Monday, December 12, 2011

2 Adults and 5 Kids

Last Christmas eve I brought Rachel a little Christmas tree.  The lights on it were battery operated and when I showed up on Christmas night (the day she was due), not only were they not working anymore but the battery pack was frozen into the ground.  I stood there in the pitch black, still healing from my c-section, trying to chip away at the frozen dirt so I could replace the batteries and sobbing.  It was so heart wrenching....

This year, I determined that she would not spend the winter - and especially Christmas - in the dark (as if there is any dark at all where she is!) and ordered solar powered Christmas lights.  I ordered two sets and me & my friend Kim went out for the afternoon to decorate Rachel's grave and her sister's grave together.  For as much as that may sound like a less than desirable way to spend the day, I was glad to have someone to go with who understood.  I do so much cemetery stuff alone.  Sometimes that is good for me and sometimes it's really hard.  (pictures coming soon!)

I was getting ready to go and decided to check my email.  My good friend's daughter was born 3 weeks after Rachel and there it was....her first birthday party invitation.  We had talked about these types of moments while we were both still pregnant and I'm so thankful that we have the kind of relationship where we can be open with each other.  I knew moments like this would happen....the ones that made me remember that Rachel wouldn't still be that little baby I see in the photos all over my house - she would be growing...she would be a 1 year old.  Sounds obvious, but on the days when it feels like she just died yesterday, it's easy to forget that she would probably be walking by now.

I didn't know if my heart could handle it and so I decided not to open it and continued on to my grave decorating.

When I came home last night, I opened it.  The idea of going to her birthday actually doesn't bother me.  I'm really kind of excited about it.  She is such a precious girl, just like her mama and I'm glad to be able to celebrate her turning one. 

Here is where the 'problem' arose...
I clicked on the rsvp "yes"
A little box popped up and it had a space for the number of adults...
I typed 2.  That was easy.
Then it has a space for the number of kids....
I stared at it for probably 10 minutes watching the cursor blink.
Matt said something from the other room.  I replied back;
"I'm trying to rsvp for this birthday party"
He asked what the problem was.
I said it wants to know how many kids we're bringing and I don't know what to write.
"Why?" he asked, assuming I wasn't sure if we'd all go.

And as I heard myself answer, I started crying.

"because I don't want to write 4" I blurted out.

Even still, sometimes this all seems like it can't be real.  And when I hear myself struggling so much over something that should be so simple, reality feels so harsh.  I looked at the other rsvp's...  2 adults, 1 kid... 2 adults 2 kids...  I wondered how long it took them to figure out what to enter in that box.  2 seconds?  I wanted the answer to be simple.  I wanted to be able to just enter how many kids I have - and that I would be bringing them all. Or just to feel fine writing I'd be bringing 4.  But I couldn't do it.  I so wished there was a way to type in "I have 5, but can only bring 4"...  but the space only allowed for a one number answer.  I felt wrong writing 4 and stupid writing 5 since after all, I wasn't bringing 5 and everyone knows that an rsvp is all about who is going to the party, not who you wish you could bring.  I tried to come up with some witty reply I could write in the comment section if I was to write 5... how does "only 2 of them will be eating cake" sound? 

I stared at the blinking cursor some more. 

At this point Matt was standing beside me with his hand on my shoulder as I cried and fought with myself over typing 4 or 5.

I typed 5 and shut the computer.

"She'll understand" I said as I turned from my desk knowing that my friend wasn't going to think I was a freak for claiming to be coming with 5 kids... because technically I am...I'm just carrying one of them in my heart instead of my arms.


  1. Hugs. I'm so glad that you have friends who understand. Rachel will always be a part of you!
    Love and prayers, anja

  2. Big hugs coming your way! I'm so glad that you have that close of a friend that will understand your pain and your reply with no questions asked, simply comforting support.
    I can't wait to see the pictures of the decorations, though like you I wish she were here with you instead of you needing to decorate a grave at the cemetery.
    Praying for you! :)

  3. This post really tugged at my heart. This is the exact type of thing that has me in pieces. Why is it the "little things" about not having our girls with us that hurt SO BAD!

    Love Ya!

  4. I love you, and would NEVER call you a freak:)

  5. I hate that you experience things like this and that I can relate so well. However, I am thankful that you share your thoughts and feelings (and that you do it so beautifully) reminding me that I'm not alone. <3


We so appreciate your words of encouragement!
Thank you! ♥ The Aubes