Friday, January 28, 2011

Three Little Birds

This post as been simmering for quite awhile.  I've made references to our three little birds many times before, and I'm finally ready to tell the whole story. It goes something like this...

As most of you know by now, we have lost three babies on our journey from Carri & Lou to "Four Schneiders." We had two early, first trimester losses - one before Josie and one after. And then we lost Camille in the second trimester after a year of trying to conceive, and that just about broke us.  The morning after we said goodbye to Camille, there were three little birds on the ledge of our condo downtown. This was unusual because, while we had our fair share of pigeons in the city, three random birds on the ledge was a rarity. Instantly, these three little birds became the way we symbolized and remembered our three little babies.

To add to that, we are huge Elizabeth Mitchell fans. No strangers to Bob Marley either, we've always loved Elizabeth's rendition of "Three Little Birds" on the first CD of hers that we bought.  The thing is, that CD ("You Are My Little Bird") was the only thing that calmed sweet Josie and that song has always had special meaning.  The first time I heard it, with teeny tiny Josie in her carseat behind me, I just sobbed.  I was so grateful (and so hormonal) and Elizabeth's daughter is singing along with this little tiny sweet voice, and I just cried and cried. We listened to that CD more times that I can seriously count and every time it got to that track, I always got a big lump in my throat. I'd think about that first day in the car when Josie was so small and I'd think about the day when she would eventually add her own little voice to the track. And then, one afternoon, it happened. Josie was old enough to sing along and her tiny "Don't worry about a thing, Cuz Every little thing is gonna be alright..." came floating from the backseat. And I wept again. The distance between the first time we heard the song and that moment had passed all too quickly.  By then, we had started having trouble conceiving and I took great solace in hearing sweet little Josephine remind me that everything would in fact be alright.

There have been other "three little bird" moments as well. For example, after each loss we looked for a way to memorialize the tiny life.  After the third loss, I was shopping on etsy for a way to remember the three babies and found this "three little birds" necklace that instantly felt right. I emailed the seller to buy it, explaining the significance to me and our losses and she shared her own personal story of infertility and loss and we remain friends to this day.  Here's the necklace. The crystal is a peridot for Josie's birthstone. And we will add another one for the new baby. :)

Yes, those three little birds have provided me comfort lots of times - and in the strangest of ways.  When we developed a bloodclot in the placenta at 13 weeks with this pregnancy and faced a threatened miscarriage, we were sent to specialists at Good Samaritan Hospital. We sat in the waiting room, extremely nervous to find out if we were losing our fourth baby. I went into the bathroom and would you believe - of all things - someone had put three little bird stickers right on the "specimen cabinet." I had to laugh at how funny of a coincidence it was, and just how hilarious that those little birds showed up in such a silly spot. And, in that moment, I knew everything was gonna be alright.

And it all came full circle later when we went to Chicago for Lyla's birthday. Elizabeth Mitchell and her daughter hit the opening notes of "Three Little Birds" at the concert, where we were sitting with The Austins in the front row. And here were the tears again, as I sat there and rubbed by pregnant belly and held my big girl Josie and looked over at my sister with Lyla and Michael with tiny baby Jack.  And again, I knew it would all be alright.

In fact, it's become somewhat of a mantra around here. In the darkest moments of this pregnancy, I had to remind myself: "There are only three little birds." I have no doubt that these little birds will continue to make appearances to all of us for the rest of our lives - in one way or another. And for that, I am grateful.


FourAustins said...

Now that is something special! I love you sissy!!!

Anonymous said...

THanks for sharing, it brought tears to my eyes. Laurie

Roger said...

What a beautiful story and a moving way for me to catch up with you and your growing family. Wishing you all the best. Roger

Brandi Dryden Horvat said...


That is such a beautiful story. I have also had very difficult pregnanies. My son was born at 26 weeks and spent over 3 months at MVH with many complications including 3 surgeries. It took me 8years to try again. 2 years ago I had my daugher at 33 weeks. Both pregnancies were spent on bedrest with many scares and nights in the hospital wondering if my babies would survive. I am very blessed to have 2 healthy children.
Your story was very touching to me and I am so glad to see that you are nearing the end of your pregnancy and all is well with you and your little one. Good luck with everything.

Anonymous said...

Hello, i came across your blog when i was searching for a "three little birds" necklace to honor triplets that I just lost in miscarriage, which has been very tough. I can't seem to find that necklace on etsy anymore. Do you remember the seller/store that you bought it from? Thanks!! Heidi

Unknown said...

Hi Heidi. Thanks for your comments. I am so so sorry to hear of your loss. The necklace came from Cameron at Create Beauty Daily. Even if the necklace is not in her Etsy shop, I'm willing to bet she could still make one for you. Check out:
All the best to you!!! Carri