Saturday, May 30, 2009

I See Pregnant People...

The months after I lost Andrew, I saw twins everywhere. They were in the stores- in the park- in our church. When I drove I found myself always behind a 'Twin Camri'- When I shopped I found myself staring at "Twin Packs" of food items.

How I longed to be pregnant again- to feel that way again- and just like 'twins' were everywhere I looked, so were women who were pregnant. They were everywhere I turned. I would look at them and remember that ignorant bliss I felt when I carried the boys. I remember thinking my biggest fear then was how labor would feel- not how losing a baby would feel.

I would watch them, the pregnant people, and part of me wanted to run to them- to tell them- don't be so sure- don't be so happy- Listen to what happened to me! I would watch them shop for clothes and strollers and part of me wanted to run to them- to tell them- don't buy those things- they are so hard to return- it is so hard to have those things when you don't have your baby.

That's how I felt in those early months. I hated seeing twins. I hated seeing pregnant people and I found them around every corner. It seemed to be some cruel joke.

The morning I learned that Baby E was gone and my heart had broken again, we decided to take our children for ice cream. They had seen their parents cry a lot that day and it seemed that something sweet would make things better- at least for them. It was a fall day and we sat licking our ice cream cones and I noticed they were there. Pregnant people. Five cars pulled up with passengers who wanted ice cream and every single one of them carried a woman who was expecting a child.

Again there was that cruel joke- I went back to that raw place- those feelings I felt when I lost Andrew- I wanted to tell them- I was pregnant- I was pregnant just like you- just yesterday...

And then I looked around me-
Three children sat near, enjoying their special treats. Three children close in age. Three children and their mother... me.

Had anyone looked at us, they would have never suspected, never guessed, never believed that I, a woman in my early thirties, had had my heart broken twice by children who left me. I was a member of that secret society of broken hearts and I suddenly looked at the women and wondered if perhaps they were members of the secret club too. But I wouldn't dare ask. Not anymore. I'm healing- but I did wonder...

We've talked about it at meetings. So many of us felt it. Those of us who have been walking this path for some time... We could look at pregnant people and be happy for them. I could look at pregant people and be happy. But as happy as I was for them, I was more sad for me.
I wonder if that's right,
or wrong-
and I think it just
is.
My reality.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Lessons

I have always been a planner. And things in my life have always fallen into place in my time frame.
In college I met the love of my life.
After college I got a job that I truly love.
I had a beautiful, picture perfect wedding.
A wonderful husband, home, dog.
Amazing friends, family, life.
And then I became pregnant and with not one but two babies. I loved being pregnant and it was everything I ever imagined it would be and more. I had never struggled.
Life was good.
I was happy.
I was full.

And then life threw me my curveball.
In a moment I learned that despite all of the the planning, all of the hoping, all of the praying- sometimes life just doesn't turn out the way we think it will- Sometimes it's not the way we dreamed- the way we pictured it in our heads as children- growing up and dreaming about what our futures would be. Sometimes we find ourselves in a place we never dreamed we'd be and it can feel so lonely and so, so dark.

Losing Andrew was the hardest thing I have ever been through in my life. It has been a journey on which I have found myself- And at times I've wondered how I got to this place- to this person that I have become. I had a choice and somewhere along the journey, the path, I chose to listen to the lessons that he teaches me- daily- just through loving him, and knowing him and losing him.

Andrew has:
Made me a better wife.
Made me a better friend.
Made me a better mother.
Made me more compassionate.
Made me more understanding.
Made me more forgiving.
Made me pause-

We should all be so blessed with life's lessons-
If only they didn't come at such a cost.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day

Mother's Day.
I couldn't wait to celebrate it.
But then it was here. And he wasn't. And my Mother's Day was different than I had imagined. I sat in church, with my new baby, a corsage pinned on my blouse. I looked down the pew at my grandfather and he knew. He was looking at my son, tears streaming down his face. He knew. This Mother's Day was different than I imagined.

Was it different for you?

I have met women who wanted to be mothers, but couldn't. Friends who go to church every Sunday, except this one.
This Sunday.
This holiday.
Mother's Day.

And I understand.
Today I stood in church, surrounded by my children, my belly swollen with a new life growing inside of it, but I understood.
I wore his ring,
And I remembered.
I wore his ring,
And I remembered who gave me the new name- Mom.
I wore his ring,
And I remembered the tears flowing down his face.
Because he knew.
And he remembered.

Today I did. And a tear fell from my eye. His ring on my finger.
I remembered how I got here, my journey, his story, and I was thankful.

Thankful for the mothers with children beyond this world, with children who are missed, with children who are loved. Mothers who paved the way for my healing, who have given me strength, who have given me hope, who have given me reason.

And I remembered.

Happy Mother's Day my friends. No doubt your children are watching, so proud of the mothers who gave them life, who loved them, who carried them, and who remember them.

I love you.
I remember.