Day 9: If you have other children how has your loss affected them? If you don't other children how has your loss affected your relationship with your partner? This question makes me sad...I should be saying yes I have other children and it has affected them this way and that but unfortunately both my children are gone and we have no living children left. So on to the second part of the question. I really hate that I have two different answers because each loss has affected our relationship differently, I shouldn't have two different answers. With Ty it was such a shock to both of us that I think our grieving timeline took the same path so we really understood each other and where we were coming from. It really strengthened our relationship and brought us closer together. We had only been together 15 months when we lost Ty so it was a real hit to our relationship and we were worried we wouldn't survive but our love carried us through. I think one big thing that helped after Ty was counseling. It made us understand that we were both grieving differently and had different thoughts and ideas to what happened and instead of being mad at each other that we weren't feeling the same things, or that one of us was crying more then the other it made us see that we would never grieve the same and we accepted that. Not only do me and women grieve differently, every woman grieves differently as well and I think couples need to understand and accept the fact that their partner will not grieve in the same way and it's okay. Another thing we learned in counseling was that communication plays a huge part in relationships. If there is something bothering you, you have to talk about it and if your partner comes to you with a problem, listening without judgement is key. Stephen and I are capable of doing this on our own but it's only because counseling helped us develop that skill. Loosing Ty really brought us closer as a couple and as a family. With Jacob....well we're still figuring that out. This time around, we are on opposite grieving timelines and it is harder. I know Stephen said he is having an easier time this time around but I am not. I am having a much harder time so we're trying to learn to balance our grieving in our relationship. We are still supportive of each other and understand that we aren't grieving the same but I would be lying if I said everything is fine. We start counseling this week so hopefully it helps as much as last time. I think if we were like we are this time after we lost Ty we would have a lot more problems but because we have been through it and understand and support each other it has made things in our relationship okay. I know this will also make us closer and strengthen our relationship even more then we ever thought possible.
For the last two August's I have had a dream about putting the boys in a Snugli and going for a hike at Komoka Provincial Park. I love the fall time and hiking through there is one of my favourite things to do. We went for a hike today, I needed to get out. Since I don't have either of the boys with me on Earth I took my Jacob Molly Bear (which is an AMAZING organization, check it out and donate if you can, https://www.mollybears.com/TheMollyBearStory.php) and the Snugli and we headed out. I knew if we went today there would be a lot more people on the trail because it was the weekend and a long weekend at that but I did not care. I wore my Jacob bear and Snugli proud! We ran into a lot of people and half of them had their own Snugli's on. None of them had a bear in theirs but no one asked about ours so we hiked on. It was a really good work out carrying the Jacob bear in the Snugli, the extra weight made the hills hard to get up. It still didn't fully fill my urge as a mother, but that would only be possible with Jacob. But I did get my hike with my Snugli in. Now some people make think this sounds absurd but if you have never lost an infant you would not understand the urges a grieving mother has. Urges that are completely normal and okay to fulfill. I'm sure some of the people we passed today thought I was crazy, literally crazy but I bet if any of them had lost an infant, and two at that, they'd understand. For any moms who are reading this that have angels in Heaven, know that it is okay to fill some of the motherly urges you have. Others may think its crazy but to a point it is not. If you want to take a bear and walk it around in the stroller once or twice go for it. Our counselor encouraged me to do those motherly things last time but I never did, I thought it was strange. This time though, I am doing some of them and I find after I do it once or twice the urge is gone. It helps a lot more. I no longer have the urge to wear the Snugli on a hike, my heart is still completely broken and it has a huge hole but the need to do something is no longer there.