My Story.   Part 1. Story of an Angel.

One of a Kind. You.What do I say when people ask me  about Alexi: “Is he your first?”. I usually say “Yes”. How else would I explain  to them  that this answer is a lie, especially since the tone  of their question does not imply a long talk about  overcoming a loss of a child.

Alexi is not my first. My first was and always will be my son Angel. His story is more than a story of death before even starting a life. His story is about hopes and dreams that went crashing down when he died. It is a story of a terrible guilt for not being able to fully appreciate the miracle of life in full its perfection. It is a story about superficiality of everyday concerns that surround us on a regular basis.  It’s a message of awakening  our true potential and starting serving a meaningful life’s purpose that feeds our soul and creates positive value to others.
Picture 445I found out I was pregnant in January 2012. My life has been boring and had no meaning. I was wasting my time working at the office 9-5 Monday through Friday and had a second job at another office on Saturdays. I have lost any motivation to do anything else as I was putting all my energy into work. I was not even trying to do anything for myself  because it seemed like there was no point in doing that. I remember myself  as a teenager. I had these  global dreams to change the world. I was looking at my life several years later and I was going nowhere. My global dreams were buried under a thick layer of dust, and it seemed like
an endless circle of going to work, getting hourly wage and paying bills. There was nothing else I could afford. So I even forgot how to have fun and entertain. My husband and I learned to be thrifty with our purchases. Otherwise,  how else we would have been able to buy a house. We were so proud to own. Gone our renting days and we finally were able to have the entire house to ourselves. However with that came the burden of getting paid to be able to afford the mortgage.   And since I  had no real hobby and had tried myself in many things I never was able to find my true passion and stick with it for a long period of time. I was never able to figure out how to make a living off of interests that I have had.  There were days I wanted to be an artist, a painter, but I was not really happy about my painting skills. There was a time  I have spent over $1,000 on an interior design class through an online program, however had not have enough motivation or desire to finish it up. I always knew my true passion was  teaching people how to be happy. I have read a lot of books and was very inspired back in the days that I even started a blog called Purple Crescent, but again, never fully followed through with it for one reason or another.  So there it was my life, full of constant self searching and fails. I think at some point I just gave up even trying and was floating with the current of  life that lacked meaning. I was empty inside and deeply  unhappy, because it seemed to me that I was not able to break free from that circle of work, home, paying bills, sleeping  and going to work again. I was suffering both consciously and unconsciously because I saw no exit out. I was trapped. At least that is what I thought back then. I was unhappy because my husband was not  making any effort to change the situation or really fully understand what I was going through. So we started moving apart from each other on many levels due to the reasons I described above. That is when I found out I was pregnant.

Steve and I were both hit hard by the news of pregnancy. How was this even possible? I was very careful. I  was taking  birth control pills on a regular basis. I guess we were the case of  0.03%.  They say the pills are effective 99.7% with perfect use. This pregnancy was unplanned and unexpected. At that time I knew nothing about pregnancy and birth. I only knew that I dreamed of having a homebirth and wanted to avoid any intervention whatsoever whether with prenatal care or birth itself.  Both my husband and I were scared how would we ever be able to afford to pay for this and had no clue  what exactly comes with having kids. I was shocked after finding out the news for about 3 days and then I started feeling blessed after the thought of having our first child settled in. With it came hope for new life and a way out of my circle of meaningless life. The more my child was growing inside me the happier I was becoming.

IMG_8232Steve and I attended classes together and pregnancy seemed like opened doors back to closeness.   I am not going to go into describing  my rough path of  finding a homebirth midwife and then at around 32 weeks finding out that she lost the privilege to practice midwifery because the overseeing physician dropped  their license.  I was eating healthy and did everything by the book. Biggest and happiest moment of my life happened when I started feeling little kicks for the first time. What a true miracle of life! I have had a new life inside me! I was amazed by my new experience. I somehow knew it was a boy from the beginning. Sometimes I sang to him. However, most of my days I spent going to work 6 days and most of my thoughts were about work. Oh how I wish I have spent more time with my little baby! Oh how I wish I would have given him more of my attention and love!

I could not wait for the 40 week mark. Childbirth  meant to me a transition to a  new happier life. Life that would have been so much better than what I have had before.  I was craving purpose. I was craving new meaning. I was ready to dive in with no fear, without looking back. I was ready. We had baby clothes ready. Bedding was setup in the  brand new crib. We turned a room that used to be my office into a sweet baby nursery. Steve and I put a big mural up thinking how our little man would enjoy the jungle theme on the walls. My sister in law organized us a baby shower and we opened all those baby presents.  I have sent out thank you cards.  I taped all cheerful and happy congratulation cards  to our fridge. I was counting days.

 

Until one day at 36 weeks I went to work at the office on Saturday and had unusually week hiccups in my belly and since then I felt no movement. I did not know much back then, and just thought that was normal.  I felt sick in the second part of the day and went home. I had terrible cramps and could not lay in any position for more than 5 minutes. I had no idea what I was thinking back then, but I thought that was normal too.  I could not sleep at night, I had a fever and was incredibly cold under 2 blankets.  In the morning I was still hesitating  whether I should have been seen by a doctor. I decided to go.

Facbook post from June 30, 2012

Today Steve and I buried our first son Angel Stephen Melvin. Earlier in a week I did not feel well and was worried about why my baby boy does not move much. Last time I felt movements on Sunday, and he had weak hiccups. On Monday I went to the  hospital and nurses could not find his heart beat. They called a doctor who confirmed that my baby boy does not have a heart beat. It was hard to comprehend and I really did not believe what might have happened… After another ultrasound at the OBGYN, it was clear the baby is not alive. They said that it is hard to name reason on why this happened. They said that my labor would need to be induced the same evening. It was on Tuesday morning, Steve and I went home and gathered our things…Our son was born on 6/26/2012 at 6:48 pm. He was 20″ and 5.5 lb. He was our precious little baby and we could not just let him go off of our hands. During the delivery it was discovered that the cord was wrapped tight around baby’s neck 3 times, which is a very rare case and we happened to be in that category. I squeezed his tiny little hands thinking that he might come back to life and open his little eyes. Our baby boy was so beautiful and was sleeping so peacefully in our arms, we named him Angel. Angels are pure and free and they fly to heaven. Today we said our last good buys to a tiny white casket. Seven white balloons went up in the sky symbolizing the freedom of his soul. Our son Angel Stephen Melvin was buried in the Laurel Memorial Gardens in Poplar Branch, NC. We love you our baby Angel and will carry you in our hearts forever.

angel steve I sepia

What happened after was deep pain. Oh how hard it was for me to write this post for Facebook. However, our  friends deserved to know. It would have also  prevented  us from uncomfortable questions and awkward conversations.   I just wanted to disappear, dissolve, hide, run away. I felt betrayed of my happiness.  Someone just took away our entire future. I  could not understand why. I spent 8 months waiting for my new life and it never happened. My hopes and dreams shattered. I was exactly where I was before, but now even worse – I had pain of loss and terrible guilt. Guilt that I should have spent more time with Angel. I felt I failed hopes of others: my parents, Steve’s parents, our friends who gave us shower presents and sent us cards. I  felt humiliated because I failed. I was incredibly jealous of my friends who were pregnant with me. They gave birth to healthy babies while I failed. My biggest dream was to be pregnant again. And how was it that  my body did not realize that there was no more baby and it kept producing milk? What a slap in a face. Who was it trying to take care of? It was like someone’s bad joke.  And maybe then,  I felt I deserved a baby more than some others who may not have been as caring of  parents  as I would have been. And I don’t refer to  anyone I know in person, but I watch news and observe how some other parents treat children in public. Why was I being punished and for what?  I was hopeless again.

Angel cepiaThe worst part was going through the pregnancy for 8 months  thinking  how you would bring your baby home. Instead we were leaving hospital empty handed. It was so painful to be starting up a car and moving away from the hospital, leaving our baby in that hospital, driving away from someone so precious forever. It’s a slow motion movie, in which each second felt like eternity filled with pain. Oh how hard it was to be coming home, walking over a doorway to where we were supposed to have had happy life and instead it’s this cold angry, dark place and a feeling of hopelessness over and over again… and  congratulations with baby cards up on the fridge, bedroom with brand new crib and toys and  tiny clothes.

boxNobody could truly understand what we were going through. Everyone said  “I am sorry”, but it felt so meaningless, so superficial. People always say I am sorry for no reason. In our case “I am sorry” felt like another slap in the face.  I don’t  know or remember what I would rather wanted for people to say , but “I am sorry” was not enough, and  it was truly making me mad. People had no idea.  I read  articles on what not to say when a loss of a child happens, and one of the points in those articles was never say “you are young, you will still have other babies”. And it is true to an extent. Yes, other babies will be other babies, and I will never be able to return the one I have lost. But all I wanted was to be pregnant again. I wanted to have  many babies, as many as I could. I had unfulfilled motherly instinct.  I needed to be pregnant again like yesterday. And maybe it was true, that it was easier on us that the baby died before we got truly attached to each other. It may have helped us with our healing. I needed to be pregnant again to be fully healed.  People kept telling me to go to support groups and speak to other mothers. But that was the last thing I wanted to do. I had enough pain on my own to be listening to someone else’s stories of loss. I just wanted to be surrounded with  healthy babies. Yes I had a feeling of jealousy, but I also had a feeling of happiness for those babies and their mothers and hopes that this would happen for me sooner than later and I would become pregnant again.  May be I felt  that hanging out with pregnant women  and  healthy babies would  bring it to life for me quicker. So I  continued to attend  Birth Network meetings as I was doing when I was pregnant with Angel. And despite such a terrible  happening, I managed to see positive changes in my life. My life finally had a purpose. And the purpose was to be pregnant again and  I wanted to do it consciously this time around.

One of a Kind. You. One of a Kind. You.I went to work soon after returning from the hospital. I knew Steve would be going back and an idea of staying  home by myself was killing me. I though even though I hated the idea of doing something so meaningless in times of such a turmoil, I figured it would be good for me to distract myself from my own life.

What fascinated me the most was the fact that when your life basically goes crashing down, everyone else’s life stays the same. It felt so unfair and rude for the life to be continuing around me, when  my life was shattered to many-many little pieces. It  was making no sense to me. Everyone else cared about their daily superficial problems. I have been overcoming something so drastically and overwhelmingly big and painful, and it felt like everyone else’s life should have given me some respect for it and stop. And while  that is what I felt, the life was still continuing  with me or without me. And if  I have died then, life would have moved on, without even  noticing.

And since life was moving on and people who were not aware of my personal circumstances never cared, I still needed to buy groceries and  I still needed to pay bills, and I still needed to go to work and perform the same daily tasks I have been doing for years to be able to  earn  my  hourly wage so we could pay  those bills that needed to be paid. I felt like I wanted to wake up the world with my important messages, while someone else cared whether I clocked out for a break.

I am sharing my story with you today in hopes that it will help someone  else  to overcome a huge pain that may happen to any of us in the future.  The pain needs to be shared with others. It is Ok to be weak and it is Ok to ask others for help. People are compassionate . If you share a piece of your pain with them they will share  a piece of their love. You cannot stay silent because the pain will burn you out from the inside. Share your pain, give it away piece by piece and accept a piece of love and compassion back  from  those who loves you. That is how we got through. I had love and support of my family and friends.  After what happened, I have become even more inspired to share my messages with others.

Sometimes people need something  really terrible  happen to them in order to shake  their world up and realize true value of life. The entire world collapses in front of us, but form the ground up we will build something so much better, we will build our happiness. There is no vacuum in the universe. You are in control to fill your vacuum with happiness.

 

Read My story. Part 2. Miracle from Heaven.

Read Why I am a Dreamer?

One of a Kind. You.