Wednesday, February 27, 2008

In like a Lion, out like a Great White Shark

I am hedging away from March as fast as it approaches. For days now, I have been going to bed in tears, waking up in confused and angry dream states. March is just around the corner, I heard my brain tell me. And just as fast as the thought was born, I pushed it to the far corners of my mind to have a time-out and gather dustbunnies. Fuck that. As if a month or a season could screw with someone like that. As if.
I refuse to let that someone be me.
But when I go to sleep, my rational and always in place defenses also go to sleep.
Dreams that I once implored my subconscious to provide me, now taunt me with both the sweetness of seeing my son, and the horrific realization that he is gone forever.
I mean, realizing he is gone forever has been something that has wormed itself into my being in small toxic doses over nearly the past four years. Realizing that forever is a long fucking time is, well...suckish. Realizing it day after day as your face gets rubbed in it, your nose gets buried in his neck...and then that sweet neck?


Gone again. Forever.
Does it make me want to not open my eyes in the morning or not close them at night? Both? I'm not sure.
I should be grateful for these moments in dreams - these precious whiffs of the vanilla and cedar smelling bodhisattva, these rare glimpses of my son's eyes when they sparkled and saw the fairies - they are gifts, right?
And I am an ungrateful and cynical angry bitch who still shakes her fist at the universe for stealing him away. What need did the universe have for him? Was it more important than allowing him life? Was it more important than allowing us our son?

My dreams are not all of neck-nuzzling. There are far too many snippets of the feeding, the endless feeding. The hours and hours each day it took to feed this baby, stuffing him with high calorie foods to show the doctors (who did, indeed, want to be shown) that he did not need a G-tube. He could swallow. Slowly. But what did we have but time? (The universe has an evil sense of humor)
He did not like it, but he put up with it, as any bodhisattva would. He patiently opened his tiny little bird-mouth again and again, allowing us to stuff him until his cheeks swelled and shone, but his body still refused to grow.
"A G-tube will help him to grow!" The doctors insisted.
"Can you be sure? He just seems to get fatter and fatter, but never taller than a three month old." We were suspicious.
The answer was, "Probably."
Which was not enough to convince us to put him through surgery.
I kept skimming my pumped breastmilk (using a gravy skimmer, to allow the milk to separate and only give him the high-fat creme, making every effort to suck or swallow worth more calories.), we kept mixing it with careful ratios of cereal and butter and formula to achieve the perfect high-calorie food.
He kept chubbing out.
He never grew taller than a three month old. He never did.
There was the growth hormone. I still can't even talk about it. He should never have been given that. It was not approved for a neonate, and his size warranted that lable more than it did 'one year old'. He died so soon after the HGH injections began.
His cheeks got wider and shinier.
He kept opening his mouth, we kept shoveling it in. For hours each day.
I believe he was weary of it. Too tired to fight.

I have so much anger, guilt, agonizing memories of this time. And now I get to dream it.

I fucking hate March. I get to endure, not celebrate, a birthday.
Bear with me.


nailgirl said...

Oh babe! I am hear for whatever you need me for. Please email me if you need too. Hugs.

Tricia said...

The neck, the smell...Damn.

nakedjen said...

Did you know that March babies really ARE bodhisattvas? They are! But of course you must. You had the most beautiful one, of all.

I'm sorry I'm not there to somehow help.

Lin said...

I have a friend in Washington, DC who lost her only child, her son, in a motorcycle accident when he was 24. Through all the years of grieving, (not constant, of course...there are still moments of great joy) she reminds me that at least she had him for 24 years. Just think, Lin, she so often has said, some people lose their golden boys when they are just tiny. At least I Rich for 24 years.

When you write your words of anger and agony, I cry, but I also think they should be gathered, carefully, and published and bound because painful as they are, they are words that are helping you and may help someone else.


chris said...

My heart aches for you.

Jenijen said...

Lin is right. Let's get together this weekend?

Lunasea said...

Railing against an unfair universe for taking your child away far too soon never, ever makes you an ungrateful cynical bitch. It makes you his mother.

capello said...

why the hell were you not approved for neocate? we had it, it cost out the ass, but we had it.

there are no words, no words whatsoever. you are living my worst dream and i'm very sorry for that.

Cindy said...

This is the one subject on which I just cannot find words to say to you. But then words are probably not what you need.

All I can say is I'm here and bearing. Right there with you.


mamadaisy said...

the neck is truly the most delicious part.

i've been thinking about you and this post for 2 days, and i still don't know what to say, except i'm so sorry you have to live through this.

Shannon and Carey said...

I am sorry.
We are here with you. We will bear with you.
-Shannon in Austin