Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Day 2: Identity

iden·ti·ty noun \ī-ˈden-tə-tē, ə-, -ˈde-nə-\
:who someone is
:the name of a person

To see where all of these lovely name photos came from check out Claire's Name Gallery.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Day 1: Sunrise

 Happy 4rd Birthday to my Claire! ♥
sunrise noun \ˈsən-ˌrīz\
: the time when the sun appears above the horizon in the morning : dawn or daybreak
: the colors that are in the sky when the sun slowly appears above the horizon

Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada

September lovin'...

September lovin' thanks to:  Peggy and Mykayla, Carrie, Lara, Amber, Brandy, Megan, Holly, Jessica, Lea, Shannon, Virginia, Rachel, Molly, Janet, Michelle, Theresa, Mandi, Sheila, Tracy, Monica, Antoinette, Yolanda, Jennifer, Maureen and Kerry, Grainne and Vanessa.

Monday, September 30, 2013

...minute by minute...

...that is how today's date goes...
...I once again relive it all... minute to the next...

"This love wasn't enough for us to survive
I swear, I swear, I swear I tried
You took the life right out of me
I'm so unlucky I can't breathe
You took the life right out of me
I'm longing for your heartbeat
Heartbeat, heartbeat"
~Beyoncé Knowles
Tomorrow is Claire's birthday however today is the day that we heard the words,

"I'm sorry, there is no heartbeat."

The day that forever changed my life.

The day I had to share my devastation with my family and friends, 
the day I went to the hospital to be induced, 
the day that seemed to last forever yet was over in the blink of an eye. 

The day that the waiting began,
that the grief began,
that the loneliness began,
that the overwhelming heartache began,
that the indescribable sadness began,

...when the beginning meant the end...

The one day that haunts me every year when
...I once again relive it all... minute to the next... 

Saturday, September 28, 2013

9 years ago today...

  I lost my first baby.
It made me question everything about my future plans.
It's strange looking back after how far we have come as a family.
What would our family look like now if that baby had survived?

You can find my Little Love's story here.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Dans ma famille nous sommes...

Exactement mon homme!

So proud of my little man's school project.
I love that he never hesitates to include her.
(Now the only thing we need to work on is proper spelling of her name! Haha!)

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

I can't remember the punch line...

At the beginning of the month I went away with my family to Edmonton. On the Saturday evening we all went out to celebrate both my cousin and uncle's birthdays by hitting up a comedy show. The guys performing had us in stitches!

One guy was part way through his set when he started a new joke with, 

"And then there was this girl Claire..." 

I cannot for the life of me remember what the joke was about as when I heard her name my heart skipped a beat and my head got kind of cloudy, kind of like blurred out slow motion.

I instantly wondered if and how it affected those I was with...

Did they hear her name too?
Did they immediately think of her too?
Did their world stop for a millisecond?
Did their heart skip a beat?
Did they wonder if I heard it and how it affected me?

Or did it go unnoticed to them?

It's amazing how one name can trigger so such emotion.
It's amazing that in one quick weekend away that name appeared twice.
(See previous post here.)
It's amazing how much I love her even though she is no longer here...

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

In print...

I love it when I hear Claire's name. 
Be it on tv, on the radio, in casual conversation, it always makes me pause and smile.

I also love to see it, like I did in the book I was reading on the plane this past weekend! 
Up popped her name and all I could do was stare and smile and then take a picture! 

And then to sweeten my reading experience a little more... up popped Lucy's name!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

August lovin'...

August lovin' thanks to: Elaine and William, Antoinette, Kate, Belinda, Jasmin and James, 
Wendy, Becky, Lina, Cally, Heather, Maureen, Amber, Vanessa, Holly, Tracy, 
Lara with Davide and Paul, Molly, Virginia, Mandi S, Mandi M, and Heather.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Claire's Prayer Flag 2013...

My Claire's Prayer Flag in honor of today,  

I adored working on this project for a second year in a row!
There are not many times during the year that I get to spend uninterrupted creative Claire time so I soaked it all up in the wee hours of Saturday evening/Sunday morning. I gathered all of my material and accessories and began brainstorming, playing, organizing, and doing a lot of changing my mind along the way until I came up with a design idea that I adored! 

And this is what I came up with: 

  'C' is for Claire, our sweet baby girl.
Orange is her color as she was born in the fall.
Red for the lettering as it is the color of love.
A heart for the many winks we have received from around the world.
4 buttons on the heart as she was my 4th pregnancy.
3 orange stripes represent her being the 3rd baby I gave birth to.
x for kisses / heart for love / o for hugs

To view the many beautiful, meaningful prayer flags made by families from around the world in honor of their babies, check out CarlyMarie's Facebook page here:

Thursday, August 1, 2013

July lovin'...

July lovin' thanks to: Heather, Evelyne, Amber, Melanie, Karen, Cally, Crystal, Lara, 
Tracy, Monica, Wendy, Glenda, Yolanda, Caroline, Tara, Heather, Sky, 
Emalee, Michelle, Tammy, Kylie, Caitlin, and Brittany.

Monday, July 22, 2013

He always includes her...

"Mommy! Come see! It's for Claire so she can be at the beach too!"
I love you William.
Thank you for remembering your sister and including her. 
You are a sweet, thoughtful, caring soul.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Hot air balloon ride for our babies...

Such a beautiful way to have your baby(ies) honored on the 
25th anniversary of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month!

still birthday will be releasing petalled heart shaped plantable 
seed confetti during their hot air balloon ride. 

Each heart will hold the name of a baby remembered.

To submit your baby(ies) name(s) click here.

Monday, July 1, 2013

June lovin'...

Thank you to: Cassie, Lara, Tracy, Shelby, Karen. Lee, Julie, Virginia, Rachel, Terr-Lynn, Emalee, Dena, Caitlin, Ashli, Angie, Carolyn, Theresa, Wendy, Caroline, Jennifer P., Jennifer Y, Jemma, Monica, Molly, Antoinette, Michelle, Brandy, and Amber!

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Lucy finds her first wink...

While on a wee walk, Lucy stopped in a neighbor's driveway to play with rocks. 
Not 30 seconds into playing, she popped up and said, 
"Mommy! Look I find a heart!" 
In a sea of thousands of little rocks she found some lovin' from her big sister...
her first wink!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Grocery store goodness...

While at the grocery store on the weekend, I picked up corn picks for the family 
as summer is here(ish) which means... 
fresh corn on the cob!
William looked at the 2 packages and began to count the picks and do the math.
"Mommy, you bought 6 because there is 6 people, well 6 living. 
If we still had Claire you would have to buy a whole new pack."

So smart. So sentimental.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

May lovin'...

May lovin' thanks to: Lara, Carrie, Mandi, Elaine, Michelle, Monica, Lina, Antoinette, Kim (Carys), Jennifer (Melissa and Candace), Jenn, Sonya, Sheila, Caroline, Wendy, Emalee, Megan, Amber, Cally, Karen, and Tracy.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

"C" is for... (pt 2)...

Graphic credit

C   ontinuous

L   onging

A   lways

I   ntertwined

R   ound and round 

E   ver present

Part one can be found here.

Monday, May 27, 2013

RTZ: We can make this happen!

"Based on the true story of a successful couple 
who are preparing for the arrival of their first child. 
Just weeks before their due date they are devastated to discover 
that their baby son has died in the womb and will be stillborn." 

This film is very important to me. 
In 2004 we lost our first baby to an ectopic pregnancy 
and in 2009 our daughter Claire was born too soon for unknown reasons. 
Our lives were changed forever. 
To spread awareness about miscarriage, stillbirth and infant loss and to honor my babies, 
I have signed up to be a Local Leader in Yellowknife. 
I LOVE THIS! This is what change looks like in the NORTHWEST TERRITORIES! Because it only takes one person to change everything. (Thanks for the shout out, Sean!)
I am one of 1600 Local Leaders who have signed up worldwide so far.
 To sign up to be a Local Leader please fill out the form found here.

Another way to show your support for the film is to 
opening weekend wherever you may be!

Why is pledging to see the film so important? 
Because Return To Zero needs Hollywood to take notice in order to get the film into theaters and if we Local Leaders can gather at least 150,000 pledges in 30 days (by June 30th, 2013) it would show them that there is a need and a desire to have this film distributed worldwide! 

Join Return To Zero on Facebook here to find more info!
Join me here on FB to keep up to date on local happenings.
If you are not on Facebook you can find the pledge form here.

Every Local Leader, every Pledge, every voice matters!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

April lovin'...

April lovin' thanks to: Cally, Antoinette, Nessa, Michelle, Amber, Monica, Dena, Karen, Jessica, Carrie, Kathryn, Emalee, Diane, Jennifer, Wendy, Carloine, Tracy, Rebecca, Janice, Shelby, and Molly.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

A sad goodbye and a sweet hello...

We moved out of our old house. 
It was sad leaving, like I was leaving another little piece of Claire's life behind. 
It was a lot more difficult than I thought it would be for me. 
Her everything from beginning to end happened there.
I just couldn't say goodbye to her home without leaving her mark.

And then we moved into our new home and what did I find?
A sweet hello from my girl.
Quite the housewarming gift! 

Thanks for making the transition a little easier on mommy's heart. 

Saturday, April 20, 2013

That's what I want to feel...

I miss sitting and reflecting and writing 
but I feel like I am tapped out, so to speak, 
on what to say about Claire. 

I feel so far away from her and it hurts. 
Photo credit

Just one day of that gut-wrenching agony that I had in the beginning...
that's what I want to feel.

 It seems so wrong but I feel like it would make me feel closer to her.
"It hurts to not hurt so much." 
~Michelle White

Monday, April 8, 2013

Random wonderings...

When I close my eyes, everything that happened between us comes back to me.
A teardrop shows it's presence.
I wonder what went wrong?
Wonder how it'd be if we didn't say goodbye?
I always wish that I could get back to that time and hold you a little more closely.
I know... it's always a dream.
A dream which I hate to wake up from.
Image credit
Wondering and worrying about what to write about.

Wondering if I will ever have anything new to write?
Wondering if anyone feels the same way?
Wondering if anyone noticed that I hadn't been writing?
Wondering if they think I don't care as much as I used to?
Wondering if people are tired of hearing me talk about her?

Wondering when I will find the time to write more consistently?
Wondering if others understand that while I am not writing I am still dwelling and loving her?

Wondering when and if I will find the time to read the blogs I follow?
(I miss getting caught up.)
Wondering why she died?
Wondering if she is proud?

Wondering if I am still helping anyone in any way?

Monday, April 1, 2013

March lovin'...

March lovin' thanks to: Emalee, Gillian, Tracy & Dale & Joanne, Cathy, Maureen, Annie, Laurie, Dena, Meghan, Cally, Jennifer & Melissa Megan, Maria, Karen, Virginia, Molly, Sheila, Carrie, Mary, Amber, Caroline, Monica, Wendy, Andrew, and Michelle! 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

National Potato Chip Day...

Who knew?

My friend Hannah of Rose and Her Lily knew and for a very special reason! 

"Lily Katherine was due three years ago today, March 14th, 2010 (National Potato Chip Day), so one of her nicknames is "Spud." :)
"Ironically, the food I ate nonstop during my pregnancy were hashbrowns. I craved them daily and enjoyed them homemade, as well as at all different restaurants. It's only appropriate to make eating them a tradition each year on this day, in honor of our little Spud."

"Though Lily was not born on March 14th, it was the day she was due, the date I associated with her my entire pregnancy and shared that date when people asked how far along I was. So naturally, I still think of her on this date." 

Throughout the past couple of years my family and friends have sent many potato chip winks so I thought it would be fitting to make a quick collage for this special day! Yummylove!

And what better way to celebrate this fine day (which has quickly grown to be one of my new favorite days of the year!) than to indulge in a big ol' bag of ketchup chips? 

And look at what I found:

A little bite of love from Claire and Lily Katherine! 

Friday, March 1, 2013

February lovin'...

February lovin' thanks to: Michelle R., Moriah, Shannon, Monica, Amber, Tara, Carrie B., Dena, Antoinette, Megan, Carrie W., Jen, Cally, Erika, Jennifer, Maureen, Lara, Mandi, Molly, Lina, Theresa, Emalee, Valerie, Caitlin, Jessica, Virginia, Angie, Jeffrey, Shelby, Brittany, Leslie, and Kaitlyn.

Friday, February 1, 2013

January lovin'...

January lovin' thanks to: Vanessa, Maureen, Lisa, Michelle R., Talisa, Amber, Holly, Kathryn, Heather F., Evelyne, Antoinette, Caroline, Mandi M., Monica W., Elaine, Cally, Virginia, Jennifer Y., Jennider B., Kara, Karen, Alejandra, Glenda, Heather M., Monica M., Kamey, Mandi S., Sheila, Lizzy, Andrew, Molly, and Caitlin.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

I stand corrected...

Photo credit:
Matthew went to a birthday party today for a classmate I had not yet met. His mother and I spoke briefly on the phone so she could fill me in on party plans and today I met her face to face. We began discussing the craziness of party planning (she had one son celebrating today, has another next weekend and another little guy she will plan for later in the year). I told her that I could relate to the busyness of family life and she then asked how many children I have...

Eek, one of the most difficult answers for a BLM to respond to!

I said 4 for simplicity sake and Matthew looked up at me and said, "No mommy, 5!" I smiled down at him and said, "Yes, you're right baby." He then turned and ran in to join his friends. I looked up at the little man of honor's mom and she was looking back with a puzzled expression so I added, "We also had a little girl who was born too soon." She looked a little taken aback however offered her condolences and continued the conversation in a comfortable and easy manner which I was very thankful for.

My caring and concerned little boy correcting me?!...
What a kind big brother...
What a sweet soul...

Today, Matthew's honesty and his buddy's mother's willingness to continue on without missing a beat made me smile inside. I am proud of Matthew for stating the not so obvious and not worrying about how it would make others feel (like his mommy would!) and it felt so good to include Claire, just as she should be.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Claire's flag in Australia...

Back in September I completed Claire's Beach Prayer flag and sent it off to CarlyMarie in Australia to participate in this beautiful event in honor of October 15th Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day.

CarlyMarie, at last count, had received approximately 350 prayer flags from all over the world. Each and every one unique and made with and abundance of love. Looking through the albums is heartbreaking and stunning. To see these amazing flags you can look through the albums posted on her FB page.

I am constantly amazed by CarlyMarie's creativity and generosity. She went way above and beyond by taking on such a huge project and I am thankful for her taking the time out of her very busy evenings to spend a little time remembering our babies with us by setting up such a wonderful display and photographing our flags for us.


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Claire's piece of 'The Rock'...

A little background... 

When I was first born my grandfather and grandmother were in the very beginning stages of building a log cabin. Over the first couple of years, I spent some time out there 'helping' to build the foundation. We moved away when I was 2 so I don't have many memories however I have seen some photos of me around the wood piles and I do remember when visiting one summer catching minnows at the lake in a (red or yellow?) milk jug while work went on around me. Helpful, right?!

Over the course of 20 years my grandparents put their blood, sweat and tears into building this home. Cutting and bleaching each log, building the cabin from the ground up, inside and out. From the foundation to the parquet hardwood floors to the kitchen cabinets, they built it all. They hand picked each and every rock that surrounds the bottom outside of the cabin as well as each rock for the amazing fireplace wall. They have a beautiful piece of knotted wood that has been incorporated into the archway to the living room. The log home is a piece of art and a huge part of our family's history.
Fast forward to 2 summers ago...

My mom, sister, aunt and cousins were all up at the cabin with my grandparents and my mom and grandfather went for a walk together. As they approached the shed behind the cabin my grandfather brought my mom over to a boulder in the yard. The rock has always been there, my mom remembers seeing the kids climb on it and play around it but it wasn't until that day that my grandfather pointed something unique and completely incredible out to her. He told her to look closely as running through this boulder is a large pink vein. He told her that in order to best see it they should pour water on it... so they did and the pink vein in the rock forms a massive heart!  

My mom instantly thought of Claire. She's not sure how she never noticed the big pink heart before but figured that since Claire's winks were starting to show themselves in the most fabulous ways that maybe that is why it came to be seen at that time.

My family all shared the special sighting with me that summer over the phone and promised me a picture but forgot to get one! This past summer when they went back they talked about it once more and then 'didn't get an opportunity to get a picture' again... except they did! My aunt took a photo and my cousin, through the magic of Photoshop, made it black and white leaving the pink vein that runs through it so that the heart would really pop. They then had it enlarged and printed onto a canvas for me.

To add to the story, a couple of years ago the little town where their cabin is located decided that they should name the roads as it was becoming a little more populated so they came to my grandfather and asked him what he thought the name of the road should be as he was the first on the road and had been around for so many years. He chose the name Angel Road (apparently after a little dog named Angel that lived nearby) and his place is number 1. I am not really one for angels, and am not religious at all but think it is still a pretty amazing coincidence that this all fell together this way!

One of the best gifts I have received, by far. So incredibly thoughtful and meaningful to me that my family thought of Claire when they saw this boulder and
so fabulous that they all worked together to to surprise me knowing how very much it would touch me to "bring" the boulder to me. 

And as if the picture wasn't enough, my aunt also typed up a sweet message to be placed in behind the canvas too. Ahh...


Now if I could get my whole family to Newfoundland (a.k.a The Rock) to see her rock it would just be the icing on the cake!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

December lovin'...

Thank you to Amber, Anne, Antoinette, Cally, Carrie, Emalee, Jennifer G, Jennifer Y, Kamey, Kara, Kim, Lina, Melissa, Michelle, Monica, Tiffany and Virginia for Claire's end of the year winks!

With thanks from Face2Face Yellowknife...

As we say goodbye to 2012, I would like to take the opportunity to give thanks to many...

To you all, those who keep up to date here on my blog as well as our 'likers' on Facebook, for joining us this year and for helping to lend support to one another, we appreciate you beyond words. I wish from the bottom of my heart that this group was not a much needed part of your life or that of a loved one but am grateful for the opportunity to be a small part in your comfort and healing as well as a part of helping you help a family member or friend through a very difficult time in their life.

A big thank you to my co-leader Jennifer for helping to make this group a reality. We shared many doubts, fears and tears in the beginning stages but I know I can speak for us both when I say that those feelings have been overshadowed with gratitude towards you all for making this group a safe, comforting, empathetic and caring space for women and families who have been struck by the tragic loss of one or many precious babies who have left their lives too soon.

We have Galit Rodan (The Yellowknifer), Diana Carolina (CKLB Radio), as well as Allison Devereaux (CBC Radio) to thank for approaching us and giving our stories, our cause and our group a voice.

We would also like to thank the Stanton Territorial Health Authority, the Yellowknife Health and Social Services Authority, the Yellowknife Primary Care Centre and the Frame Lake Community Health Clinic for their outstanding encouragement and support as they circulate our F2F information to those in need.

And a huge thank you to my family for being so very supportive, encouraging, as well as flexible in giving me all that I needed to make this group run smoothly and with success.

I wish you all a gentle, happy, healthy, wonderful new year. I hope that 2013 brings you all that you wish for... and then some.

With thanks beyond measure,

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