Skip to main content

21

21 years ago today I gave birth to a little boy named Christopher Thomas.  Christopher never took a breath outside of my womb but I miss him just the same.  He lived and grew within me for 6 months.  Even though I was 16 and scared to death I loved him, was in love with him from early on.  Laughing when he first had the hiccups and then thinking he would become a kick-boxer or soccer player the way he moved all the time. 

Christopher would be 21 this year.  Had he been healthy and born on time I would likely still be in mourning today, wondering what he'd be like, if he went to college or had a special someone.  We planned to give him to a wonderful family who would love and take care of him better than a 16 year old girl and boyfriend who'd probably not last another year together, let alone be good parents.  He was never going to be mine.  But he's always been mine, he's always been near. 

I used to get glimpses of him as a 5 year old boy, dark hair, brown eyes and onry as the dickens.  Then a few years back while celebrating one of my friends' son's 15th birthday it hit me that he was the same age as Christopher would have been.  A skater boy, dark shaggy hair, deep brown eyes.  This Sunday on the way to church it hit me that Christopher would be 21 this year.  It's hard to imagine me with a 21 year old son.  Yet, it doesn't seem so scary now.  He'd be a young man, hopefully near finishing his college degree.  Philosophy?  Science?  Pre-med even?  Or maybe religious studies...like his mom.

This has been a hard birthday.  I've been a mess since Sunday.  Thankfully I have an especially wonderful husband and sister.  My sister, Amanda, drove 3 hours this morning to be with me.  She knew I was in pain.  Unfortunatley she knows my pain as she lost her first daughter just 6 weeks after she was born.  Today we cried we laughed.  We loved our dead children.

Yesterday was Merkin's birthday, today Christopher's, and Friday will be mine.  Most years aren't this rough.  The freshness of the pain ebbs and flows in no particular pattern or rhythm. 

Happy Birthday Christopher, I've always loved you and I always will.

Comments

Rebecca Ramsey said…
This is so beautiful, and I grieve for you. What a generous young woman you were. I'll be thinking of you today.
Mompriest said…
oh...so much here to celebrate and grieve. Much love to you.
revkjarla said…
Oh sweetie, yes, so much generosity of spirit, of love, and vulnerability.
Love to you...
and remember,
we are birthday sisters! 9/3!
One Womans Life said…
Blessed are those who mourn for they will be comforted. When I had a miscarriage 28 years ago, I bought myself a little figurine of a baby sleeping in a little bed. Even though I went on to have other children, that baby still existed and is loved. I wish you the very best.

Popular posts from this blog

My Third-trimester Abortion

It's something I don't talk about much.

In the past I referred to it as a stillbirth. It was a stillbirth. But it was also an induced labor in my third trimester, hence making it a third-trimester abortion.

When I discovered I was pregnant I was only 16 years old. I'm pretty sure Christopher was conceived on the night my mom walked in on my boyfriend and I having sex on the couch. I thought she was going to be at work but she came home early. He ran out the door and I cried while my mother yelled profanities at me. It was a horrible night for all of us.

I wasn't smart enough to consider pretending I was on my period. After a few months my mom asked me if I was pregnant. She was right but I denied it just the same. Tim and I had talked about giving the baby up for adoption but we were scared out of our minds and decided I'd get an abortion. Another month or so passed, I hadn't gotten an abortion and I couldn't deny my pregnancy to my mom anymore. I told her …

Cancer blues

Most days I feel really positive and good.  Today is not one of those days. Today is one of those days in which I've been thinking about having my lymph nodes removed and the risk of lymphodema in my legs. Dr. Gyn/Onc seemed more worried about this side effect than the actual cancer.  I don't want to go there but sometimes those images of log tree legs, remembering the pain from the swelling in my legs when I was pregnant, and imagining the drains being stuck in my body for a week or more, well it makes my skin crawl.

I know there will be good days and bad days. I try to keep the bad days from my family and friends. I know they are stressed too.

I feel like we are one of those families in which something is always going on and people start to pull away wondering WTF is wrong with them!

I'm used to being the care taker, not the one receiving care.

I have to find a new normal and that won't happen until after the surgery.  So I need an interim normal for the time being.

Cancer and unicorns

I wish I could remember where I found this prayer, it gives me strength and courage. 

Let me not pray to be sheltered from dangers,
but to be fearless in facing them.

Let me know beg for the stilling of my pain,
but for the heart to conquer it.

Let me not crave in anxious fear to be saved,
but hope for the patience to win my freedom.

Grant me that I may not be a coward,
feeling your mercy in my success alone;
but let me find the grasp of your hand in my failure.

Written by Rabindranath Tagore

It turns out I have actual cancer.  In the tiniest of ways I am concerned but overall I am very positive about kicking some cancer ass. I think it has helped going through the precancerous stuff and emotions. I now know that I can get through the surgery. I know what I face and that I am surrounded by people who love and care for me and will help me through this.

A few months ago I had a "unicorn party" for my staff because things had been rough in the office and most folks had persona…