December 7, 2011

This Christmas

This is not your regular Christmas. There are so many wonderful things I have to look forward to. My husband is passed out after an extremely happy homecoming from his deployment. He may have only been gone two months this time (on deployment number four), but it’s following a six month TDY (temporary duty for you non-military), so it feels much, much longer. Both our families are piling into Dover to celebrate with us. One of my best girlfriends is planning to stop by a few days after Christmas. That doesn’t even include H’s first ever Christmas Pageant, or the fact that she almost, kind of understands the season. Imagining her joy on Christmas morning tickles me.

H has a Fancy Nancy Christmas book that she got last year. We’ve been reading it a lot lately. Nancy talks all about decorating and putting up the tree. She is devastated (I paraphrase, “It’s like being upset only a zillion times worse”) when the tree topper she had spent all her birthday money on is broken when she accidentally knocks into the tree. Grandpa comes to the rescue, and they make a new topper. On the last page Nancy is getting a kiss from her little sister, who is wearing Nancy’s leg warmers. If you read the tag on the wrapping paper, it says that Nancy is giving her an “heirloom.”

That page kills me. I actually try not to look too closely at it when I read. H should have had a baby brother or sister for Christmas this year.

The baby I lost in May had a due date of December 7. In my guest room are tiny Christmas newborn sleepers that I picked up at a clothing exchange no more than a week before I lost that pregnancy. They were in fact, sitting in a laundry basket at the top of the stairs during the miscarriage. Putting those tiny garments into the drawer is by far my worst laundry-related incident, if such a thing exists. I kept them because I couldn’t bear to do anything else with them. Losing the baby was bad enough, giving away the clothes he/she never wore is still unthinkable. Neither can I go in that drawer. Thankfully there’s no reason for me to go in it.

On our tree this year is a special ornament. It’s a hand-painted heart with angel wings on one side and an inscription of “Angel Baby Dec 2011” on the other.

I wish that was the end of it. But it’s not. Hanging next to that ornament is another that reads, “Two Souls, One Heart March 2012” for the conjoined twins we lost in September. I was so comforted by the thought of a big pregnant Christmas belly—that at least there would be the promise of a younger sibling. But there is no baby this Christmas.

There is too much good to make it my worst Christmas, but too much heart break to make it my best. God willing, maybe H will be able to help unwrap baby’s presents next year. And from the tree our three angel babies will shine down on us, now and always.


  1. Touches my heart, Jamie. While I will never have the right words to say, please know that I think about you and hope there are brighter days ahead.

  2. You will and are persevering! Thank you for being so honest and open about such a difficult life experience. I wish you peace and comfort this Christmas and for the future! Happy Holidays!!

  3. Oh, Jamie. My heart goes out to you. I didn't know about your loss in Sept. I am so sorry. I pray that your healthy baby arrives in 2012. Lots of hugs, Stacey

  4. I am sorry you've had a hard year. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this thursday morning and while I can't imagine the pain you have in your heart this Christmas season, I pray that 2012 will be a better year for you and your growing family.

  5. Thank you, everyone. It helps a lot to have your support and love.


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