Monday, March 26, 2012

Finding my new normal

Dear Avery,

     You have been gone for 5(almost 6) weeks now.  I should be coming up on my 38th week of pregnancy and setting up the final details of your nursery.  Instead, I'm here missing you with a squishy belly and empty arms.  I hold my Molly Bear and shut my eyes almost everyday so that I can remember what it felt like to hold you.  I would give everything that I have to hold you for just a little bit longer.

     I am going back to work on Thursday.  People keep telling me that it will be good for me or that I need to be on a schedule--and it might be-- but they don't know what it feels like to be living without you.  I have really enjoyed having this time to focus on remembering you.  I have needed this time to sort through all that comes a long with losing a baby.  I have spent hours on hold to talk to insurance companies, doctors, and geneticists.  People don't realize that after your baby dies, Enfamil still sends you formula in the mail and the insurance company still tries to add your baby to your plan. It takes time to call each place and beg to get off of their list.You have to decide how you want to receive the death certificate, fill out tons of paperwork, and set up an organization system for the medical bills that arrive in the mail on a daily basis. It takes time to shop because you still  look pregnant and it is impossible to find clothes that fit. Picking out your headstone and creating your birth announcement are some of the hardest things that I have ever had to do.  Both of those things took a lot of time.  The finality of these things is numbing and people can not possibly understand if they themselves have not walked in my shoes. I'm so tired of people assuming that they know what is best for me.  If they have not lost a child or are not a doctor or therapist, their comments hold no traction.  This blog that I came across explains it much better than I can.

    Returning to work is going to be a very emotional thing for me.  I looked about 12 months pregnant at the time that I left and now I am deflated.  I have seen some of my kids since I left, but I am so nervous about how they will react when I return.  I don't know if I am more nervous about them asking questions or acting like it never happened.  I am going to see them at the end of the day tomorrow to relieve some of this anxiety before I actually go back.  I love and miss my students, but I am scared of balancing work and my new life without you.  I feel like I will have to act like I am over it in front of my class, and the truth is that I will never get over losing you.  I know that I will eventually find my new normal, but I am still searching for what that means.  I think that I am as ready as I will ever be--I hope that it is enough. 

     At your funeral, I promised you that great things would happen because of your short time on earth.  I want to do something in your name.  I want to set up a foundation or scholarship program or SOMETHING that will help others and shout to the world that my daughter, Avery Alis Ogburn, lived.  I have racked my brain trying to come up with ideas for what we can do.  I still haven't settled on anything but I will keep praying about it and I am sure that it will come to me.  Your Mimi and Yay-yay want for me to write a book.  I don't know how it will turn out or if it will ever be published, but writing your story will be my project this summer.  I thought of the title while I was laying in bed last night: What To Expect When You Are Expecting An Angel.  We will see how it goes, but I might need for you to send me a little inspiration.


PS: Thanks for all of the sunshine on my birthday and during our cookout this past week.  The weather men said that it was going to rain, but I knew you would come through.  I love you sweet girl :)


  1. The name of your book is perfect. You could always do a "Life after life lost" line or something. Just put yourself out there to talk to other women who know their child will only have a short amount of time on earth. Love you girl. Love you Avery

  2. Hi Carey,
    I followed your story on the April Board on the Bump. I wanted to pass along a website to you since you are thinking about what to do for Avery. A classmate of mine and his wife delivered conjoined twins who passed after birth and they have started a foundation to provide support for parents who receive poor prenatal prognosis or who have children with disabilities. I am not sure if it is something you will be interested in, but I felt compelled to pass it on. Luci Klare is my classmate's wife's name (I have never met her, but have been touched by her story). The other reason I thought to share this with you is that they are centered in northern Kentucky.

    I hope this isn't unwelcome. I apologize if it is. I still think about Avery and I pray that you are doing well.
    Stacie (stacieann15)