Baby On Your Six



Thursday, August 31, 2006

A wonderful date night and thanks!

I got the mail yesterday and there was an envelope in it that was printed with no return address. When I opened it - inside there was a note inside that said, "Thinking of you guys! Have dinner out on me! Your secret admirer" and some cash inside. Since I honestly have no clue where it came from I am thanking said secret admirer here. We made the most of the cash and were able to do dinner and go see a movie! It was perfect. Drummerhusband and I had an excellent time together. We had Mexican and then saw "Invincible" (a great movie about our beloved EAGLES!) We haven't had a nice night like that in a while. Whoever you are thanks!

Also, an quick update. I don't have the exact figure in front of me now, but those memorial donations continue to come in. I am just amazed by that! We now have about $1,450.71 Every time I see the total with the 71 cents I get tears in my eyes. I can only imagine the change was something a kid gave. It makes me laugh that it's not a nice round number.

The support, love, prayers, hugs and cards we continue to get even today is humbling. So once again we thank each and every one of you. I continue to be one proud mommy that our son, small as he was, in his short time here made such an amazing impact on this world and your lives. Every time I hear a story about how Aaron impacted you or changed your life I am just so proud of my baby boy! We love you all!

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

13 Weeks

Dear Aaron,

Hi baby boy, Happy 13 week Heaven Day! I have two things that still have your scent on them and one whiff takes me right back to the weeks between April 28 and May 31 no matter how long its been. I love to smell them (while they still smell like you). I know that it will fade, but at least it will be a gradual thing. I wish I could bottle up the smell of you and have it forever. We were talking last night about things that we don't want to let go or do because doing so would feel like that's just one more thing of you that we have to let go (and we don't have a lot to begin with).

Lately I have been having longer stretches of "good" days. By that I mean maybe 2 days at a time that are better than they have been. Every time I have a "good" stretch then I feel bad, because for me, part of you is the sad/worried/upset/scared emotions. So I get scared thinking I am moving on. The thing is I know not a day will go by in my life where I don't think of you, no matter how "good" things get, really I think it's just the next grief step.

Apparently I thought about this a lot yesterday, because once again I had a dream about you last night. I dreamed that you and daddy and I were at the beach. You were playing at the edge of the ocean and we were watching you and laughing. You came running over to me, jumped up on my lap and said, "Mommy, I love to see you laugh and smile. I know you are sad sometimes and that's okay, you just miss me." I just nodded and gave you a hug and kiss. You jumped down and started to walk away and turned and said, "Mommy I'll always love you and Daddy and I know you'll both always love me forever."

Those dreams always come at the perfect time Aaron...Right when I need them. Even though we don't have a lot of memories we keep making them - like with our balloon launch and next weekend (Sept. 9) we're doing a "walk to remember" for you at the Pottstown Mall. We'll keep doing whatever we can to make sure not only YOU know how much we love you, but everyone else does as well!

I love you Aaron!

Hugs and Kisses,
Mommy

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Monday, August 28, 2006

About two weeks ago...

...I posted a comment on the blog of my favorite author, Robert Jordan. He's been recently diagnosed with amyloidosis, and is undergoing recurring treatments at the Mayo Clinic. I've been keeping track of his progress on his blog, and made a comment there about how I've recently begun re-informing myself on his progress after dealing (and continuing to deal) with the loss of my son.

Mr. Jordan routinely makes specific comments in his blog relating to those made by his fans. Well, I know it's nothing special, but he took the time to say this in his last post:

"For Joshua Young, man, with what you have in your own life, I can’t imagine that you would waste two seconds on this bog. God be with you, Josh. You have my prayers."

I'd be lying if I said I didn't get a little bit excited to read that. I actually kind of inaudibly gasped. It's kind of a "I didn't actually expect to even get noticed among the 60+ other comments made on the day of the post I responded to" moment. I didn't post a comment at his blog to fish for a reply, or to fish for any kind of notice. Believe me, I'd rather that no one had any reason to notice us, or read this blog because Aaron was born on time, and came home with us like everything was normal.

Mr. Jordan, thank you for taking the time, with all that you are struggling with, to notice me, my wife, and my son. I'll continue to keep you in my prayers as you heal.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

12 Weeks

My dear sweet Aaron,

Happy 12 week Heaven Day baby boy! I hope that you are doing well. Today was a bit of a rough day for me. I didn't sleep well and it led to a very bad morning. I ended up staying home and was able to just spend some time with you. Thinking of you, looking at your pictures and looking at some of your stuff. It was nice to be able to do that. I thought an awful lot about you today and miss you so terribly much right now.

There is one thing since you have left us that I hear over and over again. Everyone says that daddy and I will never be the same again and that we need to find what our "new normal" is. That worried me for a long time. We are still just new at the whole grief thing, so I am not quite sure where I will land, but it doesn't scare me so much anymore. At first I didn't know was I a mom still or wasn't I? Do I have a child or don't I? I now know that I am always a mommy and you are always my baby. There is a poem that gave me a lot of comfort and it's called "What Makes a Mother". The end of it is my favorite part. It says:

"So now you see what makes a Mother,
It's the feeling in your heart
it's the love you had so much of
Right from the very start

Though some on earth may not realize,
you are a Mother.
Until their time is done.
They'll be up here with Me one day
and know that you are the best one!"

Daddy and I were at a wedding last week and I had a really hard time watching the groom dance with his mom. It got to me on two levels. First, the song was called "You Raise Me Up", by Josh Groban. The Chorus goes like this:

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.


The thing that got to me the most, is that I will never be able to "raise you up" or dance with you. I wish that I could. Maybe we can dance sometime in my dreams :) That being said, while I might not be able to physically "raise you up", I promise you that in my heart I am always your mommy and I will raise you up every single day. Until then buddy, you watch over me and let me get through these stormy seas. When we meet again we'll dance!

I love you Aaron Keith!

Hugs and Kisses,
Mommy

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Monday, August 21, 2006

Whew...

Wow. That was a long, crazy, busy weekend.

Friday night, DrummerWife and I had the pleasure of attending the wedding of a long-time DrummerFamily-friend. My God-parent's daughter got married to an old friend of mine from high school, and it proved to be an exhausting night for both of us - both physically and emotionally.

First off, before anyone gets the wrong idea, it is 100% A-OK for you to approach us and talk about Aaron, the blog, or anything relating to either. We do enjoy talking about it - honestly. But I guess that neither DrummerWife or myself realized how much of an impact everything really made on many of you. It was surprising to hear from so many people about how they read the blog every day, or how often they pray for DrummerWife or myself. It really is great to hear. But by the end of the night (after a few beers/wines/etc.) it really started to *impact* us.

It's also strange to see what effects us and what doesn't. We were at a wedding - a happy occasion - and we really do like both the bride and groom - they're great people, we get along well with both of them, and we were both so happy to see them "tie the knot." But watching the groom dance with his mother...well...it kinda did a number on DrummerWife. Kind of a "this is one more thing that Aaron will never do, and I'll never get to do with him" moment for DrummerWife. It was the kind of thing you wouldn't have even though about until the moment you saw it occurring to someone else and went - "Oh crap..."

It didn't take long for her to recover though, and we really did have a great time Friday night. It was nice catching up with a bunch of my old high school friends and acquaintances.

Saturday night, we went up to the Reading Phillies for a double-header as part of the birthday celebration for a friend of ours from our Nerd Night group. Our friend got to throw out the first pitch as part of the whole deal, and despite that fact that his throw managed to traverse approximately 1/10th of the 60 feet, 6 inches from the pitchers mound to home plate, it was a good time, too. (We were just a little bushed from the night before: free beer and wine sticks with you for a little while after the fact.)

Sunday was church, and lunch afterwards with my parents, brother (and his girlfriend), grandparents, and cousins (and my cousin Dan's son). We went out to celebrate DrummerWife and my 2nd anniversary which is today.

We're keeping it low-key tonight. We're finally going to get around to drinking the champagne we got as a wedding gift from my friend 2 years ago (we were going to save it for our 1st anniversary...but we were kind of alcohol-ed out last year as the result of a little over-drinking of wine at an outdoor concert at a winery the night before.) But we're going to pop the cork tonight and pour the champagne out into the champagne flutes my friend gave us with the bubbly, cook a nice meal, exchange cards, and watch our wedding video. We wanted to do more, but the last few months have made that kinda impractical. We'll have a good time, I'm sure. It's been 2 great years, despite the trials of the past few months.

I love you, DrummerWife. :)

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

11 Weeks

Dear Aaron,

Hi peanut! Happy 11 week heaven day! I can't believe that it has been 11 weeks. As always, I miss you a ton! I was just looking at your picture and every time I do it brings a smile to my face (and sometimes a tear to my eye)...I just think you are so beautiful. Your blonde hair and your little nose were my favorite. I was showing your pictures to someone earlier this week and she was saying how beautiful you were and when she saw you hands and feet she said she thinks you would have been tall like daddy. I thought that was a neat observation. Every time someone new sees your pictures they make different observations. I just love showing you off :)

This past weekend one of your little cousins was asking about you. She asked daddy what happened to you and daddy told her, "Aaron got very sick and the doctors and nurses tried everything they could, but they couldn't make him better." Later I was helping her get her pj's on and it was just her and I and she said to me, "Couldn't you make Aaron any better, mommy's can always make everything better?", I told her we tried everything we could, but no I couldn't do anything. Every time I think of that I still get tears in my eyes. It was such an innocent question and for her, and I know her mommy always makes everything better for her. But, this morning I was thinking of all daddy and I did to make you better. We loved you, we prayed for you, we comforted you in any way we could, we massaged you when you were swollen, we changed your diapers and took you temperature any chance we got, we loved you even more, we sang, we talked, we laughed, we stayed positive, we loved you to the point of bursting and then ultimately we let you go. The more I think about it that was the biggest thing we could do to "make you better" - it was to let you go. Most mommy's (and daddy's) get to give kisses, wipe away tears, or put a bandaid on the boo-boo, but for daddy and I to make you better we had to let you go.

Now that you're all better we continually try to make ourselves "all better" to. We'll never be "all better" until we see you again in heaven, but for now we'll kiss each other's tears away, give each other hugs and keep loving you forever. At least that makes us better, until we can see you again.

I love you Aaron, I am proud to be your mommy and I am glad that even though it wasn't exactly how I wanted to do it, I could make you all better. I'll see you "soon and very soon"!

Hugs and Kisses,
Mommy

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Monday, August 14, 2006

As of 7:17am...

Baby On Your Six is 9 visits away from 15,000 total visits. When I started doing this, it was just supposed to be some little corner of the web where I could record the follies and foibles of DrummerWife's sure-to-be hilarious pregnancy.

Some family found out about it, and started reading along. And that's basically how it stayed for months. And then April 28th, everything changed, and the traffic to the blog literally ramped up by leaps and bounds. Now, this is by no means Google or Yahoo-level traffic, but it's significantly more than I ever expected to receive here.

Sadly, the cause for all that traffic will never get the chance to read to about his mom's pregnancy like I originally intended. Aaron will never get to grow up, and read back about all of the hoopla leading up to his delivery, and laugh about how strange his mother and father really are.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Also:

In reference to yesterday's post about the comment spam and the potential for turning on comment moderation...

At the suggestion of a visitor to the blog, I've turned on comment validation instead. This requires you to enter a random string of characters that are generated and presented to you in an image before you submit your post. This is less annoying than comment moderation, and prevents automated systems from submitting spam comments. I think it's a win/win situation.

Thank you anonymous visitor. You = awesome.

And for desert, we'll have some cookies, I'll take a cup of coffee, and my wife will have a moth, please.

After a horrible day yesterday, DrummerWife and I decided to get out of the house, go out to dinner, and hit up a movie. DrummerWife fielded a fantastic phone call yesterday from some jackass at a financial company who asked if we were interested in setting up a TAP account for Aaron. DrummerWife calmly informed the turd that our son had died and that she wanted to be removed from whatever list his company got our number from.

According to DrummerWife, he paused, as if pondering what to say, and replied with "Well...think of all the money you'll save."

DrummerWife then incredulously replied with "What?"

"Yeah, I mean, think of all the money you'll save not having a kid."

"Didn't you hear me? He DIED."

"Yeah, you'll probably save a ton of money now."

"But we WANTED a kid."

"Well, at least you'll be able to save some money."

I think from here, the conversation degraded into DrummerWife berating the turd, and hanging up on him before remembering what company he worked for. Or, we would have called back, gotten a supervisor, and reported the turd. Yargh.

Then, a letter arrived from our health insurance company reminding DrummerWife that just because she's a mom now, that doesn't mean that she can stop taking care of herself, so she should see a doctor.

I have a general question, because this has happened to us a few times now with different companies - if one "department" of a company knows our son is dead, WHY CAN'T THEY SHARE THAT INFORMATION WITH THE OTHER DEPARTMENTS? How do these mailings get out to people?

Anyway, back to the point of this post - DrummerWife swallowed a moth as we left the movie theatre. Opened her mouth to yawn, in flew the moth, and that quick, it was lodged in her throat. She eventually swallowed the thing, which had me in hysterics as we walked back to the car. Then, last night as we were laying in bed, DrummerWife asked just about the Best Question Ever: "Do you think that the moth is still flying around in my stomach?"

No, dear. No, I don't. I think it's long-since dead. :P

Thursday, August 10, 2006

A Formal, and Perhaps Pre-emptive, Apology

It's come to my attention that spam has been cropping up in some of the comments in the blog. I don't want to have to do this, but I may just be forced to turn on comment moderation - meaning that I (or DrummerWife) would have to approve all comments before they show up on the blog. I don't want to have to do this for a number of reasons:
  1. It's a hassle. You post your comment, and then you get told a "moderator will approve it" before it's actually displayed. We have to go in, read all the comments (which we do anyway) and sort out which ones are crap from the (vast) majority that aren't.
  2. It kind of ridiculous that I have to consider this in the first place - some jackass out there sees that this blog gets a noticeable amount of traffic, and posts some spam comments hoping to drive up traffic to his own site. You'd hope that people would have the decency to see what this blog is, and what it represents, and not decide to attempt to use it as some tool for profit. My son died. Have a little respect.
  3. I don't want to feel like I'm censoring anyone. If you have something to say, I want you to be able to say it, without me or DrummerWife lording over your words and parceling out what can be posted and what can't be.

Unfortunately, if these spam comments keep cropping up, I might just turn on the moderation to keep them out. It's just so ugly to me that I even need to consider doing this.

So, in the event that in the near future you see that comment moderation has been enabled, I'm sorry.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

10 Weeks

Hi my sweet baby boy!

Today is your 10 week Heaven Day. Last night we were with the grief counselor and she told us about another lady who said "Heaven Day" rather than anniversary (the standard) or "Angel Day" and I decided that I like Heaven Day best. I miss you so very much today. Wednesdays get tough for me, especially after lunch time. I guess because you went to heaven around 1:00 - just after lunch time. I was looking at the picture I have on my desk at work. I love that picture and every time I see the frame (it says "Smiles for Mommy") I just picture your dear sweet face smiling down on me.

I hope that you got a good laugh out of our balloon launch and watching us at Dorney on Friday. I told Daddy that I bet you were having a good time watching us have fun on Friday. Every day we get further from the due date I know that you are definitely not coming home - not that I didn't know that before but it's just more...final.

Last night I had a dream about you. I was watching you play. I'm not even sure what you were playing. You were running around with a bunch of other little kids. You looked up and saw me, came running over to me and leapt into my arms. You gave me a big hug and a big kiss and said, "I love you Mommy! I miss you, but I am having a lot of fun! You don't need to worry about me." I gave you a kiss and told you I loved you and sent you back to play.

I once talked to someone about some of the dreams I have had and he told me that God knows what your every need and every time I have a dream with you in it - it's when I need it the most. I love meeting you in my dreams!

I love you Aaron and as always I am sending you a million hugs and kisses.

See you in my dreams, peanut. Now go play!

XOXO,
Mommy

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Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Well, Dorney Was Nice...

And the little ceremony-thingy we did pre-Dorney on Friday was wonderful. But Saturday, the day after, was tough. I made the terrible, terrible mistake of picking up and reading through We Were Gonna Have a Baby, But We Had an Angel Instead on Saturday morning. I was fine with it, right up until the end of the book, where there's a picture of the little boy from the book and his dog, and he says something to the effect of "I'm sorry if the same thing happened to you." I just lost it, and spent a solid 20-30 minutes just crying.

From there, it took me another hour or so to really get myself together again. DrummerWife and I had to cancel on spending the day camping with my parents - and we just spent the day together at home. We really needed it. Sometimes the best thing you can do is just spend a day where you're on your own. It can do wonders to recuperate yourself.

Friday, August 04, 2006

The Due Date


We really had a nice day today actually. We started out at our church and had some time in the sanctuary for some time of reflection, prayers and sharing. It got pretty emotional during that. After that, we went out front to do a balloon launch. We all wrote notes and attached them to the balloons. The balloon launch...well it didn't quite go as planned we learned a couple things...

1. A full sheet of paper is a little to heavy - it is doable but one must tie the note up close to the balloon and fold up the sheet. Punch the hole closer to the middle of the paper.
2. Do try to steer clear of trees if at all possible.

Daddy's balloon got caught it two different trees - eventually it did work itself free - thank goodness it was a breezy day. Mommy's note fell of somewhere near the beginning and then went into the woods - it too eventually worked itself free. Grandma W's - went low - first into the trash cans and then into the woods - it either worked free or became food for some animal - hopefully it worked free. Grandpop Y's almost hit power lines - then hit a tree working free. Grammy Y's was the most successful one after she learned from our mistakes. We'll plan to do another one for his birthday and we'll make it much more successful. We laughed so hard and knew Aaron was probably laughing right at us!

After that we spent the day and Dorney and we had a wonderful fun day. I bet Aaron had fun watching us have fun there to.

Thank you all for you thoughts. We love you. Oh and Aaron, we miss you and hope you had a lot of fun watching us today - we probably gave you a couple good laughs! Love you sweetheart!

(The pic is Mommy and Daddy before the balloon debacle).

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

9 Weeks

Dear Aaron,

Hi peanut! Another Wednesday...another week. This week might have been your birthday. Mommy's due date was August 4th - this Friday. This week is a little tougher on me. I should be anxiously awaiting your arrival, but you've been here, made an impact on people's lives and have been gone for 9 weeks. I can hardly believe it.

Tonight, daddy and I were talking about expectations we had for you. It was an assignment that our grief counselor gave us. Daddy talked a lot about when you were older and how the two of you could play catch, you could teach your younger brother or sister things, etc. I couldn't quit thinking about right now I would be getting ready to hold you for the first time, kiss you for the first time, and see you for the first time. Don't get me wrong, I couldn't be happier that I already held you, kissed you, snuggled with you, sang to you and told you all of our stories, it's just I wish you were still here and we'd be getting ready to bring you home from the NICU for the first time.

On Friday, we are going to have a little celebration for your due date. We're going to go to the church and spend some quiet time, time talking about you, and just remembering you. Once we are done we're going to go outside an let go of some balloons with notes attached to them. I know you'll be there with us and keep your eyes open for those balloons :-)

I love you buddy - I'm sending you a million hugs and kisses! See you in my dreams!

XOXO,
Mommy

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