March 27, 2011


I haven't been feeling too gracious about anything lately, so I thought I would grab this fleeting moment while it lasted. My bottle of Nyquil and my box of tissues are here to support me.

I have heard from so many people in the last 8 days. People from all the different parts of my life have written me the kindest and most loving words. You've sent phone numbers and addresses and cards and invitations to do everything from sit and cry to stay in your homes. I have been humbled repeatedly by the private pain and brutal, gut-wrenching experiences that so many have confided in me to let me know I am not alone. Some people have said some stupid things, too, but in my more charitable moments I try really hard to remember that they are just clumsy attempts to comfort me.

Thank you.

I haven't actually managed to call anyone on the phone--not even my own parents--and have thus far responded to very few emails. Please forgive me for this and know that it's not because I didn't appreciate them. I am really feeling my way around in the dark here.

I'd also like to ask in advance for your patience as I continue to grieve through my blog. I realize that if you're looking for light and lovely reading my blog has rarely been the place, but it's even less so at present. It's just that I need somewhere to put these words, and somehow in the last 5 years of using this little corner of the internet as a repository for them I have come to rely on it heavily.

Now back to our regularly scheduled angst and intensity to express my deep and complex nature.

March 25, 2011


I (rubbing my belly): I know it's empty. I just need to touch it.

In three parts

We took the baby to be cremated yesterday. After a great deal of thought and discussion, we decided that we just could not bear handing her off for lab tests.

It was a miserable day--cold, wind, and heavy rain. We had to take two buses to get to the mortuary in Daly City. While waiting for the 28 along 19th Ave., car after car plowed through the standing water and splashed and soaked us. Some people took up defensive postures with their umbrellas; I just didn't care. Our task at hand overwhelmed me, and I didn't care who saw the tears creeping down my face on the bus.

We completed the paperwork. We reported the date and time of death. We signed off as her mother and father. We named her Marie. Marie Pesic. This was never intended to be her name, but I so often light-heartedly called her "Fetus Marie" after my own middle name that it felt right. We held hands as the kind staff member asked us the necessary questions, and when my voice broke with sadness Ivan took over answering them. We said goodbye before handing her over.

* * * * *

In the nights, I feel panic. I feel lost and alone and the pain and fear are still fresh in my mind. I curl up to Ivan--pressing my body against the length of him, but the darkness engulfs me and the cold creeps into my bones. If I manage to nod off for a bit, my mind places me on a tiny, unstable balcony hundreds of stories above a city at night. I am carelessly leaning far over the edge, looking down. I jerk awake. Over and over again.

* * * * *

People keep referring to the next time I get pregnant, and I have to wrap my sweater tighter around me to keep the cold out. The next time.

March 21, 2011


I: I might not be the smartest motherfucker. I might not be the prettiest motherfucker. I might be a hairy motherfucker. But I'm your motherfucker. And you're mine.


I wrote this message to a friend, and now I have adapted it for here, too. I orignally composed it as a private message because I didn't want to hurt anyone's feelings by posting it here. Fuck it. I am so fucking mad.

* * * * *

I hate today. I was indescribably pissed off when I woke up and the sun was shining. I made the mistake of getting on Facebook and now I feel loathing for everyone. They're all going on with their lives and commenting on each other's cute fucking kids and saying inane shit like, "Is it Friday yet!?" You fuckers. My baby is dead. Fuck you and your fucking Fridays for the rest of your lives.

I realized this morning that I don't think I can go back to the clinic I was going to. They took good care of me, but I don't think I can sit in the waiting room with all the pregnant bellies. I don't think I can face all the women who were so kind to me and who congratulated me. I'll find another place to go for the remainder of the medical care I need.

Someone said to me, "This is a blessing in disguise," and I wanted to fire-bomb the world.

Someone else suggested that maybe next time I shouldn't tell people about my pregnancy so early, because now I have to clean up the mess of telling everyone. Fuck all the people who walk around keeping everything in hushed tones. I need to talk about shit and I would do it the same way again.

I don't know where to put all this. Where the fuck do I put this?

Someone wrote to me in kindness to share suggestions of how I should memorialize my baby, and part of it included taking pictures of all the things I bought for the baby and putting them in a book. Well, I didn't have anything for the baby. I had only bought myself things: prenatal vitamins and fresh fruits and vegetables and milk and maternity clothes and a nursing bra and passes to a community pool so I could exercise and a new bathing suit to go with it. Should I take a picture of these things?

Before I was pregnant I looked at Ivan's body with desire. When I was pregnant, I looked at it with wonder because of this life we were creating together. Last night when he stretched out across the bed I looked at it with fear. We can do terrible damage together.

I want to wrap all women that this has happened to in my arms and take away their hurt and keep them safe.

I want to scream when people say cutesy things about their miscarriages, like, "Today is my baby's two year angelversary." Maybe coating it in god and sugar and angels helps them, but it only makes me furious. My baby is dead. And I was revulsed when I had to pull her out of a blood-filled toilet still warm from my body and drop her in a jar. I will hear the sickening thud she made for the rest of my life.

I just don't know what to do with this.


This morning crashed down really fucking hard. How can the sun be shining? I wanted rain.

March 20, 2011

We used to be three and not two.

I lost my baby at 3am yesterday morning, Saturday, March 19.

I had her in my bathroom. The pain was horrific and the scene was grisly. Most of the time I made Ivan wait on the other side of the door. I didn't want him standing in my blood or seeing and hearing the things that I was seeing and hearing. When I called his name he was through the door in a flash, folding me in his arms. The rest of the time he stayed outside, taking my instructions for what I needed and whom to call.

I want and need to tell my story of what happened in this apartment between 1 and 4am yesterday, but I don't know the right person or venue. I can't bear the thought of my friends who are mamas or mamas-to-be to read these awful things.

I can tell that she is gone. There is a terrible void where she used to be.

I feel such strange things toward my body. On one hand, it has been through so much in the last couple of days and I want to be gentle with it. But on the other, I feel betrayed by and angry with it. How could it fail to keep my baby safe?

I want to scream to the world that she existed. That she grew and fluttered in my body. That she was so important to us and already loved very much. That I thought of her nearly every moment, waking and asleep, and wanted to be a better person for her.

I have some irrational thoughts. Heroin addicts can shoot up while pregnant and still manage to have healthy babies. People can be unknowingly pregnant for as long as I was and longer and still manage to have healthy babies. Dogs can go off by themselves and burrow under porches and have healthy babies. But I--while taking the best care of myself that I could--managed to fuck it up.

I have some hateful thoughts, too. I wonder if the people who weren't happy for me before will be happy now that there is no baby.

I can sit and stare for hours at a time. I feel guilty if I smile at anything; my child is in a jar of alcohol in the bedroom. The grief and the anger come in tidal waves, and I am drowning. There just aren't enough tears in the world right now.

March 18, 2011

Downpour, downpour

Some of this is a little gruesome. Please don't read if you will be offended.

After several days of bleeding and a couple days of cramps, last night at about 1am the pain became extremely intense. We went to the emergency room at San Francisco General Hospital in a cab. It had started to rain. Ivan held my hand. I frequently had to lean over and grit my teeth from the severity of the pain. We tried not to focus on what was likely happening.

They took me in very quickly, and my kind nurse Gallo walked me to the bathroom so that I could give her a urine sample and put on a hospital gown. Once she shut the door and I began to undress, blood and tissue began to gush from me and onto every available surface--the floor, the toilet, my gown. I tried to clean up after myself, but it continued to run down my legs in hot, red streams. I opened the bathroom door to ask for help, but all I managed to do was begin to sob loudly into the hallway as blood pooled at my feet.

They put me in bed and hooked me up to an IV. I began to shiver violently, and they wrapped me in blankets. They called for Ivan. The doctor did a painful pelvic exam and vaginal ultrasound. He didn't say anything for the longest time, and I asked if he could see the baby. He turned the screen toward me so that I could see my tiny baby, very still. He couldn't see a heartbeat, and said he wasn't sure if it was because she was so small or if it was "something more worrisome." Ivan and sat and hugged and cried while we waited for my lab test results.

In the end, the verdict was that I am still pregnant according to my urine and blood tests. But the doctor warned me that I may very well be in the process of having a miscarriage; it's just too soon to tell.

I cried at the thought of my baby falling into a clump in the toilet. I was advised by multiple people to save the tissue so that it could be sent for lab tests. And then I cried at the thought of fishing her out and holding her in my hands.

I have been given instructions under what conditions I should return to the hospital. Otherwise, I return to my prenatal clinic Monday to give more blood and urine samples to find out if I am still pregnant. Now all I can do is wait.

I am so unhappy. And numb. I feel like I have failed.

The rain is coming down hard now.

March 17, 2011

My porn skills are apparently being under-utilized.

More and more frequently, I am noticing folks coming across my blog via google searches for topics of a graphic sexual nature. Recently it was "how to lick my husband's penis" from an interested party in India. Quite regularly, it is "grandmother swallows" from all over the world.

What the hell?

I mean, sex is good. I have spent years teaching and conducting research on sex-related topics. I have even been known on one or two occasions to have sex (but only in the dark in the missionary position with someone I love). People can look up whatever they want, of course, but how are these things bringing them to my little narcissistic, self-indulgent corner of the web?

I feel certain I've never written about any of these topics. Perhaps I should start--maybe this is the shift in career directions for which I have been searching.

I feel certain Ivan will have other ideas about the merits of such an endeavor.

March 15, 2011


We are okay, but that was a kind of primal fear I've never known and am not eager to experience again. After everything was over, we could not hear the baby's heartbeat. My midwife kept soothing me that this was perfectly normal for 11 1/2 weeks, and that I would see her with my own eyes during the ultrasound on Friday and would feel so much better.

Oh, I hope.

I want to sincerely thank the folks who wrote to check on me. Your concern means more to me than I can express.

More of my usual blather soon.

March 13, 2011

Weekend of worry

Things happening that shouldn't be happening. A call to the doctor assuaged my concerns yesterday, but today things have escalated. I am anxious. I am noticing every twinge. I am trying to be calm.

Doctor tomorrow.

March 8, 2011

Wherein I begin what will surely be more regular mentions of my lady-parts

Knowing that boys read this blog, including my father (Hi Pop!), I'll try to go easy on the vagina talk. I'm not trying to give anybody nightmares or anything.

Today I had 1 of 3 doctor appointments this week. This one was with a midwife at my prenatal clinic. Well, actually I saw TWO midwives--one of them was in training. I really, really loved them both. We began by talking forever. Nothing was left out! Every aspect of my body and mind were covered. I had a list of questions and concerns, and we went through each and every one in great detail. We even pondered the nasty head cold I am currently sporting from every angle. Then they proceeded to poke, prod, and examine every square millimeter of my body. Again, nothing was left out. I just finished some antibiotics for a UTI, and now the antibiotics have caused some yucky side effects. Ick. This issue was dicussed and dealt with. Prescriptions were filled. I also had a flu shot and blood work.

What I am REALLY excited about, however, is what is coming up March 18: my first ultrasound. I elected to undergo some optional genetic testing that is no risk to the baby just so I could have an extra ultrasound a few weeks sooner than the first one they are already planning. I can't wait! It will quite possibly be too early to tell the baby's sex, but I don't care. I'm dying to see her swimming around and to glimpse her little heart beating.

I came home exhausted and congested, and was grateful for the hugs and offers to make dinner that I encountered. Ivan also kindly trekked out into the drizzle to Walgreen's to get me tissues and the cold medicine I was given permission to take. What was supposed to be taco night turned into yogurt, bananas, and kiwi for dinner, but the best part came last: armed with cold medicine I slept for *3 1/2* hours! I am hoping for more of this delicious elixir known as sleep in the very near future. Like, in the next 10 minutes.

March 7, 2011

Idiots and granola-crunchers

Recently I complained about some of the ladies that annoy me on I still visit the site regularly, though. I think that talking shit to the computer is theraputic for me when I can't sleep in the middle of the night.

A popular feature of the site is the ability to ask questions of other expectant and new mothers in an open forum. I do learn things on here--some I didn't even know I wanted to know and some that make it impossible to imagine eating for the next several hours given the degree of detail they go into. But one popular line of questioning involves variations on the question, "Do you think I could be pregnant?" Here is an actual message someone posted:

I have a friend that hasn`t gotten her periods just yet. She is never late and have her period marked every month. Her boobies are sore as well as her nipples. she has been off the pill for the past 8 months. Do you think she could be pregnant? Its hard for me to say as I never got any symptoms at all and found out late in my pregnancy that I was. Please help

What is your major malfunction? Take a pregnancy test! Some women say they don't want to "waste a test." What are they? Made of fucking gold? Take a pregnancy test!

In other news, I recently watched a documentary called, "The Business of Being Born." It "explores the history of obstetrics, the history and function of Midwives, and how many common medical practices may be doing new mothers more harm than good." In general, I have always imagined giving birth in a hospital and having an epidural, but wanted to educate myself about other ways that giving birth might look. I have already gotten comments like, "You want a home birth, right?" and snotty advice from women who haughtily state that "a natural birth experience" (i.e., without my much-coveted epidural) is the only conceivable option.

Well, I feel like I know more after seeing this documentary and that I am getting increasingly sensitized to important issues to consider, but I still feel like I want the hospital and the epidural even after viewing and considering.

I had a friend who had her first child about three years ago, and decided she wanted a doula. When she went into labor a few weeks early, she and her partner called the doula who was out of town and unwilling to return. She assured them that she "probably wasn't in labor" and advised her to "light a candle and take cleansing breaths." So they went to the hospital. This is exactly the kind of hippy bullshit I want to avoid.

March 5, 2011

This battlestation is operational.

I felt the baby move for the first time today. I felt the baby move!

It was the strangest and most wonderful feeling. I was lying on my side trying to take a nap, and I began feeling these tiny, delicate flutters. It felt like butterfly wings, or like a tiny fish swimming around. My little fish.

I felt her again tonight, and it makes me smile uncontrollably.

At least now I have an excuse.

My formerly squishy belly is taking on a new and unfamiliar firmness.

March 3, 2011


"...And I really hope he has someone in his life right now who can make him feel a little less judged by this giant, jeering audience..."


No shit!

At 10 weeks of pregnancy, I am reading that Fetus Marie is the size of a small plum. Now we're getting somewhere! She's lost her tail, her fingers and toes have separated, and her tooth and taste buds are now forming. She also intensely desires hot cinnamon candy.

I threw in that last part.

A few weeks ago when I had some time to kill in the Outer Sunset, I browsed in a small candy store. The sight of most of it didn't do anything special to me, but at the very end of the aisle, my eyes fell upon what seemed to be the loveliest sight:

I bought a few ounces of them. Oh, holy Jesus, did they taste divine. I've never been a big gummy candy fan, but I cannot stop thinking about these goddamn cinnamon bears. I've tried to fight it. I certainly don't need to be eating all that sugar--especially now--but oooohhhhh.... During a few moments of weakness, I found a website that sold them and just looked at pictures. Then I very responsibly closed the page and tried to forget. But I could not.

So I just gave up ordered 5 lbs of the damn things. I'll probably need to turn custody of them over to Ivan so that he can allot me a daily ration. At least until I freak out and hold a knife to his throat until he gives up the stash.

It's been a rough fucking day.

This week, the website advises me that I may find myself "feeling moody" and "getting distressed easily."

Uh, you think?

March 2, 2011

A few things in no particular order

1. Brooklyn. Huh. I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

2. Lately I have been worrying that I am going to have twins. This is followed by worries that I will have no baby at all. I'd really like to relax about this stuff. I'll be happy with just one healthy one.

3. My friend and her boyfriend are moving to Portland, and I am sad. I haven't gotten to hang out with them for a couple of months, but they're a lot of fun and they live in my neighborhood and I will really miss knowing they're nearby. I was so eager to see them off, apparently, that I showed up for their going away party tonight a total of 10 days early. (Idiot.) Since I was all made up and at the bar, I pulled up a barstool, ordered a cranberry juice, and chatted with a few folks before turning around and going home.

4. At about 1am, I lay in bed thinking about my grandparents. This actually happens quite a lot. I was the first grandchild, and I was remembering how my grandmother always told me that after I'd spent the night with them as a baby, my grandpa would keep my tiny undershirts under his pillow so he could smell me when I was away. I'm not sure anyone has ever loved me so much before or since. I miss my grandparents so intensely that at least once a week I cry for them. I think I might always.

5. On Thursday, I am most likely going to meet Ivan's mother for the first time. I am nervous about this. She was incredibly kind to me when I wrote to her a couple of weeks ago.

6. My erratic sleep habits are really starting to become a problem. I have a doctor appointment later in the week that I really think may help me with that.