I was feeling a little weird having so many comments to our "big announcement." I always thought there were lurkers and such around here, based on the statcounter...but now...
It was kind of freaking me out at first.
But then I got this email from a woman who lost her baby in October...
You handled yourself so incredibly well at work the other day and I admire you for it. I had a similar day at work the same day and the next day when I was dragging myself back to my accounting firm I thought of you. I have only read a few entries and wanted to thank you for sharing your feelings. I also wanted to let you know that you helped another person not feel so alone. I hope tomorrow is a better day for you.
If you have experienced a stillbirth or miscarriage, please know that you are not alone. For too long, mothers and fathers have been expected to just pick up the pieces and move on, quietly suffering from the sadness so as not to make anyone else uncomfortable. To you I offer an open invitation to lurk anytime. And be sure to check out the links in our sidebar. I hope tomorrow is a better day for you too.
My biggest fear at the moment is that people will expect me to be "better." I mean, I AM better to the extent that time has softened the raw edges and made the pain a bit more bearable. But being pregnant is a fact that I can barely get my mind around at this point, let alone having it be the magic fix for all my sadness.
In fact, the nightmares are worse and the crying is deep and mournful again. I feel like I need to apologize to Alex over and over and over again. There he is, dead, under a foot of snow...and here I am...but what am I? Happy? Excited? Unable, at times, to differentiate between what was and what is? Yes, I'm so far-gone from reality that sometimes I actually think to myself, "Maybe this is my chance to get it right...to fix it." But reality is there, ready to crush that thought when I let the delusion fade. It won't be fixed. Alex will still be dead under a foot of snow.
And what am I supposed to feel about the potential new baby? I don't believe it will ever be born. I don't. With Alex I was just so sure. And with this potential new life I'm so far gone to the opposite end of the spectrum that I don't even recognize myself. I don't see my life with a baby in it...with two living children. I get to the end of the pregnancy in my dreams and I see no baby.
Now don't get me wrong, I have hope. I just don't believe. It's like the hope of someone who says, "maybe we'll get a miracle," but knows the cold hard facts that make it so unlikely that their wish will be granted. And in a way, I guess that's what it is, after all, isn't it...a miracle? Actually, it takes a convergence of a million miracles to end up with a living baby. And I'm just finding it hard to believe that I'll get that lucky ever again. Who am I to ask the universe for more than I have already? Didn't I learn my lesson the last time?
OK...so maybe my biggest fear isn't how other people will expect me to be...but how I expect me to be...how I expect my life to be...how the universe plans my life to be. I realized, after commenting on someone else's blog, that I stopped asking, "why us?" I don't know when or how it happened, but somewhere along the line, I stopped asking "why" and started asking "now what?" It's doubtful the universe/God/whatever is going to drop the answer to the "why" question in my lap. And even if I do happen to get an answer, it's doubtful that any explanation offered would satisfy me. So it's best that I don't torment myself with that particular question anymore. At some point I accepted this as it IS...my life. And now I need to figure out where to go from here (to the extent that those decisions are within my control).
But this means I have to really think about my own expectations. I KNOW a new baby isn't going to "fix" things. But I also know that the same things hold true in my life that led to our conceiving Alex in the first place. Our family doesn't feel complete. Maybe it never will now that Alex is gone. But we still have love to share with another child. And Sam still wants a little brother or sister to play with. I have to remember that Alex is gone but the rest of life remains. And closing ourselves off to the possibility of love in any form just can't be a good thing.
But it still feels a little weird...Saying goodbye to one dream and hello to a new, but very similar, dream. I hope this one ends better.