Birthday or Anniversary?

Last updated on February 17, 2021

… I just found out that Storey was using Cytotek to induce me. I was a little pissed, but what could I do at that point? The next several hours were unpleasant, but I spent them reassuring nurses and visitors that these things happen and that, yes, it sucks and it’s tragic, but somehow someway there was a reason.

Whether that reason made any sense to anyone else or not is kind of immaterial. My experiences were my own, and I feel like things happened the way they needed to for Toby.

Now, as far as I’m concerned… I am poignantly aware that this wound still bleeds from time to time and has been doing so aggressively for some weeks now. Having other emotional scars bothered and wounds discovered on top of that is not so nice, either, but sitting down and prioritizing it leads me to believe that, frankly, the Toby issue is the top of the list. The rest of it can come later, and will.

I’m sure that it’s made ten times worse by being pregnant right now – about six months along – and feeling some of the same sensations and intuitions that I felt back then coming up again. Paranoia, intuition, or fear? Or a little of all of the above? Who can tell? Who can say? Time will reveal all, but I have an intense fear that if history repeats, I will not be so capable of bouncing back from it.

Is that the crux of my fear? That I might not be as emotionally capable as I need to be? Is the fear of weakness stronger than the fear of loss? The emotional issues that are connected to the loss directly and indirectly – rejection, unworthiness, injustice, ignorance, etc. – all rain down and demand no answers, just blood. I feel like I’m almost out.

“Hey, I really think there’s something wrong.”

“This time is different. It’s going to be okay.”

“Didn’t you say that last time?” Isn’t that the natural response that comes when you’re afraid of your own loss? Tell it to me again, but this time, try to make me believe it as something that you’re sharing with me and not just something you’re saying for self-comfort.

Is that mean? I don’t feel mean right now, but I also don’t terribly care much if comes across as harsh. It’s not so much that misery loves company as that platitudes are often made of salt.

Don’t get me wrong – I want this time to be different. I want it to be different so badly that it aches in my chest and my gut like a pounding drum… if only my heart would step in line with it and get us out of the danger zone. If stress raises blood pressure, how much lower would mine be without this feeling? In a dead panic, I got all the way up to 93/68 (or so). That’s not good… well, maybe if I was asleep it would be okay… but not now, not like this.

When I found Dr. Collins’ work, I was chilled to the bone and yet thoroughly thrilled that there was a light, a hope, a chance to take control of the situation. “It’s just random” is about the cruelest, most horrible thing you can say to someone. Tell that to someone whose family member was fatally shot, and then tell me that they’ll believe you. Sorry, there needs to be understanding, justice, closure… and that takes time. I know it does. It comes in many steps, and sometimes it hits you all at once, making it seem like you’re back at square one despite all the tears and hard work.

Two years ago, I labored all day to deliver a child that had been dead for a week. That was a whole week of “you’re just being paranoid” and “I’m sure it’s nothing” and “eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich”. (Remember that other emotional scar? This is part of it – not having any faith in myself when it comes to my own feelings and emotions, second-guessing myself constantly because someone else always knows better, don’t they? There’s no way I could ever be right even though I was there, even though it happened to me, don’t be silly, you’re just making things up, being a drama queen, making excuses for not taking care of your real job of taking care of everyone else first…)

Ten hours of labor. That’s all it took. Storey missed the delivery because he didn’t listen. Of course, if you get right down to it, I lost my child because he didn’t listen. That would assume, of course, that he could have known what to look for, that he could have recognized the danger signs, that he would have been prepared to transport me that very day – that last day, that Monday the 15th of August at 10 in the morning, the last time I heard my son’s heartbeat…

But that’s just anger talking. He couldn’t have known. (He’s a fucking doctor! It’s his fucking JOB to know!!) He was just doing what he thought was right. (He was an arrogant fucktard who was so convinced of his own omnipotence that there was nothing anyone else could tell him about anything!) It’s totally understandable that he shut off his emotions to get the job done. (Because compassion is obviously kryptonite to doctors. If they had to care about their patients, they’d have to be accountable for their mistakes.)

I want to change the outcome. I want to change the ending. I feel so powerless, so blocked and unsure, but I don’t want to go through this again. Please, dear god, no, not again…

Reluctantly… I knit baby booties, a hat, a going-home wrap… a blanket… I budget a new bed for Joseph so that Daniel can have the crib… I took Rose and Security to the shelter because I cannot clean up their pee and poop all the time, not being pregnant, not nursing a baby… I try to prepare for Daniel’s arrival, for an addition to the family, for tragedy to turn into joy… I’m trying to hard to grasp that feeling of hope, and it slips away, again and again… they say that when you give up, when you finally stop trying, that is when the result you most need finds you.

Every bit of reassurance I have is just over the horizon, a week away, a month away, a little bit longer, just out of reach. I would be at the hospital every single day if it meant I could listen to his heart, track his motions, feel his changes and understand them. The comfort in listening to his heartbeat is not relief – that sensation of being out of the woods – but rather a temporary reprieve, a feeling of simply not having reached the end yet.

And today, the day of Toby’s birth, I am having a very hard time getting in touch with the dance of the universe. I only have my anger and fear and grief to sit with me today, and I don’t know if I will evolve to the next phase by sundown. Maybe I should have organized an event, made a cake, given myself something to look forward to… then again, I probably would have just canceled it at the last minute. Events don’t happen without my direct involvement and effort anyway.

But that’s a topic for another rant, and I feel rather wiped out right now. Not a good thing since it’s only 9:30 in the morning, but maybe with a little television, some knitting, and whatever, I’ll get through it. Maybe.

Dawn Written by:


  1. August 24, 2007

    So hard to believe it’s been two years…

    I wish you hope and peace today.

  2. August 25, 2007

    Despite everything, I still care very much.
    I love you.
    No platitudes. Just a wish for peace and joyful resolution.

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