How Do You Survive A Miscarriage?

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I was 12 weeks pregnant and at the photo center picking up our latest family pictures when I suddenly got that strange feeling that I had just started my period. Rushing to the bathroom with my two year old daughter in tow, I was greeted with exactly that. But wait, I thought – That couldn’t be. Entering my second trimester, I definitely wasn’t supposed to be having a menstrual cycle. The sight of blood is probably near the top of any pregnant woman’s worst fear and so, leaving my cart behind, I swiftly made my way out of the store dialing my OB’s numbers along the way.

Panicking in the car on the phone with my doctor’s office while they scrambled between all of their offices to find someone who could squeeze me into their packed schedule, I stopped at home and changed my pants, grabbed a pad and headed to their office for what seemed like incessant waiting. Waiting rooms are agony but they give you time to reflect. Motherhood is such an amazing thing…To have your heart walking around outside of your body in your children. Their smile. Their laughter. Living only for their joy. Words cannot express.

And there are just no words for that moment when the ultrasound screen lights up and that once fluttering little heart is undetectable. When there is no movement. You feel, but you don’t know what to feel. What I do know is that in that moment of seeing the flatline where there once was a beating melody, I think I flatlined too. You become uncomfortably numb. The only sign of life: the silent, steady stream of tears followed by low sobs.

It’s a special kind of torture to have a lifeless child within your own body. A child whose heart was beating steadily just weeks before. And the unknown of the days ahead. Waiting. Passing. Waiting. Wondering. WAITING. There are a million questions and no right answers. These things, they just happen. You can do everything right and they still just happen. They just happen and we somehow move forward from here. And here you are. Just here. Just waiting. And comfortably numb.

The afternoon I left the doctor, the sunshine was hidden by an overcast sky. It was comforting at least that God didn’t send a bright sunshiny day to greet me and the horrible news I’d just received. I find solace in the sky every day and I just don’t know if I could have beared to have it beaming and smiling down on me like a fake friend that day. I imagine it would have made the sting that much worse. I was greeted that night by not just a giant full moon but a red one at that. Watching as it rose between streaks of black clouds I thanked God again for at least giving me this time to bond with nature through my news and to have that moment. It’s like that “take a minute to fall apart and then clean yourself up” that your mother always told you. I didn’t sleep at all that night.

And the next day, the sun was back and my two year old was ready to enjoy it. It’s strange when you think about it. Standing there with the sprinkler on watching her play and smiling at her while you’re carrying this darkness inside of you. While you’re waiting for your body to expel what was yesterday supposed to be a beautiful new baby this fall. Thank God that two year olds are ruled by joy. Thank God that they make that joy so infectious. Thank God for this full-time/all-the-time job that keeps you busy so you can’t dwell on what is going on under your skin.

What’s tricky is trying to find a way to go back to acting normal without feeling guilty somehow. Is it okay to publicly “Like” that article you just read on Facebook that was read while you were passing time passing clots, even though it was light-hearted or borderline silly? Then you do anyway because in that darkest moment, you are so thankful to hear news or read an article that’s not laced with negativity or misery; For something positive and alive…the way you used to feel. Because it reminds you of that and throws you a rope so you can start to climb back to the light.

You ponder what’s wrong with you even though you know, as adamant as you are about personal health while pregnant, there was absolutely nothing you could have done differently. You remind yourself a million times a day of the doctor’s words. “These things just happen”. They just happen and there’s nothing you can do sometimes to prevent it.

You say a million wrong things trying to comfort your spouse and then give up and just spend plenty of time being silent, but somehow still being comforted just being together in your silence. Sometimes there are no words. Sometimes you just have to rely on the presence to pull you through; Finding appreciation in having someone else who is going through this with you so you are not alone.

You question God and then find a deeper faith in Him even though you have no idea what His reasons are sometimes. You marvel at the beauty of life around you and find a deeper appreciation (if that’s possible) for mother nature. Every tiny petal on the flowers in your garden – Life: So delicate; So beautiful. You listen to the tiny baby birds in their nests above your porch and find peace in their songs. You cry for your loss but keep faith that what is meant to be will be. Because it would be easy to focus on what has been taken away from you if it weren’t for all the blessings so abundantly present in your life.

You swallow back the lump that rises in your throat when seemingly everyone around you announces they’re expecting. You count your blessings and gather your composure and then wish them the deepest, most heartfelt congratulations…Because you now realize even more just how much of a miracle it is to actually have a baby – All of the many things that need to align perfectly to make it happen. And you know what a blessing they are about to receive and the joy it will bring to their lives and regardless of whether it will ever happen to you again, you want nothing but the greatest happiness and love for your friends. Truly.

You avoid social gatherings because you know you won’t be able to stomach small talk and yet, don’t want to be the sobbing mess you will become when it comes up. And when you do have to go out, you avoid eye contact knowing that at any given moment you may break down into tears; And are always just on the verge. You learn that you are not alone and you find a sort of secret sisterhood that you never knew existed before in friends and family who have gone through the same things – Some multiple times – and you find an even greater love and respect for them than you had before admiring how strong they are. And then remind yourself that you are too.

You watch your child(ren) and let their joy remind you that even though you don’t know why this is happening, you still have so much to be thankful for. You let their joy radiate to your soul and fill the dark crevices with sunshine once again. You stop caring what people may think of you and your toddler if she’s screaming Disney tunes in the grocery store and instead throw your social cautions to the side and join her because you finally realize: This is what life is – It’s finding the silver linings in the darkness. It’s seeking positivity in the worst of times. It’s keeping faith. It’s choosing happiness and not allowing the grief to win. It’s focusing on what you have and not what has been taken away.

You find a greater perspective in all things. A deeper knowledge and understanding. A vulnerability. A greater compassion for people… And life. A greater appreciation. An even deeper gratitude. And love…Love for life. Love for family. Love for friends. And love from the broken heart that still beats for the heart that beats no longer.

So how do you survive after having a miscarriage? The answer is: I don’t know. I don’t know but, somehow, you just do.

There is an ache in this hollowness that I'm scared won't go away...And yet also somewhat scared that it will. It's hard to make sense of some things. But I just keep reciting this to myself.

There is an ache in this hollowness that I’m scared won’t go away…And yet also somewhat scared that it will. It’s hard to make sense of some things. But I just keep reciting this to myself.

 

 

**I have found through this experience that we all can help to heal one another through sharing our journeys. If you or someone you love have experienced a loss or miscarriage, please feel free to share your story  in the comments below.  And please accept my deepest sympathy. Take comfort in knowing that you are not alone. If you have questions about what you are going through or need someone to talk to please feel free to email me at: thewritesideoflife@gmail.com 

Hang in there. <3

Hang in there. <3

 

Check out my pages on social media!  
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Pro Life, Pro Choice…Pro Patient 

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I respect everyone’s differences in opinion about abortions in general and I’m not going to use this situation as a platform to get into that or try to make either side right or wrong. But regardless of whether you’re pro life or pro choice, I think everyone can agree that this footage of Planned Parenthood’s Senior Director of Medical Services, Deborah Nucatola talking about selling body parts from abortions and subjecting women who are having these procedures to a more complicated breech position just to be able to harvest more organs and heads of babies/fetuses so they can sell them to God knows who for God knows what is just disgusting and abusive to the patient and their trust. Once again some corner of the medical industry proves that it could really care less about its patients and more about money. We’ve GOT to demand better than this!!!  Planned Parenthood has thrived on the basis that they are providing a safer solution to women who may otherwise resort to unsafe strategies. So to find out it’s not exactly the patients’ safety being kept in mind at all times but the ever-holy dollar is beyond disturbing. But I guess it shouldn’t come as such a surprise. I mean, why should they be any different when it’s the same situation everywhere we look? Our government is failing us. Our doctors are failing us. Who can we trust anymore?  It’s a scary world we live in.

Thought For The Day

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Listen, I don’t pretend to have all the answers but I like to think I have a pretty good idea. I know there were two significant things that happened today and both are linked to two of the major divides of this country – A big decision by the Supreme Court and a funeral procession of one of our local police officers.

Watching the funeral procession of Officer Sonny Kim, a jewel of his community and a wonderful person, I can’t help but cry. Seeing his karate students and their sign that they are his legacy made me both sentimental and so uncertain of just what legacy the rest of us are leaving behind. We live in a terribly difficult time where hatred runs rampant; Where so much misunderstanding abounds. And I still don’t have all the answers but for today I just want to, I just NEED to believe that whatever is done with love has to be something done for the good.

We need more love in this world. We need more knowledge. We need more understanding. We need more people like Kim. We need to find the true jewels of life and honor them NOW and not when it’s too late; Not when the good has all gone dry.

So live your life… To the fullest; Because nobody is guaranteed tomorrow and nobody gets out alive. Take care – with yourself and with this planet. Do everything you possibly can to leave this world better than it was when you entered it and to make your life the happiest it can possibly be while you’re on it. And while you’re at it, it wouldn’t hurt to try make other lives a little happier too. Spread the sunshine, folks.

And regardless of where your opinions lie with either of today’s events, #DoAllThingsWithLove

De-stressing & Distressing

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I’ve been busy lately…Well, busier than usual (with the usual being home renovations, new chickens, and a two year old).

But this week I’ve been working on these…

Reclaimed wood, turquoise, mason jars…they are everything I love

Reclaimed wood, turquoise, mason jars…they are everything I love

And this that complements it so perfectly that it must be love…

That wood finish is to die for

That wood finish is to die for

I made two sets – one solid and one two-toned and I can’t decide which I like best…

<3

<3

<3

<3

The hand distressing and staining process may take a little while to achieve that finish but man it’s worth it!

I’ve got some other projects coming up for the shop and house soon so stick around!

You can check out these items and others in my Tulip Garden Gifts Etsy Shop

And you can check out my shop’s Facebook page too!

PFW 

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It’s Paris Fashion Week – A time to not hold back on flashy fashion statements. And nothing says new, forward strides in fashion like summoning characters from 1980’s cult classics.

I’m considering going gelfling this spring too. 😉



I’m considering going gelfling this spring too, Kim ;)

Heist Ice Baby

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Because I could never pass up an opportunity to remix a rap song…

 

Alright stop, collaborate and listen:

Wait, Ice is a thief and headed to prison???

They say that the cops grabbed a hold of him tightly,

After breakin’ into houses daily and nightly.

Will he ever stop? Yo, I don’t know –

It’s boosting the ratings of his show.

To the extreme he renovates like a vandal,

Lootin’ neighbors houses it was a scandal.

Secondhand, the decor in his room,

Cuz he snatched it up, even took their broom!

In trouble, as I play this dope melody,

Cuz VanWinkle’s facing a felony.

Love it or leave it, Hey the shit was free!

At least so he thought when he stepped on the scene.

If there’s a problem, Rob will solve it

Checking with the network, can they dissolve it?

“Heist Ice” baby, he’s plottin’ heists, Ice Baby…

Now that the apprentice is “Trumping”

And he’s back to his daily humping.

He’s quick to the point, or to the joint, no faking,

Because of all the loot that he’s been taking.

Steadily, as he crept in windows

chandeliers, tv’s and stereos

I guess he’s a thief, and I’m just a poet,

Old Suge’s up in prison yellin’ “don’t I know it!”

“Heist Ice” baby, He’s plottin’ heists, Ice Baby.

“Heist Ice” baby, He’s plottin’ heists, Ice Baby. …

This is his story about the premises and he's sticking to it

This is his story about the premises and he’s sticking to it

 

Love you Rob!! xox

 

Hot Toddy

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Yeah I think most in the northeast could agree, Elsa.

Yeah, Elsa. I know many that would agree!

Yeah, Elsa. I know many that would agree!

Sore throat weather and this blustering cold means a hot toddy in the afternoon for mommy & daddy. Want a blend sure to beat the rest? I add a dash of ginger to mine and just a kick of cayenne to boost immunity. ;)

Cheers! 🍹❄️🔥

A twist of ginger and one other spice gives this traditional Hot Toddy recipe a kick for the tastebuds and for your immune system - by The Write Side of Life

A twist of ginger and one other spice gives this traditional Hot Toddy recipe a kick for the tastebuds and for your immune system – by The Write Side of Life

Homemade for the Holidays: My Crafty Christmas Projects

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With all the money tied up in our new house, Christmas was a bit difficult this year. I was facing a challenge of gifting from the heart on a super tight budget and also decorating the house. So this year I decided to go homemade for the holidays. After all, when you’re in the middle of a total renovation property and raising a toddler, time is the most valuable thing you have to offer, right? I loved some of these items so much I decided to add them to my Etsy shop too!

MASON JAR SOAP DISPENSERS

I loved the way these turned out. It took a little engineering to construct the lids but these pint jars went from simple to shabby chic thanks to that, some chalk paint & glaze, and a little distressing. I made them in a weathered gray, ivory and went a little bold with a turquoise one for my own bathroom.

Mason Jar Soap Dispensers by The Write Side of Life

Mason Jar Soap Dispensers by The Write Side of Life

Gray Mason Jar Soap Dispensers by The Write Side of Life

Gray Mason Jar Soap Dispensers by The Write Side of Life

Gray Mason Jar Soap Dispensers by The Write Side of Life

Gray Mason Jar Soap Dispensers by The Write Side of Life

Turquoise Mason Jar Soap Dispensers by The Write Side of Life

Turquoise Mason Jar Soap Dispensers by The Write Side of Life

Turquoise Mason Jar Soap Dispensers by The Write Side of Life

Turquoise Mason Jar Soap Dispensers by The Write Side of Life

You can also order these in my Tulip Garden Gifts Etsy shop by clicking here.

FAMILY BIRTHDAY BOARD

I LOVE how this turned out. I started with a basic board and did a crackle paint finish then stenciled and added the hardware. This was for my husband’s grandmother and there were lots of names to add so I color-coded all the tags. The color of each name and birthdate represented either her children (or one of their spouses), her grandchildren (or one of their spouses), or her great-grandchildren.

Family Birthday Board by The Write Side of Life

Family Birthday Board by The Write Side of Life

SPECKLED COFFEE MUG SETS

A few years ago I made gift baskets for some of our family members with spiced nuts and a homemade cocoa mixes and coffee mugs and other goodies. I wanted to do something similar but within my budget and a bit more personalized. I meet with my grandmother and her Dutch friends every Tuesday and didn’t want to forget these beautiful women who I now consider very good friends as well. After stenciling and dotting the mugs I baked them to set the paint so that they could be washable. Then I made a hot cocoa mix with spices and dark chocolate shavings and marshmallows and added a small bottle of Bailey’s to each cup.

Speckle Initial Coffee Mug by The Write Side of Life {Tulip Garden Gifts}

Speckle Initial Coffee Mug by The Write Side of Life {Tulip Garden Gifts}

Personalized Coffee Mugs by The Write Side of Life.  I even made a set for The Hub and I <3

Personalized Coffee Mugs by The Write Side of Life.
I even made a set for The Hub and I <3

Personalized Coffee Mugs by The Write Side of Life - Available in Etsy Shop @ Tulip Garden Gifts

Personalized Coffee Mugs by The Write Side of Life – Available in Etsy Shop @ Tulip Garden Gifts

Personalized Coffee Mugs by The Write Side of Life - Available in Etsy Shop @ Tulip Garden Gifts

Personalized Coffee Mugs by The Write Side of Life – Available in Etsy Shop @ Tulip Garden Gifts

Personalized Coffee Mugs by The Write Side of Life - Available in Etsy Shop @ Tulip Garden Gifts

Personalized Coffee Mugs by The Write Side of Life – Available in Etsy Shop @ Tulip Garden Gifts

Personalized Coffee Mugs by The Write Side of Life - Available in Etsy Shop @ Tulip Garden Gifts

Personalized Coffee Mugs by The Write Side of Life – Available in Etsy Shop @ Tulip Garden Gifts

These are also available to order in the Etsy shop (sans the alcohol) by clicking here.

RECIPE / PICTURE HOLDER

This was definitely one of the more unique items I made this year. It took a bit of engineering to come up with a proper design but once I assembled the right components I realized how functional this could be. I used a cabinet face stained in a walnut finish and applied a coat of chalk paint just enough to give it a pale weathered look. I assembled a base and added a decorative topper all painted to match and then added a simply decorated clip to the front. The base also doubles as a stand so that if you are using, say, an iPad to read a recipe from you can prop it up on there as well. And when it’s not being used to read recipes, it makes a great and unique picture holder as well! :)

Recipe/Picture Holder by The Write Side of Life

Recipe/Picture Holder by The Write Side of Life

Recipe/Picture Holder by The Write Side of Life

Recipe/Picture Holder by The Write Side of Life

You can purchase these in the Etsy store as well by clicking here.

TEACUP BIRDFEEDERS

I was really looking forward to trying this one out. I used some really durable, black coated chain, hardware, epoxy, and of course some seed.

Teacup Birdfeeder by The Write Side of Life

Teacup Birdfeeder by The Write Side of Life

Teacup Birdfeeder by The Write Side of Life

Teacup Birdfeeder by The Write Side of Life

Teacup Birdfeeder by The Write Side of Life

Teacup Birdfeeder by The Write Side of Life

Teacup Birdfeeder by The Write Side of Life

Teacup Birdfeeder by The Write Side of Life

You can purchase these in the Etsy store by clicking here.

BURLAP WREATHS 

Some crafts are just not cheap to make. These were on the pricier side of the projects I made this year but, they are just so beautiful. There are so many different combinations and colors if I could afford it, I’d have made one for every room of my own house too. Maybe someday. ;)

Burlap Wreath with Green Bow by The Write Side of Life

Burlap Wreath with Green Bow by The Write Side of Life

Candy Cane Burlap Wreath by The Write Side of Life

Candy Cane Burlap Wreath by The Write Side of Life

Burlap Wreath with Red Bow by The Write Side of Life

Burlap Wreath with Red Bow by The Write Side of Life

You can purchase these in the Etsy store too by clicking here.

THREADED 3-D STATE WALL ART 

This is a really neat gift for anyone tied to a certain state or area. After staining and sealing the wood, I outlined the state and used copper tacks and thread to create a unique wall hanging. But perhaps the sweetest touch of this gift is that the heart encircles where they live. Awww. I know right! ;)

3-D State Pin & Thread Wall Art by The Write Side of Life

3-D State Pin & Thread Wall Art by The Write Side of Life

3-D State Pin & Thread Wall Art by The Write Side of Life

3-D State Pin & Thread Wall Art by The Write Side of Life

You can purchase these in my Etsy store by clicking here.

CROCHETED DREAMCATCHER 

I have seen some cute crafty dreamcatchers made out of doilies online and got the idea to make a dreamcatcher for my sister. For this I just used a needlepoint ring and crocheted the dreamcatcher part. I sort of made up the pattern as I went based on how big I wanted each loop to be. To finish it I just braided some yard and added a few feathers I picked up at the craft store. (Sorry, I didn’t take a picture of the finished product).

Crocheted Dreamcatcher by The Write Side of Life

Crocheted Dreamcatcher by The Write Side of Life

RIBBON LOOP CHRISTMAS TREE DECORATION 

This was something I was going to attempt in a set of three but to be honest it just took waaaay too much time and glue this way so I aborted this one and just let this one hang out on its own on our mantel during the holidays. If you’re going to attempt this one, instead of using thin ribbon and glueing them together then to the cone individually, you can save yourself a lot of time by using thick ribbon and folding it over then cut slits into it. It’ll give you the same look.

Ribbon Tree by The Write Side of Life

Ribbon Tree by The Write Side of Life

All in all I think everything turned out pretty good! :)

Christmas Crafts with the Kids

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With the holiday rush, renovations, and a 2nd birthday party to plan I’m a little late with my holiday post. I hope everyone had a great Christmas and new year!

As you may know, my sister and I love to get the kids together before most holidays and have a craft day. Not only does it give us some really cute keepsakes of their childhood but we usually come up with some pretty good gift ideas for the grandparents too! :) If you’re new to the blog or missed it, here are some from holidays passed:

Christmas Crafts with the Kids (Last year’s goodies!) :)

Halloween Crafts with the Kids (Talk about cute!)

Spring Flowerpot Crafts (These were great for Mother’s Day!)

This year we let the kiddos put their stamp on several new ideas and they turned out great! Take a look…

We made these cute fingerprint wreath ornaments…

Fingerprint wreath christmas ornament | The Write Side of Life

Fingerprint wreath christmas ornament | The Write Side of Life

These cute fingerprint bulb coffee mugs…

Fingerprint bulbs coffee mug | The Write Side of Life

Fingerprint bulbs coffee mug | The Write Side of Life

These really sweet fingerprint bulb picture frames…

Fingerprint bulb picture frame | The Write Side of Life

Fingerprint bulb picture frame | The Write Side of Life

And these adorable Christmas tree cookie plates…

Handprint Christmas Tree Cookie Plate | The Write Side of Life

Handprint Christmas Tree Cookie Plate | The Write Side of Life

Needless to say I was also on a pretty tight budget this year when it came to gift-giving with the new money-pit  house and all. Still, I didn’t want to turn that into cheap, meaningless gifts for the friends & family so I decided to make most of the gifts myself. After all, when you’re knee-deep in renovations and busy chasing a 2-year old one of the most expensive gifts you can give is your time right? Can’t wait to share them with you!! I’ll be posting a round up of some of the things I came up with so stay tuned! :)