That's what I am.
I've changed. And not all for the good. That became very apparent to me today.
I spent the morning with two of my very bestest (I know that's not a real word, but I like to use it!), closest friends, Shannon and Shana. These two have been there for me like no others through losing Grady. They brought me numerous meals. Shannon even sent paper goods with Shana once because she thought I wouldn't be up to doing dishes. They called me, even when I didn't want to talk, knowing that I wouldn't answer the phone, just to leave me messages of love and concern, putting NO pressure on me whatsoever to call them back. They've sent me emails just to tell me they love me. Just to tell me they remember Grady. I have more cards from Shana than I do anyone else. She spent a fortune in postage just to let me know she loves me.
What better friends can I ask for?
(I love you both!!!)
I preface with that because they are two people with whom I can be completely and totally real. I don't have to put my fake-face on...and even if I did, they would see straight through it!
Shannon was generous enough to share a gift certificate with us to get our nails/toes done and then we went to brunch. I enjoyed my morning with them...
But I realized what a stranger I've become...even to myself.
I am not the same person.
I am different.
I've changed...not all for the better.
I don't like it!
I didn't recognize myself today.
Actually, I did...
But, I didn't like me.
It is so very hard for me to explain.
I truly don't think you will understand unless you've experienced a stillbirth yourself.
Of course Grady's death has changed me. I would be worried if it hadn't. But, I'm not even close to the person I used to be.
I learned today that another friend of ours is pregnant. The old me would jump for joy over this news...but not now.
Now I feel sad. Left behind...wondering why it's so easy for everyone else and not for me. Knowing and hoping and praying that they will take their babies home, but I didn't get to. Wondering...why me, Lord?
The old me would be the first one to want to talk about babies, childbirth, breastfeeding, and anything pertaining to taking care of little ones...but not now.
The old me couldn't wait to get a glimpse of a newborn...now I run the other way.
The old me couldn't wait to hold a newborn...but not now. I only feel betrayal to Baby Grady when I think of holding another that is not my own...
...he was the last baby that I held.
Shannon and Shana wanted to talk about Grady today. You would think that I would jump at that opportunity because few people even bring him up.
But I didn't want to...
I had nothing new to say to them. I feel like a broken record. I know that I sound like a broken record, even on this blog.
I don't want to be defined by his death. But the cold, hard truth is. . .
He was my baby boy.
I'm a different person.
He took a part of me with him.
I'm a stranger...even to myself.