Right Where I Am: 3 years, 5 months

If I die young / Bury me in satin
Lay me down on a bed of roses /
Sink me in the river at dawn /
Send me away with the words of a love song

Lord make me a rainbow, I’ll shine down on my mother /
She’ll know I’m safe with you when she stands under my colours /
Oh, and life ain’t always what you think it ought to be, no /
Ain’t even gray but she buries her baby

If I die young / The Band Perry

I am standing in the wind and the drizzle, still dressed from work, looking at Gabriel’s tree. The tree seems obscenely, offensively green against the grey sky. I am looking at the roses for those of us who loved him, planted in our favourite colours. I am looking at the markers for the babies who were only with me for a short while, the tulips and the daffodils which are blooming. The wind moves the branches of the tree, the tulips shake off rain drops, and I stand here, in my trench coat, staring.

I have finished up my meeting, driven home from work, taken the cat back to the vet for suture removal. Behind me, the dogs are snuffling around in the yard. Mr. Spit is out of town and I am contemplating what to have for dinner. Those lyrics are still in my head, the song still playing in my mind. These moments are less frequent, a cloud burst and not a day long rain. They happen, you stand in them, and then you walk through them.

He died young, and I along with him. Unlike the song, he did not have just enough time. I cannot tell you what would have been enough time.

My mother asked if I was planting the veggie garden this year, and I laughed. That Mrs. Spit is dead. That woman, so domesticated, so determined to be the perfect wife and mother is dead. She died in a hospital room, in a sudden rush, caught up in the after effects of tragedy, when it over takes your life.

Another woman has emerged. She is different. Less certain, kinder, more compassionate. She has a backbone of steel. This woman listens. She knows that she does not know much, not really. She has seen success and failure at the office, she has found other things to be passionate about. Organically grown carrots can be purchased at the farmer’s market. In the grand scheme of things, organic carrots matter even less than you can imagine.

Most days, the days are sunny. Most days are good, most days I have things to look forward to. Most days I like my life just fine, most days I am happy. I have changed my hair, changed my career, changed how I spend my time, changed my life.

Some days, three years, 5 months later, you find yourself standing in wind and rain on a grey and cold day, in front of your son’s tree, looking at 4 solar lights to mark your four miscarriages, standing in silence, and the only thing you are at that moment is the mother of dead children. Still trying to make sense of it all.

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36 Responses to Right Where I Am: 3 years, 5 months

  1. Angie says:

    This absolutely took my breath away. I hope everyone reads this. Thank you for participating. And thank you for taking inventory. It just nailed what it is to be right where you are. xo

  2. Kristin says:

    Oh Mrs. Spit…so raw and so powerful…those moments can seem overwhelming when they hit.

  3. a says:

    There is no sense. I only wish there were.

  4. Christine says:

    Mrs. Spit, this was so beautiful. Remembering always.

  5. Ya Chun says:

    What an image.

  6. Missy says:

    Such a powerful image. Thank you for sharing it with us!

  7. Hanen says:

    Beautifully said.

    “the only thing you are at that moment is the mother of dead children” – the first time I read this, I wanted to say “only? Being a mother of dead children is a huge, difficult task – there’s no only about it”. But then I re-read it again, but in the sense that in some moments, this job of mothering dead babies does in fact block out everything else, and that resonated more with me. Thanks so much for mapping your path through this.

  8. VA Blondie says:

    Such a lovely post. Thank you.

  9. Lani says:

    wow, that leaves me breathless. beautiful post Mrs. Spit. thinking of you and your babies and sending some love and light. xo Lani

  10. curlsofred says:

    Very powerful post. Thank you so much for sharing this. The section about your mom asking about the veggie garden, and organic carrots especially resonates with me…I understand that ‘woman being gone’ aspect very well.

  11. HereWeGoAJen says:

    Thank you for sharing this. 🙂

  12. Penbleth says:

    So touching. Much love to you.

  13. Erica says:

    This knocked the wind right out of me. Thank you so much for writing and sharing it.

  14. linds says:

    Beautiful post. This post touched me and I really feel you are a strong woman.

  15. Maureen says:

    Very well written. Thank you.

  16. J. says:

    Beautiful. I’m at a loss for words. Thank you for sharing it.

  17. TracyOC says:

    Perfect post, Mrs. Spit. I wish you didn’t know any of this but I appreciate your way with words.

  18. Lovely, thanks for sharing.

  19. Sally says:

    Eloquent, heartbreaking post. I am so sorry for all your have endured. Your strength is an inspiration.
    Thank you so much for taking part in Angie’s amazing project. So glad I stopped by here today.

  20. Jeanette says:

    Breathtaking post, thank you, I’m glad I read it, and I’m sorry you have the need to write it. x

  21. Echoing TracyOC”s “perfect.” Perfect, perfect post.

  22. Barbara says:

    Beautiful post. I am still trying to make sense of it all too.

  23. Heidi says:

    And for all of those reasons I love you.

    You have helped me make the choice to live. You.

    And know when I hear that song, instead of my eyes filling up with tears, I will know that it is you reminding me to be strong.

  24. Kate says:

    I am crying and my heart hurts….for you and all of us….
    and I am Right Where I Am…32 years and 11 months….
    and I will never forget my children who live in another place I choose to call Heaven….
    and I know I will see them again, but my heartaches for them!

  25. Jordan says:

    For me, the line “I’ve had, just enough time” is my line. I’ve had enough time to love my son as deeply as any mother can love a son. I had 5 days and that was just enough time.

    Thank-you so much for sharing.

  26. Catherine W says:

    Amazing post. It is very difficult to make sense of it all.

    These moments are less frequent, a cloud burst and not a day long rain. They happen, you stand in them, and then you walk through them.

    Perfect description.

  27. loribeth says:

    Amen. Yes, yes, yes. Thank you for this, dear Mrs. Spit.

  28. Tess says:

    I’m over from Angie’s project and I’m so grateful for the chance to have a snippet of what the view from down this path looks like. The greatest feeling for me is relief in reading these, that I will continue to grow stronger, and more aware of the woman I am now – I guess it takes time for everyone else to catch on…

    If I Die Young – that is my special ‘ear-worm’ at times too; just roaming around and around. Thank you for sharing, remembering Gabriel with you

  29. Trish says:

    I’m not sure it can ever make sense, at least not on this side of heaven.

  30. Brianna says:

    Sometimes I feel like that is all I am as well, a mother to a dead child. Other times I feel like that woman you spoke of with a backbone of steel. That has been one of the most confusing things about the aftermath of the death of my son. Who I am is not who I was and I am not sure what person I am evolving into.

    Thank you for sharing where you are.

  31. Alissa says:

    All I can say is “Wow” and thank you. This post is breath-taking. Thank you for taking part in the Right Where Am I Project and for sharing this with all of us. Sending love to you and your babies.

  32. I’m trying to comment on each of the “Where I am”posts that I read. Sometimes the posts are so powerful, I’m left speechless. What beautiful, sad, profund words. I wish you didn’t have to write but thank you for doing so.

  33. Melissa says:

    Wow. What am amazing post. It is amazing how experiencing the death of our children really makes us go down an entirely different path, isn’t it? Thanks for sharing your story.

  34. Josh says:

    This was really beautiful, both the writing and content. As a newbie to this babyloss tragedy, I appreciate you taking part in this project and letting us see a small glimpse into the future.

    I found this line really moving: Another woman has emerged. She is different. Less certain, kinder, more compassionate. She has a backbone of steel. This woman listens.

  35. D. says:

    Ah, still so fresh. We are similar in time to the loss of our children but I feel the pain deeper in your posts. I hope you find peace, I hope you find joy. Your strength permeates from your words.

  36. Kate says:

    “Another woman has emerged. She is different. Less certain, kinder, more compassionate. She has a backbone of steel. This woman listens.” Gosh these words resonated for me. Especially the less certain words. I thought I was certain of everything.
    This post made my heart skip a beat more than once. The imagery so easy to see.
    Thinking of your Gabriel and your other losses with my Joseph Gabriel. xxx

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