Sunday, June 2, 2013

7th Birthday

It has been 6 months since I posted something. That is just sad...but honestly, it isn't because I think of him less. Or miss him less. It is just because....there is nothing new to say.  And that is hard.

What else can I say except we miss him? We wish it was different. We wish he was here. I wonder what he would want for his birthday. How 1st grade went. Who his friends were. Would he be in baseball? Soccer? Computer games? Math? Music? Animals? He is still gone. What ifs will always linger. I don't beat myself up over them, but we all have them and he is a big one.

Seven. Years. Seems like such a big kid.

Those first few days, weeks are etched in my mind. The first year stumbling through our grief, then compounded with a miscarriage and, finally, getting pregnant again with Claudia.

That first trip away over his birthday, which set up traditions we still have in place today. Going to the angel statue. Eating cupcakes. Releasing a balloon. Taking a trip. Then, after the kids were born, going to build a bear and having them make something in honor of their big brother.

I find so much comfort in these traditions. I am already stressed out about his 8th birthday. Claudia will start kindergarten and will be in school. But his birthday falls at the end of the school year, it will be hard to be gone 3 or 4 days at the end of the school year, when class parties and performances happen. The last 7 years it hasn't been a problem. And we can go in the middle of the week when it is cheaper. Maybe the trip will no longer happen. We will do our family vacation a different time.

Traditions will have to change. Sure, we can go to the angel still, the kids won't outgrow build-a-bear for quite a few more years...but it will change. With that comes uncertainty which I find very unsettling.  I am already stressed out about something 12 months away, simply because I find so much comfort in the traditions we have built for him.

We have built so many traditions for Cole and Claudia that take place throughout the year. The Easter countdown. The Valentine picnic. Christmas tree cutting. Gingerbread house party. July 4th outfits. Birthday celebrations. It is nice to have traditions for Curtis too. Traditions I can say "this is for him. AND for us."

But, here is the thing I need to remember. As Curtis would have grown, traditions or events would have changed as he would have grown. Eventually we won't go see Santa anymore with Cole and Claudia. Eventually making little gingerbread houses with the kids will stop. They won't humor mom in matching jammies. They won't want to do an Easter countdown activity each day.

But it is hard. It will be hard when Cole and Claudia outgrow these traditions and it will be hard on me when we no longer are able to experience Curtis' birthday the way we have for 7 years.

That first year it was just Craig and I, we went to Lutsen and had a peaceful day, trip together. The following year I remember how thrilled we were to bring Claudia with us.

 It just feels like with each year, the "older" he is getting, the farther away he is from us...well it just feels like it is slipping away and I am afraid to see these traditions go by the way side. It is hard on a mom without her son. That's all.

It always will be.


We did have a wonderful trip away. The weather, for the first time in a few years we beautiful. We got to spend a lot of time outside. In fact, we were so thrilled with the weather we ran around like crazy people trying to do as many touristy things in Wisconsin as possible. The main thing, we had a blast. The kids were great and had fun as well.
Us 4 at the angel statue 

The kids with the Angel

Angel with flowers for baby Abbey, baby Ethan, baby Aaron and baby Curtis. We put 4 flowers in her hands every year in honor and memory of some special babies that passes away around the same time (Ethan being a year earlier)

We lay 4 flowers on Curtis' 3 bricks (one from each of us)

Releasing his balloon

At Build a bear with their new friends

My big kindergartener :(

On a duck boat tour, they let Claudia drive! 

At the deer park, the deer loved Craig :)

Me and my cuties downtown Wisconsin Dells


megan kudela said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
megan kudela said...

I want to thank you for taking the time to share your experiences with others. My husband and I lost our beautiful son, Rylan, on Mothers Day this year, two days before his due date. We are just taking things day by day, hour by hour, for now. Ive been looking into support groups in our area (which ive found few-especially with anything specific to our situation). In the meantime Ive found comfort in reading personal stories on line; we have remarkable friends and family who support us but I often feel that its impossible for them to completely understand what were going through and the undescribable loss that we feel. Of the stories Ive read, I feel that your experience has been the closest to ours (although the reason our son passed is undetermined). I can relate to your earliest posts and take comfort that you found the courage to try for more children in more current posts. Although I know we will never get over the tremendous loss of our baby boy, I hope that my husband and I will be able to someday be the parents we long to be. Thank you.

CARL said...

I really enjoyed reading your blog. We also had a stillborn child. He was our first boy and it was and is still very hard. We now have a healthy 9 month old boy. This past weekend marked 2 years since the stillbirth, but we always take time out to remember him. Here's a brief post I did about what we do every year on his birthday:

Thanks again for sharing your story! You have a beautiful family.

Laura said...

Thank you for sharing. I'm scared of forgetting our little one day or it not feeling strange that she's not here. This sounds odd but I'm glad you still feel the gap of your little one. It reassures me she'll always be a prominent part of our life.
I think about her everyday day, every hour of the day. It's tiring but I don't want to forget her either.

Sophie said...

Carl hope you don't mind me reading your blog too