My birthday is tomorrow. I actually had forgotten about it until last week and it’s another day I dread. What is there to celebrate? My greatest gift, creation and purpose is no longer here with me. She’s always on my mind and in my heart, but I want her in my arms. The ache and pain never stops, it just seems to happen more often. I miss my daughter. I long for her. I feel as if I’m just floating through life until I see her again. There are so many days I think to myself, was she really here? Did I actually have a baby? The time she was with me was so brief I have to pinch myself and make sure it’s not a dream. A nightmare. I was meant to be a mom. It felt right and as if I was truly happy.
Gemma was definitely a baby that wanted to be held all the time, some people call it spoiled, but I didn’t care. I didn’t care when she was alive and now I’m more thankful for it because I got all those extra cuddles and the closeness. I felt as if there was no way to “spoil” a baby. What’s wrong with them wanting their mommy or daddy? Was it hard to get stuff done? Absolutely, but I wouldn’t change it for the world and I will do the same for my future children. I think I will be the one that will want them all the time versus them needing me. I had talked to Patrick about co-sleeping. I know people say it’s hard to break them of sleeping with you, but I want my children close. I need them close. Gemma slept with me when it was just her and I. I had this bed bassinet though because I was terrified to roll or her or for me to push her out of bed. Having her right in the bed however was so nice, especially because I breastfed. I would just feed and change her right in the bed, then put her down next to me. I didn’t have to get up all the time when she woke up, which was only about 2-3 times a night.
I feel like I’m forgetting what she looked like in my mind. I have pictures, but if I didn’t, would I remember her? I know I’m forgetting other things as well like how she felt in my arms, breastfeeding her, the feel of her skin and just our day to day activities. I want her back so bad. It’s too difficult to keep going without her. I wasn’t supposed to live without my baby. She should be rolling right now and laughing. She isn’t supposed to be in a little ceramic box. I felt as if I tried so hard to be a good person and an even better mother. I know Patrick has come so far from where he used to be. He has made some mistakes in his life that he is still paying for, but he was hoping to teach our children not to make those same mistakes. He was a great dad and would have taught Gemma so much about being a good person to making an impact on this world like he wants to. I feel as if Gemma would have been extremely intelligent and ambitious like her parents, but she never got the chance. We will never be able to see what kind of person she would have been.
I haven’t had the motivation to write in awhile, and Patrick and I have been busy house hunting or working. Unfortunately our grief has not taken a break. Lately it feels as if we are talking about the what ifs or our lost future more often. Our dreams are broken about having a beautiful and happy family.
Yesterday him and I were sitting outside on the swing and talking about how nice it would have been to have Gemma outside with us, for her to feel the grass, hear the birds chirping and just be in awe of the outside. How we would have loved to get a kids/small shallow pool and the three of us sit in it with Gemma enjoying the warm weather, of course Gemma wearing a cute bikini with her cute Buddha belly and rolls galore. I mourn not only for my precious daughter, but for the future we lost. There was so much love but we still didn’t get to keep her. Our heart breaks everyday, over and over again. The deep pain and anguish never ends.
There are times now I see a picture of her and it’s hard to see them. Seeing her brings me so much pain, but seeing her smile and how beautiful she was also brings me joy. It’s strange to feel so much agony and joy from seeing her pictures or watching her videos. I have a new favorite picture, her huge smile melts my heart and puts a smile on my face.
I don’t believe the pain will ever go away. People tell me time will heal, but there’s no way time can heal the hole in my chest. I feel as if getting day to day may just become easier to endure the pain.
Mother’s Day wasn’t too awful. Having my friend’s and family’s love and support definitely helped me get through the day. Of course Mother’s Day with my beautiful Gemma would have been perfect, but it’s not feasible, just another beautiful dream.
Easter was a hard day for Patrick and I. Of course we missed Gemma, but it was the first holiday without her. She also had never gotten a single holiday. I wished she could have gotten one. She was alive for New Years and that’s it. I feel as if New Years is a holiday for adults. We were invited to a few Easter celebrations, but I wasn’t up to be around families with children. I didn’t want to be around them because they were going to be having a great time, smiling, laughing and sharing beautiful moments together as they should. It hurt too much to know I would never get those moments with Gemma. I was robbed of all those small, precious moments.
Gemma’s New Year was memorable though. We were only home from the hospital a few days at that point. Patrick was going to change her diaper and she used to get so upset she would scream. When she would scream she would also tense up and poop. So dad was changing her, she was screaming and she shot poop at him. Literally it fired like a cannon. Patrick stood up so fast, Gemma was screaming and I had to help. There we were, mom was holding Gemma’s legs, dad was wiping her and Gemma was crying. I believe she had also spit up on Patrick as well. He was covered in spit up and poop, but we were so happy to be home with our beautiful baby girl. I’m so happy I have these memories and small moments. I wish we could have made more and continued to grow.
That’s what bothers me the most. Everything was perfect. Patrick and I were better than ever, we had beautiful Gemma, we had a routine with who had Gemma when one of us was working, and we were looking for a house so the three of us could be under the same roof finally. I miss those days. What I wouldn’t give to replay the that time we had with her, over and over again. What I wouldn’t do or give to have her back. Why was I given the most precious baby to have her taken from me in such a short period.
My sister had her baby a couple weeks before I had Gemma, so Erza, my sister’s baby girl, and Gemma were close in age. Everyone has been keeping Erza from me because they’re worried seeing her will be too painful. My sister also feels guilty that she still has her baby when I lost mine. I don’t want anyone to feel that way. I want people to cherish the time they have with their children whether they’re newborn or 40 years old. I encourage people to take more pictures, take videos, hug them a little longer, give them a kiss, tell them you love them because you never know when you will lose them. You never expect to lose a baby, but I did. Seeing Erza was just like seeing my niece because she’s not Gemma. They are so different which also made it easier. I just hope my sister won’t take her time with not only Erza for granted, but with her other daughter Elise. That time is so precious.
Erza Mae January 24th, 2018 & Gemma Nova February 15th, 2018 both babies are about 7 weeks old.
We had finally done the thing we have been dreading. We picked up Gemma’s remains from the funeral home. We had decided to get her cremated. I didn’t want to put her in the ground because Patrick and I are in the process of looking/buying a house. I didn’t want to then find a house so far away from her burial site and I want her with me always even if she can’t be with me alive. Her urn is beautiful. I will have to post a pic in here later. She is currently at my mom’s house because I don’t want her to be alone. There’s always someone there.
Along with her remains we had gotten her book back that I read to her before we said our last goodbyes at the funeral home. We she was with us, I had read that book to her twice. The first time her dad was there with me at my apartment and she was nothing but smiles. She was so happy I read the book to her and I wished her daddy would have recorded her on video, but he didn’t only because I had finished feeding her and I wasn’t dressed appropriately. But her smiles while reading to her, I will treasure forever. I wanted to cremate her with the book, but her dad had suggested we didn’t and we can one day share the same book with our future kids.
I still have so much pain even thinking about having more kids. I miss having my baby and dedicating my day and my life to her, but I cannot have another baby right now. I just want my Gemma and that baby will be its own person, they will not be Gemma. What I wouldn’t do to be able to hold her again. Nurse her, snuggle her, take a shower with her or rock her to sleep. I wish I could kiss her and get her to say “Aahh” with me. She used to say Aahh when I kissed her on the lips. Her Nana had did that one time and she continued to say Aahh every time Nana kissed her on the lips. It was the cutest thing; Gemma kept doing even with her momma and daddy. It’s also hard for me to shower. I feel sad because I was so used to taking a shower with my baby. She screamed if I put her in the baby tub and I hated that. Patrick’s friend had said he used to just take them in the shower with him when his kids were babies and they liked it much better. I tried it then and Gemma loved it. She had gotten to cuddle with me and I got to get that baby nice and clean. Every time I showered, so did Gemma. Every other day. Now when I shower I feel alone. I miss having that slippery baby with me and talking to her as we both got clean.
I want to get a urn necklace so I can have my Gemma with me everywhere I go. I’ve been looking, but the ones I really like are cheap which I assume the metal is cheap, and the ones I don’t like have the metal quality I do like which are more pricey. Along with that, Patrick and I have to find another small urn for the purposes if we would happen to split up. I would never want to keep Gemma from him, but of course I want to be with my baby too, and he said he would never want to keep her from me. Any other couples deal with something like this. How did you work this out? Why do I even have to think about that? Patrick and I are stronger than ever, but you never know. Even in 20 years, it could happen.
I wasn’t able to compose myself the last few days to write anything. I’ve been feeling broken, empty and void of any life or love. I miss my baby. I’ve had a few people tell me she’s blessed to not be able to experience any pain, heartbreak or loss in her life. She is in a place where there is no pain, heartbreak or loss. But she will also never get to experience love, joy or happiness. She will never get married, have children and have her own life achievements. I never got to experience any holidays with her. Easter is coming up and she didn’t get a chance to wear her beautiful Easter dress, she didn’t get to celebrate Christmas or her first birthday. To me, she is not in a better place. She was safe, healthy and happy here with her mommy and daddy.
There are days where I’m not even sure I had a baby. Was she real? Or did I actually lose her? It doesn’t feel real. Then I look at pictures and feel love, happiness and pain. Sometimes I cannot even look at her pictures because it’s too painful. There are other times where I just want to watch her videos, look at her beautiful smiling face and cry. Why get out of bed? Why can’t I just stay in bed and mourn my baby, or look at videos and pictures? I want to cuddle her like I had got to the night before she passed away. That’s a memory I hold dear.
We had gotten home and I needed to take a nap before work since I work 3rd shift. She needed to eat too and I hated wasting my pumped milk when I was with her, so her dad had told me to just lay on my side and have my shirt off so I could feed her while I slept. I was so nervous I would roll on her or my breast would cover her nose when I fell asleep. He assured me he would watch her as she ate and I slept. He did. Once she was done eating and fell asleep next to me, he left her there to cuddle with me. I treasure that memory. That was the last time I saw her alive. I’m so thankful I had gotten that with her and I’m so thankful her dad watched over her to ensure she would be okay. She had then passed away in the early morning while I was at work that night.
So for me to hear that she’s “in a better place” in hard for me. That night with me was pure bliss. So much love was shared between the three of us. She had brought me and her dad closer together and now with her death, we are even stronger. I’m thankful to have Patrick in my life. I wish we would have been a family, but Gemma had actually brought us closer together and her death made us so strong. When I break down, he’s there for me. When he breaks down, I’m there for him. I know the death of a child often breaks couples or marriages apart, but we have made it work. I do hope it continues.
I miss you Gemma. I hope you are looking down at your mommy and daddy and see how much we love and miss you. We will see you again one day. Mommy will hold you in my arms again one day my precious Gem.