Unanswered Questions

DSC_0102Five years pass and I finally decide to file for a stillbirth vital record for my son. The thought of seeing it officially recorded on paper has kept me from doing it before now. It makes it too real. Makes it hurt too bad.

So I waited.

But I found myself in the county office getting another document Tuesday and decided to bite the bullet. I filled out my form, handed it to the cashier and walked out of there with my records.

The employee printing the certificate said it was nice that I gave my stillborn baby a name. She meant well, but her words rubbed me the wrong way.

“Yeah, he had a name, a crib, a car seat, etc.,” I replied. “Oh and he had a knot in his umbilical cord too.” Then I showed her a picture of my perfect, beautiful baby boy.

Of course he had a name. He is real and he is mine.

I didn’t want to look at the “Birth Resulting in a Stillbirth” certificate in front of the employee so I waited and pulled it out in the elevator. I took one glance at the thick, colorful paper and sighed.

They spelled my sweet little baby’s name wrong.

So back I went to the office where I was told it might be too late to change it. The hospital may not be able to change records back that far. If the hospital’s medical records department can’t do it then I’ll have to file for an amended certificate and my husband and I will have to sign notarized paperwork.

All for a paper stating that my third son died before he was born. Uggh.

Sometimes things like this hurt my heart.

It’s been more than five years. To be honest I am doing really well with my grief. Probably because life keeps me busy.

But then there are moments like when I see his name spelled wrong on his certificate that sock me in the gut.


Or when I see cute little kindergartners heading off to their first days of school. It would have been Luca’s first day of school.

It didn’t hit me until I saw photos of darling little five-year-olds in my Facebook news feed, ready for their first day. I love seeing back-to-school pictures. I posted several myself of my boys. But I can’t help wonder what Luca’s photo would have looked like.

Instead of a cheesy grin in front of his classroom with his teacher, I got a picture of some glue and pencils next to his headstone — things that may have appeared on his kindergarten wish list.

What would his first day of school have been like?

What would it have been like to take him to his first class?

Who would his teacher have been? What type of backpack would he have asked for? Would he have clung to me like his oldest brother or smiled and waved me goodbye like his second brother?

Would he know how to spell his name?

My mind is filled with questions about what might have been. Questions that I can’t get answered. And I’m sure I’ll have what-would-he-have-done? moments my whole life — especially on milestone days.

Like days when he would have been joining his brothers at the local elementary school.

But for now I’m going to keep trudging along. Keep cherishing the things I do have.

And I’ll work on getting his name spelled right on his stillbirth certificate.

Maybe it’s time for whoever entered it in wrong to go back to school.

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. talkincurly
    Sep 03, 2015 @ 09:15:11

    This makes my heart ache! I wish you had your little Luca with you too right now. I’m sure he is seeing the thoughtful ways you remember and honor him and smiling. Thanks for sharing your feelings on this dear friend, even though it hurts so much. 😦

    And seriously, it’s alarming how many people are unable to do something as simple as copying a name from a paper that is usually right in front of them! Especially when it’s a name on an official document. They should be required to check and recheck and have 5 other pairs of eyes look at it. Can’t even tell you how often my name gets misspelled….alllll the time, Grr!


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