Saturday, December 5, 2009

what's the fucking point

Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck

mum = lipservice only. I hate people who pretend to give a shit, when they really don't. I think that after a year, If you can't remember that my daughter is dead, or how to spell her name (especially close family) then you can go fuck yourself. Yes, I'm tsakling about you mother. fuck fuck fuck fuck fuckjfakldsjf ;lewkjr[qewjf'oiqerwh[!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
THE SERVICE TONIGHT WAS A FUCKING DSISASTER. there is obviously not enough room for my mother and my grief in the same room. ever.
what's the fucking poiunt of me, huh? I can't grow babies, I can't even make babies. I can't stick to anything, I can't get a decent job, I can't funcking do anything useful. I want to stab my eyes out, I want to be blind, i don't want to be around people, I am completely insecure, I have nothing to commend me to other people. I am not interesting, i am not interested in anything, I have no qualifications or any moments of pride in my life.
tonight it all came together again. I'm angry, I didn't get to ask michael if we wanted to go to the service, mother just decided we were all going. her, dad, Indi, Michael and me. I didn't want her there, I just wanted it to be michael and me, if wew were going. with her there i have to put on the happy face, pretend I don't care that she actully only gives a shit when there's someone there to see. it's so much harder to speak to other people when she's there. she just wants to 'stickybeak' at every one else's pain. fucking bitch. Almost a year. we named her about a year ago now, bitch still can't fucking spell it right.

Monday, September 21, 2009

After Last Week

Last week was pretty I just felt awful and depressed for so much of it. To be fair to Michael, sometimes i can be a real B"TCH. He should be allowed to have A-H"LE days too. I just worry that we will have a family that includes living children, and I will lose myself more in holding the peace between Michael and the world. I hate that he feels the need to give out put downs all the time, and doesn't even notice. I do feel scared that he will do the same to our kids just as he does to me, my neice, our pets (and yes, I know animals aren't that intelligent, but he uses a 'tone' with them, they get confused so easily when they haven't done anything naughty).

He does love me, and I guess I do love him, although the focus these days is on the tangibles of our relationship - kids, house, budget etc.
The first months of my pregnancy, I had attachment issues myself with the baby, I didn't feel affectionate towards it, and the exhaustion, the inability to eat anything, and all the other stresses involved didn't help any. I felt awful sometimes at how badly I wan't to love my bump, but couldn't. I even bought a book called 'How to Bond with your B.ump', which only made me feel worse and cry. It was full of suggestions for doing physical activities which my doctor had banned me from.
Those first months, I was struggling to settle into a new, perfect job with the uncertainties of how child-rearing would affect that. I was struggling to make plans for my baby, when I felt so much resentment for the physical discomforts I was experiencing. Michael and I argued a lot. Being pregnant made me immediately do the best i could to look after myself, albeit with a lot of days when I just didn't have the energy to pack a healthy lunch, go for a walk and get home to do the housework after a an 11 four work day. Being aware of pregnancy makes you a parent. It's up to you how you live up to that.
Michael and I argued over the deadline to parenthood. He felt that we would only become parents AFTER she was born, I struggled to explain that actually, our lives had already changed; staying out late and going to pubs wasn't really my something I could do anymore. Nor should he. Same goes for getting smashed at home every time he had a bad day. If he wanted to, he should go out with his mate on the way home from work, disappear for hours then come home drunk in the middle of the night. According to him, we could think about all the preparations later, it wouldn't take much to get ready to live with a baby, His new life as a father didn't start until she was in our arms.
I'm sure we aren't the only couple to argue like this, but it got so bad he would pack his little bag and sit at the train station after the last train had already left, pretending he was going to visit his friend, then come home again. Sometimes he went away for a couple of days at a time, wouldn't speak to me. It was bloody awful, the more I tried to impress upon him how important it was to sort it out, the more he pulled away and acted like a complete tool. We discussed abortion. I have been cautious my entire adult life to avoid becoming pregnant before I was ready. I never wanted to be a single mother, sharing custody with a dead-beat loser Dad, but that's how life was looking. He wouldn't talk seriously to me, I couldn't get a straight answer when I wanted to know If he wanted to work out our problems, or give up on everything, including our baby. I didn't want an abortion, but no way could I have lived like that for much longer. He said he didn't see the need to even talk about it, to think about what we should do until we had passed three months without miscarrying. I'm also fairly certain our fears of another miscarriage added to the uncertainty for both of us.
We eventually managed to work it out, after a month or so of fighting. By the first trimester screen we were both very happy and excited, looking forward to the journey to come. We had even made a few trips to baby shops together, checked out all the cool stuff, the expensive stuff, the stuff we never had time to buy.

When we found out what was wrong with Olidea, he was wonderful. It feels awful to say it, but during the hardest times, the weeks before and after her birth and death, He really was amazing. We found a closeness in our grief that we struggle to feel in our everyday lives. He's not the easiest person to live with, and neither am I. We are both bull-headed, stubborn and self absorbed at the best of times, but it's good to know that when we really needed each other, when we were tested so hard, we made it. And we are a better couple because of it. I don't like to think it, but the loss of our baby has given us something I never thought we would have. A future together.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


It's late. I'm tired. I feel angry. I'm angry that i can't get pregnant. I'm angry that there are so many useless, ungrateful sh"ts around who just get pregnant every time they take off their pants, but the women I know, who all desperately want children all have their babies die or become seriously ill. Why the F%ck does it have to be this way? Surely just one loss is enough for any parent? Why is it that some people get to keep their innocence, get to plan their pregnancies and births based on 'empowering their femininity' when there are thousands of us who live in statistic land, whose every thought is weighing up the risk factor to our potential pregnancies or unborn children, scared we will lose another one?

I get angry that so many ingnorant, naive people think it's ok to say to a Mother who has no living children that God is the answer. A friend of mine posted a F"book status update today about other people not living their lives by his religious standards - the Ninth Commandment to be exact. I looked it up, there's a little confusion but the first verse I came across was Deuteronomy 5:9-10.

Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me, But I show mercy to thousands of generations of those who love me and obey my commandments.

I don't hate God, and both my parents are very christian. Why did MY BABY deserve the punishment of a grotesquely malformed body? Why do my friends, who live their lives as christian and loving people, deserve to have their babies taken from them in pain and suffering?

Religion is BS.

Now I can't get pregnant again, we have an appointment to go to a fertility clinic next week, but I am thinking about cancelling, sometimes I have no confidence in our relationship, our future as a couple, our ability to raise a happy, loving family.
I asked Michael to be positive, polite and just generally pleasant to me for 7 days. No put downs, no stupid arguments for him to let off stress. I'm tired of having to put the walls up whenever he's home, just to protect my feelings. How am I supposed to feel intimate and close when he is arrogant and aggressive all the time? Anyway, his time started 9:30 Sunday night. It's Wednesday, and he came home in a really sh"tty mood, and now we're not speaking. again. The most I could get out of him was that he didn't have a bad day, and he doesn't know why he acted up, but he wasn't taking it out on me as there was no underlying feelings to release. 7 days. what a f"ing joke.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Why I sometimes hate myself. Part deux

Following on from the previous:

One woman read my last post on one of the abortion poll boards, where I ended my unheard lobbying with a few pithy, sarcastic and probably blasphemous remarks. Along the lines of being certain I am going to hell for having an abortion. Below is what this woman 'Nancy' wrote in a message to me, and how I responded.

31 July
From Nancy

Michelle, you are not evil. You simply made the decision to abort your baby. I do not personally know you *as others have also posted*, but even though I do not know the circumstances - yes, you did sin against your own body, your baby, & God. Please do not ever say again that you are "evil" & will burn in hell for all eternity. As long as you are still alive on this Earth - you can still ask God for His forgiveness *being sincere* & He will forgive you! :)
Life is not easy for anyone. This is not promised any where in the bible. The main reason He wants to have a personal relationship with you is so that you grow in "His" love & see life through His eyes - not just your own. In the process you will learn to love others & understand that we all make mistakes. And as I'm sure you've heard before - not to make the same mistakes again & learn from them. Please get involved with a church that speaks about God's truths...which has NOTHING to do with 'being religious'! Hopefully this church will teach you His truths & you will enjoy & love learning how much He loves you! Go to: - to start your journey to God's amazing love & grace to anyone who truly seeks Him! God bless you! =)

31 July
From me:

Nancy, thankyou for your encouragement, however my comments were not entirely serious. If you are interested you can read a few of my previous posts which will explain the circumstances of my 'sin' and why I don't believe personal spiritual beliefs have any standing at all in the abortion debate. Otherwise I will be happy to share my story with you as a message if you like.

05 August
From Nancy

If you want to share, yes you can share your story as a message to me. Have a great Wednesday & God bless. =)

01 September
From me:

I am sorry to have taken so long to reply Nancy, I have been having a difficult time again for the last few weeks.
"you did sin against your own body, your baby, & God." This was something that you wrote to me. This is typical of the opinions that people such as yourself feel free to post publicly. People who belief so strongly in their own religious doctrine, that they believe all persons should be governed by it, regardless of the effect on the lives of others, regardless of each individual circumstance.
I wake each morning, every morning, afflicted with guilt that I do not have to care for my child again today. I am frequently overcome with guilt that I chose the end of my daughter's life, at 24 weeks and 3 days gestation. I have felt alienated, at times unworthy of real grief. All of these feelings are re-asserted by the plentiful material in media relating a pro-life standpoint to the public in general. I am hurt each day anew by my unwilling exposure to this. It rubs salt into the wound of my grief.
I fail to understand how a young girl who is sexually abused, a woman who is mentally unwell, or whose life situation rapidly changes can be expected to provide a safe and nurturing environment for her embryo to become a person. I fail to understand how the beginnings of life can be regarded as precious, if we do not believe that it is a child's right to be provided with safety and nourishment both before and after birth. I fail to see how acknowledging your inability to provide the very best for your child is a sin.
As for my sinning against my body, my baby and God, I would have it the other way. It is God who has sinned against my body, my baby, and placed me in a position where I had to consider ending my pregnancy.
I am married, we have been trying to conceive a healthy child for over three years, and I had a miscarriage in March last year. Four months later, I fell pregnant again.
I have followed all of the guidlines for nutritional supplements, healthy eating and lifestyle. During pregnancy, I followed my doctors orders implicitly, had scans and blood test and did everything as a woman who wants the very best for her child should do.
We waited impaitiently and fearfully to pass the 8 week mark - the stage at which I miscarried my first baby. We waited impatiently to receive the results of the first trimester screening - we passed with no problems. We waited impatiently for the halfway scan, at which we would find out the gender of our baby. I watched my belly grow, I vomited night and day, I dragged myself to work, to save money to buy the best of everything for our baby. I slept at my desk during my lunchbreaks, I walked when I had the energy.
I had my 28th birthday When I was five months pregnant, but we were too busy spending our weekends labouring on my dad's farm for me to have a birthday. My husband hadn't even had time to shop for a present, but all I wanted was gifts for our baby anyway. My birthday was on Monday the 10th of November. I planned to meet up with my friends the following weekend, and perhaps tell them the sex of the baby.
The scan was on Friday the 14th of November. When we left the clinic, there was no report from the sonographer. There was however, a message from my doctor telling me that he had delayed his three month overseas holiday, in order to see my on the following Tuesday the 18th of November. No-one would tell us why, they just told us the printer was jammed, and the report would be at my doctor's next week.
I went back to work.We spent that weekend too scared to celebrate anything. I had been looking forward to being pampered. After all, it was supposed to be the last time I had a celebration of my own life, before my child's needs became foremost.
I returned to my doctor's surgery on Tuesday. The man has known me since I was a child, and delivered my neice 5 years ago. He had spent many hours contacting other doctors regarding my results. He was almost crying when he told me his recommendation to terminate my pregnancy. My husband was several hour's flight away with work, it was arranged that he could return that night rather than at the end of the week.
We went to the women's hospital in my city the following day, and began five long weeks of traipsing in and out of appointments with ultrasound technicians, obstetricians, neo-natal surgeons, midwives, psychologists, genetic counsellors and paediatric cardiac surgeons. Their diagnoses were all the same - she was not a viable candidate for the heart/lung transplant she could not live without, could not survive long enough for surgery even if she were a viable candidate. She would never walk, and would have required frequent surgery to allow her body to grow. She had malformed and missing vertebrae, half her diaphragm missing, her organs had moved into her chest cavity, several vital parts of her heart were missing or malformed and her left luung was completey undeveloped.
We spent hours holding each other, talking to our baby, crying, choosing cremation urns. We dragged ourselves through baby stores, looking for something that we could give to our tiny, half-size baby. We delayed making a decision, we wanted a miracle to save her. I sat cherishing her every movement within me, as I watched the tears flow down the cheeks of my parents, my husband's family, my friends, and my neice.
She had told me earlier, that she didn't mind whether the baby was a girl or a boy, she just wanted it to be healthy. Secretly, she was hoping for a girl. When I told her my baby was the girl she had looked forward to, her faced cracked with an enormous grin. She shrieked loudly 'I'm going to have a sister-cousin!' before I had to remind her that no, she wasn't going to be able to teach my baby how to play with her.
For the sake of my baby's pain, the high chance that I would suffer further complications and possibly require a caesar and my husband's ability to support me emotionally we chose to terminate the pregnancy. In other words: abort my baby.
On the 19th of December last year, when I was 24 weeks and 2 days pregnant, we entered the doors of the hospital together as a complete living family for the last time. I last felt her move at around 10:30 that morning, by 11am, the drugs I was administered with were taking effect, my abdomen was fully clenched, I could not feel her movements anymore. I did not know whether she was alive or dead. It was expected that she would pass away during the early stages of labour. As I experienced my artificial labour, we spoke to the pathologist who would perform the autopsy, and with the hospital chaplain to organise the service we would hold for her, to meet her extended family. We made calls to organise a woman prepared to come to the hospital on the weekend to take castings of her hands and feet. I had wanted to have very little drugs during my labour, however, I was kept dosed up on morphine, as much for the pain in my heart as the labour.

Every day, I am reminded by my silent house, her empty cot, the chores I do not have to do.

I have let myself down, I cannot perform the basic functions of a woman. I have let my child down, I could not provide even a body for her to use, and when I was all that she had between life and death, I chose to speed her to her death.

If I have sinned against her, against myself, against God, I do not have to wait for Hell, I already live here. What good is God's forgiveness, when all I want is my child?
If your God is one of compassion and mercy, and if God will help those who also seek to help themselves, then surely the gift of our human intellect is best used when showing compassion to our companions on this earth? If we have been given the power to understand pain, to see into the lives of the unborn and perceive their suffering, either mental or physical, surely it is not wrong to allow them to be free of earthly pain?

We would have loved to have held her here with us for a longer time, but there were no guarantees, other than the end. How could we put our desire to feel like loving parents, to feed our egos, before our daughter's right to be free from pain and suffering?My story is one of the extreme ones, I know. But I'm not the only one with an extreme story. Please remember how much words can hurt before declaring your own beliefs and values as the only 'right' way.

Thankyou for reading my story,


Oddly enough, she never got back to me after that........

Why I sometimes hate myself

One of the reasons I stopped writing publicly was the internal struggle I have been through over the way I ended my pregnancy. I have felt at times ashamed of our decision and unworthy of allowing myself the status of a'grieving mother', as I had a large part in choosing Olidea's death day. I know she was going to die, whatever we chose. I know we had very, very, good reasons, but there is a very strong cultural judgement on women who abort their pregnancies.
We are lucky here in Australia to have far fewer extremists, women can still 'hide' their pregnancy terminations without being barracked by pro-lifers all the way to the doors of the clinics, but the judgement is still there regardless. The word 'abortion' is thrown about publically, generally taken to mean the elective termination of a healthy pregnancy by a single, healthy woman who became pregnant through irresponsible sexual activity.

But it's not always like that. I know that many times it is, and I do feel sad for those women, who should 'know better'. But I ask myself, why are they in that situation? There are many girls who are brought up without the level of education I have been priveledged to receive. There are many girls brought up without a caring, supportive family to develop their self-esteem. Some women are not mentally capable of being held responsible for their actions. Sometimes a relationship may change between the time of conception and an awareness of pregnancy, or shortly thereafter. There are many, many reasons why a woman may seek an abortion. I cannot stand by and join the crowd of condemnation. I'm one of the judged.

I found that through June/ July, on that other 'social networking' site that I frequent, I was often noticing polls being posted about abotions. Sometimes it was asking for a personal answer to whether you yourself wouold ever consider having one, sometimes it was asking whether women should be allowed access to them, with no regard for personal choice. I found myself becoming more and more affected by this external echoing of the struggle I was mentally tormented by.
I went to the message boards of these polls, and began to engage in pointless arguments with people who couldn't see past the 'killing babies' headline tags. In the end, I gave up. I couldn't win. People told me that women who have abortions for reasons other thatn irresponsiblity and inconvenience are so few, that they should not be allowed to be considered in the debate. Thanks. That's my life you just discarded. When I explained that I am, indeed, one of these 'rare and extreme' cases, I was told that the way my pregnancy was ended didn't count, because I was chemically induced well before term with the intention of ending the baby's life, that's not a termination. Apparently you have to have the foetus or embry removed in pieces, injected with poison and the procedure must be performed at a dedicated abortion clinic for it to count.

The thing that really gets to me is the throwawy line used so indiscriminately by the pro-life brigade. All life is precious. Sorry, but no it bloody isn't. Some babies are condemned at conception to lead a life of suffering, either physical or mental. How dare you say that you stand upon the moral high ground, because you believe all children deserve to be brought into this world, regardless of their preparedness for 'LIFE"?

Olidea is the most precious part of my life. She is the centre of my world, but if I had a crystal ball that said I would grow a chld with such gross abnormalities within my womb, I would never have tried to conceive her at all. We are trying again, hopefully our next child will be free of these grotesque malformations, but if we lose another child like this, I will be first in line for a hysterectomy.

I have since discussed this with some women at Sids and Kids. I have become much more at peace with my decision. I have allowed myself to accept that we made this decision with love for our daughter foremost in our minds and our hearts, and there it will remain. I am no longer ashamed of ending her life, and I am glad that she didn't have to suffer any further pain or discomfort. I have also become interested in the development of pain receptors in the foetal brain, but that is a separate issue.

Parenthood does not begin with the birth of your healthy child with a bright future. Parenthood begins when you take responsibility for the life within, whether that is when you are planning to conceive, or have just become aware of your pregnancy. All children have the right to a safe, nurturing and loving environment. That is what they need to grow and reach their own potential. An unborn baby needs this too. If a woman physically or mentally cannot supply this for 40 weeks of pregnancy, what right does anybody else have to force that on her children?

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

I'm Shouting

I haven't posted on here for a long time. In fact, I had only written a few times before I stopped. It was Mothers' Day, then I went back to work, my routine changed, I didn't have time to ponder and recount my thoughts and feelings throughout my days. I've been thinking lately that I should come back here, should try to calm the whirling maelstrom that is my mind. I haven't known where to start again, how to find the place to begin, but something terrible has happened that I can't not write about. I'm sitting at home alone this week, Michael is away again. I need to talk to someone about this, it is just too terrible for words. I don't think I can properly convey myself with words anymore, but I need to let it out to someone.

Jethro Craig Wilhelm has died.

I don't know Mirne and Craig well, have only made her acquaintance through an internet forum for mothers whose children have left this earth, but she has been an inspiration to me in my journey, since I came to know that there is a community of loving parents out there, in the wide world, who understand how it feels to nurture and love a child whose needs cannot physically be met.

Mirne and her husband Craig have travelled this path before. They are now the proud and loving parents of three beautiful children, a sister and her two younger brothers.

There are many who know the pain of losing a baby. There are some who know the pain of losing more than one child. I simply cannot comprehend how two people with so much love to give, can have their three children all taken from them. Mirne and Craig were so brave to bring Kees Henry into this world, after the tragedy of losing Freyja Ione. This alone would have been an inspiration to me. Michael and I have been ttc for 6 months now, and every month is torture, unknowing not only whether this is the month for us, but whether or not we will be faced with the loss of another baby, beyond our control, or worse yet, to be forced to make a decision again, to decide when our child should die. For Mirne and Craig, they have twice braved their fears since Freyja's death, and twice Mirne has carried a perfect healthy boy safely into this world, only to have him torn away.
I am awe inspired by the courage this couple have shown, after enduring the loss of Freyja. Mirne and Craig took the love they shared for her, and created her brother Kees. For them to walk the path of uncertainty a third time for Jet is quite possibly one of the bravest things anyone has ever done in my knowledge.
Since I heard the news yesterday afternoon, I have felt shock, disbelief and overwhelming sadness. I cried for hours yesterday, and I have cried again today. It is not fair, It can't be real, whoever is in charge of the universe surely cannot expect these two ordinary people to survive this.
Mirne wrote that she wants to shout out her son, Jet's name in the streets of Amsterdam. I can't do anything for Jet, I can't do anything for Craig, and I can't do anything for Mirne, Freyja or Kees, to make it all stop, to make this awful dream become the truth that should have been.
I can speak their names. I can remember them. I can tell the world, or a very small part of it, that Freya Ione, Kees Henry and Jethro Craig Wilhelm are all very much loved, wanted and needed by their families left behind.

Freyja Ione 25 July 2006
Kees Henry 1 February - 21 March 2008
Jethro Craig Wilhelm 29 August - 1 September 2009

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Don't mention the DEAD BABY

Last night Michael and I were discussing the arrival of the new dining table we have bought in memory of our daughter. A strange memorial, but I'll explain. We received the baby bonus, not because we had a baby, but because our baby died. If her birth had been as it should have been, if our lives were as they should be, then we would probably have been just over the cut off. Being handed a great sum of money is usually fun. We could really use a holiday right now, but for us, it felt wrong to squander it on something that would have no significance to Olidea. We have been living wiithout a dining table since Michael stole my cute old 50s laminate one and turned it into a potting table, about a year and a half ago, so it was a definite must have when we listed what we had to do before Olidea was born.
Anyway, when we were still naive, we went looking at tables, and we both fell in love with a great big slab of timber turned into a table, but it was way above budget...we kept dreaming. It was 2.7 metres long, 1.3 metres wide, and had benches down each side. I dreamed about filling the benches with friends and family, having a table full of food to share. I dreamed we would have a dozen kids crowded around, all sharing fairy bread, cocktail franks and chocolate crackles. I dreamed I would sit at the table, with my morning coffee, or cutting vegetables for dinner, with my baby strapped into a bouncy chair up on the table, watching me, talking to me, smiling, sleeping.
Then we didn't need a table anymore. I stopped dreaming.

As April approached, my feelings toward making her room ready changed. Now I know it will never be her room, It will sit and wait until we need to get ready again, if we ever do.
We talked it over, we could put the cash toward paying off loans, we could buy the oven, dishwasher or other electronic appliances that would make life easier for us. It isn't our money though, it's her money. I needed whatever we bought to reflect that. In the end, we decided to buy the table we had dreamed of raising our family around. (Although it's a slightly different table because when I went to buy it, I found out the one we had seen was an import, not WA made. The one we are getting is still enormous, a slab of marri polished and crafted here in Perth, with chairs not benches, but Michael's going to make them for me.)
It will always be with us, wherever we go. It will be part of our daily lives. Every time we sit at that table, every meal we share, it will be a reminder that she was here, and in a weird way, it will be like having her in our lives again. It's not a painting to sit on the wall and be admired, it will acquire marks and scratches over time, as we use it, just as a person acquires scars and reminders of the life they have lived.
As I lay in the bath thinking about the table we had ordered, it struck me that of all the tables we had seen, we bought the only one with curved edges - it's an 'O'. Then, I thought that it might be nice to engrave the centre, or inlay it, with a small 'O', just because I want to make it Olidea's Table.
Last night, Michael got angry at me about that. He doesn't want to 'ruin' the surface. Neither do I, if we do put the 'O' into it, it will be a carpenter who does it properly. . But more importantly, he doesn't want me to mark the table with anything that will tell other people that it's Olidea's Table. I can put the plaque from her coffin underneath the table, where no-one can see, but I can't tell anyone why we have bought a dining suite that costs the same as a second hand car.
He tells me that he doesn't want me to tell people, because he doesn't want to share our daughter.
He told me I can't tell my family, because they would be uncomfortable sitting at a table our dead daughter bought for us.

I can't tell my best friend, because according to him, she would also be too uncomfortable. These people and other friends already know, and it's not a problem for them.

I'm really angry that he tries to project his own opinions onto other people, to manipulate me. He has done it before, and he will do it again. I don't know why he can't just fight fair.

He says his best friend would refuse to sit at the table if he knew. His mum isn't to be told, because she will refuse to sit at the table.

My respone to that is:

Anybody who does not want to sit at Olidea's Table, to share a meal with her family that includes her memory is not welcome in the home where she should be living.

According to him, that isn't fair. It might make people uncomfortable. I'm not allowed to make other people uncomfortable, and dead babies make people uncomfortable. If I am asked, I have to say I have no children, I haven't carried a baby in my body, I have not felt the confusion and pain of her body coming out of mine. I haven't washed and dressed my child for a blessing and naming ceremony. I haven't carried my baby's cold body to the path lab for autopsy. I haven't cried as I laid flowers and photos around my baby girl, before screwing down the lid on her coffin. I haven't cried, looking at an empty crib with only her ashes to lie in it.

I am not a mother, because saying I am night make you uncomfortable.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


I am ashamed. I am ashamed of the way I chose to handle my child's diagnosis. I started off being able to speak what we chose openly, but stumbling on the word for the procedure - I'm never quite sure whether it's a birth, a death, an abortion or a termination. Usually I just settle for 'that day'. Now, I am ashamed.

I chose to end my pregnancy, when faced with unsurvivable abnormalities in my child.

My baby died when she was born.

I called my baby to come early, so she could die quicker, and hopefully more gently.

I terminated my baby girl because I was scared that if I waited until she was big, my uterus could be damaged so much that I would never be able to have another baby.

I rejected her because she wasn't perfect.

I killed her because it was inconvenient to keep a complicated pregnancy with no expectation of a living child.

I was the only person between my daughter's life and death, and I let other people choose to take her life.

I am god. I chose my baby's death-day.

I have no right to mourn my child, because I killed her.

All any unborn child asks is for a mother to care enough about her child to provide a safe, nurturing place to become a dependant, but independent child. I refused my daughter that when I expelled her from my body.

I had an abortion to ease the burden on my husband, of watching me wait for her to die.

I had an abortion because she might not have made it to full term anyway.

I had an abortion, because my baby was not a viable candidate for transplant surgery. She was not a viable candidate because they thought there was more wrong with her than I did. They thought she had a 'syndrome'. She might have done, but really it was just her spine that triggered the CDH and heart problems. They didn't believe me about the rest until they cut her open. But they would never have known until she was born anyway, and then it was too late.

My dad wanted me to terminate, because one possible diagnosis included facial abnormalities. He didn't want me to have a baby without a face. He didn't want to feed his grandchild through a tube direct to the gut. He needn't have worried, her face was perfect, and although her intestines were in the wrong place, they would have worked fine if they had been put in the right place. Her heart would have still stopped beating though.

I killed my baby because we didn't want to watch her struggle, be cut open and kept alive by machines, if she would die like that, could never live past childhood.

My husband and I disagree on 'quality of life'. To him, a wheelchair is unnacceptable. To me, a person in a wheelchair can have friends, intellect, a family, successes, mistakes, dignity. A person who cannot speak, cannot eat, cannot control movement and wears a nappy is probably suffering, but can't communicate. To me, that isn't fair.

She should be here now.

I am a bad parent because there was no place for her in our home when she was born.

I am a bad parent because I let her spend her last night in her body, locked in the morgue, refrigerated. We should have brought her home to sleep in the cot that we never bought, in the nursery we never decorated, before her cremation. We should not have left her there alone.

We should have let her be, and not tried to take so many measurements, and castings.

I should have known what was happening during her birth, I should not have taken so much for the pain, and I should not have had a general when they removed my placenta.

We should have waited, and had a proper funeral.

We should have waited, and not had her at christmas.

I should have more photos of my belly. I didn't want them because I thought it was stupid, knowing she would die.

I wish the hospital staff were more helpful when preparing and planning for a death that hasn't happened yet. Other people have a birth plan, I wanted to have a death plan.

I wish I had known more about labour. It seemed to be expected that I knew how it works, but I haven't had any other children. I only read my pregnancy manuals as far as five months.

I wish the politicians would stop comparing women and doctors who terminate for 'medical' reasons to nazi scientists. It isn't nice, but don't take medicare funding away, give more to help us please.

I wanted my baby to live, to be smart, healthy and alive. I didn't want to kill my baby.

Friday, May 1, 2009

How do I deal with it?

I'm struggling. I would like to know that whatever happens in my life, I can count on my Mum for her love and support, but I can't. She has no empathy whatever for how hard this is.
In the first few days after we found out that Olidea had major problems, my mother made a comment to me one morning as I passed her on my way to work - "it happened to a girl I know at work, but hers was worse". The woman in question's baby also had CDH, but the organs had grown outside of the chest cavity. Apparently there is a scale of grief relating to your unborn child's abnormalities. It's not as simple as knowing your baby is going to die, it's about how attractive their corpse will be.

In the lead up to christmas, as Michael and I trudged to appointment after appointment, hoping that today would be the day that someone found a way to help Olidea, Mum kept asking what I wanted for christmas. The scan was days after my birthday, which I didn't get to celebrate, nor did I receive any gifts. I had asked previously for my christmas present to be contributions or gifts for the baby, but knowing there would be no need for those things, my mum just kept asking over and over again what I wanted for christmas.

Olidea was born 5 days before christmas. We left the hospital on monday afternoon, and had Olidea cremated on Tuesday, so that she could be home with us for christmas. I would have preferred to just keep christmas for our little, sad family this year, but Michael's mother, who lives an hour's drive away, really wanted us to be with her. I went with Michael, because worse than being surrounded by happy people, I didn't want to be apart that day. We arrived, apparently with the intention of only staying an hour, but that wasn't to be. MIL had invited most of her family for christmas lunch, and we weren't allowed to leave before we ate, which got later and later as we waited for BIL, his wife and daughter. There were about fifteen people there, including toddlers, by the time we sat down to eat, and I knew only a few of them. I tried to smile, and failed, I felt so very confused, I didn't know who knew we had held our baby for the last time 2 days earlier, and who was just not talking about it.

Because it was christmas, there was nowhere we could escape to, everywhere was booked out. We did stay in my parents caravan down south for a few days, but even that was horrible,
Mum's BF was there with her family, including her 6 month old grandchild.

I spent those early days psyching myself up to go back to work after new year, but I got to the office, just over two weeks after losing her, to find most people had already been retrenched, and I was next. The bosses had thought it was kinder to wait until after everything was over to tell me, but as hard as I know it would have been to do it earlier, I would so have loved to not spend that time worrying about work, and just let myself feel grief.

I set only one task for myself between her birth and my EDD, I needed to fix her nursery, to give myself a place to sit, and make a place for her in our home. It was important to me that if we have more than one child, that they share a wonderful nursery, with furniture that will still be beautiful if they want it later. The room has been my mother's store room since we moved in here, and before that, as this was my childhood home, until my parents moved out almost ten years ago. I have lived here again for 5, without my parents, and with Michael for 3 years.
Mum is territorial. She didn't want to let it go. I asked her a year ago, pregnant for the first time, but I miscarried, and she took the opportunity to ignore her junk. Again, I asked her when we got pregnant with Olidea. I asked her every time I saw her after confirming the pregnancy last August. Over and Over again, she told me she was too busy. After christmas, we spoke about how we planned to go through with our plans for the nursery - Our home is 2 story, surrounded by trees, with a wonderful big gum tree branch draped across the view from the nursery. We wanted a treehouse theme, with plants and insects and a bit of "possum magic" for inspiration.
Again, mum was too busy, but with the added pressure, came another argument - she didn't have any room in her house. I asked for three months following Olidea's birth, so that I could move the shrine/ crib from next to our bed, and give her a beautiful nursery by the time she was due, just as it should be. One week before my EDD, three weeks after I had asked for the last time, Mum noticed in passing that I seemed to be a little upset about something. That 'little something', after i tried to put her off, to avoid the argument, became my fault, for not asking enough times. Saying it so she could hear, or making her understand. But SHE IGNORED ME EVERY TIME I ASKED!!!! I kept asking her to leave me alone, to go away, but she backed me into a corner, in MY HOME and wouldn't move until I told her why I was upset. That triggered one of her vile diatribes, and ended with her standing in the middle of my driveway, screaming at me that I'm a horrible person, I don't care about my Grandmas, I'm selfish etc. etc. etc, for around ten minutes.

Today, a month later, she tells me I'm making it all up, for some malicious reason, just to hurt her feelings. Again, and again, and again, she does these things, forces an argument, says horrible things to me, and denies it when it is suggested that she may have any reason to be at fault.

She tells me there's something wrong with me, I'm insane, I need to see a doctor, or the psych again, but I AM NOT THE CRAZY ONE!!! She makes me think I am though.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

The sadness of my happiness

I know it's normal, but I am confused by how I feel these days. The shock has worn off now, I can start to process how I think and feel, and somedays I even forget how sad I am. It never lasts long though, until I feel sad that I'm not back there, in the time before we found out, or in the time when we were still agonising over the right decision. Some days I wish I could go back to the first few weeks, when I could howl and cry, and I would feel...released for a time, that my internal emotional state was available to the air around me. Almost five months later, I should have a 3 week old baby here. But I don't. My life has changed, I am a Mother now, but I can't understand what a mother does when her child can't be cared for. I feel a need to carry a child withing my body, my pregnancy is a project left unfinished, my womb needs a baby to grow, and continue growing, and be born at full term, alive.

I want to sit beneath a roof of yellow roses, and think of you.

We have a difficult garden. The block is very large, but the space we have for a garden is tiny. I wanted to have a beautiful garden full of fruits and vegies to wander through, and pick snacks as we went, but all we have so far is a disappointing vegie patch, and lots of fruit trees in pots. I wanted to take my little girl into the garden, hang a little hammock for her to sleep in, as I worked on the vegies, but she isn't here now. I wanted her to toddle through the plants, seeing insects, and food in her life, always. Now, she isn't here.
I'm planning to makeover our pitiful patch, into a small, but beauiful place to think of her. I Want a few fruit trees at the edges, maybe tall, ballerina apples, so slender and straight, and a miniature fruit tree or two. On either side of the gate, I will plant the spek's yellow roses I bought at a garden show, lightly fragranced, but so beautiful. I want to pave a central area, in the shape of an 'O', with one of those lovely iron gazebos, climbing yellow roses, heavily scented, and jasmine woven over the top. I want to plant daisies, and liliums and nerines, to pop their heads up and blind me with their colour. I want to see bees and butterflies, lady bugs and tiny wasps, all inhabiting our little patch. In the shady corner, I will build a frog pond, and fill it with lillies, with a little fountain in the middle. If I am lucky I will imagine the sound of her giggle, as the water softly spurts up and back, onto the pond.
I want the flowers in Olidea's garden to look their most beautiful twice a year - at Christmas, when we said goodbye, and Easter, when we should have said hello.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The Beginning

Wow..this is it. My first post. It has been almost five months since I gave birth to my little girl, knowing as we drove to the hospital, that the squirming, wriggly being alive in my belly would not be going home with us. I have struggled to put my pain into words, but now I am beginning to find them. I keep repeating what happened, maybe the words will sink in and I will be able to accept them as the truth.
Olidea Cara was born at 2.24am on Saturday, 20th December 2008. I was 24 weeks and 3 days pregnant. Although it broke our hearts, we chose to induce her birth, after an ultrasound scan at 19 weeks revealed that inside her tiny body, her spine had not developed normally, along with her diaphragm, heart and lungs. We saw as many specialist as we could, in the hope that the amazing technology available today could save our daughter. Unfortunately, due to the number of abnormalities present, and the severity of them, nothing could be done to prevent her death immediately after birth. The part that really screws me up was that she was safe within my womb. Her heart and lungs were utterly insufficient to oxygenate her blood, and pump it around her little body, but until she was expelled from my body, I could supply all of her needs. I had to choose the day that my daughter died. I know that my options were severely limited, but I feel like I killed her, by choosing to birth her before full term.
I know our options were limited. I know it wasn't my fault. But ultimately, it was my body that created and nurtured her, and all that I could give her was my continuing care of her until she was ready to enter the world. I feel so very, very guilty that I couldn't supply her with the right DNA or the right nutrients to allow her to live outside of me. And I will never be able to accept that I rejected my daughter, withdrew from my side of the bargain when I took the medication that began my labour, 15 weeks and 5 days before she was expected. I keep repeating the details, everything that has happened has left me trapped just outsside of the real world. Nothing feels real, I keep hoping to wake up and realise that none of this ever happened.