Friday, August 23, 2013

Dreams

I dreamed of him last night, the same way I dreamed of my first, T, and him being a boy.

It came from a bear. <3

It makes me smile. I love bears but in the dream Bram was a bear, a huge black bear, with a gentle spirit full of love. Of course he'd be full of love it's Bram.

In the dream I raised this cub, from infancy, he was able to speak to me, I don't know if I was a bear too, or if he spoke telepathically, or whatever, but all I remember is the overwhelming sense of peace and love in our parting. It was time for him to be a bear on his own, it was time for him to go into the woods and be. And as I said goodbye he held me, and said what I've ached to hear since he left this earthly place "I la you mommy, I'm with you, I'm going to be ok" and even though I cried, I cried with joy instead of sadness, and instead of the void I will filled and complete.

Thank you Bram. My perfect boy. I la you too. We all do!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Parking lot safety for drivers

Part 2

The distraction of a person behind the wheel of a 2-3 ton machine lead to Bram's death. It was violent, it was bloody, and my family watched someone so beyond special to us die long before his time. Choosing to be fully present when driving, not treating your car like a living room where you get to relax, remaining vigilant, that would have prevented his death. So please, take these things seriously, it would be terrible to be in the shoes of a person who took a life, or a family forever in mourning.


  • Put your phone away, seriously. My mom now puts her phone out of her reach. Put your purse in the trunk. There is absolutely no reason to touch your phone, answer your phone, read text messages, while you are moving a giant machine. Even if you live an on call life style that call can wait long enough for you to stop moving the car.
  • Turn off the radio, you need to be able to hear what is going on outside of your car.
  • Roll down your windows. In combination with turning off the radio, it was shared with me after Bram died that they now do these to things so they can listen to who is around them, so if a parent screams for their child they stop moving the car
  • Stop talking to anyone in the car the conversation you're having can be finished when you stop moving the car
  • Grooming can wait, don't mess with your hair, don't apply make up, don't check yourself out. Just wait until you stop moving the car.
  • Remember pedestrians have the right of way, your car weighs 10-15 times or MORE than an adult, they are not in your way...
  • Stop looking for a better place. Take what is available. More than likely (handicapped friends excluded) your body is capable of making it from 20 parking spots away from the door. I myself have walked that or farther, even with a newborn, in the cold, and in extreme heat.
  • Look for small people around your car . Before you ever drive (or purchase) your car figure out your blind spots, apply mirrors where necessary, get a back up camera, make sure that short people will be safe from you. 
My friend said it beautifully "Multitasking is a terrible myth that not only keeps us from enjoying the moment - it has us preforming multiple tasks *part of the way* at one time.   Kinda driving,  kinda listening to the kids, kinda listening or talking on the phone.  When we stop "multitasking" each task becomes better, richer, more vibrant!  When I drive I'm fully driving. When I talk you have all of me. When I'm with my kids I am fully with my kids.   It takes practice, but if people try, within a week you feel your stress drop and your quality of life shoot through the roof." -G

So protect pedestrians, protect yourself from taking a life, and PAY ATTENTION. When driving there is nothing that needs as much attention, nothing that needs to split your focus from the task at hand. If something comes up that does need you, stop moving the car. 

Be safe for Bram.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Parking lot safety for the parent and child

I hate writing this. It's dumb, but thank you friends for being a sounding board without even knowing it! You've encouraged me and I appreciate that so much so this one's for you ladies <3

It's ridiculous to put the responsibility of preventing auto/pedestrian accidents in the hands of pedestrians. The human body is no match for the the human body inside of a 2-3 ton machines. We would never tell the victim of a violent crime that they should have prevented the crime, because it's not the a victim's job to not provoke violence. You can do everything right and still have it go horribly wrong.

So suggestions:

  • Children should be the first things to go into the car, and the last things to come out of the car 
  • Do not park near open spaces, you cannot assume these spaces will stay open, or that a distracted driver will go ahead and pull in without seeing you or your child in that space
  • When parking, pull nose in around other cars
  • Make sure none of the cars around you are moving or will be moving
  • DO NOT let your kids walk toward the back of the car
  • DO have them walk to the front of your car where it sits infront of another non-moving car, have your head light be a safety zone, where the can put their hand while you close the door
  • Have your children all come out of the same door, you'll get feet prints on your seats but eh there are worse things, obviously
  • If possible park next to a cart corral, have children stand between your door and the cart corral.
  • Do talk to your children quickly before exiting the car on how to stay safe in the parking lot
  • Be vigilant, you can't trust the drivers in parking lots to pay attention, 
None of this can ensure 100% safety, but why not be safer if you can?

Edit*
If your child is a runner wear them, put them in a stroller, or use a child safety harness. It's inconvenient but nothing in comparison to a life interrupted by child loss.

Next post: how to drive SAFELY in a parking lot.

Love you Bram, it's been 9 months and it hurts just as much, just as big, and I ache so physically to hold you again. Once day my perfect boy. One day! 

Sunday, August 11, 2013

*trigger warning* Pics from the funeral home

Before


After


And then I wailed. I screamed that's not my baby that doesn't look like him!! Where's my baby? He's still alive! GIVE HIM BACK!!!!

But it was him.... That's how death will change your baby... This is how death changed my baby. His body was stiff and cold yet felt still like him. 




Friday, August 9, 2013

The images invade every thought, not just the waking ones

This morning I woke long enough to roll over, as people naturally do. Unfortunately in that brief moment I was flooded with flashbacks. So much so I couldn't breathe. Instantly a migraine induced by anxiety drilled itself through my head. Like the tires that crushed his skull. I shouldn't have to see my baby that way. No one should. Yet these images seem to have etched themselves into my grey matter. So I was up... for a few hours...

Eventually I was able to lay back down because A needed to nurse and we did. I got sleepy and started to drift off. I was seeing Bram. My beautiful boy. I thought I finally had him back, I felt like I could touch him but the more I tried to focus on him, the more fuzzy he got. But I kept trying, and in doing so fell asleep. Nightmares of zombies, and murders, and pleading for life, and children being killed infront of me. So tired. So tired of anxiety and trauma consuming every second, waking and sleeping, of my day.

His killer stole so much from us. Killer took our baby, our family's wholeness, our children's innocence, our collective mental health, and for some our physical health. The ripples from Bram being killed weren't tiny. They are tsunami sized, and there is no obvious end in sight.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Breastfeeding Bram

It's world breastfeeding week. I love this poem, and I love my breastfeeding experiences. I'll share a bit of Bram's with you




I loved nursing Bram. When Bram was born we were so in awe of the quickness and ease of him being born that he really didn't care until everyone settled down. He just hung out and checked out his new world. Once we were all ready to finally go to bed he latched on and we all went to sleep, somewhere between 2-3 in the morning. He never had an issue, tandem nursed with his older brother K for a few short months, nursed through jaundice that first week, and got milk on cue without ever having to cry or get mad. It was such a beautiful, blissful, normal breastfeeding experience.

He called his milk "boueys" so that's what we continue to call breasts for A.

In labor with baby A, Bram nursing every chance he got <3

Nursing as a big brother while insisting he hold HIS baby.
We elected to donate Bram's organs and tissues. It wasn't even a question, we knew it was the right thing to do. When your loved one dies you have to answer a questionnaire to determine if the donation is a healthy one. Because Bram had my milk 5 months before he died I had to answer the questions for him and for myself. It was heart wrenching, but he was worth it. I still remember the conversation, sitting in my bathroom (the only quite room in the house) holding back the tears to answer the very kind gentle man from donor alliance.

Every drop of milk my body gave to him was worth it.

Normalize breastfeeding, support breastfeeding mothers, support all mothers, and support each other.

And if you want to you should also read this beautiful blog of adoptive breastfeeding!

I love you Bram! I miss you! And I can't wait to hold you again <3