Thursday, July 31, 2008

Day 90

This is Day 90, the day Mira died. I'm home in Texas and Ruth and Chris are still up in cool Washington, much better location for a pregnant daughter. I'm anxious tonight, checking and rechecking Ruth's blog for entries, trying to assume Sprout is alive still. They do have the Doppler with them to check. I know there's no magic in passing day 90, no guarantee, but it does seem significant. I find myself reliving the days right after Mira dies, the sorrow I felt then and the desire to ease her parents' pain - such hard days.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Just for fun

With two pregnant daughters due within a week of one another, I was amused (sweetly) when Ruth told me she plans to buy me two red onesies she saw on line labeled "Thing One" and "Thing Two". We do love our Seuss. And pray please please, for two healthy "things" to wear the two onesies.

Monday, July 28, 2008

hoping and remembering

Ruth and Chris are on vacation with us, so last night she let me listen to Sprout's heart beat on the doppler for the first time - like a frisky pony thundering behind the steady loping beat of Ruth's own heart such a joy. And then Ruth and Chris and Bob and I had at least an hour of happy discussion of choices regarding stroller systems, nursery colors, and baby clothes. Ruth looks great and is feeling good, fewer smell and food issues as she enters her second trimester. And we are happy and excited about this baby - AND I keep remembering August 1 is day 90. Mira died on day 90. as a symbol for Mira. Ruth and Chris use the dragon fly Beautiful dragon flies flit about the deck where we are visiting and every time I see one, I think of Mira and how she should have been born in September, and won't be - and I feel sad about Mira and thankful for Sprout. On one level it will mean nothing when Sprout has lived longer than Mira did. And yet, that feels like a milestone - Ruth and Chris entering uncharted pregnancy territory.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Second trimester!

Ruth entered her second trimester this morning and the little informational sidebar on her baby blog announced that the risk of miscarriage significantly dropped today. I remember when that happened with Mira, and the sweet last developmental comment Ruth made in her blog about Mira, that the baby now opens his/her mouth if the face is touched, was the same comment she made today about Sprout. She noted the connection of comments and it brought tears to my eyes. For whatever reason, when Mira died, that comment was one of the grief focus points for me, one of the things that made me more aware of the little life we lost. Ruth commented that she hopes she will have many more developmental milestones to comment on about Sprout, both before and after birth, and I hope and am beginning to increasingly trust that this will be true (though of course I am painfully aware you can never really trust life to continue inside the womb or otherwise). Sprout is at day 85 today and Mira died on Day 90, but there was spotting, significant spotting well before this point with Mira and all is totally well and routine so far with Sprout.

I'm so glad I chose to write this blog and post it here in Lost and Found, Connections Abound. I wish other family members would start blogging here too. It feels so good to have a place to unabashedly write the details of my feelings as they change during this pregnancy of my daughter after her loss of her first pregnancy after five years of trying to conceive. Thanks Mel for creating this community. And any moms, sisters, friends dealing with secondary mourning for babies or pregnancies, if you're lurking, I'd love it if you piped up.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

maternity pants

Ruth bought her first pair today! I remember buying my first pair of maternity pants when I was pregnant with Joanna, and a little top with strawberries on it. Hope is sparkling, sparkling here.

Friday, July 18, 2008

eleven weeks

Sprout is now supposedly about the size of a lime - a much more substantial seeming fruit than a kumquat or a grape. I ca imagine a lime - ral and solid in my hand - and that makes me smile.

seeming more real

Ruth and I talked about shower plans and diaper service yesterday, and she's blogging about gender hunches -three boy, one girl and a number of abstentions so far. This is all so normal and happy and I am finding myself more and more able to just be happy about Sprout. I don't know when a hope becomes an expectation, and I know so well how much can go wrong at every minute - any minute - but I'm imagining Sprout developing, blossoming into a real live baby in my arms next winter. I will get scared at times, I'm sure, but I don't want to lose one moment of happy baby thinking that I don't have to lose. An old favorite life motto is flaming in my brain - "No unnecessary losses!" So here we go, step by step but with a smile.

Monday, July 14, 2008

pretravel jitters

I am especially nervous tonight because Bob and I are about to leave on a road trip - leaving my practice and grand kids and friends is hard enough but leaving two pregnant daughters is harder. I know my being here didn't save Mira and in no way reduces the risk of miscarriage or any other problem. I will get in the car tomorrow and go. Probably all will be well. If it isn't, we will all cope.

I hate it that I think about Ruth's pregnancy with Sprout in terms of her pregnancy with Mira - who died at ninety days (In eighteen days Sprout will be older than Mira got). This is Spout's turn, Sprout's time to be baby in utero for Ruth. Her sister has a new sweetie growing too, a few weeks behind Sprout, but with Ruth regnancy is about Sprout right now, not Mira. There is no reason to expect parallels.

I'm at a place of wanting again to do something special in Mira's memory - to cherish the hope she represented. I will give a small contribution to March of Dimes the day Sprout gets older than Mira got.

Friday, July 11, 2008


I don't like the elevenths of months - four months today since Mira died and Ruth is ten weeks (or in the tenth week - pregnancy math is confusing) with Sprout. She wore a beautiful loose green smock top to K.K.'s performance today, not really showing in clothes but dressing pregnant and beautiful - and I thought how much bigger she'd be if she were still pregnant with Mira. I'll always wonder about that little girl - who she would be in my arms and in her life. And I'm so happy that Sprout's little life is started and keep hoping all will continue to go well.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

keeping perspective

Title of this blog is "one step removed" and I often need to remind myself that my daughters' lives and mine really are seperate and I need to keep that step removed and not call incessantly to find out that everyone is well and pregnancy continues. I really don't do the crazy Jewish mother stereotype phone calls (much). I just want to. There is absolutely no reason for me to be worried at this time (other than that life is uncertain and you just never know...) Both daughters looked radiant when I saw them just a few days ago. It's me that wants to manage my own anxiety by knowing what's going on every minute and I need to just go read a book or something. Loving from an appropriate distance is tricky choreography.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Hopeful Courage

Bob and Ruth and Chris and I went to the restaurant where Ruth and Chris told me they were pregnant with Mira. A reclaiming - a happy lunch. We talked about raising Sprout and I was so respectful of their ability to love again in the face of loss. (And SProut is still making him/herself heard on the Doppler!)

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Probable Names

It is wonderful to see Sprout more real since the sonogram and the heart beat on Doppler. Names are out there for possible use - of course could change, but I like imagining this little one by name. William James or Liliana Abigail or Liliana Jean - sweet names all.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Sprout heard from

Heart beat on Doppler today - what a sweet and reassuring sound.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Sweet Fourth

Today was good. The whole family spent the afternoon and evening at Ruth and Chris' house, in the pool, shooting off legal fireworks, eating barbecue and S'mores - happy day. The big kids are truly getting big - needing so little care and supervision. I keep thinking, next year will (I hope! I hope! be so different with little tiny Spout in arms.

As much as I am so ready for Sprout, I like our family the way it is now. We went years with no big changes, just gradual developmental changes, and now this last six months, changes have been enormormous and not easy - Mira conceived and dying, Ruth's sister's divorce and developing new (apparently happy and strng) relationship, numerous illnesses in the family. I am feeling our of sorts even though today was truly a sweet and happy day, maybe the best Fourth of July we've had (absent the prickly energy of Joanna's X husband). I just hope there are no more unwelcome changss I don't feel strong and flexible.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Relief - Sprout lives!

Ruth saw the beating heart today on the eight week sonogram. So far so good - no problems - another appointment in a month with the new Dr. Baby who she really likes. Sprout is apparently growing right on track --looks just like the diagra of an eight weeks embryo. I could hear the relief in Ruth's voice when she left me a message at work about having seen the beating heart. My own relief just floods through me.

I know Mira lived longer than this - I know there is no assurance of continued life for any of us in or out of the womb. But tonight, I'm going to just be happy that Sprout is alive and RUth is feeling happy in her pregnancy and her work as she finishes out a summer session teaching on the college level for the first time.

Still waiting

Ruth went to her appointment yesterday and likes the new doctor, but an emergency in that office delayed the sonogram until today. I keep reliving the happy day they first saw Mira's beating heart. But mostly I continue to hope. (Sprout, please have a beating heart.)