Expecting the Unexpected

Life has a funny way of catching up with you sometimes. For a long time I had the energy to do anything and everything. Then a nudge, a reminder, something triggered inside my brain, and here I am once more falling, falling into the bottom less valley of the desolate dessert terrain. This is how it seems to be going forwards and backwards, on and on like a useless yoyo that doesn’t seem to be able to have stability. All the energy I had in the world turned into energy that drained my body, as if a huge ton of bricks hit me one by one and I am back to square one. Demotivated of life. Missing my son. Missing my girls. Missing what could have been. A mother of 3 in heaven, but I have nothing to show here.

I feel like I stumble over my feet all the time. Like one minute there seems to be progress but then suddenly it is as if a rock hit me from the azure and I am back in the pit of despair with grief’s hand holding onto me for dear life, as if his life is dependent on me. But is grief dependent on me or am I dependent on grief? I miss my dear children so much. I just don’t know how to keep going when all seems completely hopeless. Seems not worth the effort to keep fighting through, to keep stumbling and picking myself up. It’s a fight, it is an internal struggle. It is a war raging in my heart. Am I worthy? Am I likeable? Am I a failure because I wasn’t able to protect Micheline, Elouise, and Sebastian-David from certain death? 

If Sebastian-David were still here the reality of my life would be completely different. Would I be working in the job that I am doing now? Or would I have stayed a teacher for disabled children? Would I have been a good mom? I imagine I would have taken him walking to feed the ducks. Fresh air is always good for children. I would have shown him our animals every day, so then like mommy he would have adored the animals and respected the animals from an early age. I imagine my friends would have played rough and tumble with my son, and that everyone would be loving him. I would be loving every minute of it. Of course, I know that with having a child comes other struggles – but what is better? To have a child in heaven or to have a child on earth? I would have loved to be able to have mothered my son, I was dreaming of it through the entire pregnancy. But I didn’t get that chance. By some fluke he had to die, and I one of 4 had to lose their child. I was the third one that year, one more after me. Than the hospital had enough stillbirths for one year. The terribleness of the situation still hits me at times. How unsympathetic the hospital was towards me.

Would the reality of my son’s death have been easier if I had the chance to hold him? Or would it have been worse for me? I remember begging them let me hold my child please, and all around me I heard them saying no. You cannot see him. And even though I begged, I was too weak to fight for what I truly wanted, because my heart was already completely broken and I was too weak, and I relied on THEM to get me better. This is my greatest regret, that I was not able to hold my child. That I was not able to nuzzle my chin to his little cheek. Oh how I wish those days were different. How I wish I could have fought to see my child. But I did not. Was I selfish? And when I left that hospital – I left behind all that was held dear to me. I remember going to the funeral home, and requesting that they put clothes on my baby, and they thought that I wanted to see my baby and again they said you mustn’t see him. Why? Why? Why was everyone blocking me from seeing my son? Why was I too weak to do anything about it? Why did I just let them walk all over me? Even on his birth certificate there was no name on it. Just Sebastian’s last name, what sex he was, date of birth and time of birth. If he had lived for 1 minute after birth he would have had a name but because he died in-vitro he wasn’t allowed to have a name on his birth certificate. Oh the rage that went through my body then. The angry rage, the injustice of it all.

I remember the day I went to hospital and the journey in the car with my mom, my sister, and my stepdad. We were meant to go to a birthday party. I didn’t go. We dropped my sister off with my stepdad and took my aunt with us to hospital and waited in a deserted lobby waiting for the nurse to come. Finally my mom had enough and she knocked on the door and they came out and told me to go upstairs to the high risk pregnancy ward. Again I was waiting in a deserted old fashioned run down hospital with old moving gurneys. Eventually a nurse and then the doctor came out, and took me into the ancient room with ancient machines that gurgled to life, and then they got down to business, reassuring me that all was well. Until all jokes left that room, and they asked for absolute silence and asked my mom and aunt to leave the room, and then there it was like thunder – ‘it seems as if your son is no longer living’. My world spinning, the curtain of silence fell over the once joyful experience into a somber experience and in stepped the black bottles of grief ready to collect the falling tears. I don’t remember screaming until after they did tests which was almost two hours, it was as if a silence befell my world, and when the final tests were concluded I just collapsed to the ground as my mom and aunt tried to catch me from falling further down to the ground. I remember praying to God, having this mantra in my head – please God let there be life. Let there be life. Let there be life. Let there be a miracle. Let there be life. But it was not meant to be. My cries to the Lord fell onto deaf ears. The long hospital stay stretched beyond my wildest imagination and I just stared into emptiness. Barely able to keep the tears inside of me. Silently the black bottles of grief collectively collected my tears and collectively collected my mother’s tears. 

I remember my mom screaming at me at one point telling me to fight for life, because she was just told that she could lose me too. She was saying fight for your life. Or do you want to plan your funeral. You have to fight. You have to fight Celine. And all I ever wanted I was never going to have. My son was gone. My son was gone, and I had nothing left. My sister came to visit me, and I gave her a weak smile and she said I thought you were going to cry. And the tears were threatening to explode, but I said I am smiling for you. That has always been my motto to life ‘smiling away the sadness’ like some stupid hyena. ‘Smiling the sadness away’ as my friends say – how come you always smile, even when deep down your hurting so bad. I guess because I don’t want others to see my pain. Darkness came over and the curtains closed to the light of the world. Those were my dark days. These are still my dark days. 

Lately I do not understand anything. I am consumed with anger, I am consumed with guilt, I am consumed with sadness, and the only thing that keeps me going is if there is a God then there must be hope for me too. But why did God have to choose me to be the one that lost my child? Why could it not be someone else from my friends? Why me? Why? Not that I wish this on anyone – but I have to be honest I did question why it was me when I had already lost everything. My husband to divorce. My daughters and then my son. I just feel so alone in this world. I feel like I am so far away from everything and everyone, and that I am just fighting to keep on going, when I don’t have the strength in me anymore to do any of that. I wish it could be different. I wish my situation was different. I wish the situation for all of us were different. But it is not. I am the mother with my children in heaven. I am that mother that everyone points at (she’s lost her child/ren). Except most don’t even view me as a mom anymore, because I have nothing to show. But as someone once said you are a mother even if you carry children in your heart. You are a mother, and damn well no what pain is all about, and enduring long days without your children near. You are the mother of mothers. 

My life is not the way I expected it to turn. My life changed. It wasn’t what I expected. And yes sometimes I absolutely hate it. I remember how sometimes I just feel this jealous rage raging through my blood because everyone else arounds me seems to have children. Is there something wrong with me? Am I such a big failure? I don’t know how to keep going. I really do not anymore. And so be it… maybe one day I will know how to move on. 

Still the black bottles of grief are there to collect my tears silently as I cry myself to sleep most nights, some days I cry all day, most days I just smile my sadness away and put on the biggest smile in the world showing to the world that it is well, when really I am just hurting and tearing apart on the inside. I miss my son. I miss the life that I could have had with him. I now find myself talking to the stars and looking for the brightest star in the sky and saying to my sister look there is Sebastian he is flying high. And I often look to the azure to see if there is any hope for me. I know that hope will come back one day as it squeezes itself gently through the cracks in my door, and the walls that I have built up around me. I am a castle with walls as high as the tallest trees in the world, protecting me from unwanted hope because I am afraid that if I have even the slightest chance of happiness that it will be taken away once more. I built up my walls so that I will not be expecting the unexpected. Except in this life we have to expect the unexpected, because the unexpected does happen.

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