Gratitude & Attitude

I don’t really want to talk about yesterday at all. Suffice it to say that it was Greg’s first and only ever Father’s Day and it was very hard on both of us. I can only imagine what all the other holidays for the next year will be like, especially Cora’s birth and death days. Ugh!

I’ve been especially, ahem, bitchy today and have been slamming cupboards, throwing things, sighing loudly and growling a lot. Perhaps it is because I haven’t cried since Saturday and I have a lot of pent up emotion right now. Perhaps it’s because yesterday was supposed to be a day of celebration and happiness, not one filled with abysmal sadness and what ifs. Or perhaps it’s because I got out of bed at 6:30 a.m.. I haven’t done that in a very, very long time and I am really tired. Whatever the reason for my crankypantsedness, it is always a nice reminder that it is time for another installment of Gratitude and Attitude.

Here goes…

Today’s Attitude goes out to:

  1. The bulgy-eyed, fishy looking NICU doctor in Vancouver who circled us like a shark when we were taking our daughter off of life support and then knelt down beside me AS SHE WAS DYING IN MY ARMS and said, “Okay, we need to talk about the autopsy.” You had PLENTY of time to discuss that with us while we stood around for nearly two hours while the team removed the majority of Cora’s IV’s and other medical crap so we could get a chance to hold her while she was still alive. It would have been MUCH more tactful to bring it up then, rather than the moment I held my daughter for the first and only time AND SHE WAS DYING IN MY ARMS. You are an asshole. A brilliant asshole, but an asshole nonetheless. I will never forget that moment. It was supposed to be OUR moment – mine and Greg’s and Cora’s – and you ruined it by being an asshole. I think you should actually get a name tag that reads Dr. Asshole. It will save parents the time of trying to figure out what you actually do in the NICU, since you never introduced yourself to us until you told us Cora was going to die and we never actually saw you do anything but circle like a shark, or a vulture. I’m not sure which. Yes, I am angry about this, but now that I’ve let the world know (and I hope you read this and know that I am talking about you), I will be able to let it go and move on to bigger and better memories.
  2. All of the people out there who keep asking me, “How are you feeling?” I know you mean well, but it is the wrong thing to ask someone who has lost a loved one. The reason is that we feel a billion different emotions each day and we cannot even begin to put those feelings into a nice, precise answer for people who think they are saying the right thing. I don’t really want to put this in the attitude section because I totally understand that you care about us and you just want us to know that, but I can’t very well put it in the Gratitude section because that just wouldn’t be right either. Next time you feel the urge to ask me or Greg that question, try changing it to something along the lines of, “I’m sorry for your loss.” Or, “Is there anything we can do for you?” Or, “I don’t have the words, but I want you to know that we feel for you and that we’re here if you need us.” And, while I’m at it, please refrain from telling me that it will get better with time. Duhhhh! That’s a no brainer, but hearing it doesn’t help me in the present moment when I feel as though a huge canyon has been carved through my body and soul and I may just fall into it at any moment and never be able to climb back out. Once again, I know you mean well, but, in my case, just don’t say it.
  3. The lady who told me that, “stamina has nothing to do with it” last night at roller derby practice. Whatev. You are half my age and I just spent three solid months laying in bed before giving birth naturally, with no drugs, and then watching my beautiful baby girl change from a healthy, pink baby into a bloated, purple, dead baby. You go and experience all that and then show me how you can skate your ass off for two solid hours without getting tired. Hmph.
  4. My kitty cat, Sky, who picked the WORST time to decide to disappear and never come home again. I don’t know what happened to you or even if you are alive and I am trying really hard not to think about it too much because if I do, it may push me past the edge I’m already teetering on.
  5. Myself. Stop being so negative and angry. Remember all of the amazingly good things you have in your life and stop bitching so much. Lots of people have lost their children and they don’t all turn into assholes. Enough already. (Hey, this is my blog, I can chastise myself if I feel like it.)

K, that’s enough bitching for one blog. Today’s Gratitude goes out to:

  1. All of the doctors and nurses (both in L&D and the NICUs in Kamloops and Vancouver). With the exception of one nurse in the Kamloops NICU and Dr. Asshole in Vancouver, you were all amazingly professional, supportive and just all around awesome during our three months in and out of the hospital. We are forever grateful to all of you and are happy to have made some good friends too. (And Deb, I hope your trip to SanFrancisco was awesometastic!).
  2. Daniel who works in the Parking department at Interior Health. Thank you for voiding our ticket and being so understanding. Also, in case anyone is wondering what to do if you can’t find a parking spot at the hospital and you have an appointment or meeting to get to, you can park in emergency, tell the security people your stall number and that you have an urgent appointment and they will call the parking people and ask them to ignore that stall number.
  3. Our friends and family and all of the complete strangers who have gone above and beyond to comfort us in the last couple of weeks. Something like this is NEVER easy, but with a huge network of love and support, it is definitely easier. We love you all very much and are very grateful that we have you in our lives.
  4. Susan Brewster, RN. She was Cora’s main NICU nurse down in Vancouver and she stayed with us past the normal shift change and throughout the entire unplugging process. She also took pictures of us with Cora so we could have some of both of us with her. And then, to top it all off, she gave me a huge hug after Greg layed Cora down in her bed before we left her room and she let me sob on her shoulder. It is people like Susan who stick in your head forever and make you smile while remembering the hardest thing you’ve ever had to do. (I also like to imagine her slapping Dr. Asshole upside the head and telling him to get the hell out of the room…it’s a happy, imagined scene, but it would have been awesome to see in real life).
  5. To Greg’s brother Chris for the visual of you driving, sobbing and trying to eat a sandwich. I’m glad you loved your niece as much as we did.
  6. Juno. Our lovely little yellow best friend. Without you, our days would be so much darker and it would take us so much longer to find the joy in life again. We are so lucky your first family were such rotten dog owners and we ended up with you. xoxoxxox woof woof, lick, smooches, smooches. Marmot! Cheep Cheep!

I should probably add a bazillion more Gratitudes, but I’ll save them for my next one. It gives people something to look forward to!

And, since my posts lately have not included any pics and I am a photographer after all, here is a pic of our pocket full of sunshine!

Good night, my friends. I wish you all enough…

3 thoughts on “Gratitude & Attitude

  1. Your honesty, just like you, is beautiful. Although we have only connected through Face Book this past few years, I have known for a very long time that you are a dynamic, caring person. I find myself wishing your pain away and wanting to find those words that make everything OK…and I know neither is possible. Thank you for allowing us to be a part of your journey and I hope you find some sort of peace in writing and sharing your experience.

    Thank you Joanne
    Peace and Love

  2. Love you guys bunches and can’t wait to see you! (Can’t you stuff Juno in your suitcase?)

  3. I was literally holding back my tears reading your blog today. That sucks about you cat, my cat has been missing for 2 weeks and I am heartbroken, i think someone stole him, I hope they both make it back home. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

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