Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Outside the box

My dear, sweet boy,

I am so thankful that you came into my life.  I am thankful for the precious 42 weeks I was able to spend with you.  I held you for every second of your life.  What a gift.

I realized that in my grief of losing you I have spent the majority of my days dwelling in negativity.  I dwell on how sad and empty my life is without you and what it should be.  I dwell on those in my life who have disappeared when I have needed them the most.  I dwell on the fact that my body is different and none of my close fit me anymore.  I dwell on the insensitive little things people say that affect me so deeply and sets me in a downward spiral.  And, that I now feel like holding a grudge against these people, where before I was so forgiving.  I dwell on the fact that my doctor isn’t being as supportive as I hope he would be.  I dwell on the fact that every day is another day further away from when I had you.  I dwell on my fear that every day your memory is going to start to blur and fade in my mind and completely disappear from everyone else’s minds.  I dwell on how much more negative and impatient I am.  How I used to think I was really compassionate and non-judgmental, but my tolerance for other people’s bullshit problems is very small. 

But, recently, I have also started to notice the positives.  I have started to see glimpses who this “new” me is becoming.  I have started to see how although I am so very sad that you are not alive, healthy, and in my arms, that you have also made positive changes in my life.  I will continue to explore and keep my eye out for these little glimpses of positivity. Right now, the biggest one I have noticed is that my fear of social awkwardness has lessened.  This started while I was still pregnant with you.  I used to be the type of person that would avoid interacting with acquaintances or strangers like the plague because the idea of an awkward encounter was so anxiety producing for me.  However, while 4 or 5 months pregnant with you, I met a woman online who was also pregnant.  I pushed my fear aside and met her, a complete stranger, for coffee.  She was very nice and although there were some awkward moments overall I enjoyed my time chatting with her and sharing our excitement of being pregnant.

After you died, I have pushed myself even further.  I have met and reached out to so many women online in an attempt to create new friendships.  I attended a loss group and then initiated contact with a woman from that group and got coffee with her last week.  She is wonderful and I am excited for this budding new friendship.  Over the weekend, I drove 2 ½ hours to support a new friend (and my hub’s old high school friend) by walking with her and donating to a cause that supports children with disabilities (her sweet little girl has CP).  This is something I would have NEVER done in the past, but she has been so incredibly sweet and kind to us, I couldn’t not meet her in person and try and establish more than an online friendship.  And, most recently I have offered to speak publicly in a staffing meeting at our local hospital to help educate the nurses and doctors on how to better support women whose babies are born still in their hospital.  I am excited, but also terrified.  However, I know I have your support and strength to help me.  You have allowed me to grow in ways I never thought I would or never even wanted to.  I feel proud of myself for stepping out of my comfort zone and I hope you are proud of me too.

I love you more than words can express,

Your mommy


  1. What a sweet letter to Silas. He must be so proud that you have been reaching out to so many others, especially with what you are doing for the hospital.

  2. Beautiful letter. I think it's great you're finding some of these positives again.

    BTW, his little feetsies to the right are so precious. :)

  3. Very inspiring, Shaina. So great that you're reaching out to help people. I agree with LauraJane. His feetsies are totally precious, he just looks like a boy, even from his feet!

  4. I'm trying so hard to come up with the right thing to say to you, but I can't because I can not even begin to imagine your pain. I just want you to know that I'm thinking of you.


  5. Shaina, no words can express how blown away I am, and how incredibly proud I am of you. Your process (in not five years mind you, but in just over three months) has gone from barely functioning from one day to the next, weighed completely down by your grief, to day by day pushing yourself to do a little bit more even though it burned, to now converting that all that energy in a dramatic way by helping others experience such a painful event in a more supported way than you did. Of course we know that Silas wouldn't want you to be losing yourself to pain--it's not the mommy he knew--but for you to actually internalize that (by thinking more appreciatively and investing your efforts in such an underrecognized and yet devastated community of blm's) is truly ASTOUNDING. For you to feel uplifted and more connected to Silas by joining the Faces team, going back to educate the same hospital staff that fucked up in many ways, and challenging yourself to reach out to others (and for others) in new ways, and to start appreciating silver linings despite how dark the storm...I am so moved by your whole process and so appreciative that you're sharing it. I am also very sorry that key people in your life have let you down. They too are experiencing great loss as a result and probably don't even know it.

  6. I am so very glad that you made the drive up so that we could meet in person. You truly are amazing Shaina. Not many people can do what you are doing and so soon into this new phase of life might I add. Feel like I say this a lot, but I don't think I can say it enough, you are much stronger than you know. I have people ask me all the do you do what you do? Or say I could never do this things you do...and my answer to them is I do it because I don't have a choice...I don't think about the things I do I just do is for my child and there is nothing I wouldn't do to take care of her. I feel like all the things you do are for Silas and you honor him each and every day. Keep on doing what you are doing the world needs people like you to guide them :)