Where I’m at 3 years Later

It’s been a long and winding road and I’m checking back in with a post 3 years and 3 months after Sunshine and Daisy died. What an incredible blessing those girls are to me. Their story, forever documented in this blog, is the beginning of a new life I’ve created in their memory, for myself, the hubbo, and my two beautiful living daughters. My life is filled with joy, color and gratitude.

Please see all of the beauty that Sunshine and Daisy’s life has brought into mine.

The story continues at Finding My Muchness.

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Resting in peace

The other markers were so pitiful, many were broken and fallen over...

The other markers were so pitiful, many were broken and fallen over...

Yesterday I went to the cemetery to bring the girls their rocks. It was a long, difficult morning dealing with legal paperwork regarding an old landlord who lost some paperwork and decided to claim it never existed. (despite the fact that I showed him copies) just incredibly frustrating and challenging when I am already tense.

Anyway, the ground has finally defrosted and I felt it was time to bring the girls their rocks. It was hard to pick them up off the bookcase where they’ve sat for the last 7 or 8 months and know I wouldn’t have them with me. But the girls need them more than I do, and I need them to have them more than I need them myself.

My friend went with me. The hubbo is not so comfortable with the idea of going, though he supports my desire to. Their spots were right where I remembered, though without a marker it was hard to determine their exact spot. I went into the office and the gave me a map of the baby burial plots. It was a little graph with the mothers names hand written into each box, and the words “fetus of” or “baby of”. I wonder if technically there is a difference, or if it’s just a result of the different funural homes using different terminology. Sunshine and Daisy were “fetus of”. A little disorienting, but technically correct, I guess.

So, I kneeled down in the muddy lawn (it had rained all morning) and, with my friends help and a broken branch,  dug holes in the ground and then put their rocks in place. I pushed the dirt back around the rocks so hopefully over time they will become embedded in the soil, as they were when I found them. I imagine that one day the grass will grow nice and lush around the rocks but their colorful and glittery art, that I sealed with a million layers of sealer, will catch someone eye as they look upon the heartbreaking and depressing area of the cemetery that is the baby section. Someone on this earth will look at it and know that those babies were loved.

It was nice to be there. Upsetting, but comforting. After I put in the rocks I talked to them for a few minutes, cried, and then I left. It kind of felt like there was not much more I could do.

Today has been a bit hard. Just more emotional than most days lately. But I guess that’s to be expected. Now, I am looking forward to finally feeling this new baby kick me…

They've been placed in their forever spots.

They've been placed in their forever spots.

Hello Again

We’ve conceived again. My due date: October 18, 2010.

I am currently 13 weeks and 3 days. I meant to write sooner. But it’s not easy. We learned we were pregnant again towards the end of january / early february. After all my ultrasounds and dating scans it seems this baby was created 10 days after our due date.

They say that pregnancies following a loss can be very difficult emotionally. They apparently know a thing or two. I was so happy to get that positive test result, I truly fell down on the floor of the bathroom and started to cry. I was scared, relieved, happy, sad…

I’ve become too familiar these past months with women who have dealt with poor prenatal diagnosis and I was grateful that the likelihood of having to live through TTTS twice was next to nothing, as opposed to women that unfortunately find themselves dealing with genetic issues that might reoccur.

We went for our first ultrasound at 5 weeks and saw the little yolk sack. Not much to look at, but it was clearly just one little bean in there this time. I felt a relief that I was likely going to have a routine, straightforward pregnancy and end up with a healthy baby in 9 months. But I was also sad. It was like an extra little goodbye to Sunshine & Daisy, and the dream of being a mother to living twins, and the specialness that comes with that.

We’ve been back for a few ultrasounds since. Once because I freaked out that something was terribly wrong and needed to see and hear the heartbeat before I went on vacation. I was having serous anxiety attacks about it. The other was the 12 week nuchal translucency test. That was last week. I didn’t expect to be terribly emotional, but from the moment I walked into the office, I started to cry. The monitor where you can watch the baby was so huge, it felt like it was larger than real life (actually, it was…)  It was hard to watch that little baby, with its kicky little arms and legs bounce around in all that room. I’d been so used to seeing 2 of them in there, it just made me feel sad for all that we’ve lost, and scared for how fragile every pregnancy really is. At the same time, this little baby looked like king of the castle! nobody kicking him / her in the face… it allowed me to believe that everything this time would be fine.

Even though it’s not generally an issue in singleton pregnancies, I made them check the fluid levels, bladder, placenta insertion… and though they must have thought I was nuts they did it for me , and all was normal.

Every day I miss my girls. Every day I wish I could hold them and know them. Hear them giggle and rub their little heads. I feel bad that when I think of the one baby I am now carrying inside me, I think of the two I wish I was carrying in my arms. I wonder if this baby will always feel to me like the second-place prize. I wonder if when it is born, I will cry for my girls. I wonder if I’ll feel this way when I start to feel this baby kick, when I learn if it’s a boy or a girl, when I have the confidence to allow my heart to bond with it. (Though it already has, I try so hard not to get attached, lest I just be disappointed all over again.)  It’s mostly not terrible, and  most days are generally fine… but it is always there, right below the surface. I still cringe when I see pregnant women, and hearing the word “twins” still makes the hairs on my arm stand on end. I’ve become hyper-sensitive to parent-child relationships and the thought of a child in danger or living in a world with no-one to love them just breaks my heart.

I wear my necklace with their charms every day. I squeeze it and kiss it sometimes when I need a boost of strength or confidence. I am grateful to have it. And other times, I’m pissed off that all I have is a fucking necklace.

They’re Due…

No one ever expected me to make it to my due date, it was more of a guideline date to keep track of how far along I was, rather than an actual date upon which I expected to go to the hospital and deliver my babies. Because of this, I assumed that when it came, I would not be as affected by it as a woman who had lost a single baby and actually expected to deliver on or near her due date. Somehow, it escaped my attention that although the date was not going to be the date I delivered, it would likely be around the time I would have brought home my two healthy, beautiful baby girls from the hospital to start our lives together. Only as it approaches, both too quickly and not quick enough, have I realized my naiveté.

Last night the hubbo and I went to dinner. Like a date. With lipstick and everything. I told him how I had been writing a letter to one  of the women on one of the grief boards who also lost her baby, at 31 weeks, and I had a realization. Shortly after our loss, I was upset because a long time close friend of mine had not reached out to me. She’d called once or twice, but never left a voicemail, only a short, not very ‘touching’  text message. She didn’t email or try to contact my husband to see how I / we were doing. She just assumed we needed space and for over 2 weeks gave us plenty of it. I said to my husband at the time that I felt like it was a cop out.  I know it’s hard for her to relate. I know she does not know what to say. I remember saying then that a few days prior I was on “that side”… a person that would have no concept of how to relate to a person on “this side,” but I would like to think I would have made a bigger effort than she did.

Now, as we approach the due date, it occurred to me I no longer can relate to the ‘me’ on that side. I can no longer access in my mind the part of me that made that statement. The girl that could relate emotionally to someone who has not gone through this… That girl is gone. It’s a strange thing. Like your perspective on the world has suddenly shifted and what you see now is Me 2.0. Like, when I was 10 years old and we got our first microwave. 2 weeks later you don’t remember a life before the microwave. How did people reheat leftovers?!? Sorry, nope. Can’t relate.

The day we learned that we’d lost the girls, I also remember telling my husband that I had been reading a lot of the posts on the message boards from women who have experienced the loss of their babies late in their pregnancies, and I didn’t understand why these women seemed ‘stuck’ as much as they did. After all, these were not ‘babies’ and they needed to move on with their lives. Another sentence I can no longer relate to. These are babies. They are loved as much as any living child has ever been loved, and these women have moved on with their lives. But they have moved on with a scar on their hearts that, though healed from the raw open wound it once was, will never disappear. The people around them will forget. The days return to “normal” for everyone else. New babies will be born and old people will be the ones thought of when thinking about those that die. But the mother of a dead baby never forgets. She never forgets all the birthdays without the child to celebrate them. She never forgets the milestones and achievements her baby will never experience. She never forgets the lifetime of smiles that child was supposed to bring her. Now I understand.

We are trying to conceive again. (TTC to the online world with which I have become intimately familiar.)  I know that when we do the likelihood of it being twins is so slim. In a way I am grateful, and hope that we will have an entirely uneventful pregnancy resulting in a beautiful, healthy baby. But in a way, despite the dangers I now know exist in twin pregnancies, that makes me sad, because I will never get to be a mother of living, identical twins, and that was supposed to be my special thing, and it sucks.

I’ve bought myself a gift, these two necklaces, and I will wear them together on one chain whenever I want my girls close by. I think I will be wearing them a lot.





13 weeks later…

It’s been almost 3 months since we lost the girls. It feels like a million years ago and yet we are still almost a month away from my due date. How is that possible? If it had been a single, healthy pregnancy, I would be walking around with a huge belly, getting ready to have my baby any day now. That blows my mind.

Things have slowly stared to return to “normal” though I know normal will never be the same as it was before. I think differently. I take less things for granted. I care more about the people around me, and have learned better how to understand grief, sadness and other peoples pain.

I have thought about writing here, maybe to help me deal with the grief, maybe just to share, maybe just because I think the process of processing everything we’ve lived through is interesting. I have chosen not to because I did not want to feel obligated to tap into the grief to find content when I am trying hard to work past it. But today I guess I feel like writing. About what? I don’t know.

Although many days are good and pass without incident, other days just ache. The day just sits, overwhelmed with a sadness that leaches into everything you touch, everything you think, everything you feel. Sometimes you can trace back the reason for that feeling… the date, an article you read, a conversation. And other times it just surprises you, coming out of nowhere to ruin your day. Being the glutton for punishment that I am, on days like that, I look for ways to capitalize on the sadness. Yesterday was a day like that. I found myself digging through my iphoto library looking for scans of my ultrasounds, and pictures of me at my most pregnant. I can not believe how big I was. I printed the ultrasound pic that is in the page header above and taped it to my wall at work. That’s nice, right? I’m sure it does not make my co-workers uncomfortable. at. all.

The day after we lost the girls I went online and ordered a HUGE framed print of my Sunshine and Daisy picture. I was not sure I would feel ok hanging it- if it would be a weird, awkward, sorrowful picture, or if it would be healing and empowering. I just knew I wanted to own it. It took a week to arrive and when it did, I wasted no time hanging it. Turns out, it is healing and empowering.

It brings me peace

It brings me peace

More later…

In their memory.

My Babies Grave Markers I painted for them

My Babies Grave Markers I painted for them

This Blog will remain online in memory of
Sunshine & Daisy Goldschmidt

Expected Delivery Date
January 13th, 2010

Actual Delivery Date
Born Sleeping on September 25th, 2009 at 24 weeks gestation

Always in our hearts.

It is crucial for parents with a multiple gestation to determine their placental type early. With monochorionic twins, you should watch carefully for the warning signs of TTTS. Since TTTS is a high-risk problem that can happen quickly and at any time in pregnancy, frequent examinations and ultrasound scans are necessary to catch the problem early. Many physicians are unaware of the warning signs so your awareness is critical.

What is TTTS?

TTTS Foundation

Thanks for reading

Daisy & Sunshine

Daisy & Sunshine

Things did not go well. Sunshine could not survive without her sister. They came to us together as a unit and they had to leave us together as well… It was out of our hands.

I know there are many friends who are reading this who will not know how to respond, so please don’t worry about it. I understand that there is really nothing to say, and I appreciate you following our story. Please drop me a line when you read this, just to let me know you’ve been here- that would mean a lot. Seeing my daily reader stats gave me incentive to write and now I am grateful to have this “diary” of our experience.

To other moms, expectant moms, and especially TTTS moms who’ve found me through the various message boards which I have visited in the last few months, please know that our situation is not the norm. Our unfortunate outcome is what was meant to be in our unique situation.

I have not decided if I will leave this blog up, or for how long. I know when I was first thrown into this situation, reading blogs of this type really helped me process and come to terms with all possible outcomes, good or bad. If you feel inclined to contact me privately, you can do so here.

Thank You again for reading.


So, after last week we seemed to be doing well.. at 22 weeks 5 days our donors levels were looking good and while our recepients were high, the doctors were feeling confident that she was fine as all other tests were normal. This past week I finally started to let myself think positive… since this situation began, I have not really allowed myself to think about names or how I would decorate the nursery, but after last week, I couldn’t stop myself from getting a little excited.

I looked at some of my daughters clothes and started to think about when they would be worn again, and started imagining what kind of mini van we were gonna have to buy to fit 3 carseats in (before this, the thought of driving a mini van was my “worst fear” ha.)

I also started feeling physically better. My belly was hurting less and and I was feeling less lethargic, and I figured this was a good sign, and even went so far as to put a picture of me and my huge belly up on my facebook page to share with friends. It was nice to finally relax a little and let myself enjoy this pregnancy without as much fear. 

Isn’t that the devils calling card? 

Yesterday at my follow-up ultrasound they told me Daisy, our recepient, had died. We were stunned. So were they, apparently. It just knocked the wind right out of me to a place I’ve never been. In fact, in this particular ultrasound room, there is no monitor for me to watch while they do the ultrasound so I just laid there with my eyes closed relaxing. The hubbo was watching the techs monitor. After she was done, she said she  was going to get the dr. which was what we had expected. While she was gone, hubbo said that based on what he saw, levels were looking really good. Sunshines fluids looked like they were over 4  and Daisys right about 9, so we were feeling pretty damn good.

The dr. came in, did some more looking and then broke the news. The head of prenatal pediatrics at Columbia, Dr. Simpson, said in 20 years of dealing with this, she has never seen a case like this- a progression from borderline stage 1- not even an official diagnosis, to Stage 5- death of one or both babies- in a week.

She said it’s impossible to know what, if anything actually caused it- even if it was the TTTS at all. She said it may have had to do with the way the cord met the placenta or just …. well, just because. It was horrible. It is horrible. We’re a mess. I was up  half the night feeling Sunshine bounce around inside me, now that she has more room and fluids. You’d think that was a good thing. 

But it’s not over. Unfortunately, yesterday was the easy part. When twins share a placenta and one suddenly passes, there are a million ways that that death can affect the survivor… and none of those ways are good. Today we are going back to the hospital for MRI and more tests to assess Sunshines “viability.” God, I hate that word.

I don’t really know what else to write. 


Good news… sorta

Sorry  didnt update after  last weeks appointment. It was pretty much more of the same from the week before. Fluid levels off, but everything else in range.

Yesterday we went back to the hospital for another utltrasound. The good news is that Sunshines levels are actually in the normal range- 3.9cm! Daisys are still high- about 10 or 11… but dopplers, bladders, all look good….

so once again we wait. At this point I am really hoping things just stay level for at least the next few weeks. If there continue to be no secondary signs, they will just wait until after 26 weeks and then likely do an amnio to remove some of the extra fluid from daisy and help keep me pregnant as long as possible. but then, the doctor was quick to remindus that things could still take a turn for the worse and so we are coming back on monday for our follow-up.

Will keep you posted.