Angel Baby

I can still remember how excited I was.  I ran like a little girl to my husband holding the pregnancy test that confirmed we were blessed with baby #2.  I immediately made appointments, changed my diet, and prepared my life for entry to the family of 4 category.  I told my 4-year old and read him books about the baby inside of mommy and all that it would mean for our family.

I spent my days reading blogs, joining mommy groups, and collecting all of the items I had saved after my son was born that would now belong to my new baby.  I saw the heartbeat at 6 weeks and heard it at 8 weeks. My husband, despite my protests, told everyone he knew immediately; even the people in line when we went grocery shopping.  My belly grew larger every day and I could not be more excited.

In the weeks between my 8 week ultrasound and my 12 week visit, I was so anxious.  I just wanted to hear the heartbeat again, wanted to be sure that all was well.  In those 4 weeks I planned our future.  Finally my 12 week appointment rolled around and I dressed in my cutest maternity outfit for the occasion.

Then, there was silence.

The doctor looked at me and said, “I am sorry, but there does not seem to be a heartbeat”.  I saw my baby lying lifeless on the screen and I felt my world start to collapse a little.  My head was spinning and I only saw the doctors mouth move as he told me what the next steps would be.  They brought my husband in, and as he held my beautiful son in his arms, I told him that we would continue to be a family of 3.

I cried.  I cried a lot.  I removed myself from mommy message boards and joined the healing from loss boards, deleted my baby registry, and hid from everybody who knew about the pregnancy. I found out that many women refer to children they have lost as “angel babies”.  I learned that I was not alone. I decided to miscarry at home naturally.  I suppose it was my way of saying goodbye.  As the physical pain progressed, the emotional pain began to wash away with it. I was healing.

I started to count my blessings instead of my losses. My husband held my hand through the entire thing, probably masking his own grief. He was talkative when I needed a distraction and silent when I needed my space.  He loved me through it all.  My son kissed me every chance he could get and told me knock knock jokes. My mother and my sister called me every day, just to make sure I was okay. With them, I made it through.

In the doctor’s office that day when the heartbeat went silent, my son asked why Mommy was so sad and we told him.  He proceeded to take out his two favorite toy cars and race them on the floor at my feet.  He looked up at me and said, “Did the race cheer you up Mommy, your car won.”

As I think back to that moment, I realize that he was right.

I did win.  I walked out of the office that day with a family when I know some walk out alone.  I was comforted in the weeks after when some don’t ever have that kind of support.  It has been two weeks since that day, but it feels like I took a much longer journey.  This journey showed me how strong I really am, how blessed I have been, that the birth of my first son was nothing short of a miracle, and that love can heal even the most broken-hearted.

R.I.P. Angel Baby.  As Anthony says, “you live in the sky now, with the stars”


Posted by on September 6, 2013 in Uncategorized


Tags: , , , ,

The “N” Word (R.I.P.)

I am done.  I am done saying it, even to provide context.

I am done listening to it, even in my favorite songs.

I am done defending it, those times when I have said “I can see how they turned a negative into a positive”.

I am done with the “n”word in all of its forms.

My 4-year old son was called “nigger” at the park the other day. It was with all of the venom I have seen in sixties era newscasts and movies depicting American slavery.  I cringed and for a few seconds and was at a loss for words.  My son looked at me and said, “Mommy what does that mean”.

I had shielded him from that word his whole life.  He had never heard it in a song, heard it said in a conversation, and never on a television show or in a book.  I had succeeded in only letting the positive in. As tears welled up in my eyes, I struggled to tell him something other than the truth.  I was not ready for him to know what that meant.  I had not planned enough for this conversation.

I am a child of parents and grand-parents who gave me great oral history of civil rights and African-American history.  I grew up hearing the names of Frederick Douglas, Sojourner Truth, W.E.B DuBois, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, the list can go on and on.  I graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in History and Government after spending four years soaking up facts about the history of our people around the world.  I am married to a first generation immigrant from Trinidad & Tobago, whose family history broadened my understanding of people of color and our history.  I watch him everyday deal with being a tall, dark-skinned man in corporate america.  I had even been warned about the great responsibility it is to raise a Black boy into a man in this society.

Still, I was not ready to have this conversation.

He is so small at 4.  He still refers to people as brown, tan, and orange.  He has no idea that people look at him differently and in the future will judge him before he even speaks.  One day soon I will sit down and explain it to him.  I will tell him to never ever use the word or allow it to be used in his presence.  I will tell him that “nigger” is something he will never ever be.  This starts by me letting that word go too.  What we resist persists, what we face goes away.  For too long we have resisted obliterating this word from our speech, music, literature.  So every now and then it rears its ugly head and we see it for what it really is, evil, degrading, and mean.

Even though I know this conversation will have to happen someday, I held my baby that day and told him, “It does not matter what it means, because he was not talking to you”.

A lie I know, and yes I will one day tell him the truth, but I just needed his innocence to last a little longer.

Leave a comment

Posted by on September 3, 2013 in Parenting, Uncategorized


Tags: , ,

This Christmas

Christmas time through New Year’s has always been my favorite time of year.  I love the holiday spirit that takes over everyone and makes them just a bit nicer than usual.  There are more smiles and laughter.  I am not into the commercial side of the holidays but I enjoy going to the mall and watching all the frantic shoppers searching for the perfect or not so perfect gift.  Since becoming a mom I have even got into decorating the house and filling it with the smells of gingerbread and peppermint.  I also enacted a rule that only holiday songs be played, which annoys my husband to no end, but he smiles and bears it.

But, this Christmas…

This Christmas something is just off.  I am decorating more hesitantly, avoiding the malls, and have yet to fill the house with holiday smells. At first I could not figure out what was going on, but it came to me in the middle of the night when I was struggling to fall asleep. I realized that no gift I purchase, no song I sing, nor one twinkling light on the Christmas tree can bring any of those children of Newtown back.  And I want to.  I want to bring them back.

I want a mom to once again tuck in her baby for bed.

I want a dad to have a reason to spend all night wrapping gifts or building toys.

I want a grandma to be able to give those bear hugs that most grandma’s do

A brother or sister to be able to say “tag” or “you’re it”

I want to take the heartache away.  But I can’t.

I can’t bring them back and it hurts.

Besides signing a million petitions, calling my senator, and doing what I can to advocate for gun control, I feel helpless.  I have resorted to hugging my son 20 times a day, giving him 20 kisses before bed, and telling him 20 times how much I love him.  I remember the bravery of those teachers who gave their lives that day, wishing like hell I could do more. Christmas time is supposed to be filled with joy and New Year’s is supposed to usher in a brand new beginning .  But, this Christmas…

26 families have had their lives torn apart and I feel a little strange celebrating all that I have, knowing all that they have lost.

Leave a comment

Posted by on December 23, 2012 in Uncategorized


Tags: ,

Meditation and Three-year Olds

Three year old’s can’t sit still. Not unless you duct tape them to something which no one should ever do.  But neither should we attempt to make them sit still in the first place.  We are embarking on a path as a family to incorporate meditation into our daily routine.  We have the right music, comfortable pillows, mantra’s, and the desire, but inevitably we end up with two dogs chasing each other around a circle of pillows that our three-year old is energetically jumping on.

I am sure that one day we will be surprised by him being able to sit quietly with us but until then I am not sure how much inner peace we will get in this process.  We could wait until he is asleep but most parents understand that when a toddler sleeps you need to take advantage of that time with some sleep of your own.  Besides, he is learning that every day should include some time for inner reflection.  Maybe our example will develop into a more calm child who learns to handle stress in a more productive way.

But back to my point, three-year old’s (typically) can’t sit still.  I have been wracking my brain for a right way to stop my son from being in a constant state of motion when it suddenly came to me; why should I?  I should just let him be 3 and be grateful for the 30 seconds where he actually crosses his legs and breathes with me.  So we have decided to let him be a kid.  We will make sure that the movement never ends in pain or disaster and enjoy his youthful exuberance and energy.  After all you are only 3 once.

Leave a comment

Posted by on August 27, 2012 in Parenting


Other People’s Business

I have recently sworn off reality television.  After years of tuning into Survivor, Big Brother, The Bachelor, Flavor of Love, Amazing Race, and most infamously Basketball Wives and Love and Hip Hop….I quit.  I am not professing to be some newly changed individual who feels that the shows appeal to our base nature.  Not at all. In fact, I miss them.  I find myself tempted to type “VH1” in google search, just to see the bonus clips or even better a full episode.  I have filled my DVR with motivational documentaries and tons of inspirational OWN programming in my attempt to wean myself from these shows I have become obsessed with.

So, no,  I don’t have any lofty reasons for giving up reality television.  I only have one…their lives are none of my business. I really don’t have any stake in what happens between Jen and Evelyn.  I won’t win any prize money like the winners of Survivor or Amazing Race.   Most of all, I can’t won’t get any street cred for picking a side in the Team Chrissy vs. Yandy war.   But you know, I was acting like I did.  I would find myself cooking dinner and wondering if Chrissy would ever really get married.  What!!  Really?!!  Instead of thinking about what cake to make my son for his birthday, or better yet how I could find a way to put vegetables in the cake since he won’t eat them in their normal state; I am actually thinking about someone I don’t know and will never meet.

This did it for me.  I realized in that moment that I have other people’s business to attend to, my own.  I have a ridiculous amount of reality right  here in my life.  I have a sister who just got married, a Mom who finally started to live her own life without constantly making sure we are okay, a husband who just got the job he always wanted and worked like hell for, a son who manages to say something utterly amazing every day, and a puppy who is so small I lose her at least 15 times a day.  I am taking back all of those hours of reality TV and deciding to live my own.  Stay tuned.

Leave a comment

Posted by on February 21, 2012 in Uncategorized



The Ultimate Gift

My birthday is this month.  For years, I have celebrated my birthday with exuberance and invited people I did not even know to share in the celebration of all things me.  This year is different though.  I was unable to gather up the usual zest for my birthday.  Where before I would start talking about it and planning something as soon as the summer hit, this year I had no answer to the question “What do you want to do for your birthday?”

People who know me were shocked at my lack of zeal regarding my birthday, so I sat down to think about what exactly was going on with me.  It did not take me long to realize that this year my birthday just does not have the same meaning it used to.  I have become less interested in gifts and bored with anxiously awaiting a celebration where I was the primary focus.

When I thought about what gifts I wanted, I realized that I have everything I will ever need.  I am blessed and am constantly receiving gifts that both inspire and uplift me.  No party or cake with candles can substitute “I love you Mommy” or “I am the luckiest husband in the world” or even “thank you ma’am, that was nice of you”.  This year I would rather give than receive anything.  Amazingly, the realization that I have so much to give is a gift in and of itself.  It is the ultimate gift.

So I will spend my birthday giving the ultimate gifts of my time, my smile, my joy, my peace, my helping hand and my support to everyone I encounter that day.  What better way is there to spend the day of your birth than by demonstrating that your existence has and will serve a purpose?  Giving the gift of yourself is truly something worth celebrating.

Leave a comment

Posted by on August 1, 2011 in Uncategorized


I am Beautiful

As hard as it is to admit, I have never thought of myself as beautiful.  Even when my husband would say it while staring deeply into my eyes, I did not really truly believe it.  I felt that it was just something that husbands have to say.  I knew he loved me in those moments but me being beautiful?  Ah, maybe.  Maybe on a good day when I wore a nice new outfit or when I had managed to keep my acne at bay, but those times where few and far between.

A lot of things made me feel no so beautiful.  Women constantly compare themselves to the industry standard of beauty and long to be the object of men’s public affections like Halle Berry, Janet Jackson or Alicia Keys.  I am no different.  But to not believe the one person who knows me better than anyone, who cried when he saw me coming down the aisle, and who makes it a point to celebrate me every day; now that is something much deeper.

We all say that we believe the cliché that beauty is only skin deep and that real beauty resides within, but most of us say this out loud while feeling much differently in private.  We spend tons of money attempting to look the part with new clothes, make-up, and the latest shoes and purse.  Would we do that if we really thought that looks did not matter?  Now I know a bunch of women right now are thinking, “I buy this stuff for me and I enjoy feeling good about myself”. Well this is not about that.  This blog is about knowing within  your soul that none of that matters and none of it and I mean none of it makes you beautiful.  Marianne Williamson in her book ‘A Woman’s Worth’ has this to say,

” Feminine beauty is not a function of clothes or hair or make-up….Beauty is an internal light, a spiritual radiance that all women have…The woman that is truly self-aware knows that her self is a light from beyond this world, a spiritual essence that has nothing to do with the physical world”

When I read this, it hit me.  When my husband tells me I am beautiful, he sees something much beyond my outward appearance.  He is seeing all of the wonderful things that make me who I am.  He is recognizing my spirit.  No matter what I am wearing or what my hair looks like; it is my spirit that demonstrates my true beauty.  When someone is out of our physical view for a period of time we remember their spirit, not their shoes.  We remember if they were happy or sad, nice or mean, generous or selfish.

It has empowered me to see myself in this way.  I am beautiful and so are you if you choose to be.


Leave a comment

Posted by on May 28, 2011 in Uncategorized