Welcome Mothers, Fathers, Grandmothers, Grandfathers, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, Friends and anyone else who needs an ear...Please come with an open heart.

This is a place for anyone who has felt the loss of a child. Treat this as a communication haven regardless of how or when you felt your loss. My definition of loss: miscarriage at any stage, still birth regardless of week gestation, infant death at any month, and loss of a child even if your child was all grown up. For me they all hold the same root of devestation. None are more profound or more "easily" dealt with than another.

Please cry if you need to.
Please connect with others who are in your same space.
Please email me if you feel led to
Please comment so we know what you need
Please tell your story

Monday, November 30, 2009

To Black or To Cyber?

"Do you do Black Friday?"

"Nope." I answered. "It's not my thing, the lines, the crowds, the chaos."

"But you LOVE deals!" my friend said.

"Yup, that's why I do cyber Monday."

She had never heard of it. I educated her, citing years when all my Ch.rist.mas shopping was done in one fell click-clack of the keyboard as I sipped coffee and relished that I never left my home to shop.

Oddly, I'm not 'doing' cyber monday this year. And, it's not because of any economy woes. I could if I wanted to, but somehow, this clean my house top to bottom, clear out corners of clutter, and - in the process - create more filled contractors bags of trash than a mini-demo team has opened my eyes to what we have.


We don't need more. And amazingly, inside this minute, I don't want more. Not even if it is half off with free shipping and would look striking on the bathroom wall.

It seems I actually internallized the lesson of the recession. We are a blessed country. I have more than enough. What I truly need will always be provided for me.

Chances are time will swing me back to some kind of happy medium. I'll shop again, moderately, I'll clean again, without the fanatical gleam in my eye. I'll find a calm space to work within. But for today, I go back to work and leave the deal snatching to my capable online friends!

So, do you 'do' cyber Monday?

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Complete 180

I have become a clean freak.

Almost overnight - well, more like over the last month, but still, a - if you take something out put it away, if you turn on a light then turn it off, consistantly nagging and scrubbing something neatnik.

I cannot go to bed with a dirty kitchen.

The cushions on the couch being askew sends me over the edge.

The bed must be made.

Unfinshed projects must be completed.

And, (don't gasp), the laundry must be sorted, folded, and put away.

This is unprecedented for me. I have never (and feel free to ask my mother if you think I'm exaggerating), I repeat, never been an instinctual cleaner.

It took an external motivation to make me clean. Often, the prospect of being judged or embrassed by my surroundings, like when people were coming over, could push me over that clorax/bucket edge. But, even then, the difference between neat and clean were lines that consistantly blurred for me and never, for one minute, did I want to be scrubbing the toilet.

I'm not pregnant. Hence, I'm not nesting. We are not selling the house. I don't have any major gatherings on the horizon.

So, what's up? I am freaking myself out. I'm white-on-rice on anyone who leaves anything laying around. I bellow their name creating syllables where they don't exist. It's a tell. They walk slowly.

I suppose I should embrace this new level of white-space living, but to be honest I'm driving myself a little crazy. (Seriously, I'm considering mopping the kitchen floor before bed) And, if I'm sending myself over the edge, I can only imagine what my family must be thinking. Um, did mom get kidnapped by aliens and replaced with a robot version or something? would probably be pretty accurate.

A happy medium would be great. I could get a bit more blogging, reading and commenting done too! Any ideas? Any sympathy? Been there? Talk to me!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Show and Tell: Click - Clack - Click - The Punchline I Never Saw Coming

I love scrapbooking. I love taking pictures.

I didn't even care, much, that my camera was on it's last clicking legs. The images were getting hazier, the battery door was cracked, and the recovery time between pics had me yawning.

Even still, when I lost the camera I was devestated.

And, it was right before the bowling event when I was supposed to be uploading images of all the raffle items to the website!

I begged to borrow a friend's. She's a good friend. She let me.

I lived fitfully without my camera for three weeks only letting a random, "Oh - I wish I could take a picture of that" or "I guess this will have to be a mental picture" pass my lips, lest I receive the raised eyebrow look from my hubby.

Two weeks before the event I raised the question of buying a new one. I approached it well, I thought and he was on board before I even finished my well practiced pitch. So, I went for it.

"Well, I could get what we had before. You know they are pretty cheap now. Or I could get a good camera."

He raised his eyebrows. I continued.

"Yes, its an investement but the quality is amazing and the features are awesome and if I get it this weekend with the card there is a percentange of money off and no financing for 18 months!"

With eyebrows still raised, he nodded, then smiled.

And so, that weekend I took 30 minutes out of my 12 hour (9am to 9pm) scrapbooking day with my good friend (the one who lent me hers) to go buy my new tashmahal of cameras!

A half an hour later I re-entered the Hol.ida.y I.nn proud as punch and ready to keep scrapping the backlog of pictures I had so I could take hundreds more with my new toy!

As I approached the table my friend raised her eyebrows. "What did I miss?" I asked.

"Your husband called." she said, "He found your camera."

I acutally laughed out loud. "Ha! Good one. That's really not a funny joke, though" I said, still laughing.

"Not kidding" she replied. "I'm not creative to make that up."

And so, I used my new camera to take a picture of my old camera and vice versa - and wha-la, a show and tell in the making!

Yes, I asked him if that meant I had to return the new one and the benevelent soul he is said no, but 'no Christmas presents under the tree for you' in a very soup-nazi kind of voice)

I can live with that. My camera rocks!

Now, go see what other good shows and tells are out there this week!

Sunday, November 22, 2009


There is somthing wildly liberating about this phrase: "I have the whole week off".

I must have said it at least a half dozen times today.

I have planned, then re-planned, then scrapped every notion of a plan for the time - just because I can.

I realized something. I have been tired, really tired, lately. And, yeah - you could make a case for fatigue based on the hours I work plus working the strings on non-profit event after, fundraiser, after meeting.

But it's more than that.

I realized, the idea of working makes me tired. Strange, huh? But it must be true for the nearly-tangible aftershock of my repeated phrase today -- I have the whole week off -- was an influx of energy, resulting in a very clean house, good food on the table, 150 pages of a book ingested, and still enough energy remaining coupled with a burning desire to post, leading me here at 10:00 pm.

And why, might you ask, can I luxioursly type to the internets at large at such an hour? I'll tell you. Because I have the whole week off! (translation: I don't have to rush out the door tomorrow!)

And, quite suddenly, the Cara of last year seems reborn, or - at the very least, her spirit possesses me for the moment, and most probably, the week.

I want to write. I want to search through emotions. I want to discect realities for their roots. I need to revist your lives. I desire to see what pages you have turned, like looking at pictures of the same person months apart and noting all the suble differences you missed in the everyday of their lives.

Ahhh- and it feels good. I feel home. I feel back where I should be. And because I want to stay in this emotion I write my intention for the week here. With it, I give you blanket permission to point out if you feel like I am leaning hard in the direction I don't want to go. Like...if I start lamenting that I can't finish painting the section of hallway that has sat unfinished for two years because the local hardware store can't match the paint, then make it a shade lighter because that section of the hallway is really dark...

See how easily I walk that road? Please pull me back. I'll thank you for it. Promise.

I intend to live every minute of this week with gratitude for the time I don't usually have alloted to me, with gratitude for what I accomplish but not frustration for what I didn't manage to get to, and to let go what cannot be done in favor of quiet, special moments with my kids and family.

In short -- I aim to feel led, not lead.

Missed you. Terribly. Tell me what I missed.

Monday, November 16, 2009

The First of Anything...

(This post duplicated at Share Southern Vermont's Blog with pictures!)

She held my gaze with tears in her eyes, words tumbling out, eager to be free and I, just as eager to hear them.

"I'll never forget the day I was reading the paper online and saw a link to 'new infant loss group'. Of course, I had to click on it and read your article. Tears fell as I read it again and again. I printed it out and held it, wanting to give it to my daugther but knowing it wasn't yet time."

I smiled, already knowing the ending to this story, yet needing to hear it again if for no other reason to solidfy that the facts of the last year are actually true, that I haven't been living a dream that a good solid pinch will wake me up from.

"That was last February" she continued, tears more prominant than ever, "and here we are, in November - bowling. My daughter found you, found your group."

Yes, yes she did and we are so grateful for her strong presence, both in group and as part of our ever expanding board.

"My prayers were answered" she concluded and I found that we were holding hands, joined in our reverie even as the chatter of giggling families and clatter of bowling balls whirred around us.
The event was everything is was meant to be. As always, all the right people were there and received exactly what they needed. It was advertised as a 'celebration of family' and one pan of the room conveyed that our intentions had indeed been met. Yet, even as balls hit gutters, pizza was consumed and cheering ensued as someone threw a strike, our babies were remembered, were there amounst us, smiling angels on our shoulders.

I stop short when I think what has been achieved in just one year and look forward to the lighthearted celebratory conversation that will spin around the dinner table as the board members dine together on December 22nd, our one year anniversary.

Even so, there is so much more to be done. Lest we not lose our momentum, but let it gather speed propelling us futher down the track of expansion, reaching every family, every parent, every heart broken by loss.

For images from that day, click over.

Saturday, November 14, 2009


As I searched for formerly-stored boxes and recently packed ones, stacking them haphazardly in the corner to be loaded into the car at a time yet to be decided as it is currently pouring outside and looks not to be subsiding anytime soon, my email beeped.

I ran to it hoping it was an update about something for tomorrow.

It was an update, from St.ap.les. In a flash my mind forwarded to the location I will be in later today, walking the isles as the copy center prints our program. Instantly, I was calm, no longer frenzied by the mis-stacked boxes still threatening to fall.

Is that sad? That St.ap.les is my favorite store of all time? That all the uber organized isles full of color coded binders, sticky notes, and carasouls of small offices supplies: paper clips, binder clips, and push pins, settle my soul?

How I wish my house could inflict the same sense of peace. Ah well, back to the office to search out a few more well hidden things., see you in a couple hours!

Friday, November 13, 2009

The ups and the downs

This has been such an emotional week. Half the time I'm struck by the fact that I want to fly to my friend and the other half I'm in auto-pilot, checking last-minute details off the Bowling for Babies to-do list.

Honestly, it feels somewhat easier to be the computer: running and doing, thinking and forgetting, then remembering, driving to pick things up and drop things off then it does to the the compassionate friend who can get sucked into an emotional portal in a second.

The event is Sunday. Then I plant my feet. I travel to her on Wednesday, then again on Sunday for the memorial.

Oh, and for those of you that read the local paper and my blog -- the event is really Sunday, this Sunday, not the one they mis-printed for all to see. *sigh* Have to go put out media-fires...

A good show and tell planned for next week and wouldn't say no to some benevelent soul wanting nothing more than to take over all media promotions for events!

Monday, November 9, 2009

A New Day...

I'm doing a little better today. The afore mentioned training has kicked in and I'm preparing a trip to see my friend. I'll be laden down with the package I'm so used to sending, minus all the share grief support materials, of course - she already has them.

Thanks to all of you for your kind words and prayers - for her - and for me.

What I'm wondering today is, if you are the support and it happens to you, what happens within you?

Does the congntitive process of what you should do to set the stage for healthy grieving automatically start up, like a remote starter on a car? Do you watch yourself walk through each step as though outside of your body?

Or, does the shock and subsequent shut down from the fact that it is now your reality trump what you've been taught, making you as ready for guidance and support as the person who had no idea it was possible to bury your child?

Ideas? Theories? Personal Experience? Hit me. I'm digging deep here, for never before have I needed to do this right so badly.

Sunday, November 8, 2009


I am heavy with grief today. My body aches. My eyes brim, silently spilling without provocation. Images fill my head and no real life presence can make them evaporate, like ashes, into the air.

This morning I received an email that, yet another baby had been born still. I receive them all the time: the calls, the emails, the references from a friend of a friend; but this was different.

I sat, reading and re-reading, thinking it had to be wrong. This couldn't have happened to her. No. It just wan't possible. Not even the unbalaned choas of this world could justify that she would be the 1 in 4.

We met at the Share National Training last spring. A small intimate group sat around the table and over the course of 5 days we knew details about each others lives as minute as the lines in a fallen leaf. We bonded, all of us, but this woman and I connected, really connected, and not just because we had travelled half-way across the country from the same small section of the Northeast. We could have been on the same airplane.

Two paths converging. Two lives about to be forever changed. Neither of us had a clue.

She's special for so many reasons:

~She is a social worker.
~She is a yoga teacher, for adult and children alike.
~She runs a Share support group.
~She runs a pregnancy after loss group.
~She is a loving mother to her girls.

But, most of all -- and this is the key that unlocked my affection for her -- she chose to attend that training. She intentionaly put herself in a place to learn more about bereavemnt, to listen to broken parents speak of their lost little ones. She opened herself to a world most push away with brute force, unwilling to listen because it might make it possible.

She welcomed the knowledge with a serene smile, an understanding heart, and a desire to truly help.

And, if you have read here for any length of time, you will remember a story of a quest during that conference: a desire to lounge in a hot tub made possible by a giving friend. She is that friend. She made it happen.

Today, I brim with equal measures of grief and anger, my day derailed by the undeniable remined that babies die everyday.

This is the email I sent her:

"I need to you know how affected I am by your loss. I get these calls and emails all time, as do you, but with you it's different. Silent tears fell all through church. I asked someone else to teach my Sunday School. I have images playing through my head that I can't be sure happened. Our time together last spring was a bonding experience. Looking back now it is obvious we met for a reason...even though I just was so grateful to you for being who you are: a kind, compassionate person in a helping field, attending a training to be better prepared to help OTHERS as they lived the tragedy of babyloss. I told my husband that it is rare to find people like you.I think that is why I'm so broken with grief for your lost girl and anger that YOU, you of all people didn't deserve this. I know I'm rambling and you are in no space to hear my emotional rambles. I just wanted you to know how much you are filling my day, I'll cry for you all day if I have to, I'll purge my emotions -- then, my training will kick back in and I will support you however I best can."

Past meets present. My experience converging with her reality. Our history setting the stage for a new type of relationship.

I hate that we now are in this club together. I hate that I now get to say, "I am so sad to be here. I am so glad I came" to her.

Friday, November 6, 2009


Tomorrow I scrapbook -all day - 9am to 9pm.

Why oh why did I commit to this? I asked myself more than once today.

I don't have one picture cropped. I don't have any papers sorted. My materials are scattered across the office. sigh

Not to mention that I can't not think about Bowling for Babies for more than thirty seconds.

No! I am scrapbooking.

I will take a break from the whirlwind my life has become and allow the moment to re-take me. I think I might finish the half-complete album about me, my childhood, my adolescence, my early years with Jer.

Yes. A trip down memory lane is exactly what I need. (with a brief sneak-out to pick up the addition bhb flyers that are ready and waiting at St.a.ple.s. I can't totally shut off - I mean... really)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Show and Tell - The Ties That Bind

The chinese raffle for Bowling For Babies has taken great gabs of my time as of late, and I've loved every minute of it. They have been arriving via email, snail mail, UPS and in person.
I've made new friends and been reminded of tried and true ones. Today, these showed up.

They are from Babysmiling. Her show and tell for the week describes them perfectly, but what it doesn't say is how the package reminded me that my friends live far and wide. That, presumably, the words typed here stay with them for a spell, causing them to make an effort to package and ship bowls even while reveling in their new twin babies!

That is what amazes me most. Our binding ties remain, even as babies fly, or are born, and life takes over for a time.

I've shared before, but it's worth repeating in my emotional state that other blogging friends are participating in this event too.

Martha from A Sense of Humor made this gorgeous necklace.

And Lindsay from Destined To Be An Old Woman With No Regrets sent this framed shot all the way from her Canadian post as she watied out the end of her pregnancy!

Pamela donated a copy of her memoir, Silent Sorority.

And Are You Kidding Me? donated time to crochet some angels for the ornment drive!

And so, you can see why I feel like this raffle is as much yours as it is the people who physically walk in the door of the Springfield Bowling Alley on Sunday, November 15th.

Sure, you may not be able to take advantage of a gift certificate to a local eatery or come in to pain your own pottery, but there are many prizes in the ever growing list that could easily be shipped to your front door.

CLICK HERE to preview the current item list. READ the raffle directions. Then, if something catches your eye, ENTER using the donate button and be sure to specify how to distribute your tickets!
Thank again, to each of you, for your support over the last year. Your words have sustained me through every transition. This reality is yours to celebrate too.
While you do, peruse what the rest of the class is showing and telling!

Lost Found Connections Abound! It Works - So Let's Use It!

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