Random attempts to cope

The hardest part for me right now is making sense of what happened. By all measures, this was an exceptionally healthy pregnancy: the high early betas; the fact that the risk of miscarriage falls to less than 5% after that first ultrasound showing the heartbeat; the initial integrated prenatal screening results that were, in the word of my OB, “excellent”; the fact that I was feeling so wonderful; the ultrasound just four weeks ago (scant two weeks before the baby died) showing everything bang-on target.


Unable to make any rational sense of it, my mind wanders to superstition. What did I do to call down the gods? If only I hadn’t spent all that money last Monday on five new pieces of maternity clothing – all of which I washed or wore, of course. If only I hadn’t skipped some of those prenatal vitamins. If only I hadn’t kept going to the gym on Saturday mornings. If only I hadn’t told Tristan’s teacher that very morning, dropping Tristan off for school on the way to my appointment. If only I hadn’t changed my blogger profile just this past Sunday evening – after willfully waiting and waiting and waiting to do so – to include reference to the baby. If only I hadn’t asked Farley Mowat to include Baby in the inscription on my book. If only, if only, if only…. if only I could find that time machine and skip back to Sunday night and take it all back.


Even in this time of sadness, though, there is joy. I was waiting for the phone to ring, expecting it to be Beloved, who still didn’t know about the baby. Instead, it was my brother, who greeted my tentative “Hello?” with a blissfully oblivious, “It’s a girl!!” His daughter, Brooke Laurel arrived yesterday morning at a perfectly healthy 6 lbs 14 oz. A first granddaughter for both sets of grandparents. Doesn’t your heart just break for my poor mother, trying to take in all this in a single morning?


Many years ago, Nancy gave us a set of “boo boo bunnies”. They’re little terry-cloth bunny heads wrapped around a block of plastic-encased liquid. You keep them in the freezer and apply liberally when there is a boo-boo that needs soothing. The boys love them, and request them for all manner of bumps and bruises.

When the boys burst through the door late yesterday afternoon, their boundless energy banished the ghosts of sorrow and dismay and anger and loss that had been swirling around me all day. They’re my boo-boo bunnies, full of kisses and burbling laughter and boyish silliness that heals even the deepest wounds on my soul.

Author: DaniGirl

Canadian. storyteller, photographer, mom to 3. Professional dilettante.

20 thoughts on “Random attempts to cope”

  1. HUGS!
    I kwn no matter how bad I feel those hugs and hearing Mommy you the best Mommy in the Universe makes everything all right. Hug your boo boo bunnies more often and if you need one more Hug, I will gladly drive up and do it.

  2. I am still in tears and speechless, how can you manage to write such a coherent, controlled post and have the pride to include such good news for your family on what is also a very sad day in your family.
    When you said T & S were your very own Boo-Boo Bunnies, I smiled, and then I cried.

  3. I can drive and cry at the same time. If I should lurch toward you one day soon, hug you, then turn around and get back in the car, would that be okay?

  4. Words fail me. I was so enjoying going thru this with you and my heart breaks with and for yours. I’m so sad that this happened. ((hugs))

  5. What Rebecca said – Your joy in this pregnancy was so transparent and exciting to share – I think all of us who read you feel that sense of loss, that pale echo of what you’re going through right now.
    What Suzanne said – “Generous in spirit” is a perfect phrase to describe you, and I can tell that your generosity is helping you already.
    And as for what I can say – I know that you know, you know, you know that you didn’t do anything to cause this. And I know that in some ways it would be easier if you had because the meaninglessness of it is so unbearable.

  6. there is no rational sense to this and don’t beat yourself silly with excuses, God knows I’ve been down that road and no good came out of it
    something was taken from you, an intangible place of hopes and dreams and you are filled with a void that is so very huge right now but with time will shrink but will never completely disappear and which will become a part of your persona
    (sorry, rambling sentence but I know you know what I mean)
    but I have to commend your spirit, rejoicing in your family’s new life and hopefully just a very small part of you will always remember her birthday as being that awful day for you
    and God bless your boo boo bunnies, and I’m not talking about the wee ones you stick in the fridge 😉
    numerous hugs filled with love sent your way

  7. Oh Dani, I am so sorry. Give those gorgeous boys of yours an extra giant hug and take some time just for you. We all love you and are all thinking about you.

  8. Oh Dani, I know only too well what you are going through. And I know that you know that you did nothing wrong.
    Nothing but time and snuggles from your own personal boo boo bunnies will heal the wound.
    Hugs for you my friend.

  9. Dani, I am so sorry. I just heard the news, and having played that awful “if only” game myself, I know how easy it is to go endless rounds in that most crazymaking of games. What helped me stop torturing myself (for that game is torture) was a line I read in Deborah Davis’ book EMPTY CRADLE, BROKEN HEART. I’m paraphrasing what she said, but it was something along the lines of “You were the best possible mother you could be to your baby and you did everything you could do to keep your baby safe.” I hope that brings you some peace. I had the joy and privilege of being with you a few weeks ago when you were pregnant and I know you were so happy and excited about this pregnancy and doing everything you could to nurture this little one.
    I am sending you lots of hugs, Dani. Grief feels like the loneliest thing in the world, but you are surrounded by people who care about you. A whole Internet’s worth, in fact. xo

  10. You are such a strong person Dani…you truly are. My thoughts are with you and your family.
    Thinking of you always.

  11. my utmost sympathies.
    I know there may be times that knowing there is a whole internet full of supporters might help a pinch, which is why I add my voice to the chorus of “I am so sorry”‘s – when I wish there was something else I could do or say.
    Thanks for sharing, and continuing to share – and take care

  12. It was nothing you did… nothing you didn’t do. Sometimes it just is.
    Take good care of yourself – and hug those boo boo bunnies of yours as often as you need to.

  13. Again–all of this is oddly familiar to me. Man, I wish I had a way of coping too. I told all my co-workers THE DAY BEFORE I found out I had a miscarriage. Talk about *what-ifs!*
    But yes, my son– definitely my boo-boo bunny. Without him, this would have been even worse.

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