Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Empty

Dear Stevie,
"Our house just feels so...empty," Dad said one night. It was a few days after we got home from the hospital, and the two of us were sprawled out on the living room floor together, just starring at the ceiling in silence. "It really does," I quietly replied.

It seems odd to talk about our house feeling "empty" when it has the same number occupants living in it now as there were when we first moved in, just two weeks before you died. It's not like there used to be children running through the halls and now there are not. I didn't even spend most of my pregnancy in this house, so there are hardly any memories of that here. But our house feels so empty since you've been gone.

Our house was never filled with children, or memories of the past, but in the short time we lived there, we had filled it up with so many future memories, so many plans and hopes and dreams. Plans and hopes and dreams for you. For our life as a family of three.

We started filling it with future memories the day we looked at the house for the first time. I left a trail of plans behind me as I walked into the room which would be your nursery and said to Dad, "this is just perfect for the baby." I stuffed the closet, which I declared would be "perfect for all the baby's toys," full of hopes. I left a huge pile of dreams out on the deck, which I noted, "is perfect for hanging a baby swing from."

As we unpacked our things and settled into the new place a month later, we also unpacked box upon box full of future memories and put them away throughout the house. Dreams of reading to you were placed up on the bookshelf. Plans of watching all the classic Disney movies with you were put next to the TV. Hopes of making our own homemade baby food for you were shoved in the kitchen cabinet, next to the food processor. Thoughts of bath time with our new baby were dispersed between shampoo bottles, body wash, and cans of shaving cream in the tub. We put our plans and hopes and dreams in every nook and cranny of every room of our new house. In no time at all, it was filled to the brim with our future memories. It was full.

And now, it's empty.

The moment you died, all those plans, hopes, dreams, and future memories died too. They all vanished in an instant, snatched away from their perfect spots in our home. We used to be surrounded by a lifetime of things to come, and now we are surrounded by...emptiness.

I suppose we will start to fill it up again, slowly, with plans and hopes and dreams of a different kind. I've already carefully placed the dream of another positive pregnancy test on the counter by the bathroom sink. I've cautiously left bits of hope of running through the grass after another child in the backyard. I've secretly put plans of naps with a new baby sleeping peacefully on my chest on the living room couch. Hopefully, someday, these future memories will become realities. Hopefully, someday, our house will be filled not only with plans and hopes and dreams, but with the sound of children laughing and a lifetime of real memories.

Even so, our house, and any house we ever live in in the future, will never feel quite full. I think there will always be a little piece of emptiness wherever we are, because we will always be missing you, Baby.

I love you so much and miss you more everyday.

Always and forever,
Mom

23 comments:

Lucid Anne said...

Kristin, you are such an incredible writer. :sniffling: <3 We had to leave our old house and move into a new one... and I'm finding myself cautiously putting those new hopes into the corners of this one. I'd so be lying if I said I wasn't thinking about children playing in the huge backyard when we first looked at the house. Its amazing how hopes and dreams can take up what feels like physical space.

Kelley and Chris said...

This is a great post Kristin. So true. It's a little overwhelming to think about how something will always be missing. Some piece of your heart will always feel empty...no matter what. Maybe one of these days, it will be a little easier for us to wrap our heads around that reality. I hope so.

Angela said...

Oh my stars - what a beautiful post. One of the first things I said to my husband when we came home was, "We need to move out. I can't live in this house anymore." When we moved in in late summer 2008 we knew the second bedroom would someday be a nursery. We knew this would be the house we would start our family in. Now that nearly six weeks have gone by since Charlotte died I am learning to live with the grief here in this house. I hope there will be a little one in this house someday and in yours too.

Maggie said...

Beautifully written. It really does feel quite empty and there will always be a feeling of someone missing. I hope someday your house will be full (or at least feel a little more full than it does now). (((HUGS))))

Christa said...

What a beautifully written post. Here's to happy future memories...

Julie said...

kristin, this is just beautiful.

Antoinette said...

could not have written it better myself!!!! i feel the SAME way....its unfortunate that we have had to take all our dreams and hopes in these houses and put them on a shelf too...i watch all the movies intended for the baby myself, they help me sleep, i want to continue to read her books to her at her grave, once i get the courage to do so...and the nursery...oh the the nursery....its going to be the HARDEST part of my move, as i had all those same feelings when we took this apartment....its such a shame...im heartbroken for you and your husband....you are in my thoughts always..xoxo

Dawn Kelly said...

You have a real gift for sharing what's on your mind and in your heart. Thinking about you...

Courtney said...

Empty. That is how our house has felt for awhile now. Just breaks my heart.

I wish this wasn't our life my friend.

*hugs*

Danae said...

I hate the empty feeling because more times than not, it is so overwhelming.

It's also ironic how the "empty" feeling can be one of the heaviest feelings in world.

Mrs. Mother said...

You brought tears to my eyes. I felt empty after we lost Jenna, my arms felt empty, her room felt empty. Everything just felt like an eternal emptiness. Having our rainbow baby has helped fill some of the emptiness, but not completely. Something, or should I say someone, will always be missing.

Melissa said...

This is so touching, and so true. Someone will always be missing.

Michele said...

It's true.... Even now, with two 9 mo olds in the house, we are still missing the sounds of two 2yo's and a 19mo old. It breaks my heart. For all of us.

Chelsey Whitfield said...

Hey Kristin... I've never been able to get up the heart to post on here. I've been following your story since we were trying to conceive on the forum together, then expecting August babies on another forum together. And it just breaks my heart into a million pieces. You are an incredible writer, almost as incredible at that as you are at being a mom. Even with Stevie gone, your unwavering love and devotion still shines through. I know Stevie is looking down on you smiling - proud of all the support you give to others in your similar situation and proud of expressing your opinions. I've read every single post you've ever written. I follow your blog like you could not believe. And when it goes a few hours without feeling Jakey move, your story flashes in the back of my mind and I can't help but fill up with tears. You are living my, and many others, worst nightmare. And I just want you to know that I hope that someday soon, you wake up with it just as a small pain in the back of your mind, but are able to tell your future children about your horrible nightmare and feel mostly whole again. If that makes sense....

I love you, and Stevie. My heart grieves for you. Sending you whatever strength and encouragement I can.
-ChelseyWhitfield from BBC

Kristin said...

Thanks, Chelsey. I was never on a Trying To Conceive forum though! Stevie was our little "oops" baby :) Thanks for the comment and for your continued support!

Ashlee G. said...

*wipes away tears*

This is beautiful. I am so very sorry for your loss. I'm sure you've heard it a million times, but let me offer you those words one more time. I pray that your home will not feel empty for very long.

Best of wishes.

Ashlee
ICLW #180

brooke said...

"Empty" is the only way to describe how I feel, how our house feels, how my life feels since my baby girl was stillborn at 34 weeks. Although I can logically see that in some ways it is "easier" for us in that our day to day life didn't change, it's really the most terrible and heartbreaking thing of all. We were ready for everything to change. We were ready to become parents and have our lives turned upside down. Now we just go back to "normal"? Sure, we can go to happy hour or kill a bottle of wine on the couch or go out of town for the weekend or go see a movie on the spur of the moment, but those things we could do as a couple without kids have lost their appeal. We don't feel free. We feel empty.

Waterbishop @ An Older Version said...

Oh dear. My heart breaks for you my dear.
I sincerely hope you can fill a part of that emptiness soon. I know a piece of you will always hurt, but some day, the rest can know joy.
Take care.

(from the creme)

Mr. Thompson and Me said...

I think that this is one of the most beautiful posts I've read from Creme de la Creme.

The photo of your beautiful beautiful little girl... looks like my beautiful beautiful little boy. And if I were to write a letter....I think it would be like yours.

Thank you for that. Now a follower.

Ashley said...

What a beautiful post. I'm so sorry for your loss! Praying this year brings you lots of blessings and new memories to fill your house!

Sara said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. Your story is heartbreaking, but you tell it beautifully. I hope that it has a very happy ending.

Esperanza said...

Here from Creme. That post was just heartwrenching. It brought tears to my eyes. I am so sorry for you loss. I cannot imagine how empty a house would feel after you'd imagined your life with your daughter and then she wasn't there. You feel the loss of your future together and it must be very tangible; even if others didn't experience her presence the way you did, she was there. I'm so sorry that she can't be with you now. I can't fathom the heartache. I know my words cannot bring you any peace but please know that you are in my thoughts and in my heart. I hope you can start filling those empty spaces with different hopes and dreams, ones that can share the space with the loving memories of your daughter.

Creme de la Creme #125
Creme de la Creme 2010 Iron Commenter Attempt
http://esperanzasays.wordpress.com/iron-clad-creme-de-la-creme-commenter/

gailcanoe said...

I'm here from the Creme (a little late, but still here).
What a moving post. Thanks for sharing!

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