Monday, December 29, 2014

Well, I made it through Christmas

Christmas Eve was three months since Psalm was born and died.  I hadn't reckoned to mark it, but I did.  I shared a couple of pictures on Facebook.  This was one of them:

She was so, so tiny.  I will never get over that.  I think I said here before I think that about half of her was just not there and that's part of it, but of course she was a near-term preemie as well.  And I remember the feel of her little head in my hand, of her sweet, soft skin, of her silky hair.

Christmas Day was not easy.  The older girls' father actually bothered taking them for his half of vacation this year for the first time ever, so I was missing them and then missing my girl too.  Three months old on her first Christmas would have been awesome!  At that age they're pushing up and looking around at everything.  I've never had that at Christmas before, always either a pretty old baby or else a little lump of cuteness that doesn't really do anything.

Such a large part of this grief is realizing what you don't have...

I decided to take my usual group photo of the kids the next day when they were all home.  I'd read an article on including a deceased child in some way in future family portraits and decided to do something of the sort.  I put our little pink tree in the gift unwrapping chair along with her heartbeat bear, and added the portrait of her we had on the table at her memorial service, then had the kids stand around that.  Turned out pretty nice:

Of course, that smiling blonde girl there is the same as this girl here:

So you can imagine that the execution didn't come off so well.  I got four pictures taken before Ro burst into tears and I spent the next hour or so trying to calm her down.  She was doing that ugly crying like an animal in pain.  To say she is my sensitive one is an understatement.  I know the feeling, of course.  The difference is she hasn't had the expectation of keeping things in control beaten into her yet, and I really hope she never does.

This is another of those entries without any real point, by the way...

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