like that. I'm going through enough.

This will probably be my last publicly noted post for awhile. If anyone wants to keep up with me, you'll have to do it by following and checking every so often. I don't want anymore comments like that one.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A motherly desire

My entire life, I have always wanted to be a mom. I have always wanted children, and at least 3. I have also, since I was a teenager, had a huge fear of not being able to have children. Why, I don't know. It was odd- I would always think about having children, and then the thoughts would pop up: "what if I can't have children?".

It makes me wonder what my body has been trying to tell me myentire life... what my mind knew that my heart cannot grasp. I am beginning to think that I've been trying to prepare myself for the fact that I will not have children of my own here on earth with me.

I am so depressed, so broken, so lost... in so much pain. I want to have a baby so badly. I want to have my OWN baby, and I would give anything to have Kylie back. I cannot have her back, so I do want another child to fill this void in my heart- my yearning to be a mother. This child would never replace my Kylie, but it would help fill my desire to become a mother.

In April of 2010, when I could finally start trying again, my body decided to wage war on me again. April to June, things went haywire. June is when I started seeing my new doc, Dr. H. He was so kind and so great-- he worked with me for June, July, and August to get my cycles on track and coming on their own. In August, I started back on clomid (50 mg) and again in September. In October, I started on 100 mg a day, and have been on it ever since. This month is the last month I can take clomid for awhile. It would be the fifth month.

I am so scared, so frustrated... it's 3 years ago all over again. The "no's" each month are killing my soul. The empty nursery is a constant reminder, but I cannot bear to take it down. The inability for my body to regulate itself is so frustrating and draining. I feel worthless, useless, hopeless. Others get pregnant right away. Others say it's easier to conceive the second child once you have had your first. Why do people say that?

It isn't easier. It sucks. It royally sucks. I shouldn't even have to be trying to have a baby. I should be caring for an almost 16 month old preemie who needs her Mommy more than others. I should be looking at a house full of baby toys, clothes, and tiny socks. I should not be buying ovulation kits, clomid, and prenatal vitams in hopes that I will conceive this month.

Why me? Why has my whole journey to motherhood been full of pain and suffering? Why is my whole life consummed with NO to every thing I ever wanted with all my heart? Why am I being forced to live this life of uncertainty and heartbreak? Haven't I suffered enough? I just want to be a mommy again. I want another child. I want to have an opportunity at a full 40 week pregnancy. I want a baby to love, to raise, to teach, and to guide. I want to complete my family. At this rate, I'll be happy with just one more sweet angel to add to my home. BUt, I can't even get that.

This is emotionally, mentally, physically draining. It brings out every emotion I ever had before I got pregnant with Kylie, and it brings back every memory of my pregnancy with Kylie, every memory of my life with her, and every memory of my living hell since losing her.

I am not okay today. I am not okay right now. It is so hard for anyone to understand my desires and my pain, and to top it off, I am still grieving, which makes this process all the more difficult. I just want things to work out in my favor for once.

Everyone keeps saying "Well, you know you can get pregnant." Well, tell my body that. Yes, I got pregnant with Kylie. Yes, it happened on its own. But apparently, it isn't happening now. How in the world is that supposed to comfort me?

Fertility issues suck. Being unable to conceive sucks. Being a mother who has lost her baby... well, it stinks to be in this position.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

To my princess

My dearest Kylie Brielle,

Sweet angel, words could never begin to express how much you are loved and missed. Your life was and is a blessing to me and your daddy, and not a day goes by that we don't think of you OFTEN.

Today, I stood by bed 11 in the NICU... well to me, it will always be YOUR bed. It was your home. It is where you lived... and where you died. I thought it would be easier to stand there... but it wasn't. At that exact moment, I think for a few moments, I missed you more than I have EVER missed you in my life. I think for a moment, I hurt more than I have ever hurt. It was a realization that you are truly gone, that you are truly in Heaven... A realization that your life was so terribly short...

October 15, 2009 will never leave my mind. The sounds, the events... the emotions. It will always be a difficult day. It will always be something I remember.

But in all of that pain, all of that grief... all of that overwhelming sense of hopelessness and despair... I have you. You, my beautiful princess, are priceless. There is nothing and no one in this world more special or more beautiful than you.

For my entire life, no one will ever take your place. No one will ever be you.

I just wanted to remind you of a special phrase that always makes me think of you:
"On the night you were born,
the moon shone with such wonder
that the stars peeked in
to see you
and the night wind whispered,
'Life will never be the same.'

Because there had never been
anyone like you...
ever in the world."

Sweet girl, that is so true. I was in awe of you, and you still put me in awe of your grace, beauty and wonder.

Yesterday, I saw a billboard on a church. This church has a way with sayings that get to you- I often write them down. This one said: "Blessed is the influence of one loving soul on another." I feel that you have influenced me in so many special ways, and you are influencing so many others in many beautiful ways. Your life is a gift, and your memory is going to live on for everyone to benefit from. You live even in death, as your spirit will never fade. You, my sweet baby girl, are truly an angel.

I am so blessed to be your Mommy, and so blessed to have you as my child. I love you with every single fiber of my being, and I miss you so badly it hurts. You are perfect, and mine, and I am so proud to be your Mommy.

As always, be sweet, my princess.

With sincere love,

Your Mommy

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Priceless Friendships and Growing Up

Today, after a very deep conversation, a very real, very personal conversation with my close friends, I made a realization.

We have all grown up so much; for the first time in my life, today, I felt like an adult. I felt like all of us had become adults. We were discussing personal, difficult, deep topics without being offensive, being offended, or getting upset. We were respectful, able to see different sides. We were grown women having a grown-up conversation.

I realized today that we have all turned out to be pretty amazing women. It is an honor and a pleasure to be friends with such beautiful, independent, kind-hearted women. I just feel so strongly about today.

I am thankful today for a special group of friends who let me know in so many precious, priceless ways that they have not forgotten my Kylie, and that they have not forgotten me and my pain.

Today, I was told some things that I have a hard time feeling about myself, but I thought I would share them in writing. Maybe it will help me believe in myself more.

I was told:
1.) You are stronger than I could ever be; you are the strongest woman I know, and I admire you for that.
2.) You are stronger than you give yourself credit for. You’re doing better than you give yourself credit for.
3.) You are allowed to grieve in your own way.
4.) It’s okay to talk about your child; we ALL talk about our children.
5.) You aren’t bringing attention to yourself when you talk about Kylie; you are bringing attention to KYLIE.

I just have to tell everyone that I am so grateful for the blessings these people have brought in my life, both old friends and new. Today, as I cried with my friends for the first time in a long time, as I opened up to them about my feelings, my fears, my emotions… I felt so raw again in my grief, but I also felt comfort… comfortable sharing my story, my feelings, and like everyone in the room hurt for me just as badly as I hurt for my Kylie. They may not understand the depth of the pain, but they understand the fact that I hurt, and they understand that my need to talk about Kylie, and they understand how badly I need them.

For my special friends, I am truly thankful. I am so lucky to have people in my life who love me, my children, and my husband. I am thankful to have friends that I consider FAMILY . I could not have made it through the past 16 months without them by my side… and I just don’t know what I’d do without them.

Thank you, sweet friends, for being there for me, for loving me, and for being a part of my life. Thank you for showing me that Kylie is near and dear to all of your hearts, and that she is just as important as any of your living children. Thank you for showing me love and kindness, and for accepting me as I am. Thank you for reminding me that I am real, I am human, and I am entitled to be imperfect. Thank you for being my rocks and shoulders to lean on. Thank you for being you. THANK you for everything.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Surprises and Happenings

So there are a few ramblings to put in this post...

The idea of the parent dinner meet-up has gone over tremendously well! There are over 14 people signed up to go to our first parent dinner meeting next Thursday, and I could not be more thrilled. The idea of gathering in an informal setting to talk about anything on our minds... it just suits the whole idea of grieving. We don't always have to have structure, and so it seems fitting to do this kind of meeting at a restaurant. I am so thrilled about it. If you live in the Huntsville, AL area and have suffered a pregnancy or baby loss, you can let me know if you'd like to attend on Thursday, January 27 at 7:00 PM at Lone Star steakhouse in front of Madison Square Mall. =)

We are kicking off the March of Dimes 2011 March for Babies with a family team kick-off celebration on February 8 at 6:00 PM at the Marriott by the Space and Rocket Center. I, along with Anna Claire Vollers, are the volunteers heading up the family teams, so I'm really excited about this new role within the MOD organization. I am really excited to get to know the other family team captains and form a dialogue with them, and to get them pumped up about the walk. They have a lot to compete with, though; I plan on passing our $8,000 fundraising we did last year!

Also, I have a meeting that is being scheduled with the Huntsville Hospital Foundation to start the fund for parent bereavement resources. I want all parents who leave HH without their child to be given a copy of the book: Empty Cradle, Broken Heart: Surviving the Death of Your Baby, and for moms to be given a mother/baby necklace set like the one my sweet cousin Donna brought me from her social worker at her hospital in Georgia. These resources will be provided to all parents who leave Huntsville Hospital without their baby due to miscarriage, NICU loss, stillbirth, or other early infancy loss. I am excited about the possibilities.

Yesterday, my story was posted on the site Faces of Loss, Faces of Hope. It has already connected me to several remarkable women who sadly understand the pain and suffering I experience every single day. It feels good to see my story in yet another publication, and especially one where I can connect with others who have experienced similar losses. Tiffany, a beautiful, kind soul I have met through our losses, is creating a Face2Face group here in Huntsville, through this website, so I am excited to see what this will bring to our area. That means three meet-ups for parents who have suffered a loss. In a year's time, we've gone from 1 to 3. What a huge step for bereaved parents in North Alabama!

Okay- now to my big rant. The other day, Chris stopped by to see Kylie. Last night, he told me what he found. A headstone was installed for the lady buried one row below our row. The people who installed the headstone left trash and coke bottles ON MY BABY'S HEADSTONE!!!!!!!!!! Who the heck does disrespectful crap like that? You shouldn't do that to any headstone, but ESPECIALLY not to MY KYLIE, to a BABY, especially a RECENT loss such as hers. How dare you leave trash on her headstone and treat it like it is insignificant and not worth your time to even clean up after yourself. HOW DARE YOU disrespect my baby girl. HOW FREAKING DARE YOU! I am so livid... Chris called the guy in charge of the cemetery, who went off, because the headstone wasn't even approved!!!!! So he will be finding out who put it in, and then WE will be calling, writing, and perhaps even paying a visit to the people responsible. Now, they have to deal with one irate, over-protective Mommy, and I don't think there's ANYTHING Chris can do that would come close to being as bad as what I will do when I get to them.

So, there's the rant... someone seriously will pay for this, and they will apologize, and by God, they will meet me at the cemetery and apologize to my daughter for their blatant act of ignorance and disrespect.

Sorry to end on a bad note... but I am just furious!!!!!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Something to look forward to...

So I guess scrapbooking has given me something to look forward to. =) I enjoy putting pages together, admiring my masterpieces, and sharing my beautiful angel in creative ways. It makes me feel close to her, and it has given me some strength I didn't quite know I had. I am so excited about this scrapbook... now if only my pocketbook could keep up with it!

I made another page last night that I am super proud of, and it will be included at the bottom of this post..

Today, I admitted something to my mom that I never thought I'd be comfortable to say or do. I admitted that by Spring Break, I think I will be able to handle boxing up Kylie's clothes, blankets, towels, and things that she never used (not the furniture or her memory items, just the clothes and baby items) and put them in the attic until we are ready for them again. I never thought that day would come! It feels a little scary, to admit something so huge, a step that I haven't been ready for. However, I haven't gotten the courage to throw away the much-too-old-to-use breastmilk in the freezer... all 30 or so containers... that is my last physical bond to Kylie. That milk was made for HER. HER. By me. I made that. That very milk that come from my body nourished her body.. okay, so not the same milk in the containers, but it all came from me. All of it. And she was nourished for several days with my milk. What a connection to have to your child... and how special it really was!

I miss my baby girl so much these days, but I find so much strength in helping and doing for other people. I am so excited about the steps we are taking this year...

I met with Ellen (my bereavement group leader) on Friday, and we are going to be doing so many things... and those things will have a post when the time is ready, but I am so excited to have her on my side to help me get my goals accomplished... goals that I have had since losing Kylie.

So... now I have something to look forward to. Chris just left on yet another structure fire call, and so the house is quiet and waiting for me to take on another page or two. I might have more pictures to post early in the morning!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

15 months....

Today, it has been fifteen long, agonizing months since I said goodbye to my first-born daughter as she grew her wings. Today, it has been fifteen months since my future crumbled in front of my eyes, and a new one began to slowly form. Today, it has been fifteen months since I watched my daughter take her last breath. Today, it has been fifteen months since I held my precious girl for the first, and last, times.

My heart is heavy with grief, though I cover it much better than I used to. I sometimes lie awake at night and wonder if it will ever get any easier to breathe without her, if it will ever get any easier to put one foot in front of the other and just make it through the day. I try to imagine a day when things are easier, better, more bearable, and that day just blurs in front of me. There is no way that this can get easier... is there?

Why this fate was chosen for me, I don't know. Why my child was taken, I'll never know. Why the world seems to be so unfair, so cruel... well isn't that what our parents tried to teach us when we were younger?

Today, we made more boxes for the NICU. At the hockey game last weekend held as a benefit for the Melissa George Neonatal Fund, and it was mentioned that they were running low on memory boxes again. So today, ironically, we met to make more boxes to donate to the NICU in your sweet honor and memory. It was so much fun to work with my close friends to make boxes we felt were sweet and innocent, and boxes that we felt parents would cherish forever. I know I cherish Kylie's box.. and it always gives me a very good feeling to know that I'm doing something for others.

I also did a few pages of Kylie's scrapbook. I've never really had the patience, time, or ability to work on scrapbooking pages very creatively. I often end up frustrated, and seem to think that my pages look AWFUL (and they normally do look pretty rough). However, I am MORE than thrilled with my pages. I put three photos and her name on the cover of her scrapbook (there was a spot for them), and then I made three full pages for her. I am so, so proud of them. I have a feeling I can actually make the prettiest, sweetest scrapbook for her... and it just really gives me something to look forward to.

Jaycee has been sick for a week now. She started off Sunday sick, and then she ended up getting better, then she got sick again. We had a quick trip to Huntsville Hospital Women's and Children's Pediatric ER yesterday, and we were stunned with how efficient, kind, and fast they were. No one in the waiting room when we arrived, no wait anywhere, and we were in and out with diagnosis, prescriptions, and a smile. Absolutely amazing. Kudos to the Pediatric ER and the staff there- wonderful experience.

So, I say all this to say, things are just difficult right now, though I am trying to put my best face on and get through the day. Grin and bear it, right? I do have happy moments, but the stresses of fertility treatments, grief, work, home life... it all is getting to me desperately. I started my period yesterday, and started clomid again today.. and if I don't get pregnant this month, I can't take clomid anymore. I will have to go on to the next steps, which is a little scary... why does everyone else get their rainbow babies, or just to be pregnant and have a baby, when I have wanted nothing more than that for my entire life?????????

This is a picture of 12 boxes we made today

Kylie's Scrapbook

First page

Second page, the one I am most proud of!

Third page

Thursday, January 13, 2011

March for Babies 2011 and other ramblings...

Today is January 13, 2011. 8 days ago, I started up our March for Babies team for 2011. This year, instead of being just Angel Kylie's Hope, we are Angel Kylie's Hope and Gavin's Miracle. This year, we walk for two beautiful babies: one earthly angel (Gavin) and one heavenly angel (Kylie). It is an honor to be working on this project with my best friend, who unfortunately had to walk the path of NICU and uncertainty, but it is still a special thing to be able to share with her. It gives us such an understanding of one another.

This year, we have so many fundraisers planned. We will be putting out collection bins at local businesses again, which will be great for a few hundred dollars! We also will have our Thirty-One party again. We will be adding new fundraisers: possibly a Pizza Inn night, a carnival, car washes, etc. I am really hopeful that things will work out to exceed our goal of $8,000 this year. =)

Along with another lady, I am co-head of Family teams for our city's walk, so that is a huge undertaking on its own. We are working on the Family team captain kick-off, and the Marriott will be working with us on that one. =) I am thrilled beyond words about this opportunity to reach out to family teams and to help them with their goals.

Today, 93 days left until the walk, we have 26 walkers and $580!!! I know we can pass our goal...

RTS was cancelled tonight, so I am desperate for my RTS buddies to talk to! I hate that we can't meet-- we haven't met since early December, and so much has happened since then.

Today, I did something I have been putting off for a year; I finally wrote the letter to my OB from when I was pregnant with Kylie. So many things that have gone unspoken to him came pouring out in my letter, which I feel is very mild and calm compared to how I would have written it a year ago. IT was very freeing to type the words on the screen and get those feelings out of my head and off my chest; it was something that I concentrated on so much that I did not cry or get upset. Amazingly, I made it just fine through the letter. Now, I need to print it and send it. I think it is important that I do this because I have been harboring blame and anger towards him for this entire 15 months, and it is not healthy for me to do that. It is not fair to me or to him, and if sending that letter ends up helping someone else receive better care in the future, then that is the whole point.

I am jumping back into coupons, and I am planning so much for the next few months to keep busy. It's so important to stay busy and to stay focused, and I wouldn't have my life any other way right now. Saturday, friends are coming over to work on memory boxes for the NICU, and next Saturday, I'm teaching a coupon class!

And in two days, I'll be celebrating Kylie's 15 month angelversary... it's so hard to believe that we are fastly approaching 1 1/2 years... and then before we know it, it will be 2 years since we held her for the first and last time. I'm not sure I'm ready for that...

Here is the link to our team page: .

Friday, January 7, 2011

And people just keep on bothering me

Why do I continue, day after day, to let people upset me, hurt my feelings, and "win" because they get to me? Why?

At this point, I have had it. I am so tired of what I hear this person say about me behind my back and how this person treats me to my face. You can't be two different people and get away with it.

Behind my back, you say I use Kylie's story and her life to get attention. You say that I talk about her too much to bring attention to myself, and that you're tired of talking about her. You say that I really don't have a place talking about babies and raising them because Kylie wasn't here to raise. You say I should be done talking about it.

However, if it gets YOU attention, you're all for saying how you know Kylie, how you have helped, what you have done, and she is just so special to you. If it gets YOU recognition, you are willing to say what it takes.

I am so sick of you using my child for your own personal gain. Do you know why I talk about Kylie? It's the same reason anyone talks about their children. She is MY child, and she was born to ME as her mother. In Heaven or on Earth, she is MY baby, and if she was here, I'd talk about her, so why should it be any different?

If you are JEALOUS of my situation, then you are a SICK SICK person and you need some serious help. I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy, and you will NEVER, EVER understand what I feel or what I am going through. If you can't sympathize with me or get over your jealousy, then get out of my life and LEAVE ME ALONE. I don't need you or anyone else trying to bring Kylie into drama, and I REFUSE to let her life be involved in that crap.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Letters to My Daughter

Something that I saved for a post all on its own... and something that just happened to be mentioned by a friend of mine... so I had to post today.

I will begin my book this year, a book I want to call Letters to My Daughter: A Journey of Non-Traditional Motherhood... well, I do want to call it Letters to My Daughter for sure.

Some of my story is already written. It is in the letters that I have written to Kylie over the past 15 months, letters that speak my heart and tell the story of my grief and healing. The book will consist of a series of letters that I have already written as well as letters and chapters that have yet to be written. I'm not sure how it will go, but it has been pulling on my heart for a long time to write this book and to share my story with as many people as possible. I want to share Kylie so that her life will help others. Kylie can be other people's hope and inspiration.

So, I thought I would find my first letter to my daughter and include it here, to start the new chapter of the new year, of my "new normal", and to reminisce, because where better to start than at the beginning?

This is the first letter I wrote. The following letter was written October 16, one day after Kylie's passing.

Mommy is so sad that I had to let you go yesterday. Words cannot express the hurt I feel and the size of the hole in my heart. Your daddy and I had so many plans for you and your future. We waited five years to find out we were having you. If you could have only seen our joy when the doctor told us we were going to be parents- I loved you even before I knew, but at that moment, you owned my heart. Each doctor's visit and each time I heard your heart beat or saw you on an ultrasound, I was overcome with joy and happiness. Your life, however short it was, taught me a love and joy I never knew was possible in any lifetime.

I want you to know that right now is very hard for me. Last night, I cried out for you, cried to have you back, begged your daddy to give you back to me. Today, tomorrow, and the days to come, I know I will again cry out for you. I'm not trying to be selfish, I just feel like my job was left unfininished, like it was so unfair for you to be taken from me and your daddy. You see, we never thought we'd be blessed with a child, more or less the vision of perfection you were. For two precious weeks, you fought with more strength than I could imagine your tiny body having. For two glorious weeks, you were here in this world and you were here for mommy and daddy.

I will always remember your tiny little face- I studied it daily. You had your daddy's cheeks and facial structure, and his lips. You had my nose and chin- and they fit perfectly with that sweet set of baby blue eyes. You were, to me, the definition of perfection. Thank you for blessing me with the miracle of your life- you were so strong for us, and I am trying so desperately to be strong for you. You beat the odds so many times- they thought I would miscarry... they thought you wouldn't make it past a few days when you arrived... they thought you wouldn't make it through Wednesday night.

I knew Wednesday night, whether I wanted to admit it or not, that you were going to be leaving me. The surgery was just too hard on you. When you lifted your eyes to me yesterday morning, I knew you were telling me that it was going to be okay, and that you were going to be okay. And most of all, when I came back to your bedside with Grammy, I knew you were telling me it was time, that you had enough, that you just couldn't do it anymore. You made our decision for us, and I thank you for making it easier. I knew it was your time, and your daddy knew, and we had to let you go. I am so thankful I held you in my arms as your tiny little heart stopped. I had to hold you before you were gone. I had to know that you felt my arms around you.

I just wanted to let you know how much I love you and will always love you. You mean more to me than anything in this world. Your daddy and I are so proud of you and the strength you showed. You taught me more in 2 weeks than I have learned in my entire life. Even in your short time, you were taking care of your mommy. Your big sister would have been so good to you; I wish you could have met her before you passed. She would have loved you from the moment she saw you.

I want you to also know that you will always be my princess and my angel, and that I will never forget you. It is so hard right now, and today at the funeral home will be hard... and your funeral will be hardest. I'm so afraid that your daddy will have to hold me back from throwing myself in with you... I just so desperately want you back in my arms. We worked hard on your beautiful bedroom... I wish you could have come home to it. We bought you all kinds of beautiful clothes and toys and things.... I'm so sorry I couldn't have done more to help you.

I love you and miss you more than words can express.

Love always,


Monday, January 3, 2011

Another New Chapter

A new year means a new chapter. A new chapter means a new mindset. A new chapter means new feelings, emotions, and ideas.

2011 has started a new chapter in my life, though my life, since April 30, 2009, has had many chapters... This chapter is bittersweet in several ways.

The negatives of this new chapter, are obvious of course. The negatives include getting further away from Kylie's short life, from having to live this "new normal" in the first place, and from dealing with the negativity from other people in how I choose to grieve, remember my daughter, and raise awareness. Infertility still reigns, and my broken heart is still broken.

The positives include the ability to put one foot in front of the other to make it through the day in one piece. My heart is broken, but my spirit is still somewhat intact, and with my spirit, I carry Kylie's legacy.

I know I say this a lot, but one thing I have always wanted for my children is to make an impact on the world. My goal growing up was to impact as many young people as possible through the teaching profession, and I wanted my kids to have positive impacts on others... and through Kylie's short life, she has already touched more lives than I ever imagined possible. I swell with pride when I think of the fact that her name will not soon be forgotten, that her name is LITERALLY set in stone forever and ever, and that one day, people will hopefully see her picture and say "That's the little girl who lived long after her heart stopped beating. THat's the little girl that made it possible for parents to deal with their own grief. That little girl changed MY life."

Kylie changed my life in numerous ways.. so many ways that I could not list them here in the given space. She has made me a better person, and she gave me the gift of motherhood. She is so special to me, and she is so important in my life.

Just because Kylie isn't here physically doesn't mean her spirit and memory can't continue on to my other chapters, because in all actuality, there will never be another chapter in my life without her. She is a part of me, forever, and where I go, she goes. Where I am, she is. What I do, she does. Kylie is my heart, and so my heart beats for two of us.

My new chapter isn't completely defined yet. I don't really even have an outline for it, but I do know that my life is taking on some very specific paths in honor of Kylie and all other babies lost too soon. She will mold a future for other babies and parents, and I cannot wait to see what happens this year in her name, honor, and memory.

However, I have decided that some characters are no longer a significant part of my novel. These characters have chosen to be cut out of the chapters, chosen to be left out of the ultimate story. For that, I am deeply saddened, but I am not going to lose sleep over choices that others make. These people are the ones who unfairly feel that I am selfish enough to use Kylie's life for attention. These people do not belong in my story, as they encourage me to feed off the negative. Kylie only knows innocence, love, and purity, and I will not have yet another memory tainted with the negativity of others who cannot put someone before themselves.

So today, I take charge, as much as I can, of this new chapter in my life. I take charge of the paths that I will walk down, and I start mending the fences that have fallen along the way. My novel may not be the happy story that most people like to read, but my novel has depth, love, and the struggle for all things good and pure. My novel has character, class, and heart ache. My novel has truth, pain, and raw emotion. My novel is real, true, and unforgiving. My novel is life, death, and afterlife. My novel is MY story, and My story is good enough for me.

So watch out world, because I'm jumping in with both feet. If you don't like it, move over, because I'm not swerving or stopping for you to move. You can take care of yourself.

To my Kylie: this is for you. Everything I do, think, say and feel... it's for you and your sweet big sister. Everything I decide in life is with yours and Jaycee's best interest at heart. I hope you will stay close as I try to sort out which way is which in my life, and I hope that you will help me share your life and memory with others. I love you, deeply and truly, and I miss you more than anyone could ever imagine.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Well, hello, 2011...

Today is January 1, 2011 (as if you didn't already know). So much on my mind and heart right now...

Today is the one year anniversary of my due date with Kylie. In all actuality, I should be celebrating the first birthday of my first child on the first day of the new year... but, I am not. I can only look at her pictures, her empty nursery, and close my eyes and focus on the memories of a life that was all too short... and it breaks my heart in a million pieces that I am now into another year without her. 2009 seems so far away today... her two weeks on earth with me seem even further. I still remember almost everything like it was yesterday, but that doesn't help ease any pain I feel from not having her. I just miss her so badly, and I would give anything to have her with me. My new normal is NOT the normal I had planned for my life.

There are so many things that I want to happen in 2011, and so many things that NEED to happen in 2011.

First step is to create a non-profit in Kylie's honor so that parents will be provided with a vital resource when they leave the hospital with empty arms. This is my number one goal, even if it is just getting started with the Foundation first at Huntsville Hospital. This WILL happen.

Second step is to begin working closely with the Foundation on getting some features added into the hospital for a memorial place for parents to visit. Some parents do not have a grave to visit, or do not have a place that is dedicated to angel babies in general, and so I want to work on that with the hospital. The more support we get for this, the better chances of it happening. I would like to ask all of my friends to write a letter to Huntsville Hospital encouraging them to do a memorial garden for lost babies and pregnancies. If you write this, I'd like for you to send it to my home address so I can compile them. Please message me on Facebook, or email for my address. I want them to know that even friends and family members need a quiet, beautiful place to go to remember and honor their angel baby. I would love to have a park bench or something special donated in Kylie's name so her life will continue to live on. I am hoping to get going with this in a few months, so please let me know if you plan to write a letter for me. =)

Third step (and these are in no particular order, just things I want to get done) is the March of Dimes and the March for Babies 2011. The walk is April 16, 2011 at Bridgestreet. Angel Kylie's Hope for Gavin's Miracle will be teaming up this year, and Jessica and I (along with our husbands) will be the co-heads of the team, as we are walking in memory of Kylie, and in honor of Gavin, who received his healing heart surgery within a few weeks of life. It is an honor to be able to be a part of this with my best friend. I hate that she had to walk down a path of uncertainty on the way, but I am so glad to have such a deeper connection with her. We both understand the NICU experience, and we both understand how many sacrifices NICU parents must make. We also understand the importance of funding for the MOD, because without donations, the life-saving surgery Gavin had would not have been possible, because research would not have been performed, and Kylie would not have even had a chance to live. So we are both eternally grateful for the MOD and what they have given us and our families. Look for more info on our website soon, and how to donate/join. Our initial goal will be $5,000 this year, and then we will try to exceed our last year's total of $8,049. I know we can do it!

Fourth is the obvious- to conceive our 2nd child to expand our family. A second child would be such a blessing to us, and would mean more than anyone could ever imagine. I cannot wait for the day that I can hold my own beautiful precious newborn against my chest and have the experience of motherhood that I have not yet have the honor to have.

Other things:
- We have a lot of work to do with our grief and our marriage. After my last blog, we had a very long 2 1/2 hour conversation late that night and I think that we listened to one another to get out what we needed to get out. I think it was a positive step in the right direction, but I am having some real issues trusting and believing. I guess when you've been promised something for so long, and it never happens, you become one of those "I'll believe it when I see it" kind of people. So much negative has happened in the past 2 years that that is what I've become regardless of what is going on in my marriage or personal life.

- I want to get things to a better point in my life, and I want to continue doing things to remember and memorialize my sweet baby girl. I want to focus on the beauty her life has brought and the huge impact she has made on others. I want to continue her legacy in beautiful ways. I will continue to donate to the NICU, and I want to learn how to sew so I can make blankets to donate to the NICU as well. The NICU is in desperate need of all supplies, because they have so many babies rotating through the doors... and it would be wonderful to keep them supplied with beautiful things to give to parents to offer a bit of comfort and hope.

- I want to focus on sweet Jaycee and give her the love, attention, and home she deserves. I want to help her grow and learn, and I want to get her enrolled in Pre-K. I want her to have wonderful experiences, and I want to provide her with more opportunities than imagineable.. I want her to have the best time of her life in 2011.

I don't really want to look at this as a list of New Year's Resolutions. I want to look at it as a list of hopes, dreams, and accomplishments. Regardless of the New Year, i want to do these things, so for now, I'll focus on these things and get as far as I can in 2011.

I miss you and love you so much, sweet baby girl. You are my whole heart.

Happy 15 month birthday today, Kylie Brielle!