Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category


The Day

November 18, 2012

I made it through the day the Norah died 5 years ago. I did drag 4 children to the store and then discussed what day it was and what we were about to do. I extracted promises from the 2 older kids to help with the 2 younger kids. We shopped for a 5 year old on the Salvation Army Angel tree. It was fun to pick out everything. The kids enjoyed trying on shoes and playing with all the toys. I made notes for Christmas. We order through a drive through and went to a park where we ate our picnic lunch. We played at the park for 2 hours. The sun was casting long shadows in the winter southern sky. I turned my face to the sun and absorbed the rays. I watched and played with my kids but silently mourned the one who wasn’t there.

Yes, I’ll push you, because I can’t push her.

Yes, I’ll chase you, because I can’t chase her.

Yes, I’ll hold your drink, because I can do nothing for her.

I miss her.


It is that time of year again

November 17, 2012

The sun dims in the afternoon sky. A chill covers me early in the afternoon. The smell of decaying leaves, the long shadows, and the crisp air constantly remind me of Norah. I am two days away from 5 years and every hour I am reminded of her.

Five years ago, I was teaching my last class with her….

Five years ago, I was walking in the woods with her…

Five years ago, I was preparing for labor…

Five years ago, my daughter died.

I mourn her, not like the immediate aftermath but still, I mourn her. I feel her around sometimes. But, I am sure that it is just my imagination…a protective barrier devised by my brain to shelter me. I tell myself that I can not feel her because I have convinced myself that she was born into another life. I hope to meet her someday. Therefore, I can not feel her because she is in this this world.

I have devised many mechanisms to shield me from pain. I could write pages about the different tactics I have used in the past and in the present to allow myself to function in everyday life. My favorite is that death is not a end but a beginning. However, I don’t know that. I’ve never died (at least that I can remember).

Words like I think or I believe or I feel are not part of my everyday vocabulary. I am a scientist. I only seek the truth. My profession does not allow me to express ambiguity. Yet, at the end of the day, I think Norah is around; I believe she is living a fulfilling life; I feel like I will meet her again.


Thrown for a Loop

August 23, 2011

Yesterday Coach received a text which he showed me right after dinner. It was from our neighbor informing us that my OB just died. On the surface, it is sad that she passed and I will miss her. But just under the surface, I grieve. Not only for the loss of her life but also because of the loss of one of the only people in the world who knows about Norah and my entire medical history. This was a lady that I didn’t have to be careful around. If she were in a different profession and not familiar with my parts down south, then we probably would have been friends. I am saddened for her friends and family. She delivered 4 of my children, and she showed us compassion when she told me that Norah had died and subsequently delivered her. I feel unsettled. There is one less person in the world who held Norah and could verify her existence.



March 31, 2011

I forgot what my blog was called. For a bit, I didn’t know what to click on. I’ve let it languish, without attention.

The Spring is difficult for me. My baby died in November yet the season that is difficult is the Spring. Flowers are blooming, plants are growing, the days grow longer, new lives = new beginnings. Except for my daughter. My daughter no longer lives. I love the smells, the growing, the life. And yet, it makes me sad. The sadness is not crippling but it is dibilitating. I find it hard to concentrate, to function. Yesterday I had difficult doing a basic trigonometry problem. I was frustrated that I could not figure out which buttons to push on my calculator. It was an easy problem, but so hard for me to figure out. I have so many stresses right now but the sadness has numbed me. I tell myself that I am tired. I haven’t slept well lately. But I know it is because I am grieving the loss of my daughter. My mother died at this time of year 3 years ago. I grieve the loss of a confidant. We talked several times a week and then we didn’t. A sudden loss that sent me reeling after my daughters death. As everyone else is enjoying walking in park, playing outside, and returning to life. I mourn. I grieve over what should have been, the life that I left me.

Summer can not come quick enough…



February 21, 2011

Lately it seems like all I do is try to keep up on top of all of the meetings and material that I have promised people. But I can tell I’m coming to an endpoint. I hurt my back pretty bad about two weeks ago – I herniated a disk. It is a cry for my body to get back into balance. I know that. I look at my schedule to try and determine when I can exercise and I can not figure where to put it in. Last week, nearly every moment of the day was scheduled with a meeting or teaching. When do I get to do research? Spending time with my kids always trumps exercise, cleaning always trumps exercise, sleeping always trumps exercise. Yet, I will break. I can feel it coming. I can only put so much stress on my body and mind.

The prospect of traveling across the country for a year is daunting but exciting at the same time. Coach and I are excited to minimize and thin out our stuff. There is so much to do before July. This is where my time away is going to come – a sabbatical – away from daily meetings, students, and my responsiblities. I want to leave.



February 6, 2011

I do not perform well at blogging. Initially I thought this would be a great place to put my thoughts and ideas about Norah and then I thought this would be a great place to store all the funny, strange, weird events that happen throughout the day. However, I have failed. I can not seem to find the time in the day and I forget that I even have a blog. What do I do all day long. The mornings are taken up with the craziness of getting everyone to school and to get myself out of the door. When I come in to work, I sometimes have enough time to check email but mostly I am preparing to teach which goes through about noon. 3 out of 5 days a week, the afternoon are taken up with meeting. The remaining two days are supposed to be research, however, many times I am “putting out fires”. I am not even connected most of the day. At home I have to pick up kids, make dinner, clean, get everyone ready for bed. Sometimes, I get some internet time when I am putting Tyson to sleep. I do read your blogs at that time but never have enough hands to respond — I have to login and with one hand in the dark, it is difficult. Then, it is time to do a load of dishes and laundry and head off to bed myself.

I barely have time to talk to my husband. I think it is better to talk to him than to blog, better for my marriage. I call him on the phone during the day, just to have time “alone” with him.

Now I am feeling guilty for letting the blog languish. There are many thing happening that I am trying to sort out….

my field schedule for the year, my commitments for research, all my responsiblities to the department and to my family and the most exciting development is that I earned a fellowship for the academic year of 2011-2012 at the University of Colorado, Boulder. So, I think we are going to be taking the entire family there for a year, unless the budget is too small, then we will only take them there for a semester. I have been searching for what to do on my sabbatical and I found it.

Oh, and another development, my university gave me an iPad so any kind of free time that I have, I’ve used the time to try and figure it out. I do not have a smart phone so everything is new to me. I’m supposed to use it to transform my teaching….any ideas?


Well, maybe not…

January 7, 2011

So, two posts ago, I was trying to talk myself into writing thank you notes to the people in my life to express my gratitude. I don’t think that is going to work out because of my own sloth. When I think about going to the store and shopping for cards, my stomach turns. I am not a shopper and on some level, I fear it. It wastes time and not an enjoyable activity. I usually keep a list and then go on a kamokazee shopping blitz to get what we need. I don’t browse. Maybe, to express my gratitude, I’ll pick one day out of the week to write a blog post about how much I am thankful for that person/thing. That may be more manageable.

Classes start on Wednesday but I am been furiously working since classes ended in the Fall. I sent out some fellowship applications for sabbatical, I completed a federal grant, a scheduled some research trips. The result being is that I’m not ready to begin the Spring semester and all of the responsibilities that go along with my faculty position. I am going to better at managing my time which means less internet time during the day and more active work. I do best when I set a timer in the morning to check email/internet sites and then close it all down for the rest of the day. That is my plan. The purpose is to use my time more effectively so my stress level does not rise to unmanageable levels. When I get stressed, I get sick. When I am sick, I don’t want to cook and am short with my kids/Coach. When I am sick, I need to lay flat on my back for at least 30 minutes to make the pain stop. When I lay down, nothing gets done. If nothing gets done, then I have to stay up later to finish it which leads to decreased sleeping time. My sleep time is already decreased with an 8 month old feeding all night long. Then I wake up sleepy, my productivity is decreased at work. When my productivity decreases, I get stressed. And the cycle starts over. The way to stop the cycle is to stop the stress and anxiety to begin with. I know why it happens. It is just not that easy to break the cycle.

What do you do when you are stressed?