Thursday, September 15, 2011

It's getting closer

Fall has made a sudden and slightly early appearance here in Minnesota this week. I LOVE fall. Crisp air, jeans and sweatshirts, open windows- all good stuff. It's still good stuff, but different now. Because last year we were enjoying these things with two kids. And now, with just one. Last year at this time I was busting out Ellie's cute fall clothes and had just made a recent BabyLegs purchase (which definitely means I bought more than a couple pairs!). We were spending our evening out in the cool air on the patio, playing, swinging and talking walks.

Ellie was such an easy going baby that it was no big deal to just do whatever we wanted to- so we did. We played in the leaves, went to the apple orchard and to pick out pumpkins and play in the straw maze. We have so many great pictures from all these fun things we did with the kids last fall, and since Ellie passed away, the pictures organized into the "Fall 10" folder on my computer have been some of the favorites. They are the last memories with have with our sweet girl, of our old lives.

I dreaded opening up the fall photos folder because it's the last one we have with Ellie pictures. Every folder after that just has pictures of things in honor or in memory of Ellie. And that sucks. These pictures make me so happy and so sad. Today Ellie should be twenty months old. That's insane! I can't even imagine what it would be like to have her in the house as a busy toddler. I'm sure it would be amazing though. The next month and eight days worth of pictures we have are our last memories. They are the things that I've held onto for the last ten months. Every day that passes, there are fewer... It's been so healing for me to look back (almost) everyday to what we were doing last year. It was my reminder of the good things when horrible scary thoughts crept into my mind. It was my reminder that Ellie really was here, she wasn't just the best dream I've ever had.

Lately, a peace seems to have settled over me. The feelings of anger, extreme sadness and despair are lessening and when they do make an appearance, they don't last quite as long. I will say that I hate to admit that it's getting easier. And I'm pretty sure that other BLMs know what I'm talking about. I don't like feeling sad and depressed all the time, but I feel like allowing peace in makes me a bad mom. In my mind, I should never feel ok without her here. I know this doesn't make sense- but what does in my life right now?? But the whole guilt over peace is it's own separate issue...

My worry right now is how much worse things are going to start get in the next month. In just forty days, it will be one year since we said good-bye (insert uncontrollable shaking, crying and vomiting here). I don't see any possible scenario in which these next forty days don't progressively get more sucky (trying not to swear- not working out so well...). Memories of the time we did this and that with Ellie are going to start pouring in. It's already started.

Tonight Dave and I were talking about going to the apple orchards with our friends, just like we did last year. The place we went last year is really close and was a really nice place, but I don't want to go back again. I have anxiety anxiety. Yes, it's an official medical term. The anticipation of anxiety makes me anxious. The fear of those awful sad feelings is totally overwhelming. It's almost never as bad as I imagine it will be, but when it comes down to it, I just am sick of feeling like that, and I don't want to make new memories at a place where we already had memories with Ellie. Of course, we've been doing this since Ellie died. But the first time at a new place is always awful...


I just want our old life back from 365 days ago....

Ellie~ Happy 20 months Peanut! We miss you so much and thank you so much for the dragonfly on your spot today! I wanted to scream and runaway when I got there today and saw they had just started the process of burying someone nearby. But when I got to your spot and saw your sign, I knew it would be ok. I love you little girl!!

Remembering September 14th, 2010

What to do with a baby and toddler who want to be at Mommy's feet while she makes dinner?? Tupperware!!
I plopped Elle in the drawer and her and Max went to town throwing crap all over. Please note Ellie's chubby thighs hanging out of her BabyLegs that had to be pulled down to let the cool air in!

Remembering September 15th, 2010
 Please prepare yourself for the cuteness you are about to see...
This is Elle's "I'm not supposed to have Georgie but holy crap am I happy when I do!" look!
Yes, I agree she is cute!
This pic and the next are of Ellie doing her patented "excited dance." Moves include moving her legs back and forth on the ground, tightening her arms and giving a little growl. I should really find a video of this- it's awesome.
Oh yeah, spread out fingers is an important part of the "excited dance" too.
All of a sudden, she started looking so old.
I could look at her all damn day... sigh...
Ellie went to bed early this night (apparently turning eight months old is hard work), and Dave and I got some time alone with Max and he was in a really good mood. Here he is playing a little peek-a-boo.
Playing with Daddy
He thought this was hilarious.... he was climbing up onto the chair with toys and then dropping them onto Daddy was laying on the floor beneath the chair...


ccc said...

As always, such beautiful pictures. I am dreading this fall. It's already feeling like fall here,too, in Michigan. My kids have been talking about Halloween and going to the corn maze. These things just make me think about this time last year and then I become sad.
Thinking about you during this fall.

Natasha said...

The kids looks so cute playing with that tupperware! Love Ellie's BabyLegs!

The guilt over peace is definitely a feeling I understand. It's hard and I've felt like a bad mother for letting that peace in.....but I know I'm not and neither are you. The complete opposite in fact.

Love ya friend.....thinking of you and Ellie with lots of love.


Harlowe said...

Eli get's that same look when he gets a hold of something he doesn't normally get, ha ha. My gosh it's so cute. Your children are beautiful and look so happy.

B. Wilson said...

I bet this was INCREDIBLE therapy for you. I'm so glad you shared all your Ellie photos with us, too. It made me feel part of your journey and I loved experiencing all you did with Ellie. She lives through these memories.

"It was my reminder that Ellie really was here, she wasn't just the best dream I've ever had." She was not the best dream-- she was real and incredible and every moment is a gift and true blessing.


Love the pictures of your kids. They are so dang cute! I love seeing all your photos and seeing what a great mom you are and how happy your 2 kids are/were.

I hate how time does makes things easier in the sense that the moments when the pain is so unbearable...doesn't seem to last as long OR bring me down for the next few days. BUT I miss him more and more AND that has gotten MUCH worse :(

Erin said...

I have been having funny mixed feelings about fall, too. I love the autumn, the traditional fall foods / flavors, Thanksgiving... So it is strange to feel a little happy after absolutely dreading the passage of time over the past 8.5 months. Love the pictures, adorable as always. Glad to know you are feeling some peace.

Ashley said...

Fall used to be my favorite time of year. Now, not so much. Too many events and bad things have happened during the fall and I actually wish away September - December. I can't even enjoy Christmas anymore.

I'm always thinking of you Tiffany and I'm praying that Fall '11 will have some pretty awesome memories for you! You deserve them!

Mandy Hitchcock said...

Hi, Tiffany-- I found your blog from Laura Jane's. I am so very, very sorry about the loss of beautiful Ellie. She is just precious. Sadly, I know exactly what you are going through. We lost our daughter, Hudson, in May 2010 at the age of 17 months due to a sudden and incredibly aggressive strep pneumo bacterial meningitis. A perfectly healthy child one day, fatally ill the next. We didn't do an autopsy, so we don't really have any explanation as to why the infection went so fast that her immune system didn't even have a chance to fight it. At the time, she was our only child. We've since welcomed our son, Jackson, in May of this year. Our sweet girl was 10-11 months old in fall of 2009, our only fall with her, and we have so many good memories with her. Your post here reminds me so much of one I wrote last year when fall was just arriving-- it has always been a favorite season of mine and facing it without Hudson was almost too sad to bear. And this year, we have to decide whether we're ready to go back with our little boy to the apple orchard/pumpkin patch where we took Hudson two years ago. You are so right that the first time at one of our baby's "places" is always so hard. I've found over time, though, that after the initial awfulness of it, I am glad for the feeling of closeness that it brings me. I still don't know if that's enough to make me go back to the pumpkin patch (our son will only be 5 months, so he won't be missing out...).

As much as I always hate encountering a new bereaved mom, I am always grateful for the companionship of others who know what this awful grief is like. Again, I am just so sorry that your sweet little girl is not here, getting ready for her first birthday. It is impossibly wrong. Sending love and light for this journey.

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