Thursday, October 18, 2012

Thoughts on Grief and Loss

I have been meaning to write a post like this for a while and with October being pregnancy & infant loss awareness month, it just seems fitting to jot some thoughts down now. 

Things have been busy around here due to lots of things and it feels good to take a few moments to process everything and get it down. I am always grateful when I take time to put my thoughts into words and find it helpful to reflect on later. It is hard to do but very beneficial.

First of all, thank you to all my friends and family who sent Scott and I nice messages on the anniversary of Trace's death. It was so nice of you to think of us and send a card, email, comment or text. It really warmed my heart and I am so thankful for the support network you provide me with. I know it is hard and even though there isn't anything you can say (really, there is nothing anyone can say) I appreciate the nice thoughts and gestures. Although Trace's funeral was a terrible, terrible day I still remember how my heart swelled to see everyone there to support us. It is just the worst, but thank you.

We observed Trace's anniversary on the 10th. I took the day off of work and spent some time with my mom who was here for a few days. We had a nice day and lunch with Scott. Mom and I visited the cemetery after shopping at Earl May for a new solar light, garden stake, and plant for Trace.

As sad as it is going out there, I really think it is beautiful and I always feel at peace at the cemetery. One day I was out there and I saw a woman eating lunch, sitting at a little fold up tailgating chair she brought with her. I thought that was such a good idea and now I try and always pack a blanket in my car so I can spend a little bit of time just resting, sitting and being still when I am visiting Trace's spot. 


After Scott got off work, we went back to the cemetery so Michael could release balloons for Trace. It was a clear night and we could see them go really high. It was really special. 

It seems like I was amped up and braced for the worst as Trace's anniversary neared and now it feels weird that it is over. It is just like...okay, time to start year #2 without him. It is actually probably more depressing now that it is over than it was before and I have a feeling getting through the run of holidays is going to be hard like it was last year. I'm already not very excited for Halloween and don't have a costume for Michael.....but I think I have Scott talked into taking him trick or treating again this year and I'll stay home and man the candy bowl.


 A friend sent me the link to the CarlyMarie Project Heal 31 days Capture your Grief series and although I have been following others, I have been really slow to the uptake with my own sharing. is a little bit. 

(above, Day 1 Sunrise- taken at a stop on the way school. Doesn't it look happy and sad at the same time? It was so neat I had to take a picture. )

Day 2: Before Self Portrait 
I know I recently talked about this before but looking at pictures of me before makes me so sad. I feel like I am a different person now- I feel older and I feel like I look older.


Day 3. After loss self portrait. 
Michael and I (and Scampy) spent lots of days just like this one- snuggled up on the couch. I never felt like I had lots of energy to get much done but I wanted Michael close and especially liked holding my cat just so I had something warm to snuggle with. 

 Another after loss self portrait. On this day my drink had been paid for by the car in front of me-- a blessing for sure. I felt like most days if I had the motivation of stopping for a cup of coffee ahead of me then I could get out and do something fun with Michael or run some errands. 

After losing Trace, I went through a bad period where I was not sleeping well and coffee was my best friend. It now seems even more comforting to me know because I feel like maybe if I just have a cup of coffee I will feel a little better.

Day 5: Memorial: 
See above photos for Trace's memorial. It was really hard to pick out a headstone for our baby. It made me sick to my stomach: it just seemed so permanent. It sucks because it is's forever. I really went with my gut feeling on the design and I am so happy with the way it turned out. I love that there is an angel holding a chubby little baby at the bottom. When we go visit, Michael always says that the baby is baby Trace and I swear that it looks more and more like him every time I go visit.

Day 6: What to say:
As I said earlier, there is nothing really you can is like, what can you say?  The best things people could say were memories they had of Trace, even though he was here for such a short time. I remember people saying that they just remember him being so cute and happy the last time they saw him and that made me happy to remember that, too.

Day 7: What not to say:
This is also a really hard one. I think the only thing not to say would be to not say anything or acknowledge Trace's life and death.

Day 15: Wave of light

I lit my candle for Trace on the 15th and I loved having it lit to remember him. I actually went out and bought a special candle that I could burn this fall that reminds me of him. It is nice to see the little glow and think of my little baby.

Thanks for sticking it out with me and for all your thoughts and prayers. I hope to keep updating with more of the series as the month goes on.


  1. Thank you for writing this! You are so brave. I still feel like I have no idea what to say and it feels like its all about me me me, when it's really all about you you you.

  2. I felt much the same as you when passing Caroline's 1 year anniversary. It was almost heavier as it was MORE time passing. I dreaded going through the holidays again (she passed on 10/20). Just starting the whole year over. It was a lot to take in. But I survived another year, starting year 3 now. Seems unreal.

    I feel like I look so different before and after the loss of Caroline. I know for a fact I look older. Grief causes crazy aging. Just ask me with my giant forehead wrinkle and gnarly gray hair! :/


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