It was my birthday a little over a week ago. 4 days after Valentine’s Day and exactly 6 days after Averie passed away. I woke up on the morning with this heavy feeling. A familiar haunting feeling. Two years ago when Averie passed away I remember my family trying so hard to give me such a great birthday. My Mom made my favorite cake, but I asked nobody to sing Happy Birthday to me. Instead Vanessa, my sister, chose to hum it as they brought me my cake. I didn’t want to be merry and sing, I didn’t want to celebrate my life when my child didn’t get a chance at hers. I remember that night just sobbing in bed wishing this nightmare would end.
Two years later things felt a little different. The haunting feeling was the same because we are still missing a member of our family. The weather was nice, Zach and I drove up to the river to one of our favorite shops. We walked around town and visited a few of the other shops on the main road. One is a year round Christmas shop. We browsed the different Christmas ornaments and I found a ceramic angel that said daughter on it. I thought of buying it for Averie. The shop owner asked us if we were here for a 1st Christmas ornament for Isabella, I mentioned she already had her 1st Christmas. I of course thought of Averie and how she didn’t ever get her first Christmas. Overall it was a good day. I can’t say that my heart was complete though because everything we do, every picture we take doesn’t have Averie in it and that has been EATING at my heart lately. Which brings me to another topic….
I’m trying to figure out how to balance parenting a child that is here, and still remembering the one that I don’t have, without hurting the one that is here. Did any of that make sense? I don’t ever want Isabella thinking we love Averie more because of everything I do for her, in memory of her. Lately I’ve been thinking about that A LOT. Of course right now it isn’t an issue because she is so small, but I am worried that the guilt that I feel when I don’t memorialize Averie will get in the way and Isabella will feel like she is living in her sisters shadow. For instance, we took a quick family photo on the day of my birthday and I felt SO much guilt not having Averie’s picture in it. It wasn’t even anything professional it was literally us using the front camera on my phone. The guilt was strong when I was pregnant with Izz, but I have realized it’s creeping back full force. I am learning quickly that parenting after a loss is incredibly hard as well. What part of this process isn’t though?? If anyone has any insight and experience with this I would LOVE for you to share.
Needless to say I’m ready for February to be over. It’s the shortest but longest month ever. Today it was 60 degrees here and stepping outside and feeling the sun was AMAZING. I’ve recently been struggling with some baby blues. Remember guilt? Yeah he’s here again. I start feeling guilty that I have felt this way because in my mind I shouldn’t feel this way. We wanted Isabella more then anything and love her so much how could I ever feel blue right? My hope is the change in weather will help. Being stuck inside is maddening in itself even when you don’t have a cranky baby. The nice weather today gave me hope though. And a little bit of hope goes a long way.