Sunday, June 17, 2012

2012 Rock and Walk

On Saturday, June 16th, Steven, the boys and I were joined by many of our closest friends and family as we participated in the Tears Foundation's Annual Rock and Walk.  We walked in memory of our sweet Brynna girl, as well as all the other precious babies gone too soon.

It was a day of many mixed emotions.  At times, I was overcome with sadness and grief like when Brynna's name was read over the loudspeaker and I realized we will never hear her name as she runs in for a sports game or after a dance recital.  And when her picture came up on the scoreboard, I realized I will never see her picture as part of a preschool slideshow or a montage video of her senior graduating class.

Other times throughout the walk, I felt supported.  Held up.  Carried.  So many friends and relatives came out to walk with us.  Round and round the track we walked, talking about Brynn.  Giving her life the recognition and attention it deserves.

Thank you to all that walked and thank you to all that donated.  Because of your continued support and caring, Steven and I are able to walk. 

(Note: the music, "Safe in His Hands" is sung by Alissa Peppley, a friend from high school.  She and her husband just lost their sweet baby girl as well, 6 months ago. Alissa, and her friend Kathy Kerber wrote and recorded this song shortly after Anna passed away.  It can be purchased on iTunes.)

Friday, June 15, 2012

Need to SEE You Again...

June 15, 2012                                                                                3:18 p.m

Dear Brynna,

I am so scared.  I am walking tomorrow in the Rock and Walk, and I am so very scared.  It is a walk to remember you and so many other babies that were taken from their parents.  I don’t know what to expect because I have never had to participate in a walk like this, and I don’t want to have to start. 

I will be walking with your Daddy, and your brothers, and some other people that have continued to show their love and support to our family.  But I am scared.  And I miss you.

And I wish so badly that you were just here with us, so we wouldn’t even have to know that a walk like this exists.

I have been so sad the last couple days.  Missing you and praying to see you in my dreams.  I went into your room yesterday, and picked up the froggy Daddy made me for Mother’s Day, and I rocked it.  I closed my eyes again and I rocked it, swaying back and forth, holding it trying to remember what it was like to hold you. 

I didn’t get nearly enough time to hold you.  I just want one more minute.  Daddy says even if I had “one more minute” of course it would never be enough.  And I know that, but I still want it.  Just one more minute.

I was so scared last night as I sobbed to your Daddy and admitted something that brings me so very much shame and sadness.  Sometimes, I told him, I am having a hard time seeing your face.  I can see you most of the time, but every once in a while, when I close my eyes, my mind is blank.   

What kind of a mother can’t see her baby’s face when she closes her eyes?!  What kind of a horrible, fickle mother, can’t see her daughter’s face??  It is horrible, Brynn.  It’s horrible to have had just 6 days with you.  It wasn’t enough time.  I didn’t have time to memorize every last little bit of you.  I wasn’t brave enough to take away all the blankets after you passed away, and force myself to study you.  Force myself to look at every last inch of you without all of the tubes and lines, and engrave your perfect body in my mind.  If I had it to do over again, I would try harder to be brave.  I am so sorry. 

I need just one more minute.  Please, just one more minute.  Oh God, please just give me another moment with my perfect baby girl.  Allow me to see her so that I can etch her memory in my brain.  Please.   Please.  Oh, Lord, please let me have one more moment in time, if only in my dreams to see my sweet baby girl. Please….

Daddy told me he’d had exactly the same thoughts last week and was feeling exactly the same way.  Funny, how even when we feel so alone as individuals, we are still reminded over and over again that we have each other.  We have each other to trust.  We can allow each other to be the most vulnerable, raw versions of ourselves with, and know it’s safe.  There will be no judgment.  No, “you should” or “you shouldn’t”.  Just acceptance and love.  And complete and total understanding.

I don’t know how to survive this pain, baby girl.  I don’t know how to “work through”, “move past”, or “go ahead” in this life. 

I need to SEE you.

As I am writing this to you, the Steven Curtis Chapman song, SEE, keeps playing over and over in my head. 

Maybe, instead, for just a moment, I need to listen…  and maybe then I will SEE.



6/15/2012                                                                        3:00 p.m

*NOTE: this blog is a part of a process.  And with the process of grief comes all kinds of emotion, including anger and hurt.  It's not all pretty and it's definitely not all "PC".  I write this for me, and I write this for anyone else currently traveling this awful road, in hopes that we can band together in our healing, knowing that everything we are feeling is what it is, in the moment it's being felt.  I am sorry if anyone is offended by the following post.  It is not meant to be personal.  This life just really is a hard one to endure sometimes....

Do you have any idea how badly I want to back out of this too?  Be able to back out of this life, of this circumstance? I would love nothing more than a simple “change of plans” or “something has come up” so that I could opt out of this reality and cease having to be a part of it.

What the hell, people? Have you thought a step further and considered that you are not the only one backing out??  Have you thought that perhaps there are many more like you with the same excuses? They come via email, they come via text, very rarely they come over the phone because in doing that, people have to be brave enough to hear my voice, hear my response. 

My voice unfortunately though, is the voice of a coward, insisting, “oh it’s okay, thanks so much for letting us know, thanks for thinking of us,” even though I want to cry.  Because to me it sounds like, you don’t have the guts to put up with for one hour, what my husband, my kids, and I have to put up with for all hours.  Everyday.

But they come.  The excuses, boy how they come.  “So sorry, we can’t be there today to support you in “x”, “y”, or “z”, but “Jenny” is sick, “Bobby” is tired, “Greg” has to work.”  “So sorry we can’t be there, but please know you are in our hearts.”

That may very well be, people.  We may very well be in your hearts, but guess what?  We are in our hearts too.  Trapped in our broken hearts, trying so hard every day to endure this broken life. 

“Please know there isn’t anything we wouldn’t do for you.”

There isn’t anything you wouldn’t do, huh?….except be here today like you said you would.

"Call if you ever need anything, if there's anything I can do to help..."

We've called.  Over and over again, we've called.  Where are you?  Why won't you say her name?

Am I jealous?

Damn right I am jealous!  So freakin’ jealous that I can’t tell myself, “Sorry, self.  I am not strong enough to handle this heartache today.  I need a break from the sadness, so if you’d kindly just put yourself on hold, I’d really appreciate it.”

Yeah, I’m jealous.  And I’m tired.  And I want so badly to have an excuse to get me out of this.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Walking, Held up by Love, Walking....

Just one last post regarding the Tears Foundation's upcoming Rock and Walk at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma...

This Saturday June 16th, Steven and the boys and I will be walking for 3 hours, surrounded and held upright, by our dear friends and family, in the name and memory of our sweet daughter, Brynna Elizabeth Finnegan. 

We will also be walking hand in hand and heart to heart with too many other parents in exactly our situation. This Saturday from 10 a.m- 1 p.m, we will walk in memory of all of our sweet babies who have passed away entirely too soon.

Thanks to so many of you, we have met and exceeded my original total team fundraising goal of $1000. Not only have we surpassed it, we have more than doubled it!! As of today, Team Brynna has raised $2235. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

The Tears Foundation has been one group that I personally have clung to for support in my darkest hours of grief, and through financial generosity like this, many more broken hearted parents will have the same support as they are forced down this awful road of grief.

If you would still like to join Team Brynna and walk along with us, today is the last day for online registration. Follow the link below:

If you would still like to donate (or know someone who would) you can still do so by following this link:

Of course, people can also register to walk the day of the event at Cheney Stadium beginning at 9:15 a.m

Thank you again to all of you that have continued to show such amazing love and support to Steven, the boys and myself.

This road is not yet becoming easier, but because of your caring and compassion, we are finding the courage and strength to walk another day, until some day it will.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Just a Quick Hello...

Dear Brynna,

Hi, Baby Girl.  I miss you.  We all do.  Your Daddy, your brothers, and me.  We miss you so very, very much.

I thought about you a lot today.  Well, I think about you a lot every day, but for some reason, I couldn’t get you out of my head today.  You were with me in all I did.

A couple times, I thought I was going to break down and cry I was missing you so much, but somehow I got through it.  Today seemed a little lighter.  I don’t know exactly why or what it means, but it didn’t hurt as much to love you today.  It felt good.

We went to Cole’s baseball game tonight.  He had a couple really good hits and made it on base.  He seemed to be having a good time and it was really fun to watch him.  Of course, we were all getting wet because although it is now early June, we are still experiencing more than our fair share of rain here in the rainy state of Washington.

Before the game, Daddy and the boys and I went to look at a house that was on some property out between Orting and Buckley.  It was nice to get out into the country a bit, and although that particular house wouldn’t work for us, it sure did confirm for your Daddy and I that we would really love to get into a place on some land.  It would give us all room to stretch out and explore and take in the fresh air.  It would be lovely.  Someday…

Anyway, I just wanted to write you quickly tonight and tell you how much I love you.  More than you’ll ever know, and so much more than words could ever say.

I miss you Baby Girl.  We all do.