May 28, 2012 · filed under life

right where I am: nine months, six days

Prompted by Angie at still life with circles

Despite the blazing sun and summer weather, my mind and my grief are like a bear in winter. I’ve been hibernating. Reading, but not writing. Thinking, but not talking much.

In the last few months, my mind has quieted down a bit. It’s exhausting to cycle through sad, angry, jealous, depressed, anxious, and sad again. I needed a a break.

I appreciate the emails and cards and photos and texts that many of you have sent me about Miller (and I’m so sorry for my lack of replies). It feels good to know that even when I am not here talking about him, that you think of him. I feel like I don’t have to carry the grief alone, because so many people carry it with me. What a relief that is.

A few days ago a friend mentioned Miller in conversation. It was a casual comment, and everyone just kept right on talking as if she mentioned a normal, alive baby. It was the best moment. That’s what I’ve been wanting. For Miller not to be this terrible thing that happened to me that people are scared to talk about, but to be my baby who I got to name and carry inside me. It sounds so silly, but it felt like such a milestone to have had this lighthearted conversation with friends. It was so…normal.

So it’s been nine months. I’m very much aware of what can happen in nine months time. Babies have been conceieved and born since Miller died. And I’ve gone through the shock, and then the depression, and now (maybe? perhaps?) the acceptance of what happened to him and to us.

I may keep hibernating for awhile. But I’m here, and I’m doing okay.


30 Comments

  1. Sally
    May 28, 2012 9:07 pm

    Nine months is such a hard time. I’m glad Miller has been included in normal conversation. I treasure the friends who do this for me.
    Sending love.
    xo

  2. Nic
    May 28, 2012 9:29 pm

    So, so glad you’re doing okay. xoxo

  3. doahleigh
    May 28, 2012 9:36 pm

    Glad to hear from you, and glad you found such pleasure in that moment of normalcy. Hope you continue to heal!

  4. Sian
    May 28, 2012 9:37 pm

    You’re amazing and an inspiration. I’m glad to read that you’re doing okay. Hibernating is fine and do it for as long as you need to. I’m nowhere near as fragile as I was but some days I’ll still burst into tears at the drop of the hat.

    I had to deactivate my Facebook in order to cope because seeing all those bump pictures, baby photos and pregnancy posts was doing my head in. So yeah, I totally get your need to hibernate. *hugs*

  5. Anna
    May 28, 2012 10:22 pm

    Glad you’re doing ok. Been thinking of you.

  6. Angela
    May 29, 2012 12:03 am

    Nine months was a difficult time for me. I too stepped back, withdrew, took time away from everything and everyone. I am so glad you have friends who speak of Miller. I love and appreciate the friends who have done this for me.

  7. Renel
    May 29, 2012 1:30 am

    9 months…why is it that every 3 months seems to be this reflection point of missing. Im just ahead of you and next month coming up on the 1 year anniversary of Camille’s death when we should be celebrating her birthday.

    Hibernating is fine….as long as you feel supported it is what matters most. Fortuneately and Unfortunately the community will always be here when you are ready to join. It is your grief and your loss and your Miller. Find a way to comfort your heart if you can.

  8. Aly @ Breathe Gently
    May 29, 2012 4:09 am

    I’m so happy that Miller is becoming a more comfortable topic with your friends – as he should be. And I’m so happy that you’re right where you are, because you’re amazing. Hugs from us. x

  9. Angie
    May 29, 2012 6:58 am

    I love this post, the way it was written. It captures nine months perfectly. Having someone bring up your child in that way is so refreshing. Thank you for sharing right where you are. Love to you. Grateful to have found your blog. xo

  10. Laurie
    May 29, 2012 10:09 am

    Wanted you to know I’ve been thinking about you. Many hugs and I am glad that you are around again. Happy summer days of relaxing, I hope help, too! Many hugs!

  11. Laurel of Sass Attack, RIP
    May 29, 2012 10:53 am

    Still thinking of you, Miller and Andrew always – hibernating or not! xoxo

  12. Brooke
    May 29, 2012 11:15 am

    I know just what you mean about the gift of mentioning your baby in casual conversation. Knowing that some of my friends’ kids pray every night for Eliza and the Deuce… It’s the greatest gift.

  13. Nilsa @ SoMi Speaks
    May 29, 2012 12:34 pm

    This is a terrible analogy, but I’m going to use it anyway. When someone goes through a breakup, *they* say to multiply how long you dated by two and that’s how long it could take you to get over the breakup. The exact multiplier matters not. The point is, it takes time to get over losses. The fact that you’re starting to experience some normalcy around your loss is so great. It’s just great to hear you’re still hanging in there.

  14. stephanie
    May 29, 2012 1:49 pm

    I often think of Miller and you, which honestly surprises me at times. In reality, I dont “know” you – but somehow i feel that doesn’t matter. Us being pregnant at the same time often makes me think of you and your sweet boy. I hope that your heart is healing even if it is never quite whole again. Lots of love.

  15. Betsy
    May 29, 2012 5:18 pm

    I’m glad to hear you are doing okay, I think of you three often. I appreciate everything that you have shared over the past 9 months and how this helps me better understand other people’s losses. Miller is alive in many ways and close to the hearts of so many due to your fight for him to be remembered.

  16. Catherine W
    May 29, 2012 5:23 pm

    It is such a gift to be able to mention our children lightly, for them to escape that description of ‘a terrible thing that happened’ and just to be the little babies that they were, loved by us, carried by us. I’m glad you’ve had the opportunity to have open conversations like that recently.

    I hope you emerge from this quiet time of hibernation full of peace.

    Remembering your son, Miller Everett

  17. katelin
    May 29, 2012 6:35 pm

    so glad you’re doing okay lady, you constantly pop up in my thoughts. and looks like your trip was a great time despite being so sick! hope your week is just lovely.

  18. Arcadia
    May 30, 2012 9:52 am

    “It was a casual comment, and everyone just kept right on talking as if she mentioned a normal, alive baby. It was the best moment. That’s what I’ve been wanting. For Miller not to be this terrible thing that happened to me that people are scared to talk about, but to be my baby who I got to name and carry inside me.”
    – Oh, I’m longing for that..

    Thinking of you and your beautiful little boy, Miller.

  19. Alison
    May 30, 2012 12:44 pm

    I can say it feels like a more comfortable topic for me as your friend too.

  20. terra
    May 30, 2012 12:56 pm

    I’m so glad you’re okay. (hugs)

  21. Hannah Rose
    May 30, 2012 5:15 pm

    Hi Janet, I just took some time to read about your sweet Miller. I love your blog. I am so sorry for your loss. That’s good you don’t feel obligated to respond when you’re not feeling up to it. Blogging should be when and how we need it. I know what you mean about wanting people to feel free to mention your baby’s name. I don’t want people to remember Lily as “the baby that died” or me as “the woman that lost her baby.” I want to be thought of as a mother, like anybody else, and Lily was, is, my precious little girl and will be forever. Just as Miller will forever be your sweet baby. It is good to feel normal in that. Thank you for sharing your heart. I love that photo of his feet.

    Much love and hugs,
    Hannah Rose

  22. Merry
    May 30, 2012 6:49 pm

    I think at 9 months I started to accept – and it hurt. I’m glad to hear you are doing okay. And oh, his feet. Just beautiful :)

  23. heidikins
    May 30, 2012 7:29 pm

    Thinking of you, Andrew and Miller often and always sending hugs and love your way.

    xox

  24. Emily
    May 31, 2012 11:17 pm

    Hi Janet,

    It sounds like you are right where you need to be. Turning inward seems like an appropriate way to grief. I think most people know it’s not personal. I know it feels strange to be this way when you are used to being outward and bubbly.

    Aloha,
    Emily

  25. Suzanne
    June 1, 2012 5:33 pm

    I can’t believe that we met here on line what seems like ages ago, and here we still are missing our babies. I’ve taken to periods of hybernation as well, and I will close myself up in my house and my yard for days and weeks at a time. I suppose it’s cathartic? Anyway, we’re both approaching our one year mark. I will be thinking of you and Miller and holding you both in my heart.

    Sending love xoxoxo

  26. Jessica M.
    June 1, 2012 10:31 pm

    How nice to have Miller mentioned in a normal conversation…I would love that to happen with my babies. Thank you for sharing, I am so very sorry for your loss. <3

  27. Julie
    June 2, 2012 9:27 pm

    Yes, hibernation is so important sometimes. I have to force myself out of it at times because I think it is my natural inclination. And it always feels more comfortable to crawl back in.

    Oh the joy of having Miller seen and talked about as just a perfect, loved little baby! I love it also when I can talk about Bear, my pregnancy with him, motherhood and it can just be a part of the lighthearted conversation and others show that they see him as a baby who I love dearly, just as other mothers love their children.

    Peace to you as your trudge along.

  28. Jill (Fireflyforever)
    June 5, 2012 8:02 pm

    Miller has the most scrumptious little feet – they are so sweet.

    I found nine months to be very significant (partly because she was a due date baby and I invested it with such significance) and partly for the same reason you mention – babies had been conceived and born since she lived. It was such a hard reminder that other people’s lives were carrying on when it felt as though mine had stopped.

    And yes, the people who talk about our babies as babies not tragedies – they don’t know how precious they are nor how grateful we are.

  29. red pen mama
    June 6, 2012 9:10 am

    It’s so good to hear that Miller is spoken of! That seems to be very difficult for a lot of people, and it’s heartening to hear that his name can be spoken without people acting weird about it.

    Friday will be nine YEARS for my husband and me. I’m glad to read that you are vacationing, and hibernating, and basically doing what you need to do to take care of yourself. That is vital to moving through. As always, sending the best thoughts to you.

  30. Erica
    June 6, 2012 6:31 pm

    “That’s what I’ve been wanting. For Miller not to be this terrible thing that happened to me that people are scared to talk about, but to be my baby who I got to name and carry inside me.” Oh, my, yes. Yes to this and to your entire post. I still treasure moments like this and wish they weren’t so few and far between.

    I am so sorry your beautiful Miller isn’t in your arms right now.

    Sending love.