Monday, June 28, 2010


Dear Stevie,
One thing you would have learned about me as we got to know each other is that I hate surprises. I can usually avoid having to experience them pretty well. I can't remember the last time I was genuinely surprised by a present. When I was little, I would sneak around the house, looking under my parent's bed or in their closet (sorry, Mom and Dad!) for my unwrapped Christmas presents. If I couldn't figure out was I was getting that way, It was always way too easy to get my little brother to spill the beans. It would go something like this. Me: "Brandon, what did Mom and Dad get me for Christmas?" Him: "I'm not telling." Me: "Is it an iPod dock?" Him: "Maybe..."

I will never let Dad surprise me with presents either. I have honestly cried, on more than one occasion, when he has refused to tell me what he bought me for my birthday (embarassing, but true). Every time I've cried, he's cracked. Three years into our marriage, and we now have a pretty solid gift-getting system in place. I will go online and buy myself whatever I want, and then send him an email with the link to the gift I've purchased, saying something like, "here's what you bought me for Valentine's Day. It should be here in five to seven business days."

It's not just presents, either. I also hate surprises when it comes to things like movies and books. Once we decide on a movie to watch, I grab my laptop, pull up good old Wikipedia, and read the full plot summary, paying special attention to the ending. Then I spend the whole movie trying to get Dad to let me tell him what happens, and dropping hints like, "Hmmm, wouldn't it be so sad if that guy's daughter gets kidnapped...?"

When I start a new book, the first thing I do is flip to the back and read the last page. I need to know what happens. I can't enjoy the story until I know how it ends.

That is exactly how I feel right now. I thought I knew how the story of my pregnancy with you would end: "...and Stevie was born healthy and alive and she and her mom and dad lived happily ever after." But instead I experienced the biggest surprise, the biggest plot-twist ever. You died. When that happened, I thought your story was finished. But then, I realized your story, our story, is not over yet. I'm living it right now, day by day, page by page. I'm living in the middle of the novel of my life, my journey to motherhood, and I want to flip to the last page and see how it ends. To sneak a quick peak and see what happens.

I just want to know that one day, I will be happy again. If I could just look into the future and know for certain that in, let's say, three years, I will have at least one living child, I could relax and enjoy the time, the "pages" in between. I don't need to know exactly when, or how, or what gender, or any of the details, I just need to know that I will have another baby and that baby will live. It's the uncertainty of it all that is driving me crazy. Just tell me I'll have my happy ending someday and I'll be good. No more surprises, please.

The thing is, everything about you was a surprise, Baby. From your unplanned arrival, to the way you had me thinking you were a boy most of your life, to your shocking death. I may hate surprises, but I sure love you. My sweet little perfect surprise.

If one of your super special "angel powers" is the ability to see into the future, do mommy a favor and let me know what's coming up. At the very least, can you give me a little hint? :)

Love you. Miss you. Wish you were here.


Julie said...

i feel this way, too. if i could know for sure that everything will be ok, that we will get to be parents together, that kenny will have at least one healthy, happy, younger sibling, it would give me so much peace. it's the not knowing that kills me.

and i feel so naive for thinking the happy ending was a given.

Maggie said...

The uncertaintly of it all is one of the worst parts. All you can do is hope and hope and think that you will get your happy ending one day. I know it seems kind of hard to believe...I'm still trying to believe! I always look at the last pages of my books when I get them too. :) I don't know why I do it! XO

Emily said...

WOW!! I DO THAT TOO...flip to the end of the book to see what happens. I do it because I'm usually attached to a certain character and if they aren't healthy and whole in the end I don't want to be too surprised and distressed. I honestly can't remember the last time I read a book and didn't at least flip and read the last couple of pages when I was part way through. I'm not as much of a nerd as you though. I can take present surprises (although I prefer if I gave the person a list in advance so that I at least know I'll like it and won't have to fake it). I also don't mind movie surprises...but it's a rare movie that I can't see the end coming a mile away. And EXACTLY like you, if I knew that at some point, some day that I would have a healthy baby, then I could relax. I could get on with living in the now. I could be happy...well okay...maybe not TOTALLY happy...but happier. I could be patient and wait. The not knowing is literally crushing my soul. Thank goodness I'm waiting with all of you.

ajmcgauley said...

Kristin... I would like to tell you what an impact your journals have had on me. I go on Babycenter everyday to see if you have written a new one:) I make my husband listen to me read them as I cry. I wish I had the ability to write and express my feelings like you do. Thank you so much for helping me in my journey of loss and knowing I am not the only one.

April said...

The more I read about you, the more amazed I am at how alike we are. I'm the same way with surprises. I used to coax my little brother into telling me my Xmas presents, and one year even pretended to be sick so I could stay home from school and open my presents using steam and re-wrap them(I got caught that year). And just last night I wiki'ed while my husband watched The Road, as I do with all of the movies we rent. And it chills me to see someone who walks down the same path as I did. Trust Stevie. Trust that she wants her mommy to be happy. And you will be. You won't hurt like this forever.

Danae said...

So much of that sounds like me. I tend to read wikipedia about movie plots. I was so the little kid sneaking into my parent's closet to see what I got for Christmas. I don't read the end of a book usually...okay okay...I did on the last Harry Potter, but that's because I HAD to know.

And I would love to know how this story is going to play out. I know this is one mini-story, or even one really long chapter, in my life...but much can a person take? But, if someone would have tried to tell me ahead of time, to avoid the surprise, that this...this is how this journey would go...that I would lose my daughter...I wouldn't have believed them...and unfortunately, after having been through this, if someone tried to tell me how it's going to be in the future, I probably wouldn't believe them on that either. No matter if it was good or bad.

Mrs. Mother said...

I hate surprises, too. And I flip to the end of the book to read, and I get people to tell me what happens in movies. I said more than once I wanted to know how it all went after losing Jenna. I wanted to know if it was just going to be me, my husband and our daughter or if we would get our rainbow baby. I hope Stevie gives you a sign in the days to come.

Kathy said...

Kristin -

I have to tell you how much Stevie's story, your story, has touched me. Explaining that is impossible, but I'm glad I met you on BBC. I find your blog listed on my favorites and check it once a day if not more often. Your story, your journey is... there are no words. Emphatically impactive.

I hope you get your sign soon, dear. You definitely deserve that someday happiness.

Melissa said...

Beautiful words, I feel the same way about the biggest plot-twist ever - I don`t mind surprises but ones that are in my control if that makes sense, I like to plan things out and within that plan have little surprises. I had a plan, this was not supposed to happen.

Violet1122 said...

I feel the same as you do - I wish there was a way to fast forward to the future. Just to see a few moments. Just knowing that I had a healthy baby in my arms would make all the difference in the world right now.

I'm already sending you good vibes, that when you are ready, you'll find yourself expecting a new little one. And someday you'll find yourself cradling your new, healthy baby.

I guess there is no way to prevent surprises. But here's hoping your next big surprise is a happy one!

Andrea said...

I too wish I could just have that reassurance of knowing I would have at least one Earthly child. This journey seems so long sometimes....and often so harsh.

Thinking of you as you journey on Kristen.

Betsy & Kurt said...

Hi Kristen,
I'm a new follower of your blog... someone posted the link to it (i can't remember who, sorry!) on the pregnancy loss message board on the bump. We lost our little girl at 34 weeks this past November. You are such an inspiration, and I love the way you write. Thank you for being so candid about your feelings. :)

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