Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Cemetery Visit & Statue Area Changes

A few weeks ago I posted about Sofia's stone by the angel statue at the cemetery and how we weren't sure what they were doing to the area. The stones were all removed and the angel statue was put onto a pallet off into the grass. I was concerned about the placement of her stone and whether or not they'd put it back in the right place (assuming they would not).

We went back last week after work one night and saw they placed the stones back but this time they were in a framed concrete barrier to keep them better aligned. Her stone was not in the same place, so at first I was a bit frustrated.  Then we found her stone- it ended up just to the left of the angel statue! We think it's in an even better place now than it was before.  I snapped a few pictures with my phone.
From Other Photos
There used to be a line of small bushes that surrounded the stones but they for whatever reason decided to yank them all out. I had never (or at least don't remember) looked behind the statue until this day. On the back there is a nice prayer:

From Other Photos

There were some new gifts for Sofia at her grave too. Thanks Aunt Gloria for the two birds, Ann for the lady bug, and mom for the dragonfly!

From Other Photos
From Other Photos

We normally visit Sofia on the weekends too, and bring her fresh flowers. This past Sunday I was in the area so I bought her flowers and went to the cemetery alone.
From Other Photos

I put her flowers in a vase then wandered over to the angel statue to see what changed. They planted a pink rose tree just behind the statue! So now Sofia's stone is by an angel and a tree of pink roses. I love that, and even though it's just a stone, and not her grave, it's nice that something special in her name is in such a great spot, something we will visit for years to come.
From Other Photos
From Other Photos

Usually we don't run into other people in the baby section but as I started walking back towards Sofia's grave another car pulled up. A gal about my age was walking in the first row of baby graves with two white roses in her hand and I said hello. She said hi back then started telling me how a good friend of hers lost a baby recently and they come every weekend to visit but they were unable to so she was bringing flowers for them. She had never been there before so she couldn't find the baby boy's stone. I explained to her how some new stones were in the front row to the left of the statue, some to the right, and then a larger cluster of new graves/stones were in the area near Sofia's (I pointed in that direction).  I asked her the baby's name and we started looking. She walked right over to Sofia's and looked (probably because of all the things she has) and I said, "she's ours".  I felt a knot in my throat as I said it. She looked at me & said how sorry she was.  All I could say was thanks and kept walking, looking for the baby boy's grave.

There was another person that walked up and was talking to her- I think he might have worked for the cemetery based on what conversation I heard. Then I found the one she was looking for.  I pointed to it and she said thanks. In a hurry, I gathered up the things I had to put in my car and as I started walking away the tears began to flow. I kept thinking, please let me not loose it until I get in my car! I tossed the stuff in the back then hopped in, tears streaming down my face. Then I cried uncontrollably. This had been a good weekend- the celebration of her new sister the night before- but I was an emotional mess.

I thought to myself how sad/odd it is that I'm so familiar with this cemetery that I know where all the new graves are, as if it were a little city that I know my way around like the back of my hand. Then I thought, it's almost been a year of visits every single week. I was so sad, so overcome with emotion as I drove away.  I just miss her so much and the fact that we have a baby on the way doesn't take that pain and sorrow away. I should be planning a one year birthday party with cake, presents, fun & laughter, cute smiles- the works. Instead I'm left contemplating how exactly we should celebrate her short life, with her not here.  As I drove up the hill I noticed a bunch of water shooting into the sky. Someone must've run a vehicle or something into one of the pipes meant for filling vases with water because the pipe was on the ground and it looked like a huge geyser shooting up in the air, water spilling into the street. It was a good distraction I guess, because it calmed me down a bit. Sigh... I drove home, mentally exhausted. I miss her a lot.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

It was a Lady Bug Week!

It's almost as if Sofia is trying to say hello...

I've said it before, but I have to say again that I work with/for some great people. When I think of the woman recently in the news who was told to remove her daughter's photos from her desk and how it made coworkers uncomfortable that she talked about her deceased daughter it made me sick. I can't even imagine that.  I also realize how fortunate I am to be on the opposite end of the spectrum when it comes to the workplace behaviors of others in relation to our loss.  It's not like I sit around talking sad stories every day but it's nice that I can mention things now & then without feeling bad.  And the thoughtfulness of others really is appreciated more than I can say.

My manager & friend, Sheila gave me this cute little ladybug. I recognized it right away because I had bought one for our siblings last Christmas (and wanted one but thought it might have been bad luck to buy myself a good luck token!). I'm so glad to have one now!! It sits on my desk in front of Sofia's photos.
From Other Photos

I thought this coloring was too cute! Sheila's son colored it and she thought of me. She told me not to feel bad about throwing it away...ha- like I'm going to throw it away! It's hanging on the wall at my desk. I love the little stars he colored on top of the antennae.
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This was a mystery bag I found in my desk drawer when I arrived to work Friday morning. Inside was a white gift box with tissue and a sticker sealing it. There wasn't a card or a name on the gift receipt inside so silly me wasn't sure if it was a gift for me or for someone else! It was actually quite comical trying to figure out who it was from.  Kind of a reverse scavenger hunt!
From Other Photos

I finally discovered it was indeed for me (the ladybug gave it away!) and the gift-giver, Tracie stopped by my desk. What a thoughtful gift! It will be perfect for Sofia's room (and for baby-to-be to enjoy). It was so nice of her to think of me, almost a year after our loss.
From Other Photos

It was a stressful week due to some home repairs & contractor issues (I'll save that for another day) but there was one little sign that Tim saw which made me smile. The day I was stressing over the house issue he was driving and saw a license plate in front of him that read, "LDYBG".

It's funny too, because just the week prior I was starting to think it had been awhile since we'd seen any 'signs' from the little girl. I was sad because I knew the chances of seeing a ladybug again this year were slim as we're heading quickly into the fall/winter season.  I guess she wanted to prove me wrong!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Eleven Months

We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting. ~Joseph Campbell

How true this quote is. It doesn't mean we must let go of Sofia or her memory, rather we must let go the life that we planned with her. She will always be in our life, just not as we had planned. That won't stop us from thinking through all the "what if's" but in time it might get easier. We must also make room for the life that is now and the life that is coming with this baby.

In one month it will have been a year since we lost Sofia. Tim & I were discussing it yesterday and how fast the time has flown.  Tim said today that he knows she is always with us but it still hurts that she isn't here actually with us. I think it always will. Last night I held the framed photo by my bed of me holding Sofia in the hospital. No matter how many times I look at her I can't get over all the hair and how cute she was/is. That "empty arms" feeling has not gone away.  I want to hold HER again. Not just a baby- HER.

From Slideshow

Miss you & love you, Sofia Rose. XXOOXXOO

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Stillbirth Remembrance Day

Quote taken from the Faces of Loss Faces of Hope facebook post today:

"September 6th is Stillbirth Remembrance Day. Stillbirths tragically strike 1 out every 115 pregnancies. In the USA, 26,000 babies are stillborn every year. That's approximately 71 precious babies every single day. Remembering all the babies lost to stillbirth today and everyday."

It's such a scary statistic and knowing how many other parents there are out there (and will be in the future) who will go through what we're going through is hard to imagine. Seriously- approx. 71 babies in the USA are stillborn every day?! It's so sad & heartbreaking.  To think that today there have been that many families impacted by this is just terrible.

Today we of course think of Sofia as we do every day, and all the other babies who died too soon.

A couple weeks ago we watched a movie "Life as we know it" that brought the sad emotions to the surface once again.  They're always there, but right now since I'm pregnant I try to keep them at bay so I don't get too upset and potentially cause harm to the growing baby inside my belly.

The movie was the opposite of our situation.  Parents of a one year old were both killed in a car crash and the baby was left alone, to be raised by her Godparents. We enjoyed the movie, even through some sad parts, but it was the end of the movie that brought on the tears.  They were celebrating her birthday and I just couldn't keep it in.  Without saying a word Tim knew exactly why I was crying. I looked over and tears streamed down his face too. The harsh reality that Sofia's birthday is quickly approaching and she won't be here for it is almost unbearable. We miss her so much.

We went for our weekly visit to the cemetery this past weekend and the area with the angel statue was all torn up.  The statue was on a pallet in the grass and all the square stones paid for & dedicated by families (including Sofia's from Tim's parents) were gone.  Even the bushes that surrounded them were torn out.  We aren't positive but we're thinking (HOPING) they are just fixing it up.  The stones were not in the ground very well and had shifted over time.  We can't imagine they would just be getting rid of it since the stones were bought by families.  It was kind of irritating though to find it in such disarray without being told.  Couldn't they at least have posted a sign or something!? I shouldn't let it bother me but it does.  Where is her stone?  My mom had placed a small gift we never saw on that stone and it was likely tossed out by the workers. We visit once a week and pick up any items left there or by her grave.  It bothered me knowing something of Sofia's was tossed and we never got to see it.  I asked Tim if he thought they'd even place the stones back in the same order as before (he doubts it, and honestly so do I). That bothers me too.  I know it's not her grave but it is a place where her name is engraved and we stop there to think of her often. We've grown accustomed to her "spot" by the angel and I'll be upset if her stone isn't in the same spot as before.  Hmpf.  I just hope it gets put back before winter.