A grave marker for little bean.


This weekend was full of so many emotions! Friday morning, I got a call from my mom saying that my brother and his wife were on the way to the hospital to deliver their baby. I waited for updates all day, but it was a slow process, so I tried to be patient! Our power went out at work that morning, so I spent the bulk of the day writing thank you's for people that have donated and/or purchased a necklace. I was running on adrenaline all day, trying to get all my things done before leaving work. That night, I worked on more thank you's, and Brandon edited a vlog. We had a nice night, just hanging out, still waiting for updates on our little nephew. Finally, at 10:43, he was born, and I officially became an aunt! And guys, he is the cutest!

Saturday morning, we woke up early to drive to Logan. We hadn't been to visit the babies in a month, so it was really nice to get up there and do some maintenance. We cleaned off the headstone, trimmed the grass around it, reorganized the toys, and made a makeshift lanyard to put the babies' pins on. The weather was perfect, and we were able to spend a lot of time with them without freezing or being too hot. It will be winter in Logan before we know it haha. Then we went to go have lunch with Brandon's parents and brother to celebrate his mom and brother's birthdays. After lunch, we ran to Hobby Lobby real quick. We had bought some football stakes to leave at the cemetery, and accidentally forgot them at home, so we just decided to buy some more and leave them that day. When we went back to leave the stakes, we decided that the lights needed to be cleaned, so we took them to Brandon's parent's house and got them looking new(ish) again! We had the birthday people open their presents, and chatted for a while, then left to go back to the cemetery one last time.

About six weeks ago, we finally ordered a grave marker for Little Bean. We spread her ashes at Carter's grave, and we wanted to get something to let people know that she is there too. The marker came just after our last visit to Logan, so for the last three weeks it has just been sitting on our counter. It was nice to finally leave it, but it also made my heart so heavy. Some things just really solidify the idea of everything we've gone through, and this was one of them. It breaks my heart to see not one, but two of our children's names in a cemetery.

Needless to say, we stopped for Aggie ice cream before driving out of town.

That night we borrowed the neighbor's dog and went for a nice, long walk. It was a little cooler than we had anticipated, but it still felt good to get out after sitting in the car all day! Brandon was up late that night editing a vlog, so we slept in Sunday morning, did laundry, got some groceries, and capped off the weekend with Costa Vida. Yesterday afternoon, before we left the house, we were able to video chat with my brother, his wife, and their new baby! We chatted for about an hour, and talked about how their last few days had been. We are so excited to go see them and meet our cute little nephew! He is the second grandbaby on my side of the family, and I know that he is going to be so spoiled. There are a few similarities between him and Carter (namely their big feet and head of hair) that pull on my heart strings and make me the happiest mama/aunt at the same time. 

All in all, it was a good weekend. Our visits to the cemetery are always tinged with sadness, but we also appreciate being able to be with our babies in whatever capacity we can.

ALSO. You guys are crushing it with Flying for Time!! We are so close to meeting our goal, so let's keep it going! Thank you so much for everything!!!



I promise to get some new content out soon (in all honesty, it will probably be a Disney post), but I just wanted say a quick thank you for all the support we've received since launching Flying for Time yesterday! We've already sold out of ALL necklaces!!! For those of you that are on backorder, I promise we'll get them out as soon as possible!  But we have more coming of every variety, and we just placed another order for another option that I'm really excited about. 

Not only does this project give us a place to direct our energy, but it also gives us a chance to send a little piece of our boy to people across the world. I have no doubt that, every time they look at their necklace, they will think of Carter, little bean, and all the other babies that were taken too soon. But most importantly, we are helping other families that will be handed this difficult time, and we're doing that with your help.

Thank you so much for your continued support! A friend of ours said "I'm so happy to see your project 'taking off (airplane pun).'" It was hilarious, but so true! We are so excited to see how quickly we can donate one CuddleCot. We hope we are making our boy proud as we share his story and our love for him. You guys are the best! Thank you!!

PS: There's a special little thank you video on the vlog today. Check it out our channel here.

Flying for Time

We are SO excited to share our secret project with all of you!! We've only been working on it for a few weeks now, but I feel like I've been keeping it a secret forever. That changes now!

After a baby is born still, their skin can start to quickly deteriorate. The cooler the temperature around them, the longer their body is preserved for. When we lost Carter, exactly 46 weeks ago today, our nurse kindly offered to take him back and forth between our room and a chilled room where his body could be kept for short periods of time, to allow us more time with him. Neither Brandon nor I wanted to let him go, and we agreed that saying goodbye once would be hard enough, so we kept him in the room with us for a few hours until we decided it was time to say goodbye. 

Weeks later, as we immersed ourselves more in the loss community, we learned about the CuddleCot, a cooling pad that can be placed in a bassinet or cradle at the hospital in the same room as the parents. The CuddleCot keeps a baby's body cool, and therefore preserved longer, so that the parents can have more time without letting them out of their sight. I don't know if the hospital we were at even had a CuddleCot on hand, but it would have been nice to have, so we could have had even just a few more minutes with our boy.

We'd like to give the gift of time to other parents whose babies are gone too soon.

Flying for Time, the name of our project, has the sole purpose of providing more time to parents who already do not have enough. We will be selling airplane necklaces in remembrance of Carter, and putting the proceeds toward the purchase of a CuddleCot, which will be donated to a hospital of our choice. If necklaces aren't your thing, we will happily accept simple donations.

The cost of a CuddleCot is roughly $3,000, but you can't put a price on spending more time with your child before saying goodbye. Thank you in advance for your generosity. We, and so many parents like us, are eternally grateful.


Missing the babies.

If I had a dollar for every time I've said that losing a baby is confusing, I would probably have enough money to adopt every child in the world. Confusing isn't the only word I would use to describe it (though it's one of the more appropriate ones), but besides being sad and angry, confusion is what I feel the most.

I started thinking about this on Monday. It was 11:04, and I got up to go to the bathroom at work. As soon as I walked in the door, I thought, seven days and ten minutes ago, I walked into the exact same stall and found that I was bleeding. Seven days and ten minutes ago, I was pregnant, and now I'm not. In my last letter to little bean, I wrote about how it was weird to not have any active participation in her delivery. With this miscarriage, I just stayed home. I was kind of an active participant, kind of not. Either way, one day the baby had a heartbeat, the next, it didn't. One day there was a baby in me, a few days later there wasn't. One week I got to stay home and mourn our loss and deal with the physical pain, the next I had to come back to work and pretend like everything was back to normal. Whatever that means anymore.

It has been nine and a half months since we lost Carter, and with each subsequent loss I find it harder and harder to understand our new normal. In the span of forty weeks, one normal woman's pregnancy, we have lost three babies. Three little angels that have somehow broken and completed us all at the same time.

There are so many things I've written separate posts about that I could continue to write about for years and years: sadness, anger, confusion, emptiness, fulfillment, joy, grief, fear, dread. The fact that our house is so empty. The idea that when I go out in public, no one would ever guess that I am a mother. How unfair it is that we are unable to bring a child home when there are parents locking their kids in cellars or the trunks of their cars. That I'm terrified people will forget Carter and little bean when there are so many other babies in the world. How crazy it is that time still passes, and that it seems to go so slowly, yet so fast. I think a lot about the day my counselor had me choose emotion cards out of a deck. I think I chose like fifteen different emotions. Maybe even twenty. That's a lot of emotions for someone to feel. And it would be one thing to feel each of them on different days, but I feel all of them simultaneously every single day.

How is it possible to feel so empty and full at the same time, all the time? To be so thankful for what I have, but so angry at what I don't?

When you lose someone you love, it's kind of like a giant boulder getting dropped into the middle of a small puddle. It crushes a lot of who you are, and the ripples aren't so much ripples as they are just chaos. Water spills outside the puddle, breaking the serenity and the wholeness of it all. The boulder is too heavy to lift all at once, so to get it out of the puddle, you have to slowly chip away at it, piece by piece, and it takes a long time. But even once every chunk of the boulder is removed from the puddle, there's still a dent where it fell, and that dent will never go away. There will always be tiny pieces of the boulder that are left behind.

Every single day I'm reminded of the chaos this boulder of child loss has caused in my life. Depression, anxiety, fear, guilt, loneliness, social anxiety...the list could go on and on. Losing Carter and little bean have hindered my ability to function like a normal human (or at least as normal as I was before, anyway). Brandon's work provided tickets to a baseball game last night, and I wanted to go, but we got about ten minutes away from home and I just couldn't do it. I couldn't handle people asking how I was doing, or giving me hugs, or telling me how tough I am. And on the flip side, I couldn't have handled everyone avoiding me or avoiding the subject of our losses. So instead we just went home and I was sad all night. It's not fair that we're changed in this way. Of course, I would rather be this person without my kids than never had them at all, but ideally, I'd like to still be normal and have them here with me.

It has been a pretty crappy week, in all honesty. I hate going to work not knowing when I'll get to be a stay-at-home mom. I hate staying home because it's too quiet. But I hate going out in public because, you know, people. Thank you to everyone who sends me notes and special things and remind me that our children are remembered. They always seem to come at the right time, and this week has been no different. And to all you loss parents, or anyone that is going through a hard time. just hold on. The ripples get smaller, and each day you wake up is another chip off the boulder. We can do this.

"You're so strong."

I read an article a while ago that sparked this post. I shared the article on Facebook, so some of you may have read it. In it, the mother writes "People comment on how “strong” my husband and I are. I don’t want to be strong, I want to be normal. There is nothing strong about living without your child. We don’t have any other choice but to go on without her; to go on living some semblance of a life while constantly missing her. There is no other option."

I've thought about this a lot since we lost Carter, and even more so since we lost our little girl, and now, after our miscarriage. People are always telling us how strong we are. We, like the mom that wrote the article, don't want to be strong. Trust me, I would love to have both my babies here and have people tell me I'm weak all day long. I would far take that over losing our babies and having to be strong. It takes so much work to be "strong." It is so hard to wake up every single day, get out of bed, eat, go to work, put a smile on my face, and help people with things when all I really want to do is scream and go home to sit in the empty nursery. At the end of the day, I barely have energy to sit on the couch with my eyes open. Some days I just want to drag myself outside, crawl into the backseat of my car and stay in the parking lot at work, because going home means I have to get up and do it all again the next day.

I don't want to be strong because I feel like the more I put on a show, the less people will remember our children and what we are going through. I don't want to be strong because I feel like the harder I try to be okay, the less I remember my own grief, and in turn, the less I remember our kids.

You think I'm strong because you don't see what happens when you aren't around. I put on a face for you because I don't want you to cry for me. I don't want to ruin your day the way all my days are ruined. I don't want you to feel even an ounce of the hurt I'm feeling, because no one deserves that. So you think I'm strong, because I'm spending my energy being strong for you.

But you don't see what happens when I'm by myself. When a song comes on the radio that reminds of Carter dancing in my belly. When I get home and can't make it up the steps because I'm physically tired from all the emotional pain. When I'm crying so hard that I can't breathe. When the skin around my mouth dries out because I drool a little when I cry. When anxiety sets in and I'm hovered over the toilet trying to simultaneously quell my crying and not throw up. When I get so angry that I throw the nearest non-breakable items until my arms are tired. When Brandon's shirt is soaked through with my tears. When we sit on the floor holding each other until the pain lessens. When every sentence about our children is a little stilted because we can't help but get choked up every time we talk about them. When we sit at the cemetery wondering how this is our life.

It's nice that people think we're doing well, and that we are being tough and putting on our game faces, but it's a lot of work. It's hard to not just call in to work every day. It's hard to not just lay my head down on my desk and will away the world. It's hard to come home to an empty house, or leave with an empty backseat. It's hard to live with an empty heart.

You can tell me I'm strong, but just know that you're lying. Maybe lying isn't the best word. Just know that you're wrong. I do things the way I do because I don't have a choice. Falling apart is not a choice because we have to keep going. Putting our lives on hold for grief is not a choice because time moves on and we have to learn to incorporate grief into our everyday routine. Giving up on myself is not a choice because at the very end of the day, I am all I have; I am the only one that controls my thoughts and emotions. Forgetting to live is not a choice, because my heart still beats for myself and our children, and there is so much potential for our little family. We have to live for that potential.

So you may think we're strong, but to us, breathing and living without our children is just a hard thing we have to do every day. It's routine but not, all at the same time. We're not just strong, we're loss parents, and this is our life.