Daily life. This part I find harder than the hospital. I feel lost and not sure what I’m supposed to be doing. In the hospital my role was clear … make the best medical decision for Owen, sit in his room and hold his hand, make sure to eat a meal, pray for Owen. Now what? What do I do now? Go on with life? Yes. But how do I do that now? It’s different. I know my normal isn’t going to be. But what does that mean?
I feel like I have everyone’s attention but haven’t a clue what I’m supposed to do with it. God, what is my purpose now? What is your plan for me? I’m trying to listen, but I can’t quite hear the words. Perhaps it’s been spelled out a thousand times but for whatever reason I’m missing it.
Doug and I are coping differently. That’s normal. I reflect that his daily routine has gone back to what it was. He wakes up, has cereal, watches the news. Then he goes to work, comes home, has dinner, plays with the kids a little, then hangs out with me after bed time. Repeat the next day.
My life? EVERYTHING has changed. Not 3 bottles, only 2. Not 18 diapers a day, only 12. All the babies are crying at once, wait … there is one missing. I’m in the nursery 100 times a day. The nursery that has been rearranged and has a bed missing. The triplet table where I used to feed three babies now has an empty seat. Jaden isn’t in school anymore, summer break. While being constantly reminded of Owen’s death, I’m trying to occupy a 4-year-old. Everything I do is different.
I find the four walls of my house more suffocating than when I first started staying at home. Our entire street is under construction — we’re talking you have to off-road it to get to our house. So it’s hard to even get outside.
While everything reminds me of Owen, I’m also reminded to hug Weston and Logan a little more. When before I was totally ok with the boys hanging out and if they weren’t crying, they were fine. Now? I find excuses to hold them. I kiss and hug them until they get irritated. If they fall asleep, I just sit and hold them.
This is going to sound so silly, but it’s true. My biggest struggle with having three newborns was that I always felt I was leaving one of them out. If I was holding one baby, my heart-strings tugged that the other two were left behind in their car seats. If I rocked two babies to sleep in my rocking chair, I felt horrible that the third was sleeping alone in his crib. The easy solution was to just rotate and take turns. I hadn’t quite gotten the hang of it at the end of 6 months. Instead I just didn’t do anything. I knew I was a hands off mom, but I didn’t know how to be anything else.
Now? I can handle two babies SO much easier. I can rock Weston and I know with certainty I’ll have time to cuddle with Logan later. I can make silly faces at the two of them while rolling around. I can wiggle the two boys on my lap, one on each leg. I’m no longer a hands off mom … that’s for sure. I’m a hands on mama. Thank you Owen for giving your sacrifice. The way I see it is that in addition to my own motherly love, I’m also giving them the love Owen was supposed to have given them.
Between 9 and 10pm seems to be my witching hour. Jaden is usually asleep by then and I’ve put the triplets down. Put my babies in their beds where it’s supposed to be safe, but we know all too well that it’s not always the case. Then I sit, for the first time all day, and my mind is allowed to wander. The flashes of that Saturday night are vivid, the feeling very real. This is when I do my crying. It feels so damn good to cry. To physically express all of the intense emotions I feel inside of my chest.
I think it’s also that it’s the only time Doug and I are alone, together. So many people have felt the loss of Owen. Owen the triplet. Owen the nephew or grandson. Owen the brother. But one else has felt the loss of Owen the son. It’s very different for the two of us, but in comparison, he’s the only one in the world who has a glimpse of what it feels like for me. I’m doing my best to remember this. When I feel frustrated or misunderstood, I remind myself that not only is he my husband, but he’s Owen’s dad. He’s the one person in this world who sort of gets it. I find my calmness and start at the beginning again.
So how am I doing? I’m surviving. I laugh and I smile. I do get my turn to cry. I feel lost and overwhelmed. I’m fighting to do something great … in memory of Owen.
I love you Owen. Mama misses you … but honestly I hope you don’t hear my sad prayers. I hope you’re so busy feeling the complete joy of heaven that you don’t hear me. A child shouldn’t know this pain. Play and don’t think twice about us … you deserve heaven.