This has been like a pebble in my shoe and I'm going to try to shake it out here in a way that won't make me come back and delete this post later. I never want to regret what I write or what I say. But, for a while now, this has been a place for me to get the ugly out...and now it's time to take advantage of the space.
We were done. We had given most of the baby stuff away except for the stuff we thought might be "heirlooms" for Sam (or the stuff that had been recalled for safety reasons). I can't speak for Steve, but pregnancy was the LAST thing on my mind that fateful April Fools Day. Yes, April Fools Day was our conception day. Quite the hilarious joke, no?
I love this baby and have done my damnedest to "bond" with this baby. I dream of holding him (alive) and rocking him and nursing him and adding him to our family. But the simple truth is, this baby was not planned. This baby was...in simplest terms...an accident. In fact, I think I might go so far as to say I didn't want this baby at first.
So when people tell me how "brave" or "strong" I am, I feel like a complete and total fraud. It wasn't bravery or strength that got me here...It was an accident of biology and timing. But I'm not supposed to say that, am I? I'm supposed to be sensitive to all the women who would love to be in my shoes...finding themselves unexpectedly pregnant (even facing an uncertain future). I'm supposed to honor the memories of my two dead babies...and be excited at the prospect of expanding my living baby's future by adding a little brother to his life existence. I'm not supposed to say that the thought of facing this pregnancy, on that morning when the digital said "pregnant," made me want to run in front of a very large bus.
Let me be clear...I never contemplated hurting myself in any real sense...it was just that feeling that ANYTHING would be easier (and more worth my time and effort) than another pregnancy. Also let me be clear that I never wished the BABY away. If I could have had a magic fast forward button to the finish line at that very moment, I would have pushed it without hesitation and welcomed this new baby without a doubt or a moment of hesitation.
But the truth is there is no bravery...no strength. Just me accidentally pregnant and maintaining my breathing every day because I love my son and my husband and this baby in a way that means I have no choice. I wake up every day and check to make sure the baby is still alive, I do my kick counts faithfully every day, I stick myself with injections and lancets in an effort to "do something..." But there is no bravery or strength here at all.
In all truth, it hasn't been that hard. Maybe it's BECAUSE I didn't make the choice in this? Maybe it's because I figure I know how to deal if it all goes to shit? I really don't know. I expected to be a mental case by this point on this roller coaster. And I do admit to having my irrational moments. But for the most part, I have distracted myself with normal things like eating and shopping and actually dreaming about a happy ending.
Another blogger friend of mine wrote about her mantra during her subsequent pregnancy...
"Most babies live."
I've sort of taken it as my own and repeated it so many times I think I may have convinced myself that it is applicable to me. Maybe I'm just fooling myself and I'll wake up tomorrow in another nightmare. But for now, it's easier to live in the happy dreams. I have to wonder, though. What does that make me? I mean, in all honesty, I SHOULD be a mental case. History shows this is the risky part of pregnancy for me. But yet I go shopping and buy little baby clothes and talk about Thanksgiving as though things will go according to plan and this baby will be here with us...alive and healthy.
The doubts do creep in as I write this. As if I have some universal power to jinx things by simply giving voice to the thoughts in my head. I know better. But still...I might have to delete this post anyway.