I was cleaning today and came across the little white booties and hat Maxwell was wearing when they brought him to me from the NICU.
There are only a few loose ends left to tie up relating to the birth of Maxwell. We are still waiting for the autopsy report to come back. I need to go through all of his things and place them in an acid free memory box for later. We are still working on ordering his headstone. I think about how I “planned” my life to be, how I “planned” to have my children. It is hard to think that Lincoln won’t have a living little sibling until he is 3 1/2 or 4, best case scenario. I didn’t “plan” for such a big gap between children- and I know realistically he already has a little brother- but you know what I mean.
We were at Isabelle’s ballet recital last weekend and a super nice mom asked me how many children I have. Ohhhh what a loaded question. I told her I have three- Izzie, Lincoln who is 2 1/2 and a sweet newborn that passed away in April. It’s a great way to end a conversation, in case you are wondering. They always feel bad, and it’s awkward… and they don’t know what to say… and sometimes I cry. Maybe it would be more simple just to list Iz and Linc, but Maxwell is so much a part of our family I just can’t bear to leave him out. It feels so fresh.
Talking about loss is awkward. Our infant loss is especially awkward I think because it is so rare and unexpected. People don’t know what to say, but I find it’s worse when nothing is said at all. I’m sure they don’t want to upset me, but totally ignoring the fact that I was 9 months pregnant last time I saw them is so weird.
At dinner the other night there was a brand new baby across the way. Tiny, like seven pounds, totally floppy and asleep. And I could barely keep it together. What I wouldn’t give for just a few more minutes with my pink baby, just to prop on my shoulder and pat his back to burp him. It seems so unfair sometimes. Dinner was a little chaotic and I was distracted by this sweet newborn and just when I was about to burst into tears Lincoln leaned over out of the blue and kissed me right on the mouth. And I felt like it was totally from Max saying Mom I’m here, I’m with you, it will be okay.
Thursdays are hard. The 24th is hard. Night time is hard.
When I was having a particularly sad night last week, I went into to tuck in sleepy Lincoln. Rockabye mama, rockabye he said. And of course I picked up him and held him like a newborn and tickled his face and kissed his skin. I love him so much I could just explode. Anyway, he could tell I was sad and he said, “awww you need yo’ mama” and took his paci out and offered it to me. Like hey mom, this makes me feel better when I am sad and maybe it will help you too. Children are so special, they can feel things even when they don’t understand them.