• Charlie,  Group B Strep,  Sad Stuff,  Writer

    Thirteen. 13. A Teen.

    Thirteen. It feels as awkward rolling off my tongue as it actually is to be thirteen. It’s hard to fathom, really, the possibility of Charlie being here and being thirteen. Waking up with scruffy hair on his head and a hint of facial hair. He would surely talk back to me with a cracking voice and when he might smile, the little boy in him would likely peek through every so often. He would have an attitude like he’s either king of the world or the most sullen teen who ever lived. Lived. If only he’d lived. Damn, there are so many things I would have — WE would have — done. All…

  • Life as an Anthoine,  Sad Stuff,  Writer

    One Last Anniversary

    Seventeen years ago, on September 26, 1998, standing on a St. Augustine lawn at The King and Prince Resort, two people agreed to love, honor, and cherish each other til death do them part. It was out of a fairy tale, if you had a fairy tale with leftover tropical storm winds, fresh and soggy sod down the aisle, and humidity that made the cake (that was inside) start melting and toppling over. The night was beautiful. Planned around football schedules, everyone who was able to attend did. We even had a few wedding crashers! My dad’s band played as long as the hotel would let them and the next…

  • Life as an Anthoine,  Sad Stuff,  Writer

    Apart. Part 2.

    A few months ago, I wrote about Jason and I deciding to separate. It wasn’t an easy decision or one that was come to quickly. Much thought was put into it and much care was taken to do it the best way possible for both of us and especially for Henry. It has worked very nicely. The boys took a vacation. Henry and I spent lots of time together. We all three did a few things together. Pretty sure we even laughed, cried, and got a little pissed off at some point. But after a summer living apart, we’ve decided we like “us” this way. Apart. So apart we will stay. (yes,…

  • Life as an Anthoine,  Sad Stuff,  Writer

    Apart.

    Apart. It’s an adverb, used with verbs like drift, grow, or live. It describes how our hearts have grown over the years. Apart. Our love has drifted and now we have chosen to live that way. Apart. It wasn’t a split second decision. And the details aren’t important. Apart, for now, is how we will be. Will it be permanent? We don’t know. But for now it’s where we find ourselves. We’ve grown to this place and hope that in the apartness, we can both drift towards our individual happiness or newfound togetherness.

  • My Family,  Sad Stuff,  Writer

    Her Last First Day of Football Season

    Football season is here. The countdown has been on since January 6 when Auburn and Florida State faced off in an amazing final BCS National Championship Game before the new Playoff system goes into play. As the clock ticks down and the very first college kickoff is within reach, or even on the same calendar page, plans start being made. Tailgates are planned. Trips to games are scheduled. The excitement builds! Both of my grandmothers were big football fans. My Mimi (my Dad’s mom) was an NFL gal. Of course, she watched Auburn play, but her Sunday afternoons after my grandfather died were spent watching the NFL. I remember her…

  • Charlie,  Group B Strep,  Sad Stuff,  Writer

    Dreams of a Tiny Casket

    Originally published at Still Standing Magazine, July 5, 2013 Yes, you read the title right. When I was pregnant with Charlie, I dreamed of a tiny casket. I dreamed about  weeping over a flower-covered, mahogany casket that was the size of a baby. I have nightmares even ten years later about foreseeing the death of my son. I must’ve been about 7 months pregnant when it happened the first time. I remember waking up in a cold sweat with a wet face, probably from crying in my sleep. At the time, I didn’t think much about it. And I didn’t tell a soul about it. And then I dreamed it…

  • Charlie,  Sad Stuff,  Writer

    Eleven. 11. XI. Part 2.

    I have seen death. I have held it in my arms.  I have seen the beauty that comes after the darkness. I have seen the light that shines brightly on those who remember.  I have witnessed the transition from a perfect child to a perfect angel.  I have seen death. I have held it in my arms.  I have experienced the most perfect love. I continue to hold it in my heart. Happy 11th Angel Day, Charlie.

  • Charlie,  Group B Strep,  Sad Stuff,  Writer

    What Happens Next?

    On May 23, Lucy posted a comment on Charlie’s Story. It moved me and prompted me to respond however I could. I am crying for you. Devastated for you. Life is so beautiful, so heartbreaking. I don’t understand why these things happen. Perhaps you have a better idea than I? I want to know more about your journey. What happens next? How did you survive? Lucy, there are no answers. And yet? There are a million answers. Now I’ll speak of my story specifically. This is mine. Not Jason’s and not anyone else who has lost a child. Because grief is like that. You can’t speak for others. There’s no…

  • Charlie,  Sad Stuff,  Writer

    A Look Inside The Private Folder Of Grief

    Tonight, on Lifetime, a movie called Return To Zero will premiere. The movie was a labor of love for writer/director/producer Sean Hanish, whose own experience with stillbirth and loss drove his passion for creating a film with a storyline based solely around the loss of a child. Return to Zero will take the audience through the highs of pregnancy, the lows of the loss, the struggles of anger and marriage, and hopefully, share that there IS hope after loss. Over the last 11 years, I’ve heard so many people say, “I don’t know how that feels, so…” when a friend or loved on loses a child. They’re paralyzed with fear…

  • Charlie,  Listen To Your Mother,  Sad Stuff,  Writer

    LTYM 2014: A Mother’s Heart

    On April 26, 2014, at the very first Listen To Your Mother: Atlanta, I read these words. I should tell you to bring tissues. It had been a rough week around here between me and the 9 year old. My husband had been traveling a lot and work had been stressful. Henry and I had butted heads, talked back to each other, and raised our voices way too many times. It wasn’t pretty, y’all. I’m ashamed to say, I had yelled more than I should. I’m sad that Henry had said “I hate you” more than he ever should. I know he didn’t mean it, but he said it. He…