Thursday, March 29, 2012

Another Step Backwards...

I've ended up calling in all this week.  Every night I went to bed thinking I'll go in to work the next day, but the next day comes and I can't get myself to get out of bed.  I end up staying in bed till mid afternoon almost.  Just thinking about Cameron... getting myself lost in a book.... or jut going back to sleep.

I finally left my apartment yesterday, by myself.  And it was weird... I remembered the first time I left my apartment by myself after I lost Cameron.  I left to finish making Cameron's memorials and bookmarks.  I felt so odd... I remember I kept looking at my backseat where the car seat should have been.  I remember getting out of my car and feeling like I should have had to carry Cameron with me and his baby bag and whatever else I needed.  But instead, it was just me.  Alone.  Empty handed, except for papers for Cameron's memorial.

I felt a similarity yesterday.  I felt alone and almost scared going out by myself.  I feel bad for calling in.... although I am under FMLA now.  But still... I never ever thought that I'd be calling in for the grief of my son.  Never thought I'd be on FMLA for depression.  But here I am.

I sent Eric a text message this morning telling him I was feeling bad again and he suggested I take the rest of the week off... only two days, but still.  I wrote back to him telling him that I just wanted to feel like I used to, but I guess that's never going to happen.  Eric wrote me this back:  It may not babe, but at least you know you have many people who love and support you.

Our First Engagement Picture

I loved that he said that.  I know I do, but I also know that no one around me truly understands what I'm going through.  Nor do I want them to.  I don't want anyone to know what this feels like.  But I do end up wondering how I'm supposed to have a normal life from now on.  I don't know how I'm supposed to go to work everyday and go on like nothings happened.

I hate the question of how are you... hate it.  I wanna say that I'm never okay.  That I miss my baby.  That I hate having to live.  That my life will never be great.  But instead I just answer with okay.

So, I think I'll be back to work on Monday... I have to.  I feel guilt missing work and having the others have to cover for me.  But I know for the most part, they understand.  Maybe.  I think it's hard for people to understand how much this affects someone life.  I'm sure one or two people at my work think that it's already been seven months... that I should just move on, but if they think about if they lost their child too, they'd maybe understand.  And maybe they'd give me credit for even coming back to work, because that in itself is a feat.

Monday, March 26, 2012


It's confusing for me... It's been almost seven months.  It doesn't seem that long, but then again, it does.  By now, I'm normally feeling okay, but out of the blue, sudden sadness overwhelms me.  And even though I feel "okay" for the most part, I find that I'm way more sensitive to things now.  While before I didn't allow things to bother me at work, I now take offense to a lot of things and can't control my emotions anymore.  My counselor said it a really good way... that after I had Cameron, I wasn't able to live a normal life... I was just grieving and crying... I couldn't live outside and only smiled a few times... it's a parallel universe for me.  But now, it's the opposite.  My parallel has changed to where I am living now... I am living and going on with my life, but there's the other parallel of my grief.  Still there and still hurting and still unchanging.

I'm fragile.  When I have these breakdowns, it's a sudden reminder that I'm not myself anymore.  Or am, by myself is different.  I've changed.  I'm a different person now.  I'm fragile.

I don't want to be fragile... I'm not the fragile type.  And I'm not the argumentative type at work... I am at home!  lol, but not at work.  And I find myself fighting back at work a lot now.  I think it's just because things are aggravating me more and more... I'm just not the same.  And as I used to ignore things that aggravated me at work before, now I don't.

I started feeling depressed this weekend... and I woke up this morning holding my arms, as if I was cradling Cameron in my arms... like I was holding him in the hospital.  Hoping to relive that moment.  Hoping to remember his little face in arms.  But it doesn't work and it's just sad and frustrating.  It's not fair.  It's not fair that my baby died.  It's not fair that other women have pregnancies and have their crying baby at the end.  It's not fair that I have an urn in place of my baby.  It's not fair that I'm not waking up and holding him everyday... that I'm not kissing him and not dressing him and looking at him.  It's not fair that so many other women do that so easily and I can't.  And I wanted it so much.

Why???  I'll never get an answer.  There will never be a good enough answer.  I want to be with him so much.  I think how much longer I have... I'll probably live till 80 or something, and why?  Why do I have to wait another 50 years to see my baby?  IT's like very day is dragging on all the time... and it doesn't get easier.

This blog is to remember him... to honor him.  But I don't want to remember him!  I shouldn't have to remember my son!  He should be here alive... a baby shouldn't be a memory.  It's just not right.

I know it's not Eric's fault, but I find myself resenting that he already has two alive children... and the child he had with me is gone.  So, I know he only has to worry about them... there's no way Cameron can be on his mind that much because he's not here.  He has to worry about his two children on earth.  I resent it.  Even though Eric is here for me and is the closest person to me to understand what I'm feeling, he can't understand completely because he has his two kids here.  He gets to see them laugh and smile and cry and hug them.  And I don't even have that chance with mine.  I never got to hear how Cameron sounded when he cried... I never got to see him smile at me.  I don't know what that feels like to hear my child cry for the first time... or see him smile.

I was with my bridesmaid's this weekend and played this game called Loaded Questions.  One of them was asking who I would choose to have dinner with... I chose God.  I chose God because I need to know why he would choose to do this.  Why he would choose to allow someone to live and mourn so much over the loss of their child.  Why he would put anyone through this.  I need answers.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Why Blog?

Why?  Why did I start writing this?

I started writing this blog when I first found out I was pregnant.  I was so excited and never imagined I would even get pregnant.  So, I wanted to be sure I documented it.  But I slacked.  I didn’t update it much at all.

I didn’t update it much at all until I wasn’t pregnant anymore.  Being no longer pregnant, you’d think I have a baby in the end.  I don’t.  I don’t have a baby to hold or feed or cradle or stay up with all night.  I have emptiness and heartache instead.

So, this blog took a drastic turn than from what it was supposed to be.  I remember trying to come up with a name for it on my first entry.  I went through different one’s, but many people already had blogs about their pregnancy with those names.  Then I thought, well, hey, my tummy has a baby in it.  It’s full of baby!  And thought of Belly Full of Baby.  That was when I had a strong baby boy tossing and turning in there.

When I lost my baby boy, I turned to the internet for comfort.  I never expected to find comfort here.  I hadn’t actually visited message boards since I was in middle school!  Or blogs!  Blogs?  What was the point of them?  I didn’t know they still existed… I thought it was a thing of the past, in the realm of AOL.  But when I came home from the hospital and felt an emptiness I had never felt before… and felt so alone, I found different websites.  No one in my life understood how I felt.  People compared it to losing their parents or grandparents or people knew of someone it happened to, but this was not the same.  People aren’t supposed to lose babies.  Not their child.

While I was pregnant, I was always at the What to Expect board and I couldn’t bring myself to visit it anymore… I didn’t want to read about how ecstatic the mom that just found out she was pregnant was.  So, I googled… I googled What to Expect Grief.  And this led me directly to their grief board, so I didn’t have to navigate through their homepage of baby stuff.  This is the first time I realized that I wasn’t alone.  And that it happens to so many people.  How sad.

I ended up finding most of my comfort at a website called  What to Expect wasn’t updated as frequently as I needed… I suspect because mom’s didn’t want to go through the whole website to get to a grief board about losing their baby when everything around them on that website was congratulating them. had a huge, close-knit community.  And they responded quickly to posts.  They were critical in helping me cope and helping me arrange Cameron’s memorial.  Seeing the women’s posts on there spoke to me… they felt what I felt!  Things I couldn’t say, they said.  Things they felt, I felt.  It was sad to see new people on that board… even when I visit it now, I see someone new.   People welcome them, but what a group to be welcomed to?  It’s a group that wants no new members.

From my google searches, I found people’s blogs about the loss of their children.  I saw so many women doing things to remember their children.  Helping other mom’s out.  Keeping their child’s memory alive.  During this time, I was home from work and I was just there.  I didn’t feel like watching TV, I didn’t want to listen to music.  TV, I just had no interest in.  Music was different to me… I knew music would make me sing and it normally made me feel happy… I honestly felt guilty to listen to music.  So, I didn’t.  I didn’t want to sing.  And I wasn’t happy.  I don’t think I listened to music until several months later.  And when I did, I started listening to Christian music.  Christian music gave me more hope… I didn’t feel the complete guilt I felt listening to other music.  I felt like the music was speaking to me… trying to help me feel better.  I still have mostly only listened to Christian music now.

But while I was home, not doing anything, I spent all my time online.  I spent time googling and found women’s blogs about their children.  I read them and felt a connection to them.  I cried with them.  I was trying to figure out how to cope because I didn’t know how to.  The first several weeks I spent time making Cameron’s memorial and bookmarks.  This was super important to me because this was the only thing I got to really do for him… I felt like it was my gift to him.  This was my motherly duty.

During this dark time, I started writing in my blog.  I kept the name Belly Full of Baby because I do hope to have another child someday… never to replace Cameron because that’s impossible.  He was his own person and I will miss him always.  But another child for me to love and raise and care for on this earth.  And I know Cameron will be there with us and his brother or sister will know everything they can about Cameron.

I always think how Cameron will always be a baby.  He will never grow up, become a teenager or anything… he’s always going to be my baby.  Except he’s an extra special baby… he’s an angel.

So, why blog?  I started writing in here because I didn’t know what else to do… I didn’t know who else to talk to about it.  When I did start talking, I’d cry.  I felt better expressing myself through writing… and I cried while I typed, but it was easier for me to just type and not feel someone staring at me feeling sorry for me.  I was also thinking that maybe another mom that was going through this would read my blog and maybe know that they are not alone.  I wanted to provide the same support I got from other moms online.  And most important, I feel like this is my only way of being there for Cameron, almost.  I almost feel like I am being his mom by writing this blog and letting people know about him and keeping his name out there.  My baby Cameron Conrad.

It’s therapeutic.  And I get to keep Cameron through here… and people get to know him through me.  And Cameron knows that I am always thinking about him.  I hope other mom’s find comfort in knowing they aren’t alone when they read my words.  And I hope my friends and family always remember Cameron, my first born.

Some mom’s make things in memory of their child for other moms that have lost their babies, such as handkerchiefs, digital images, scrapbook tags, videos, etc… I want to do something like this, but have no idea what to do… so this is my next project.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


I was never a big picture taker.  I liked looking at them, but never really took them on my own and didn’t care to be in them (I still don’t!).  But after leaving the hospital and coming home and realizing I only had two pictures of my precious baby, I’ve become more adamant about taking pictures everywhere. 

The morning of August 31st, I went to the doctor hoping that Cameron was still alive, but knowing in my heart he wasn’t.  I had my clothes laid out on the bed, ready to pack them and take them with me to the doctor.  I knew there was a chance I would have to go to the hospital right away.  But I figured that even if the doctor wanted me to, I would tell him that I wanted to go home first to pack and then come back to check into the hospital.  So, Eric and I went to the doctor, the nurse led me the room for the ultrasound and asked me the typical questions of how I was feeling, did I feel sick, etc., etc.  I finally had to ask her, “Do you know what is going on?”  She didn’t seem to know since she was asking me the same questions she always did… the only difference was that she didn’t get a urine sample this time. 

She said she sort of was, but not really.  I think I nodded, I don’t remember.  But I sat on the table waiting for the doctor to come in.  He came and put the jelly on my tummy and I watched the screen waiting for Cameron to pop up… hoping to see a little tick coming through.  Hoping that they’d tell me it was all a mistake and the other doctor was wrong and he was completely fine.  Instead there was silence… silence while he moved the hard thing on my tummy looking at different angles.  I finally asked, “Is there a heartbeat?”  He simply said no, and shook his head.  I could see the hurt in my doctors eyes.  I could see that he was trying to find the heartbeat, but he couldn’t.  I cried outloud.  I was looking at him on the screen, but there was no heartbeat.  Eric touched my shoulder and put his head down.  He made a comment that the baby had turned around.  The day before Cameron was right-side up, but in that day, he moved himself upside down.  I kept looking at the screen, hoping this wasn’t happening.  Crying outloud for my baby.

The doctor told me to check in the hospital right away.  They would be inducing labor… I was already almost 22 weeks… I was not expecting to go into labor this soon.  I hadn’t prepped or anything.  I had read to see what labor was or what it felt like or what I was supposed to do.  I didn’t know anything.  I’m a huge prepper and researcher, so this was very unsettling to me.  Although I had planned to go back home and pack, I couldn’t bring myself to do that.  I wasn’t in the state of mind to go and pack… I felt like I was in a dream.  Like it wasn’t real.  It took an effort just to get out of the car in the hospital parking lot.  It took an effort to walk down the hallways of the hospital.  This wasn’t supposed to be happening now.  I still had another four months.

The nurses were incredibly understanding… for the most part.  But that’s a different story… I was supposed to be talking about pictures!  Well, I packed a camera with me… for some reason, I knew I needed to bring it just in case.  I don’t know why and I still don’t know why I even though of it then, but I am so thankful that I did.  I started having contractions (though I didn’t know I was!).  I was even googling on my phone what a contraction felt like because I had no idea!  Haha.  But all of a sudden, my water broke and I had Cameron.  He shot out like a cannon!  So tiny… one pound, one ounce, ten inches.  I remember the nurse put him on the scale and displayed proudly his weight to me with a huge smile… trying to give me some sense of normalcy.  I knew what she was doing because up until that moment, I kept wondering what it was like for other mom’s and family’s that just delivered their babies, but their babies were crying.  When that nurse did that, it showed me what would have been happening either way… it showed me what their routine was after a mom delivered her baby. 

The day before this, I was calling funeral homes and Eric and I were looking at pictures of urns to fit our baby… heart wrenching.  While we’re expecting to go into labor, we’re picking out an urn for our future angel.  I never expected this.  The nurses put a white rose on the outside of my door… I knew it symbolized to others down the hall that my room wasn’t a happy room… my room was full of sadness.  And I know I needed it there to shield me from others that may come in congratulating me.  But seeing that white rose was a constant reminder of what I was there for.  Though I didn’t need a reminder. 

Well, I delivered Cameron and held his tiny body.  He was beautiful.  I was in awe of him.  He had the most perfect hands and feet.  Little tiny nails.  And I was mesmerized by his mouth.  His mouth.  He had Eric’s mouth!  I would always joke with Eric that he had a ‘fish face.’  He would kinda frown with his lips together and it reminded me of a fish.  That’s how Cameron came out.  But he had big lips – my lips!  The following days, I kept trying to get Eric to recreate that face, but Eric didn’t know what I was talking about.  I know he would get frustrated and feel terrible that he couldn’t, but I wanted to see Cameron in his face so much again.

By the time I remembered about my camera, Cameron’s body was already letting go… his mouth no longer had Eric’s expression it… instead it was more like a scream.  Like a scream like he was in distress… his little precious mouth was now in the form of a scream.  So, my aunt took pictures then… I never got a picture of his precious face with his mouth in the frown… his own ‘fish face.’  I only got two pictures of him, but I wish I had more.  I wish I had tons of pictures of his feet and hands… I couldn’t imagine any more perfect feet or hands.  I wish I had pictures of me holding him or kissing him.  I know Eric felt uncomfortable taking pictures… but he did.  Hesitantly.  And I know he feels bad for not taking pictures earlier, but to be honest, I think he was handling it harder than I was at that time.  I felt more numb at that moment. 

I wish others in my family would have taken the initiative to take pictures on their own… but I can’t fault them for that since everyone was in distress at that time.  I just wish I could have been better prepared… but really?  How can you be prepared for something like this?  I wish I had enough sense to take pictures of the whole event… this was the only time I would see my son.  I won’t see him again until I meet him in heaven.  But I only have two pictures of him to last a lifetime… and my memories. 

I won’t post his pictures because they are just too precious to me.  And because of his deteriorating state… I’m afraid not everyone will see the beauty that I saw in him.  His pictures are sacred to me… I was under medication then... how I wish I wasn’t because then I would have a more clear memory of him.  But I was, and I can’t change that.  I just hope that all mom’s and dad’s that do have to go through this know to take pictures… take as many as you can!  Even if you don’t want to or think you will ever look at them, take them and put them away.  This will be the only time you see them and those pictures will mean everything.

So, because of this, I am now trying to take more pictures of everything around me… of family and friends… of Eric and I.  I don’t want to ever not have a picture of something I wish I did.  Like with Cameron.

Monday, March 5, 2012

The First Bloom

Out of the blue, Eric and I decided to take a weekend trip to Austin last weekend.  I felt that maybe we needed that... my parents have kept encouraging me to do something, but I hadn't felt like it.  I still felt uncomfortable going, but pushed myself and felt like I needed to get out of the house.  We didn't do anything crazy like my previous trips to Austin.  We drove up there Friday, got room service and just relaxed that night.  It was nice. 

The next day we went out early to Ikea and on the way there we saw a sign for the barbeque restaurant the Salt Lick that is always on TV.  Eric has been wanting to try that place for a long time so we took a detour and went there.  Although the food wasn't as good as we were expecting, I looked at Eric and felt an ease all of a sudden.  I told him that I felt that Cameron was glad we were doing this... that I'm glad that we were doing this and felt for the first time Cameron with us.  I had been waiting for feel his presence and hadn't until this moment.  I felt a sense of peace and really felt that Cameron wanted us to do something together like this.

Overall, it was a good trip.  I was set on seeing a comedy show that night because I felt I needed a laugh.  I don't feel I've laughed (like a real laugh) in so long.  And I feel so tense all the time... just like a weight on me all the time.  So, we went to Ester's Follies, a local comedy club in Austin, and then to another one right after that.  It was good to finally laugh and relax.  We then went back to the hotel and got a few drinks at the hotel bar and then fell straight to sleep!  A far cry from my old Austin days.

We headed back to San Antonio on Sunday.  On the way back, I got a text message from my mom of a picture of Cameron's tree.  And there was a flower on it!  It's first flower! 

I felt like this was a sign from Cameron.  A sign telling me that he was happy that I finally did something... finally felt happy... finally felt him with me.  THANK YOU, CAMERON!  I've been waiting for a sign from you and I probably wouldn't have thought much of the flower if I hadn't felt what I felt in Austin.  But because of that, I feel this was you telling me you were happy for us.  Oh, how I miss you, my baby.  I miss you so much.

I went to the tree yesterday, one week from the day I first saw the bloom... and there was a butterfly on one of the blooms (there's two now!).  I never liked butterfly's before.  It grossed me how that they are made from caterpillars.  But now they symbolize something else to me.  I see them and I think of Cameron.  I see how they are reborn and the caterpillars death turned them into something beautiful.  And that butterfly was on that bloom in the picture.  I tried to take a picture of it, but it flew away before I had a chance.  Like my precious baby... he flew away with his angel wings before he even had a chance...