Thursday, January 31, 2008

Missing the wilderness

Billy has written a very interesting and thought-provoking post relating to Emily Perl Kingsley's piece Welcome to Holland. I read this and I think about how myself and Deidre both had it read out during our baby's funerals. It is strange what mixed feelings one can have. I hear of all the difficulties involved with raising a special needs child yet what I wouldn't give to experience it. I know it is tough and I really feel for all my friends, real-life and online, but can't help wishing it was me. Sometimes I read about someone going through a particularly difficult time and almost feel relieved that I do not have to go through it, then immediately feel guilty for feeling relieved.

As I said, mixed feelings. I do believe that Billy has really captured the whole special needs experience though. It is a wilderness. Even though it was not long, my 11 months showed me how hard it can be, and through the special needs group I have met some amazing people who have battled the system all their children's lives.

Sorry for the late update but Christmas was a little empty. We stayed at home this year and bought an extra stocking for Kendra which I filled with a chocolate (which Branston ate) and a new angel ornament for my collection. I also bought a new angel for the tree. I've decided to make it a tradition, to buy a new angel for the tree every year.

Well, it's a new year and I can no longer say my daughter died last year. It is the year before last or 2006. That evokes some strange feelings. Amazing how strong those feelings of loss can still be sometimes. You know it is really a bit of a conversation killer sometimes when someone asks you how many children you have and you tell them about your baby that died. You know that 'pregnant pause' where nobody knows what to say. A few minutes ago everyone was laughing and joking and it seems a bit disrespectful to go back to that frame of mind a few minutes after I have told them. It happened recently at a braai we had here and you kind of feel almost bad for causing awkwardness. Sometimes I just say 1 child just to avoid that awkwardness. I used to feel really terrible about saying that but I know that Kendra would not feel like I was denying her, I have made peace about that.

It being a new year and all and with my fortieth birthday coming up I have deceided it's time to go all out to slim down to where I should be. I have used comfort eating as an excuse for long enough, it is time to do something about it now. In that spirit I decided to create a weight loss blog. Join me if you dare!!


Anonymous said...


I know exactly that awkward feeling invoked. I mention my baby too b/c although he died before birth, he is still my baby and is very real to me. (Jacobsen syndrome also, in case you forgot).

I should also join in on your weight loss blog, as I have recently started going to the gym one to two times a week (that is what I am trying to do anyhow). I guess that comfort eating thing is pretty common. I have gained so much weight in the past year and a half it is unbelievable. I have to do something about it, but I still find it pretty difficult.

Again, thanks for sharing your difficult journey. Although our situations are a bit different, I still find some mutual understanding when I read your blog.

Take care of yourself.

Susan from VA

Nelba said...

Know what you mean... I almost feel that it is easier just mentioning my two living children, but then I feel disloyal towards my son's memory. In the end it depends how they asked too.

nelba said...

Oh yes, sorry, I wanted to say that I often feel relieved that my son needn't go through this or that - his siblings battling colds which, for them, is merely unpleasant, but which could have been life threatening for him, e.g.

But I do miss him terribly.

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