Monday, 18 February 2013

Due Date

One year ago today was Alexander's due date. 

February 18, 2012.  Seems like the most perfect day to be born.  My due date was changed at one of my appointments in my third trimester.  I was due on Feb 21, 2012 based on my last month period, but my scan showed that I was actually due on Feb 18.  I don't know why, but I preferred the 18th.  Sooner is better than later.  Less waiting. 

I must have said "February 18th" to hundreds of people over Christmas of 2011.  I work closely with the general public... and as my belly grew, it invited countless questions surrounding the baby on the way and his arrival.  When are you due?  When are you expecting your baby?  When is your little one arriving?  "February eighteenth", I would say.  Can you freakin' believe it!?! I would think.

I didn't ever want a February baby.  I even thought it to be second or third best to the Fall or Spring baby I oh so wanted to have one day.  You know... the babies you get to have when the air is fresh, and the season is inviting...?  The one's where you can plan a birthday party outside and have kids from school attend with their parents...? 

But Alexander was an unexpected, very welcomed surprise... and I kind of coaxed myself into liking February as a birth month.  As it neared, I longed for February to hit me upside the head with my first born.  It was on it's way... May to January... it's gonna get here no matter what!  February, lemme have it!

Now, February makes me ache.  I love it so, as it belongs to him.  He is all things February, and February is all things him. 

February is now oh so wrong, so backwards, so hurtful.  It's almost like that February didn't actually ever come last year... It didn't bring along all it was built up to produce.  That February was a hoax, a trick!  What does February mean now?

But this February is so unlike February of 2012.  It is frigid outside, and winter is in full swing.  We have piles of snow shoveled in our driveway, and the sidewalks are icy and cold.  Last year, I would walk outside, 9 months pregnant, without a coat... and bring in the garbage bins.  I would leave the house in just a heavy sweater wrapped around my big belly.  The week before his birth, it was 2-6 degree's every day.  There wasn't a flake of snow.  It was an off February.  We were relieved as it meant our new born wouldn't be exposed to sub zero temperatures - even just for a second while transferring to the car - just days after he was born. 

This year, the -10 weather with wind chills of -17 will snap your skin off.  It is a very different February this year. 

February 18 was a Saturday last year.  It seemed a perfect day once again as the day of the week allowed my mother to be by my side, hassle free from rearranging her work schedule. 

Well, that day came and went.  And the following days were filled with excietement, anxiety, confusion... then a lot of eerie looming fear.  Unexplained, odd, "What next...? What now...?" as I continued to stay very pregnant.  I look back and shutter at all the chances we had to have him here.

This February 18 is a Monday.  "Family Day" here in Ontario.  A somewhat new stat holiday.  What an unpleasant jab to my emotional side.  Fucking Family Day.  Thanks.

I want him back.  I want him here.  I want this entire year that has passed to be so very different.  I still feel like I'm in a twilight zone as it all seems so impossible.

We have no plans for his birthday.  I feel extremely guilty.  Work has been horribly busy and challenging while being so damn pregnant so damn close to just being so damn pregnant.  I'm exhausted.

We were going to have pictures printed.  Nice (well, nice is a meh, ugh, word to use...) soft, presentable pictures printed.  Pictures where the hospital blankets and scale weren't so evident in the shot.  Pictures where his arms aren't in the forefront, crossed over his chest like an old man.  Pictures that showed his beautiful face, and amazingly full lips.  We were going to have them softened, and lightened... and give them to close family and friends. 

But we didn't.  I didn't.  It was all too much.  Too much pressure?  Too sad?  Too in your face?  I don't know.  But January slipped through my fingers, and my every day became so routine with work and sleep and appointments, and more work and sleep... I happily let it all pass me by in a haze.  And February came.. gently pressed on for about 2 weeks... and now I'm here, 9 days until his birthday and haven't a thing planned... or done... or ... or... anything.  The days are here.  His days are here.  And I feel like I'm in the exact same spot I left him.  Stunned and sad.  Lonely and missing.  Mad and selfish.  Miserable and aching.  In love and bursting with needs I cannot have fulfilled. 

Daniel and I will probably do something together.  We both booked the 27th off, and will be together.  Anything more than that... I don't know.  It all remains to be seen... and to be felt. 


  1. I just want to say it's ok not to have anything planned. I am not sure if you are doing this but don't be hard on yourself.
    Thinking of you and Alexander.

  2. Been thinking of you an Alexander of late, hoping you are as well as you can be. I don't think there's any perfect way to celebrate their birthday unless it involved them being present blowing out their candles (or smashing pudgy fingers in a cupcake) it's all so horribly wrong and always will be. But rest assured, he will be loved. And celebrated, and missed, on his due date, his birthday, and every single day there is. Always.


  3. We didn't plan much for Anja's days. We went for walks, talked, bought flowers - daffodils, of course - for ourselves. I felt like you did in the days before - busy, tired, guilty. I hope there is some peace in Alexander's birthday for you. After a year of grieving, it sometimes starts to feel 'normal' but there is nothing normal about celebrating the death of a perfect little baby. It is unnatural, cruel and harder than most people could ever know. Be as good to yourself as you can be. THinking of you and Alexander.

  4. Sending you lots of peaceful thoughts as you get through this tough month. February is always a dreary month even without significant dates to get through. Glad to see an update from you!

  5. Do you know the Dar Williams song "February"? It's all I could think about as I read this post. Especially the final line, "I have lost to February..." I listened to it in the first two Februarys of my grief, over and over again. "And February was so long it lasted into March..." It's really beautiful.

    Thinking of you and Alexander.

  6. You honor Alexander every day. His birthday is special, but no uncomfortable, exhausting plans are needed. Your love and being together is enough.

    I'm going to find that "February" song and I'll be thinking of Alexander.

  7. We didn't plan anything for Amelia's 1st birthday either. I didn't want to create something and be disappointed and not knowing how I would feel on the day. We just went away, hid from the world for a few days. I hope the days are ok for you. Thinking of you and your family. xx Di

  8. I don't know why your blog isn't coming up in my feeder. But I followed you again so hopefully I'll see them from now on.

    I hate that your February is my January. I hate taht we have these babies missing from our lives and that every question asked is a painful reminder of that.

    xox momma. xox.

  9. I hope the month isn't too much for you. I'm thinking about you, Veronica, and remembering sweet Alexander always. xx

  10. God the anniversaries are so effing hard. Try to be gentle with yourself. Don't worry about making it perfect; there is no perfect way to memorialize your baby. It is completely ok to have nothing planned.

    Sending you so much love during these harrowing days. And smiling as I think of your precious Alexander.

  11. Oh, Veronica. Anniversaries are so heavy with grief. Nathaniel was overdue, too, and that time between his due date and his birthday went on forever last July, and I was deep in a fog of cellular memory and distress. You have a lifetime of Februaries ahead of you, and a lifetime to create memorial for Alexander. But you only have this one time to get through the first year, which, I've heard, is the hardest. So be gentle with yourself and give yourself anything and exactly what you need. When it's the right time to share his photo with family and friends, you'll know it, and it will happen. He sounds so beautiful. I'm so sorry.

  12. Oh Veronica. Your sweet boy. Those February days. I love the lyrics that Brooke has picked out.

    His day. With needs unfulfilled and unmet. But the love comes through your every word. And that is all we can do, love them.

    Remembering your Alexander this February xo