We’re back from our escape from reality. The trip was lovely, from beginning to end. Shannon and I spent equal amounts of time just sitting, being lazy and talking over lots of things. There were lots of tears, but we managed some laughter too. Being the only people bowling in a 12 lane alley at 3pm on a Friday afternoon in a North Carolina town where the social hot spot is the Hardee’s is a lot of fun*. I’m just sorry that Shannon’s hair is no longer blue. We even wrapped the whole trip up by upgrading our return flight to first class…a new experience for both of us. Sometimes I manage to forget why we were on the trip and catch myself thinking of it as just a vacation.
I’m still way deep in those dark woods. I’m dealing with huge feelings of guilt. It’s all well and good to tell yourself that you did nothing that would have caused any of this or that there was nothing you could have done to prevent it, but hearts apparently don’t listen very well. It doesn’t help that it may be a few more weeks before we have the results of the autopsy. Hopefully that can give us the answers we’re lacking. I don’t know that either of us can stand to hear that, after all that, they still don’t know what happened.
Shannon went back to work today. This is the first time I’ve been really and truly alone since the week before Christmas. There’s no nurse call-button. No husband in the next room. No Mom or Dad walking in the door. Just me and my memories and little reminders around the house of what should have been. I’m more than a little afraid of being alone with them without the buffer of someone else. I know I need to deal with these things. The memories are always going to be with me and I need to learn how to block out the awful ones.
There’s another trip to the funeral home coming up. Another drive home that is nothing like what I’d planned. This one will be harder. We knew how sick Lennox was and how slim his chances were. We were as prepared for that as we could be in such a short time. With Zoë, we’d started to hope, to believe that she was going to beat the odds and, in time, we would bring her home. Instead of her carseat strapped safely in the new car we picked especially for her and her brother, she comes home in a tiny white box, tucked inside my jacket. Just the thought of it is breaking my heart all over again. I so don’t want to see that second white box with label with her name typed on it. Her name will be spelled wrong…none of her official paperwork has the umlaut over the “e.” When we had to sign all of the forms at the funeral home, I made Shannon go through them all and put it in. I miss her so much. I’ve caught myself thinking, “Today is 28 weeks” or “This Thursday, she’ll be five weeks old.” Then I remember it doesn’t matter anymore. I’m not still pregnant, there are no gestational weeks to count and she won’t ever be more than three weeks old and Lennox won’t ever be more than two days old.
And now, I have to dry my face again and blow my nose. There are day to day things I have to tackle…groceries to buy, cats to clean up after. Somehow I have to find my way back to normal. I wish there were a road map because I have no idea where I’m going.