On Birthdays & Birth Days

July 19, 2015

I’ve been in a terrible mood lately. I can’t place my finger exactly on what it is. Maybe a little of everything.

I think it has to do with my birthday and Kaden’s birthday coming up. I never dreaded my birthday until last year, and then I just wanted it to be over. I turned off the date on FB so I wouldn’t have to wake to, “Hope your day is wonderful!” and think about how it was just the opposite. How a year before I’d woken up knowing that my son would probably be in my arms in four short days.

Since the twins died the day they were born, there’s no need for me to do anything but be sad on May 3rd. In my head, I can’t even pretend, “They’d be 3 today!” because it was too early. That day just – is horrible. And I am comfortable with that.

They’d be three the day Kaden died. August 26th was my tentative scheduled due date with them. I don’t think I ever wrote that on here.

With Kaden’s birthday, I feel stuck. Like in some way I should stay calm until the 26th. Hold it together. After all, August 5th was a happy day for us, mostly. Until I realized something was wrong and he didn’t come back from the NICU and I spent the night in the postpartum room crying.

So not really then.

The hardest part is that I dread what will happen that day. Will people remember? And if they do, then what? What do I want “in remembrance?” Last year I got texts with unhappy faces and little notes – and I felt so angry that was it BUT I have no idea what else I’d want. I also had a few people send me presents – actually that was really lovely. Really.

Mostly I just want that day to be over.

I want to be left alone and if I am I’d be upset.

I want him to be remembered as more than a 🙁 and if he was I’d feel upset.

I want someone, anyone, to acknowledge in some huge way that his life somehow both ended and started mine, and I have no idea what that looks like.

I want the world to stop.

No one can “win” in grief and mine is so complicated and messy that nothing seems right. I feel like everyone around me knew what to do when Preston and Julian died. I feel like I know what to do on that day.

Kaden’s days are lost on me. Nothing feels right. It simply haunts me from mid-July on.

I feel so alone in this. Maybe the only one who gets it is Sam, and he and I talk about it often enough. I think he feels the same – what do you do to just get through the day/week/month? If we had enough money, I’d pack us all up on those days and go do something big – a cruise. A trip overseas. A one way flight to the moon.

But the 5th will come, it will be 24 hours, it will go. And that will be all. I’ll have 3 weeks until the day he died and then holidays to deal with and then…

I don’t know.

Maybe somewhere in there, we will have a baby come home. Maybe one of these holidays I’ll show up with a little one instead of another broken heart.

It is what it is. That is all. There isn’t anything to fix this, I simply have to go through it. I know some of you might read this and feel like you simply must give me a suggestion, and I understand your hearts on that (I feel the same when friends say this stuff to me, “Oh Diana, fix it quick! It hurts to see them hurt.”), but reading/sharing/leaving a heart/commenting “Me too/I’m so sorry” is enough – for anyone with a loss.

To be brutally honest – suggestions make me feel like I’ve been doing this all wrong.


I write to connect with anyone out there who might be dealing with the same, or knows someone who is. I write because it helps so, so much. I’ve started to read my old posts from when Kaden died. I sit and sob and then I think, “I can’t believe we lived through that again.” And I feel just a little stronger, a little less scared.

There is never going to be a fix, a suggestion that makes this easier. There’s me and God and my thoughts – working this out one moment at a time. Healing me a little more until I’m not wiping away quite so many tears in a Starbucks as I write. Pulling me through to the other side of these days to the next.



  • Shauna

    July 26, 2015 at 11:12 pm

    Sigh…I’m so sorry. I found your blog when Kaden was alive, barely one year after my three-week-old son died. You and all of your babies are in my thoughts and prayers often. July is our month: our son lived from July 7 to July 28 (almost there, ugh) of 2012. Like you, I just want the world to stop on his death day. I had another baby last year, on July 5, so that’s complicated too. I tell you this so you know you’re not alone. And your blog has made me feel less alone. Thank you for sharing your precious family.

  • Erika Raelyn Covarrubias

    July 26, 2015 at 12:08 am

    I am so sorry all of this happened to you. You matter and so do your babies. All of them. They all matter equally. I feel for you. I can't imagine what you must be going through all the time but expressing your concerns jus shows your love for them and they are living through you, your children on Earth, and all of the love.

  • Rébecca

    July 20, 2015 at 1:36 pm

    I understand those conflicting wishes. Like Nancy Guthrie said once “Church was a difficult place to go, because I was afraid everybody would talk to me about Hope (her first child who died), and I was afraid nobody would talk to me about Hope.” It’s so hard. Praying for you.

  • Cari Brewer

    July 20, 2015 at 4:16 pm

    BIG hugs and prayers sent your way!

  • Heather

    July 19, 2015 at 8:16 pm

    You have never been “doing it all wrong”. On the contrary, I have read your blog for a long time and I’ve always thought you’ve done it all right, considering the heartache you’ve had to plow through and navigate. You are strong and always have been. Hugs to you and Sam and Bella and your sweet little boys…who mattered and always will.

  • LeeAnne Holman

    July 20, 2015 at 1:13 am

    There's no one size fits all grief my friend. This is yours. Hang in there it really really ::expletives:: sucks. I'm just so very sorry.

  • Jessica Harmer Pardee

    July 20, 2015 at 1:13 am

    I know it's not the same but I had similar feelings as we neared the the year date of Ana's diagnosis. I looked at all my old posts from then about how sick she was and pictures. It killed me to see her pictures and NOW I can see something was wrong, then I couldn't. Again I know it's not the same, but I can relate on how you feel to a point. Just know I love you and Continue to hold you all in prayer.

  • Maria

    July 19, 2015 at 6:10 pm

    Diana, I want you to know that your boys are not forgotten. I think about them often. I was cheering for you & Kaden and heartbroken when I heard the news. It couldn’t have been real. I will be celebrating his birthday and the time he spent on earth. He was so very loved and touched so many people.

  • Jocelyn Fox Whitaker

    July 19, 2015 at 11:47 pm

    I care about you and your family and I only know you thru your blog. In your grief, you've taught me about living.

  • Marissa Garvin

    July 19, 2015 at 9:49 pm


  • Lynn Sabrina

    July 19, 2015 at 9:22 pm

    I think and pray for you and Julian and Preston and Kaden and Bella and Sam throughout each day. And, of course, for Charlotte. <3 I'm so sorry the boys can't be here with us on Earth.

  • Renee Polfliet Gabbard

    July 19, 2015 at 9:04 pm

    I've been following you since before the twins. Julian, Preston, and Kaden all matter! They matter to me, They matter to many. I think of them often. I've never commented. I've never experienced your kind of loss. I don't have the words like I feel you do. I hold my breath in anticipation of Charlotte (literally holding my breath). I want so much for you and your family. More than I desire for me and mine. That doesn't seem right in my mind and in my life, but I think of you and your family often and want happy words, happy endings, and happy thoughts for you. KNOW many of us are always thinking of you, and your blog posts, whether personal or otherwise, reach my soul and touch my innermost thoughts more often than you know.

  • Sarah C

    July 19, 2015 at 1:45 pm

    Coming up on the 1 year anniversary of the day we buried my son’s ashes… on what was supposed to be his one month birthday (July 23rd). He should be almost 13 months old. So many of the same feelings that you wrote about….

  • Frances Baker Engle

    July 19, 2015 at 7:13 pm

    Oh, how less lonely I feel when I read what you write. I get so angry and resentful and ugly around the more painful times of the year. I hate the question 'what do you want for your birthday?' Because the answer is 'my baby back'. On the annversary of her death we just check out. Then i get fresentful towards the people who ignore/forget and the people who do acknowledge it invariably do not do it 'right'. Oh, btw, there is no 'right' way but that doesn't keep me from feeling like they failed me. It just sucks and prob always will.

  • Erin

    July 19, 2015 at 1:11 pm

    I had a late term miscarriage. It is nothing compared to the pain of what you are going through but I understand that snippet of loss. Every Sept 4th I cry all day and eat lots of ice cream and shut out the world. It was 6 years ago so no one but me remembers and that breaks my heart…but at the same time, its nothing I want to talk about or announce. Thank you for sharing your emotions because many of us have had loss and we can relate to at least the sadness and not feel so alone. You and Charlotte are always in my prayers.

    1. Frances

      July 19, 2015 at 2:34 pm

      Your loss is no snippet, my dear. The love and grief is very real and you sound like a wonderful loving mommy. I hope this September 4 will be a gentleone for you.

  • Kristin

    July 19, 2015 at 12:52 pm

    Love and prayers headed your way.

  • Leah Pollock Boral

    July 19, 2015 at 6:50 pm

    You are loved. Your 5 children are loved. Thinking of you…and them.

  • Shelly Richards

    July 19, 2015 at 6:45 pm

    I'm just so very sorry. You matter. He mattered. Your blog matters to do many of us who don't have the words. Give yourself the grace to feel whatever you need to, to get you through these weeks. I wish for you, for your birthday, moments of love and of peace.

  • Anne-Marie

    July 19, 2015 at 12:44 pm

    All I have: from the wise ladies of MotherWoman (peer support groups for mamas in Mass.) “Get through the day; get through the night.” See also, recent email on surviving and related mixed emotions. And insert curse words.

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