We had our first appointment with the new therapist yesterday. It was only the first session, but I think this person is a better fit for us than the other therapist we saw right after Alexander’s passing. There were a few times during the session, I thought she would cry. I want her to remain objective but it’s good to know she has a real compassionate side. We’ll see how it goes.
Dan went skiing with his brother and nephews for the day so I was left on my own today. I decided to reschedule my spa services that were originally planned for that day. I thought if I could just relax for a couple of hours, I could escape from my pain for a little while. Not 5 minutes into my massage, I started to shed tears as I began to think about Alexander. Thankfully, the room was dimmed and the masseuse didn’t see what was happening. Even though I continued to think about Alexander, I was able to relax enough to appreciate the rest of my massage and my nail treatments. Well, that is until the nail technician asked me if I had any kids. I hesistated for a moment. Do I tell her my situation or not? I told her yes, I do have a child but he passed away in December. She offered her condolences and quickly moved on to other topics.
I ran a few more errands before visiting Alexander and finally heading home. Once I got home, I didn’t know what to do with myself. Sure, I had laundry to fold or I could work on taxes, but I wanted mommy duties. I spent 19 1/2 months taking care of Alexander (or making sure he was taken care if I wasn’t around) and now that I don’t have those same mommy tasks, I sometimes find myself at a loss as to what to do with my time.
I miss Alexander so much and his passing still seems so unreal to me.
I woke early this morning to a ringing in my ears. I couldn’t figure out what it was and tried to go back to sleep. I had only been in bed about 4 hours when I heard Dan’s alarm go off. He was traveling to Toronto again and had to leave on an early morning flight.
I faded in and out of sleep and about 4:50am, I heard the phone ring. I couldn’t imagine who would be calling and was prepared to be outraged at whoever dared to call at that awful hour. As it turns out, it was an Amber Alert from the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office and Trenton Police Department regarding a missing girl. Our number is unlisted and I don’t remember signing up for the list so I was surprised to get this call. It certainly wasn’t the way I wanted to start my morning. I was finally able to settle down and go back to sleep for a few hours.
The last few days have been intensely emotional. I’m not sure if it’s because I thought about the fact that Alexander would have been 22 months old next week and I would have started to plan his 2nd birthday party. It could have been any number of triggers but I had several crying sessions yesterday. I cried so much that I can’t believe I have any tears left.
I called our insurance company yesterday to get a therapist referral. I had no luck with the three names she gave me. I invested more time in my search and went to the online resource guide on our insurance company website. Who knew there were so many therapists in this area? I placed several calls and got voicemails at every office. I did leave messages but only doctor returned my call. His schedule didn’t work that Dan and I could see him together so I didn’t make an appointment with him.
After speaking with Paula, the nurse at the SUDC program, she suggested I look beyond psychologists and that I also try social workers because they’re likely to return my call sooner. I think she’s right. So, I’ll be on the phone again today. Hopefully, someone will pick up.
I don’t expect the therapist to help me feel better but I could use some coping strategies to deal with these intense emotions.
As I was visiting Alexander yesterday, I thought about how empty the cemetery always seems. I don’t expect there to be bustling crowds but I hardly ever see anyone else there even on the weekends. A few days ago, I did see three other cars visiting at the same time as me and that was a busy day.
After leaving the cemetery, I went to run a few errands. My first stop was the nail salon to get a manicure. I hadn’t gotten a manicure in several months so decided to treat myself to a “spa” manicure. It was nice to have a little pampering but by the time I got to my next stop, I remembered why I don’t often get manicures: I had already smudged a couple of nails. My nails were dry when I left the salon. I checked each and every one. Looking at them today, each nail has something wrong. I’ve either chipped or smudged the polish. In the future, I think I’ll just get clear polish.
Target was my next stop after getting my nails done. Seconds within walking into store, I heard a toddler say to his mom, ‘oh, no mommy’. I immediately thought about Alexander because “oh, no” was one of his favorite phrases. This is definitely something he would have said. I had already shed a few tears before walking into the store and hearing this didn’t help.
I managed to get through the rest of my shopping without incident.
Once I returned home, the afternoon went by ok before we headed to a neighbor’s early in the evening for dinner.
Today makes it 2 months. It’s been a hard day. I tried to do some work but haven’t been able to accomplish much. I did manage to eat half a box of thin mints (gotta love those Girl Scout Cookies).
I called the Medical Examiner’s Office today to get a status update on Alexander’s autopsy report. The doctor requested another test yesterday and he should receive the results early next week. So, it’ll be another few weeks before we get the final report. I don’t expect there to be anything definitive in the report but it’s still so hard waiting.
I kept a promise to Alexander this week. For a while, I had been telling him that I was going to get a storage shelf for the toys in his room. I hadn’t seen anything I liked but I was on a mission the other day. I did find something. It’s a simple shelf that matches the other furniture in his room. Dan is traveling all week so I busied myself last night with assembling the shelf and organizing Alexander’s toys. The storage shelf is a good option because we’re still not ready to put away Alexander’s toys in the house.
Now, I just need to wash the laundry that’s been sitting in Alexander’s room since December.
I’m still going through a range of emotions. Sadness. Anger. Hurt. Sometimes, I’m very angry at God for taking my little boy away from me. Other times, I just miss Alexander so much it hurts. There are times I just want to be alone with my memories of Alexander. There are times I want to be social and times I don’t.
I’ve had many life changing moments in my 38 years. June 7, 1999 (day I got married). August 28, 2006 (day the doctor confirmed my pregnancy). May 3, 2007 (day Alexander was born). However, none of those has changed my life so much as December 20, 2008. A big part of me left with Alexander.
I took my car in for service yesterday. The last time I was at this dealership for service to the Pilot, Alexander was with me. When he wasn’t playing with the cars in the corner (the dealership has a small play area with a rug and a car track), he was walking around the waiting room. At one point, he decided it was good idea to have a little “fit” and lay down on the floor. Thankfully, we were only in for an oil change and didn’t have to wait that long. Alexander was only at the dealership with me once so it wasn’t difficult for me to be there.
I feel like I’m hearing more sirens these days or maybe I’m just paying more attention. I’ve always been good and pulled over whenever I hear/see emergency vehicles. Lately, they have a different effect on me. When I hear them, I wonder who they’re trying to save today. When I hear them, I think about what things must have been like the morning of December 20, 2008. Since I wasn’t here, I can only imagine what was happening to Alexander based on what Dan tells me. Led by a police escort, I can see the ambulance racing down the street to get my baby to the hospital. Did they think he had a chance?
I had a couple of upsetting conversations yesterday. Despite my being very clear about how I feel, some people still insist on telling me that Alexander is in a better place and one day I’ll understand God’s plan for him. One person even said to me that he’s probably in heaven playing a harp. I’m so tired of being trying to impose their beliefs on me. Not that I would wish my current pain on anyone, I want to know how comforted those same people would feel by those words if they were in my situation?
I’ve really been missing Alexander so I spent a little time today (or I guess technically, yesterday) watching his videos just so I could hear his sweet, little voice. Why did this have to happen to one so young and innocent?
V-Day is supposed to be all about love and romance. We stopped going out for V-Day years ago. We prefer just staying in and enjoying a nice homemade dinner. Last year, Dan, Alexander and I had a picnic in the basement to celebrate. Alexander crawled around while we sipped champagne and ate the treats Dan prepared.
This year, we’ll still a nice evening by cooking nice dinner and sipping champagne but I’ll be missing Alexander. I miss him now and really wish he was here with us.
It continues to be hard for me to believe he’s no longer here with me/us. I really miss his sweet, loving personality.
Life is just too short.
Alexander and I went to Shoprite 2 or 3 times a week to do our grocery shopping. In the early days of grocery shopping, he’d sleep in the car seat as I went through the aisles. As he got older, the store became a fun, teaching environment.
Sometimes, we’d stop at the in-store Dunkin Donuts and get a smoothie before heading to the produce aisle. As we strolled through the produce, I would point out apples, bananas, oranges, and other foods. He never mastered saying bananas but enjoyed saying apple and pointing them out out to me.
Alexander loved to eat and I usually had to give him a snack on our grocery journeys. As I put stuff in the cart, he would reach for the Nutri Grain bars, a juice box, or perhaps a cheese stick.
At the last minute yesterday, I decided to make a trip to Shoprite and get food for dinner. I was fine until I entered our store. I started bawling as soon as I passed the flowers. I quickly got the few items I planned to buy and left the store. I can only imagine what the other customers must have thought of me as I was walking through the store with tears streaming down my face.
I tried but I just couldn’t stop crying. Alexander and I had some good times together on our visits to Shoprite and the trip just made me miss him that much more.
I’m not sure where I learned about SIDS but it must have been one of the baby sites I visited when I was pregnant with Alexander. Like so many other parents, I thought SIDS was something I didn’t have to worry about once Alexander turned 12 months.
After Alexander passed, I spoke with his pediatrician who told me that while Alexander was at the upper end, SIDS could happen as late as 20 or 21 months. True, SIDS and SUDC are both unpredictable and unpreventable but pediatricians should tell parents about the potential risk to their children. I’ve talked to many parents recently and every one has said they learned of SIDS on their own and not from their child’s doctor. Pediatricians vaccinate our kids against disease and warn us about so many other things, why not this?
The odds of SIDS or SUDC happening are certainly low, but I would rather be frightened by a little knowledge and try to do something, anything to prevent. The devastation of losing my child is much worse.