Friday, October 31, 2008

Moo Cows

4” of snow at the Farm. It’s not even November. Mother Nature firing a shot across the bow. Time is marching on.

Cold nights, falling leaves, and SNOW tell us that time is marching on while Baker is forever a newborn in our minds and hearts. It’s soothing on the one hand to know that the earth still turns on its axis and we’re revolving around the sun, moving into shadow for a few months, but on the other hand it’s a cruel reminder of the life that Baker doesn’t get to live – the ghost costumes he won’t wear, the mittens he won’t lose, the snowballs he won’t throw.

He’s forever a baby, our baby, stuck in the suspended animation of his interrupted life.

We’ll put the Farm into suspended animation for a while – draining the pipes and making the old place weathertight against winter storms.

It’s a place apart from our everyday lives where we can think of Baker unencumbered by routine and obligation. At home we think, “Would Baker’s room be warm enough?” “How would it feel to be working part time?”

At the Farm I can think about him at another level– the spiritual level, the universal level. I see my boy in the sunrise and hear him in the rushing brook; I feel him in the wind that rushes up the valley and sweeps under the door, and I laugh at the Holsteins at our neighbor’s farm and think about Baker “mooing” at his cow friends.

Monday, October 27, 2008


There is a road,
no simple highway,
between the dawn and the dark of night,
and if you go,
no one may follow,
that path is for your steps alone.

I included this Grateful Dead lyric in my high school yearbook, and at the time, it was just a favorite line from a favorite song and I thought I was being “deep” by quoting it. In the pre-dawn hours Saturday, as I was driving north on Interstate 89 to pick up a brush mower, the song came on the radio and practically pushed me off the road.

I had been mesmerized by the fog rising from the cold valleys, and the intense magenta sunrise, and the steel blue silhouettes of the Green Mountains – the little sliver of Camel’s Hump that sticks up, and the panorama up through Mt. Mansfield – familiar strangers from better times in my past.

I hadn’t heard the song in years, and it hit me between the eyes – “this is your life!” “This is the new reality.” The old me has been replaced by the new me, the me without the boy, or with the memory of the boy, his spirit in the sunrise and in the morning fog.

We don’t choose our road, and we don’t always get to pick our traveling companions, and some of them get lost on the way, but we keep moving along. I woke up Saturday night after the storm had passed – windows leaking, branches falling on the roof, wind howling – and the stars had come out. I could see the silver maple out the window pure black against the bright starlit sky, and I thought of the Universe and of Baker in heaven and was sad because he should be nearer to us than that. We like to call him our spirit baby, and hope that his baby spirit is with us on our road – if the path is for my steps alone, I hope that’s because Baker is in my arms.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Walk to Remember

We attended this event on Sunday,, held as part of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. There were probably 300 people, including many babies and small children born to bereaved parents, remembering over 150 lost little ones. We cried and walked the steps that Baker will never take.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Cousin Gabby

The whole universe is sad.
I'm gonna miss that little dude.

--Gabby, age 8

Happy .5

Today the boy would by 6 months old, a pudgy little pumpkin. I'd be home with him, probably taking him on a long walk in his stroller, introducing him to blowing leaves and to the first chilly air of the season. Might almost be time to break out Aunt Steph's chunky knit hat to keep the ol' noggin warm.

Instead, we find ourselves with empty arms, looking for something to love, and setting our hands to work on another stage of our lives. We bought the farm (!) not to fill Baker's unfillable void, but rather as a place of refuge and renewal where through the process of restoring the old house and bringing the land back to productive use, we may create a space to remember our boy, and welcome family and friends to gather.

There is something timeless about the work that lies ahead of us. We are preparing the house for winter, in much the same way that the original inhabitants did 208 years ago. We'll mow the fields once more, and we'll try to seal out the cold and wind as best we can. A new roof will go on, and will offer protection to a frame that was cut from timber on this very land, and has survived the decades and generations, settled, skewed, and weathered, but strong.

I imagine those people who came before us and lived in this tiny house, the babies that were born here, those that didn't make it, and whose memory is erased to history. Like them, we have no choice but to find a way forward, grieving our lost boy, carrying him with us, and fixing the roof.

Happy .5, Baker.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Birth follows death

We sadly announce
The birth and death
Of our beloved son
Baker Christian
April 3, 2008
7 pounds, 11 ounces; 19 1/2 inches
Interment took place on April 12, 2008, followed by memorial services.
As we cling to the dreams we had for Baker--dreams of any new parent--we cherish the memories of our brief time together, knowing they must now fill a lifetime. We are grateful for your support and understanding as we move forward--always loving, never forgetting.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

It's official

Chris and I are now proud owners of Lazy Cat Farm, bought in honor of our beloved baby.