Thursday, July 1, 2010


Dear Stevie,
Alright, where's a girl like me supposed to go to buy toilet paper these days? Or toothpaste? Or mascara? Target has always been my go-to store for, well, pretty much everything, but since you died, I swear it's turned into a mecca of babies and pregnant people. It was probably full of them before, but I guess I never noticed. Seriously, do all the new moms in town call up all the expectant moms in town and decide to all meet up for one big, happy baby-fest at Target every time I go there? I've tried to avoid going during peak "baby hours," and plan most of my Target runs for after-dark, when all these little children should be at home in bed, but no. There's no avoiding them at Target.

That store is absolutely crawling with two types of people I hate seeing most: super happy, attentive moms with adorable babies in their carts (because I am insanely jealous of them), and super crabby, worn-down moms yelling at their young children to "STOP TOUCHING EVERYTHING!" (because they must not realize how lucky they are to have a child to yell at).

I think Target should start banning pregnant women and babies under the age of two between the hours of 9 and 10pm. They could call it the "baby-free zone," or something like that. They could hire a "bouncer" to sit outside the store and enforce this new policy. "I'm sorry, Ma'am, but that child you have looks a bit too young to enter the store at this time. Please come back tomorrow morning. We open at 8."

Just an hour. That's all I ask. One hour in my blessed Target where I can pick up my salad dressing and bath towels and plunger in peace. One hour where I can walk down the aisles without having to stare at the ground, knowing that the second I look up, everything I wanted but do not have, will be staring me right in the face.

It's weird, more than the trips to the zoo, or big family vacations, it's all the random Target runs the two of us will never take together that make me the saddest to think about, Baby. I so wish I was a part of the baby-fest rather than just a jealous by-stander. I wish you were here so much.

Loving you always,


Angela said...

Amen, sister.

Drew's Parents said...

I second that! Funny enough, I was just at Target this morning and also posted about all of the happy moms and children. I agree with you... I would much rather be in their club than in ours. Hopefully one day soon.

Kelley and Chris said...

I say we start a petition for 'baby-free' shopping times. I have a really hard time seeing it all as well. Blah...

The Griegers said...

I too have considered requesting a pregnant people ban at my favorite stores :) It hurts, hopefully one day it wont hurt so much but I guess we wont know until time passes. Hugs <3

Danae said...

I like the idea of the ban...I'd sign that petition. There has been a couple of times that I have gotten so fed up with seeing pregnant people and babies while in Targer or Wal-Mart, that I just left without what I needed.

Julie said...

hear, hear!

Courtney said...

Ugh, I so now what you mean. I use to love me some Target time now ... I dread even the thought of stepping foot in one.


Anonymous said...

hey, i herd about your story on wcco. i guess im to young to under stand what its like to loose your first baby. im sure youll never get that sensation again. if you ever have a another baby, dont be afraid. its possible that it could die but then again maybe if everybody believes it can live. i have a feeling that when the doctor said the babys heart was not beating anymore that your was not either. it just stoped. but when you type, you can let anything out. you always lave little stevie joy (if im corrwct) in your heart as you first baby. you will always be a family. and when you tell your next baby girl or boy. im sure thwy will be as thrilled as you are telling the world (or mn?) about your story.
- support always, katie

Anonymous said...

I love this POST! You have such a gift of describing that feeling of helplessness one gets in that situation. I lost twin girls at 23 weeks and Target became my enemy for a loooong time. I am not sure how long it took me before I would even walk by the baby section. There is one time I remember wanting to ram my cart into those happy smiling people that are shopping for baby items. What a wonderful tribute to your amazing little girl.

Stacy Mayers said...

I so know that feeling we lost our little Joseph James at 8 and half months back in 2006!!! I still think of him every day and when i start to feel like im forgetting him i feel so guilty and cry! Even thou I now have two healthy boys I still talk about him and some one always has to say how can you talk about a dead baby? So i really loved your statement that we are always going to be proud of our babies!!

Anonymous said...

Isn't that the truth.
In 2000, I suffered a miscarriage - my 6th - after 5 years of infertility treatments. I have a distinct memory of having a pretty good day one morning, and then walking over to Target to buy soap. The onslaught of pregnant women and new babies was more than I could take. They were all over Target like drool on a bib. I walked in and ahead of me was a very pregnant woman pushing a stroller overflowing with newborn twins. I stepped inside, started to shake, ran to the bathroom, and sobbed until I thought I would throw up. Then I got my soap and walked home. Ten years later and I see Target has the same effect still.
Hang in there, mama. There's more women out there than you know rooting for you and loving you, Stevie, and all the moms and babies like you guys.

Anonymous said...

By the way, Kristin, I think you are doing fantastic. I know you feel crappy. And the grief part sucks. But I am in awe of what an incredible human being and mother you are, and how much strength and grace you show through your blog. And, as someone who has felt that suffocating feeling of grief like someone dropped the ocean on your head, it does get better. You don't WANT it to, in some ways, but you get to a point where you get to keep all the amazing love for Stevie and all the memories, just not so much gut wrenching, breath stealing pain.

Blessings to your whole perfect family.

Anonymous said...

It's as if I am reading my thoughts from 12 years ago. Our son Nicolas was stillborn in January 1998. We will never know why - what does it matter now anyways. I had such a hard time being in public when, as you said, they had what I wanted! And that year of trying again was torture. Watching your story tonight on WCCO brought it all back - in a good way. I know he is my angel watching over our family. Nicolas was our first. Our next was Jake and he talks about Nicolas all the time and how he misses his brother! I am truly blessed today with 5 living children - and I know our last was a surprise from God and Nicolas. He will forever be our first born. And he is the little personality that our family is missing. Thank you for your story and the help you give to so many - even though you don't know it. God bless you and your husband. You are in my thoughts and prayers.


Dana said...

I hate going to stores and seeing all of the pregnant woman and people with babies. I wonder now if I will ever be one of them.

I see your story aired and it has reached people and touched them. I know that Stevie is so proud of you (and so am I!)


Lucid Anne said...

Target is all of that to me and worse- we went to Target, right around the time V's heart stopped. I now think of it as a cursed place. Along with Wendy's (place I had lunch that day) and the outlet malls (our original stop for shopping).

Melissa said...

Haha, yes. I have noticed that too at the store. Babies everywhere. I also seem to have a knack for toddlers suddenly bolting around and crashing into me.

According to my husband -- I don't remember this -- I have flipped off the baby section while walking past it, too. Sometimes I'm.... special.

Anonymous said...

I lost my son 20 years ago. The hurt does get better. I remember going out to dinner way too soon after his stillbirth and just looking down at my plate. There was a baby sitting up at a table nearby who was staring at me. I felt that he knew I was a mom anyway. I still remember his little face. Take comfort in whatever you can. Your blog is wonderful.


Anonymous said...

I love your idea.

I hope you don't mind me saying, but this could be good for so many reasons. For the mums who are here without their children, but also for those with living children and needing a break.

Target is way too full of babies, always!!

I am so sorry that you have to go through such awful experiences each and every day.

You are amazing.


Anonymous said...

Dear Kristin, my heart weeps for you...for all you should have had, for all the love you thought you could pour over an infant you could hold in your arms and instead you are forced to channel that love to something intangible; but so incredibly forceful and real, and for that I honor you and your strength and determination to give life to Stevie Joy no matter what! I was blessed to have two beautiful healthy, "never felt better in my life" pregnancies that resulted in two beautiful adults now, that I to this day thank God for every day! They are my reward for being, my daughter is my hero for her amazing strength dealing with epilepsy for the last 20 years. You cannot imagine how many times I wanted to take that illness from her and just let her have a normal life! Please! She is married and at age 27, looking forward to starting her own family.She was just diagnosed with a septate uterus; essentially her uterus is divided in two. Most women with this don't find out until they have a miscarriage. So we consider ourselves lucky to have found out before that happened! She may be helped with surgery, but since it's not an illness it won't be covered by insurance. It makes me want to curl up and cry to think that she may never even have a chance to feel a life growing beneath her heart! So dear much as I understand your fear to "risk that" again, as much as I understand you will worry over every little twinge...please open yourself up to the possibility, welcome the chance to feel that life again, another child is just waiting to come into your heart! OK, I can't not mention's late, the TV just happened to be on channel 4, and they just featured your story while I was typing this! Bizarre, but that kind of thing happens quite often to me lately! God bless you! can't wait to hear your announcement that you are pregnant again. Perhaps, God willing it will come at the same time my daughter will tell me she is! love, eileen

Anonymous said...

One thing some of you could do is try to see those mommies as possible survivors of what you have been through. A huge portion of women have miscarriages and older baby losses and go through that same thing but pick up and watch their belly grow again. My SIL lost her first tragically too but now has 7! I am expecting #8 (10 really)and have lost 2, one was a twin. I remember the days passing, the due date passing, my friends delivering, me delivering one instead of hurts. However, the babies we do go on to have are very healing. Blessings for you!

Anonymous said...

It is so wonderful how you can share this with everyone. We lost our first born son in 1976, and no one ever talked about it. What also hurt was that while I was still in the hospital I was still kept in the maternity ward around all the other mothers who had their babies. That was so painful. It was never mentioned again after the memorial service. So we grieved in silence. I wish there would of been support then like there is now. We did go on to have two beautiful children, but the pain is always there. In 2004 our daughter had a stillborn daughter. The people reaching out to them was wonderful. How times have changed.

Anonymous said...

I saw a preview of your story to be shown on the news...I have to admit...I couldn't watch it. I never carried my daughter Olivia ...I never felt her see she grew in my heart by means of adoption. (from China) A 12 month "pregnancy" wait...turned into 15, 20, 24, 28, 30,32, 34, 36 get the point...with money running out and a job lay off...we lost our adoption. The only way to explain my feelings is by "invisible stillborn". I am blessed that I was able to have 2 sons by means of fertility medication and they are now 19 and 16 (we started the adoption process when they were in middle school) but the pain of losing Olivia is beyond anything I've ever known...and I haven't found a blog (or anyone for that matter)...who "GETS IT"...I too walk into Target and CRINGE! Adopted daughters seem to be everywhere and I can't muster any husband is 10 years older than me and says he's done...which feels like a double death. I'm telling you all this ...just to say.. THANK YOU...THANK YOU for GETTING IT...and being strong enough to say so! For saying out loud all the things I've been thinking and then feeling so guilty I'm this horrible person! It's so ugly...not being able to be happy for birth announcements...or to be around my friends with little kids...It's been a year...and I do see it getting "better" for lack of a good word. And if one more person tells me to be "THANKFUL" for my 2 sons, I'm going to scream...that implies I'm NOT! I am beyond thankful! Stevie has touch my heart and for today I have a sense of peace...and just look at all the others she has touched...Thank you! hugs Jen

Anonymous said...

My heart aches along with you. We lost 4 babies, all at 11 weeks. I saw all of them on ultrasound, waiting, pleading, begging for that little heart to beat. With the twins, I had seen them on ultrasound just the week before, their 2 little hearts beating wildly.

I will never stop missing them, and can't wait to meet them in heaven.
And to all of you, wanting to scream at the people that tell you to be thankful for the children you have, or that your precious little one is in "a better place" I tell you that it is ok to feel that way.

Don't feel like you need to "get over" losing a child, at any stage in their life. You carried them within you, were their only source of nurture and protection, and to have that suddenly ripped away from you, along with all your hopes and dreams for their future, that has been one of the deepest wounds I have ever felt. I went through it 3 times, in the space of 3 years, and sometimes the pain still hits so hard that I have to remember to breathe.

So I say to all of you, I know your pain. I grieve with you. I would hold each of you and cry with you, if I could. I know how it is to wonder "why," and have no answer, to make yourself go on with life because it sure isn't going to stop until you feel whole again. The desire of my heart is to uphold all of you going through this wrenching ache of being forced to say goodbye too soon.

hang on,

Anonymous said...

I used to feel like that, too, about Target, after I miscarried my first pregnancy at 6 weeks, and then suffered through infertility treatments. I was insanely jealous of all of those mothers. Please do try, if you can, as a previous poster said, to see at least some of those mommies as survivors like you. At 40, I'm now 23 weeks along--hoping, praying every day that everything goes okay with my little boy. But no matter what happens, I tell myself I don't want to ever forget what it felt like to suffer my miscarriage and years of infertility. A lot of those Target mommies (like I'll be in the fall) carry grief in their hearts from special angel babies that have never drawn a breath and were taken away too soon. Try to remember that the path for at least some of those families may have been painful, difficult, and long.

Hugs to all us survivors that have suffered miscarriages and stillbirths.

(My baby boy belly and I would gladly stay out of Target between 9-10 so that you wouldn't have to see us unless you were prepared to!)

Patty Bishop said...

Kristin; I just heard about your loss of your beautiful Stevie Joy. And I am sure she is beautiful. I also lost a baby in 1990; however I never had the pleasure of feeling that child move;kick or anything, I was only 12 weeks. However, that child is still in my heart and I remember and think of that baby every day. My due date would have been Aug 1st and on that day still I sit and think of what it would be like to be celebrating another childs birthday. I so remember the feelings you are having; the days after loosing my baby, having to go to the grocery store one day I remember just stopping in the middle of an isle and crying. I left my cart and ran out the door. Does it get better; NO. but it does get a little easier to have to go to the stores and deal with other people and kids.
My middle daughter Nicole was expecting a baby girl; at 31 weeks (Aug 4, 2009) after a month on bedrest our 3rd Granddaughter McKenna Louise was born; with her daddy and I also in the room; what a beautiful child of God she was; she was little but doing well until 8 days into her birth (that day was the 1st day I even got to touch her) she became ill and on Aug 12th she went to sleep, never to wake again. Even though I am the Grandmother we think of her daily; hourly. Nicole has so many of the same thoughts, feelings that you are going thru right now; it is very hard and many people that have never lost a child know what to say or how to act and just do not understand that you WANT to talk about your daughter. You are a Mom, maybe not a mom of a child here on earth but a Mom of a beautiful Angel Child. I sent an email to Barb with some words that I found and had given to my daughter. I am sure she will share them with you. Nicole and Doug have attended Faiths Lodge; it is a beautiful place and a wonderful place for families that have Angels.

My heart hurts for you and tears keep coming as I try to write this to you, please know that we are keeping you all in our thoughts and prayers.

Patty Bishop
Cousin by marriage to Barb

Kristi said...

I saw your story on WCCO and thought that what you are doing is a step towards healing for you and everyone that reads your blog. After 20 months of infertility my husband and I found out we were pregnant. We were so very excited and I ended up having a normal pregnancy until week 26 when I noticed that I had not felt the baby kick for a while. First, it was the fetal heart heart beat. Second, the in- room ultra heart beat. Finally, it was the ultra sound in the radiology department in which they confirmed that our baby no longer had a heart beat. Our beautiful baby girl,Ella, was still born on 09/09/09. We have since found out that she died from Trisomy 13. It has been a very hard 8.5 months. I know that everyone tells you that it will get easier and at some points you probably don't believe them...I know I didn't. However, you have to believe me when I say that it does. Don't get me wrong I still have my bad days and most of the time the sight of a little baby girl or baby girl clothes makes me want to run as far away as I can. I guess the best advice that I think I received a few months after our loss was that it is okay to have bad days and cry for your little girl whenever you want. Even if it is months or years after. It sounds like you have a lot of support and that is so important. THANK YOU so much for sharing your letters to your sweet little baby girl. It is so important for women like us to know that we are not alone in what we are going through.

After a few months of IUI and this past month of IVF we just found out that I am pregnant again. We feel very blessed, but of course at the same time we are so very worried and concerned. My husband told me the other day that he was so happy that Ella was going to be a big sister. I got a big smile on my face and then cried my eyes out. Thanks again for sharing your story. I think that you are helping more people than you know!

Elaine said...

omg, that's so true...what is with Target? I actually live in Canada but was down in the States a week after I lost my son and went to Target. This particular Target positioned their changing rooms right smack in the middle of the maternity section and the baby supply section.

Elise said...

I just wrote about this very subject on my blog not too long ago! I thought it was just in my town, but guess not =( I agree on the 'baby free zone' hours, it would make me so happy!

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