Tomorrow is 14 months, my son would be 14 months old. And finding myself here is a little surreal. What everyone told me in the beginning is right, it still hurts, sometimes just like it was yesterday. But somehow you start to find a new way, not the way you wanted, but a way forward.
In many ways, I'm just starting to deal with some of the issues that I think complicated my grief for so long. I've been reading a lot about shame and guilt and stillbirth. I guess I didn't know what shame was, but from what I understand, shame is what you feel when others look down upon you, and guilt is what you feel when you look down on yourself.
And so, I realized that what I felt from the beginning was just so ashamed, I couldn't show my face. Everything was hinging on me during my pregnancy. I went into preterm labor and was on bedrest. And I didn't follow bed rest very well. Period. Especially as time moved forward, I remember saying, 'maybe there is a reason he wants to come early?'. and I started doing things around the house, little things, and I couldn't stop working completely, so I started going back once a week. And the studies I read did not show bedrest to necessarily do what it was supposed to do (no evidence based in my circumstances), and I'm just so anti-authoritarian. So I blatantly broke some of the rules.
So when Myles died, I knew it wasn't my fault as far as bed rest, the bed rest had nothing to do with Myles health directly, he was NEVER in distress that we ever knew or saw. The bed rest was just to keep him in there until he was good and cooked. But nobody else knows that. Everyone I know knew I should be on bed rest and that I wasn't following it completely. So, when it comes down to it, from the beginning, I was so ashamed because I thought everyone would think I killed my son. My husband wrote a letter to Myles the other day that he wanted to read to me, and he even said that he wonders if I had followed my bed rest, if things would be different. And it hurt me so much to hear him say that.
I didn't kill my son.