Wednesday, May 31, 2006

There are days when I'm ok, whole days - which is pretty much a miracle all on its own I figure. And there are days where I'm only ok because I have to be, because life demands it. And the majority of days are a mixture of both, some better and some worse. Today's been a decent day, yesterday was a great day, the night before was horrible - I'll learn not to watch John Edward Cross Country.

I hate to keep talking about Alexis here, on Nova's blog but going through this again, I can't help but compare the two experiences. I'm stunned at the differences. With Alexis, I shut down, completely. There were no good days, there weren't even good moments for the first 6 months. I contemplated suicide, I barely spoke, especially about her, I forgot I had a family, ignored my children. Scott shut down too, to this day we've barely discussed her, never dealt with the loss as a couple at all. The lack of communication caused real problems with our marriage, pushed us apart. The people we became after her death were completely incompatible. I never felt like he understood at all - never dealt with it. I felt, to a certain degree, that she was mine in a way that she was never his because all there really was with her was the pregnancy. We never got to spend time with her or know her, so I felt like that 9 months that I carried her made her mine. I felt badly that I had that bond that he never had the chance to have. I felt guilty that I had it, with respect to him, and felt cheated that it was all I had. He wanted to clamp down on it after she died, and he did. I wanted to wallow in it, and I did.

Nova was so different. We brought him home, we knew him, and having him home gave Scott the chance to bond with him, and man how they bonded. It felt more, I don't know, equal? We had him - together. We knew him and loved him and worried about him and were afraid for him together. The togetherness became a habit, one that carried over into the month and a half that Nova was in the hospital, and on into the grief. He has been so supportive of the tears on the bad days, of the smiles on the good, and all the things I've wanted to do (trips to the hospital, heart walks, t-shirts, baring my soul on the internet...) and has made some major moves of his own, like changing the name of his new lawn care company "Nova Lawn Care," and deciding not only to walk with me in the heart walk, but to raise funds through his customers. He does things, like show me that news story about Dr. Watts - he'd have never done that after Alexis. And if he had, I'd have run off crying, locked myself, literally, in the bathroom and lost my mind for a while. I'd have been angry that he showed me, and angry that my child didn't live to be on the news. Hell, I was angry about everything, all the time.

Now, though there are, admittedly, few discussion about Nova, few blatant talks about how much we're hurting, we've figured out that it isn't how much talking you do, but knowing that you can if you need to. And maybe part of it is that the talking doesn't matter so much as the feeling, and the doing, as long as those things are done together. Alexis' death left us emotionally paralyzed, completely closed. Nova's death has opened us up, not only to each other, but to so many other things, and other people, and other experiences - and a whole host of emotions too.

So yeah, the other night, I was up all night hugging Nova's bear and bawling. Yesterday I was hugging Lisa and smiling, and because of having Nova for those 4 months, 4 days, 4 hours and 5 minutes - I know that both those reactions are perfectly OK. Would I give that up to have Nova back? Of course. But since that isn't an option, I'll just feel lucky that he taught us so much - while I'm missing the way he smelled when I buried my face in his fat little neck.

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posted by Erin @ 11:11 PM   0 comments

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Donovan "Nova" LeClair

Monroe, North Carolina
Nova was our second child to be born with congenital heart defects. We lost our daughter at 12 days after open heart surgery in 2001. Nova was born 12/2/05, with Pulmonary Atresia with VSD. He lived 6 weeks after surgery, and passed away on April 6th, 2006. This blog is his story, and the on-going story of how our family is dealing with the loss of our beautiful boy.
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