Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Dead Baby Birthday

#writeingrief Day 24-This was written on Alaska's birthday on December 31, 2014; it's the rest of the truth of that day. Dead baby birthdays aren't all quilts and angel food cake. Dead baby birthdays are filled with a deafening silence and sprinkled with "Happy New Year" greetings. 

I don’t know where my writing will go today, but I know that I have to write. I feel like I am fighting an incoming panic attack. I woke up with a headache and stomach ache this morning. I can’t breathe. I have waves of dizziness. My heart is being crushed by a force I can’t fight. I just want to zone out and experience oblivion for a few minutes, but I can’t because today is a birthday party.

Happy birthday, Alaska Eileen. <3 
One of Asher's notes we found in the Blessings Jar.
Happy birthday
today is New
Years Eve We
will be celebrating
your birthday
it will be a special
 Elliott finally solved his Rubik’s cube. The boys and I played at the Children’s Museum. I cooked and baked a cake. When Brandon got home we ate lasagna and birthday cake. We opened our blessings jar that we started last year after Alaska died. We opened Alaska’s only birthday gift--her quilt from her Grandma Dawn. We played games and will continue to have a very nice day. As lovely as our celebration is today, it doesn’t take away any of the pain of missing our sweet girl.

It's tricky to talk about. If you share the scarce moments of peace,or alignment or grace, people outside your grief process may jump on it,shrieking with joy that you've found it! You've found the gift!When it isn't that way at all. (Megan Devine at Refuge in Grief)

This quote from the prompt strikes me as I have found this to be true especially with my blog. People comment on my posts about these moments of peace. These precious moments are very true parts of grief. They are just as true as the pain and the ugliness, but it really messes with me when people show so much love on my writing that reflects positive feelings. I have stopped blogging because of how effed up I’ve gotten over this. Realizing that this audience interaction is part of blogging, I just quit. I would never want to compel readers to comment or not comment because I know that anyone who comments does so in the name of love and community. Megan’s words really resonate, though, because receiving attention for feeling positive makes me feel like readers are judging my anger or sadness. The ugly parts of grief need to be written and need to be felt. It is important to write both the beautiful and the ugly. Positive thinking cannot cure this pain. It can't.
My perception of what everyone is thinking is partly informed by what a couple of people have said to me, but it’s mostly my ego running wild with my imagination and deciding that I my grief is being judged. I realize that most people aren’t even paying attention at this point, but the occasional conversation or blog comment pops up to remind me that some people do have an opinion about how I grieve. I recently posted my blessings for those who grieve on my blog, and many people commented and sent love. I always appreciate those comments. 

The next day I felt the need to answer that post with my writing on kindness (namely that it could fuck off) because that intense anger is the truth also. In contrast to the many comments on my blessings post, one friend commented and one liked that post, and I was so thankful to them for this gesture that told me that it’s ok to be pissed. That they love me anyway. I could shut the comments off, and I could stop blogging publicly, but my sense of giving my voice to baby loss and offering this platform for others compels me to keep writing.