Friday, August 21, 2009


I am a little upset that people seem to think I am suppose to be the same person I used to be. I am in the process of a thing they call grieving, I am not going to be all smiles all the time or be all excited about certain things. I am different now. I am more of a quiet person and probably will be for awhile. It doesn't mean I can't preform my job or go out and have a good time still. I am just more to myself now. I will never be "better" I will have more normal days inbetween my bad days. But my normal days I WILL seem different because I AM different. So if they can't accept that, oh well because that is who I am right now.

I am a hard worker and know I do a good job. If I didn't the girls in the ER wouldn't be begging for me to come back. I consider myself kind and caring with my patients regardless of my situation. Just because I don't go skipping down the hall while I work doesn't mean I will preform ANY different than before. I love my job and I love what I do. I love working the ICU's and ER and I love the people I work with and honestly I think I will be more distracted at work in a good way when I get to have my favorite assignments back. But for the time being, I am working the assignments that make me feel blah, I am not as excited to go to work because I am not doing the part I love doing.

Of course the assignments I love, do work a lot with the same situation that Nolan was in but I have to face it and deal with it. I feel I bring more to the table now in those situations because I can relate with the family more than I ever was able to before.

You want to know why this week has been so hard for me and I why I have had a quiet week? It's hard because I realized my "babyless maternity leave" has ended. While on the other hand my 2 close friends just started thiers this week. Also in the meantime, I am still suppose to be pregnant, my due date was 9/13!! So I have given birth, lost my baby, returned to work before my friends even started their leave. And I want so BADLY to be in the same spot they are in right now. It's what is bothering me more than returning to work. That is the god to honest truth what I am struggling with more this week. But instead I had to return to work and face all the awkwardness of people. It's not so much of the actual job responsibility, it's the fact of returning to work made me feel like I am suppose to be "over" what happened that past 2.5 months.

So, meet the new Ashley. Hi, I am a quieter version of the old me, more reserved. I struggle daily with the emptiness of my son and what I don't have, it is on my mind every second of every day. That will NEVER leave me so learn to deal with the new me. I am not the party Ashley you remember me as, I am now more of a homebody and prefer to stay home. Be prepared for me to have bad days or not feel like talking to people. I have a very small circle of friends/family that I feel comfortable opening up to on my terms. Sometimes saying nothing at all but knowing that you are here if I need you is all I need. And I want you to ask about Nolan or my pregnancy or what happened... I like to talk about him, BUT...also don't expect me to always start that conversation. I still think of myself as the Mom that should still have my son with us and taking care of him. Instead I make flower arrangements for my son while I watch my friends get to be the mother I am dying to be. The new me still loves my career, it's my passion to do what I do and take pride in working the ER and ICU's. I still have ALL intentions if working in the NICU after I heal more and hopefully have another healthy child, I feel like I have a side of the field that not just any regular person that hasnt been through this can understand. Of anything, I think my experience can only make me a better therapist.

I got this from another blog I read and she got it the same way, so I am not sure who to give credit to, but I wanted to post it because I really think it says what I feel.

Wish List for Bereaved Parents

I wish my child hadn't died, I wish I had him back.

I wish you wouldn't be afraid to speak my child's name. My child lived and was very important to me. I need to hear that he was important to you also.

If I cry and get emotional when you talk about my child I wish you knew that it isn't because you have hurt me. My child's death is the cause of my tears. You have talked about my child and you have allowed me to share my grief, I thank you for both.

I wish you wouldn't "kill" my child again by removing his pictures, or other remembrances from your home.

Being a bereaved parent is not contagious, so I wish you wouldn't shy away from me, I need you now more than ever.

I need diversions, so I do want to hear about you, but, I also want you to hear about me. I might be sad and I might cry, but I wish you would let me talk about my child, my favorite topic of the day.

I know you might pray for me often. I also know that my child's death pains you, too. I wish you would let me know those things through a phone call, a card, note, or a real big hug.

I wish you wouldn't expect my grief to be over in a short period of time. I wish you could understand that my grief will never be over. I will suffer the death of my child until the day I die. Grief is a life long process.

I am working very hard in my recovery, but I wish you could understand that I will never fully recover. I will always miss my child, and I will always grieve that he is dead.

I wish you wouldn't expect me "not to think about it" or to "be happy". Neither will happen for a very long time, so don't frustrate yourself.

I don't want to have a "pity party", but I do wish you would let me grieve. I must hurt before I can heal.

I wish you understood how my life has shattered. I know it is miserable for you to be around me when I'm feeling miserable. Please be as patient with me as I am with you.

When I say "I'm doing okay", I wish you could understand that I don't "feel" okay and that I struggle daily.

I wish you knew that all of the grief reactions I'm having are very normal. Depression, anger, hopelessness, and overwhelming sadness are all to be expected. So please excuse me when I'm quiet and withdrawn or irritable and cranky.

Your advice to "take one day at a time" is excellent advice, however, a day is too much and too fast for me right now. I wish you could understand that I'm doing good to handle an hour at a time.

Please excuse me if I seem rude, certainly not my intent. Sometimes the world around me goes too fast and I need to get off. When I walk away, I wish you would let me find a quiet place to spend time alone.

I wish you understood that grief changes people. When my child died, a big part of me died with him. I am not the same person I was before my child died, and I will never be that person again.

I wish very much that you could understand - understand my loss and grief, my silence and my tears, my void and my pain.

....BUT…I pray daily that you will NEVER understand.


Crystal said...

I'm so sorry for your loss.. your son is beautiful. I know so well how it feels when people think you should just get "over it" and be back to "normal" But this is our normal now.. I've learned that people can either except it or they aren't really meant to be in my life. And I've lost a lot of "friends" thru my babyloss journey but I've also gained some WONDERFUL friends and realized how awesome my friends who stuck by my side are. Many many hugs to you.

Niki said...

Oh sweet Ashley I wish I could take away your pain. I could have written those very same words myself a year ago and still say them in my head quite often. People just do not get it and they never will. You are not the same person and it's unbelievable that people would actually expect you to be. You had Nolan and you are a mommy, but you lost your son and now you are a grieving mommy. I doubt that any mother would tell you that they were the same after having children. Children make our hearts grow bigger and when children die those enlarged hearts we possess burst into a million pieces. Therefore, we are forever changed. My heart aches for Myles just as your aches for Nolan. It always will. He is your son and he's gone. This is tragic and certainly has molded you into the person you are today.

I think you are courageous and strong. Nolan would be proud of his mommy. I am proud of you, which is why I awarded you a blog award (visit my blog to get it). ((HUGS)) and strength are coming your way friend.

Brie said...

You've got me in tears..We share the same shoes...I was due Sept 7th, 2009 and delivered May 18th. I can't help but envy my friends who are just starting their maternity leave, while I actually took none. I went back to work 5 days post was easier being busy than sitting in an empty home.

So glad I found your blog.

Bluebird said...

Hey Ashley. I just found you through Niki's blog. I haven't had a chance to catch up on your story yet - but I will. And, in the meantime I just wanted to stop by and offer my ((hugs)) and say that I am so sorry for your loss.

cmatsukes said...

I think any death of a close loved one changes you I know I have changed since my husbands death and my mom just a month ago. I never went through a death of a child but I think any death and any life lost is precious and yes you are not going to get over it. And you know what I dont want to get over it they both have a piece of my heart and to get over it would mean I would lose that feeling, thoughts, and rememberence It does not mean my life stops no my life still goes on in a different way a different chapter of it but they are always there. And remember you need not apolize to anyone Ashley or Nikki for your feelings and greiving it is part of your life and will always be there. I saw your video for Myles it made me cry such a perfect alittle angel. I now have seen 2 perfect angels Nolan and Myles. They were both incrediable.