Person in the Mirror

Reflections on the life of Weejars


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PLEASE NOTE: Retirement of ‘Person in the Mirror’ Blog

My journey with blogging started over 5 years ago with this precious WordPress site called Person in the Mirror. Although it has been quite a dark blog at times, it has served a healing and cathartic purpose for me, after a series of miscarriages and my ongoing struggles with depression and anxiety. Thankfully, I am in now in a much better place and have decided to retire this blog. Starting afresh if you will!
If you have enjoyed my writing (which I sincerely hope you have!), never fear!  I have started a new blog called ‘By Sarah‘ and I hope you will come over, check it out and even follow me if you like what you read.
Thanks to all my readers and followers over the years (all 58 of you!)

You have supported me in ways you will never know.

Love and blessings,

Sarah (aka WEEJARS)


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12 months

Tomorrow marks 12 months to the day, since my second loss.

No matter how much time passes, miscarriage doesn’t get any easier.
The pain may not be as raw, and your life goes on, but the sadness, sorrow and knowledge of all that will never be, all that was taken from you, leaves a bitterness and anger that is always simmering.

I ask anyone who reads this, to remember my baby with me on May 10th. Light a candle for her precious little soul…

http://baby-w-no.-2.gonetoosoon.org/

I will be repeating this ritual for my first loss, in another 9 day’s time.


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Left behind

Why is it everyone I know is suddenly pregnant?
Ok, so in reality I know it is not strictly everyone, but seriously, it’s beginning to feel like it!
It seems I cannot open Facebook these days without being confronted by yet another “friend” announcing they are expecting. And every time I see one of those sonograms/ultrasounds/so-happy-to-be-part-of-the-parent-crowd announcements, it is like a punch to the gut for me. And yes, I feel completely, utterly, entirely left behind, like the failure that I am.

Don’t get me wrong here. I’m not begrudging others’ this special and amazing experience. I AM happy for them. But there is a part of me, I am ashamed to say, that just cannot bring myself to congratulate or be a part of their ‘good news’ because it just hurts me so god damned much! To the very core of my being.

I cannot stop a-thinking about why it hasn’t yet been me. I should be a mum twice over by now, but I am not. Why is it so easy I for ‘everyone’ else?!

Will I ever be a mother?
I’m beginning to think not.
And I am becoming evermore bitter about that…


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Saying goodbye to grief

Well 2013 is here. Two days in and all is well. This is the year to say goodbye to grief and embrace happiness (far easier said than done but I’m going to give it a red hot crack!)

Step 1 is to quit the grief and loss forum that got me through my miscarriage and the bulk of my depression last year (feels good to say that – the 2012 chapter of unhappiness is officially closed). As cathartic and helpful as it was to speak with others who understood what I was going through, continually sneaking back and peeking at the board just reopens all the wounds. Like picking at a scab that’s almost healed. It will take a lot of discipline as the temptation to see ‘what’s happening’ is often driven by boredom and a lack of connection in my ‘real’ life in this small country town. Sometimes seeking sadness is the easier option than being proactive in cultivating much needed change.

Step 2 is to be the master of my own life. Instead of being a passive spectator allowing life’s ups and downs to bounce me around like a cork on the ocean, I am taking charge. And not feeling guilty about it. Priority one is a change in my job situation. Priority two is getting ‘baby ready’ – physically, mentally and emotionally. I will continue to eat well, exercise, lose a bit more weight and take every vitamin and tonic possible to help me successfully carry a pregnancy. I am sh*t scared of miscarrying again but I can’t let the fear stop me from trying.

Step 3 is to be kinder to myself. I spend so much time ruminating on events of the past and beating myself up, striving for impossible perfection – these things only perpetuate my anxiety and depression. I had lunch with three of my oldest and dearest girlfriends today (aka ‘Sex and the City’ style – we really are an Aussie version of this quartet! lol). It was the first time I have really opened up about how rough 2012 was for me. I candidly spoke about my anixety, grief, depression and fear and was stunned to discover that they had ALL undergone similar emotions and traumatic events recently. Knowing that I am not alone and that life beats us all up from time to time, reassures me that my feelings are not shameful or ‘bad’ – in fact, my reactions to adversity are quite normal. My unrelenting standards need a serious overhaul.

Finally, I’m not pretending my grief will just disappear. It will always be with me, but I will no longer allow it to dictate. Instead I will focus on loving and cherishing all that is good right now.

I must remember that there is always sunshine after the heaviest rain…
Sunshine-After-Rain


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Monkey update #1

Two weeks on and operation kicking my monkey to the curb is on the whole, going pretty well.

I appear to have lost weight. Not being a big fan of scales, I have drawn this conclusion from my now baggy bra (not a good look for a D cup woman! Bras need to fit! Dammit!) and the shape that has come back to my legs. I will be brave enough to jump on the scales in a couple of weeks to see what this is worth in kilos (and hopefully more will have been shed by then too).

I am staying away from carbs and focussing on eating lots of fruit and veggies – being summer here in Oz this is thankfully, easy to do, as we have lots of great salads and seasonal fruits available at the moment. I have been exercising pretty much daily (give or take the weekends) and am LOVING my cross trainer. I purchased this a few years ago but have only just started using it. Minimum 20mins per session combined with daily walks with my puppies is doing the job for this exercise-phobic person 🙂

It hasn’t all been smooth sailing though. Over the last two days, I have again fallen into the dreaded claws of my old companion, depression. Funnily enough, it started with an act of charity… I am a Rotarian and our club had offered to run a community BBQ for a childcare centre’s Christmas Party. So of course I put up my hand to help out. Big mistake.

I was totally unprepared to be confronted by hundreds of babies, toddlers, young children and their parents all smiles and sharing a great time with other families. While this is of course, lovely for them, witnessing all this elicited from me extreme feelings of failure, loss, jealousy, rage – the full gamut of emotions I am working so hard to overcome. Let’s call them my ‘monkey emotions’.

So here I was, handing out sausages in bread to one and all – all the while raging inside and fighting to hold back tears. A smile frozen to my face. I just couldn’t stop thinking, ‘This should have been me out there with my family enjoying Christmas festivities’. Instead, I am empty.

My monkey emotions have now taken hold and all last night and this morning, I am dwelling on the ‘what might have beens’.

I think that to a degree, this happens anyway as we approach the ‘festive’ season. For some reason Christmas and the advent of a new year gives us cause to reflect on all we have (and haven’t) achieved in the last twelve months. For me, instead of having cause to celebrate my first Christmas with my little one, I again have cause to remember now two babies that I have lost. Babies who will never get to experience any Christmases.

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As a child, I used to love Christmas and New Years – there was something magical about this time. Now, I just dread it. I have no family or friends to share it with – it simply isn’t special anymore and has lost its meaning for me. It just makes me sad and seems to exemplify all that is wrong in my life.

This last twelve months has been a complete write off for me. I am no better or worse off than I was last year – 2012 could have been 2011 (and 2011 sucked!). The fact that nothing has changed is what makes it so utterly depressing.

Each new year, I have hope that things can be better and different in my life, and I really do strive to make this so. I don’t know why it all went so wrong this year. Again.

to the tune of jingle bells…
Stuck in a hamster wheel
with a monkey on my back!
Oh what fun it is to ride in a Weejars sleigh tonight…hey!

Seriously though, I’m trying hard to work through this period of negativity. I’ve done so well the last few weeks – I just need to keep calm and carry on. The monkey is slowly but surely releasing his grip…

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Kicking my monkey to the curb

That’s it. Enough is enough. I am determined to rid myself of this monkey on my back. I have spent the better part of this year suffering from a deep depression as a result of my second miscarriage. Saturday 24 November would have been my due date and though it was a horrible day, it has offered me some closure and much needed motivation to get on with my life again.

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See ya later monkey. You’re done giving me hell

I realised that I owe it to my little one to do this. My cathartic poem ‘You Never‘ that I wrote on that day has somehow spurred me into action. It made me realise that, yes, I have lost my baby and that was terrible. But why am I still punishing myself for this six months on? It was not my fault – I know I did everything right and was the best mum I could be. Even if that was only for twelve weeks. I am not honouring my baby’s short life by wallowing and being miserable and bitter. I am robbing myself of any happiness to enjoy the time I did spend being pregnant. My baby may not have got to live and experience all the things life brings, so it is my duty to make sure I do.

I have vowed to honour the memory of my baby by preparing myself as best I can for the next one. I have gained a lot of weight from my comfort eating and lack of self-care so that is number one mission – Operation eat healthy and exercise. Three days in and I’m doing great.
Once I have lost at least fifteen kilos (ok, maybe ten is actually more achievable) I will then start taking my prenatal vitamins and undertake acupuncture before TTC to help me make the next one stick.

A psychic told me when I was pregnant in March that she didn’t think this little soul was ready to be with me yet, but that it would be eventually. Maybe that’s next time.
I hope and pray it is next time…

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You never

Today would have been my due date. This is one of the hardest days in this journey of miscarriage. It marks the end of nine months that have had a far different outcome to the one I had planned for, for the one I had dreamed of.

Instead of holding my precious little one in my arms today, they are empty. Instead of my heart being filled to bursting with love and happiness, there is a dull ache that will never go away. Instead of being able to celebrate with my family and friends, I have sought solitude to sit with my grief. The pain never fades, you just learn to live life with a cushion around it.
You may be gone, but you are never forgotten my precious little one.

You never got to fully develop your little body,
But I can picture every detail of your perfectly formed features
As clearly as if you were before me.

You never got to wriggle and squirm in my belly,
But I can still feel you.
A hollowness inside that cannot be filled.

You never got to know my touch or arms holding you tight,
But I caress the memory of you with love
Hugging my pillow at night, wishing it was you.

You never got to breathe and fill your tiny lungs.
But I take deep breaths to soothe the ache in my heart.
Sighing, for what should have been.

You never got to hear my voice or know me as your mother.
But I speak to you often and the person in the mirror
Wears traces of you, etched in the lines of her face and on the curve of her lips.

You never got to experience happiness, joy or excitement.
But I lived these during the twelve weeks you were with me
A brief interlude that was over before it could truly begin.

You never got to experience sadness, loss or fear
But I know that if you had, I would have always
Picked you up, held you near and comforted you.

You never got to see your potential fulfilled,
But I dream of the ‘what ifs’ and alternate realities
All the endless possibilities, never realised.

You never got to cry out loud or shed any tears,
But I have shed enough for two lifetimes,
Maybe more.

The scar upon my soul
Is the only proof I have
That you ever even existed.

You will forever be my baby,
Never a toddler, child, teenager or adult.
The scales of injustice tip me over the edge sometimes.

But in the end, the balance is always maintained.
For everything you never did, I have done for you.
You are gone little one, but never, ever forgotten.

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An Angel in the book of life wrote down my baby’s birth. And whispered as she closed the book “too beautiful for earth.”