Obelus (Episodes of Grief)

Because one night I was in a room
listening until only one heart beat.

From “After Words” by Kimberley Blaeser (Full Poem )

 

i.

after my miscarriages, i am told

‘you can try again.’

‘at least you know you can get pregnant.”

‘there was probably something wrong with the baby.’

i am reminded again and again how common it is to lose a child in utero.

 

i want to scream, ‘but it’s never happened to me’

 

ii.

 

my wedding dress is transformed into a collection of burial gowns for stillborn infants.

 

i think to share this with you, for that dress represents twenty-five years of our lives. what it has become seems a beautiful tribute to the losses we endured together.

 

but without warning, you have ceased speaking to me. i reason you won’t care what i’ve done with my wedding dress.

 

this may be why we are no longer married.

 

the seamstress sends me a remnant as a keepsake, a small beaded pouch. i press it to my cheek, then bury it in the bottom of a drawer, empty.

 

iii.

 

i take you to the vet. you’re fierce and cranky, chatty and loving, and just a wee thing, but smaller than you should be.

 

your condition isn’t serious; one pink pill twice a day will set you to rights. but you will have to be on medication for the rest of your life.

 

i don’t know then that the rest of your life is seven days.

 

iv.

 

on this day.

 

facebook sends me reminders of my past.

 

in one week, two photos. cheek to cheek. arms

 

wrapped until there is no space between one body and the other.

 

i think of you as a sister. a woman whose heart seems entwined with mine. you are family. my friend.

 

(my life companion + my best friend) / (what happens in life that defies explanation) =                      .

 

in one of those photos i am pregnant, but i don’t yet know it.

 

in both of those photos i hold so many endings. i don’t yet know that, either.

 

 

v.

 

‘i’d like to meet your mother’ – you tell me.

 

i’d like to meet her, too. for the woman who let go of me wasn’t my mother.

 

and yet i worry i’ll end up just like her.

broken. alone.

 

when i was small and thought you were whole

 

was it already too late for you?

16 thoughts on “Obelus (Episodes of Grief)

  1. I know you’re going through some hard things right now and I just want to remind you what a beautiful, thoughtful writer you are. This was gorgeous and sad, just like you right now, and I’m so glad you chose to share it. Keep sharing your gift with the world, Julie. You are special. Sending a million hugs and abundant love to you. I know it probably helps nothing, but I’m sending it anyway. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh Kelly, it helps to the moon and back. Thank you. This has always been a sacred space to say all the things that somehow seem too vulnerable in other forums. And somehow, it’s always the writing of the thing that brings it home to me. So simple and yet so hard.

      I love you!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. How beautiful and gracious this is, Dar. Thank you. I would love to run away for spell. I know I need keep facing this grief head on, but there are times I could just curl up and rest awhile. I love you, too.

      Like

  2. I don’t know how you pulled it together to write so poignantly of so much sorrow and grief. My heart goes out to you. May you truly find peace and understanding and love.

    Someplace today, your words brought comfort to another person and they are able to go on. Maybe it was knowing this that helped you find these words.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. As always, your words are powerful and sadly spurred by loss and heavy emotion. Yet, I pray that others are comforted by your honesty and brought to a place where they face their demons and find others who can help them.
    Blessings to you friend.

    Liked by 1 person

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