On Friday i posted a long tale of some of my medical issues, specifically gluten-free/celiac issues. One of the responses to that was about Kaylee. (I want to state here i know the comment was not intended to be cruel or cause me pain. I believe it was made with the kindest of intent.) I lost Kaylee at 10+ weeks & have mentioned her fairly frequently in this blog. She's even more on my mind than ever as Mother's Day is this coming Sunday, & the 26th is the 3rd anniversary of her due date. She is also mentioned here because these are things i can't say to the general public. People don't understand & don't know how to respond. So i've learned to keep my mouth shut, but it is posted here.
I didn't really understand the comment which was that i'm being hard on myself over Kaylee. ??? I was writing on celiac vs. gluten-intolerance. Kaylee was mentioned only in passing (i thought) because i started on the gluten-free track in order to be healthy enough to get pregnant. But i understood enough to be shattered, broken, & cry uncontrollably. That continued on & off for the next 18 hours or so. Now, i've written this before, but i reiterate: i HATE crying. At least, i hate when i cry.
But a number of things were happening as i was crying. First, i knew she was right. I have known for some time that i need to let it go.
When i first had the miscarriage i was sad, unhappy, disappointed, etc. etc. Duane & i both cried. But it didn't seem to effect me all that much. I'd heard stories of women who had miscarriages, even very early miscarriages, who were so decimated by the loss that they couldn't function for weeks or months. I remember thinking, "It didn't hit me that hard. It wasn't so bad." I wasn't being critical of the ones who had such a hard time afterward, just thinking that it didn't effect me that way.
However, as time has gone on i'm finding it harder & harder. I made the assumption that because we had conceived once we would conceive again. It just was a matter of time & waiting. But that has not happened. I am currently trying to accept that we may not ever have children.
And, as i was crying i found myself crying, "But she is all i have! She is all i'm ever going to have. I'm never going to be a mama. She is ALL i have." But i know, i know, i know i have to let go of it.
I don't know how.
I don't know how NOT to think, "Kaylee would be three now." "Logan is 2 months older than Kaylee would be." "Kaylee would be able to wear Hailey's hand me downs." I don't know how to stop my brain from that track.
Neither do i know how NOT to think, "Today is day 13 of my cycle." Or "In another week i would be 2 days late. Maybe i can test then." I don't know how to stop "trying." How do i stop being aware of what is happening naturally every month? I DO NOT know how to stop my brain from following these tracks. I would guess this is why i've read that women who have children after infertility still have "infertility mindset."
Also what what going thru my mind is how that i am accused - by myself - in this statement. I've been meaning to write before, but sometimes folks tend to take a "you" & "us" mentality. I've struggled with this some because i read blogs of loss, but the loss occurs when they have other children. So my thought tends to be, "But you HAVE children!" (I really don't like this about myself. I'm sharing my bad.) I KNOW that loss is loss & that losing a child is always heartbreaking. If you had 20 children, losing one is still painful. Losing a loved one is always heartbreaking. Shoot, losing a pet cuts deep. So the comment was an indictment of me in the way i think of others & the pain others experience it. It was pointing a finger at me for lack of compassion of the pain others go thru.
Where was my beloved husband in all of this? Well, he had gotten a new video game . . .
But i didn't want to tell him, especially when i was crying. He tends to be protective of me & i knew he would be critical of the person's comment, or of my blogging in general. (He is a guy after all, & he wants to "fix" it for me or make it go away, & sometimes that means the simplest - but not the best - way to make it stop.)
So on our way down the hill today i broached the issue. (We are so blessed to spend 4 hours a week together this way!) I told him i didn't know whether to talk about it or not. We haven't talked about the baby issue very much because, what is there to say? It is not happening. We saw a reproductive endocrinologist & decided that was not the path for us. So time has gone by.
So we talked about it today. Neither of us cried. But we are both heartbroken, in much the same way. It is hard for both of us to see little children, especially the cousins of any children we would have. Duane finds it difficult, too, that we lost our baby when her heart was still beating, for no good reason except she implanted in the wrong place.
I can't say much about that conversation because we didn't say much that is important, what was to say? But we shared. And we talked a lot about contentment & wanting "the next thing." As a whole, i'm pretty content. Love my husband, where we live, our house, our church, friends & family. I'm wondering if we did have a family what i would "want next."
And something Duane said sparked something in me. We don't pray together much. (Now i've just horrified the strong Christian Women who read this.) We always pray together before meals. (We didn't do this in the early days of our marriage. It has grown.) I suggested spending the next 31 days praying together, but the focus of our prayer to be on the things we are grateful for. Prayers of thankfulness. And the hope that doing this will either give us direction in where we are to go, or will help us come to terms with childlessness.
I'm still struggling to come to the point i can accept i am not a mama, & i'm not likely to be. I will probably still mention Kaylee when i feel the need. But the comment, even tho it crushed me, helped me to take a couple more steps toward acceptance. And for that i'm very grateful.
This is a quote from The Road Less Travelled, which is a quote from a book called "Trying Again." It rather sums up the feelings i've been having.
"My body betrayed me when it failed to sustain my baby. Now it's failing me again by not giving me another chance at pregnancy. I am very afraid that Katie was my one shot at motherhood and I blew it. What an awful feeling to be so close [emphasis mine here] to something you've wanted for so long, only to have it snatched away, with no reassurances that you'll ever have anything like it again. With every passing month, I feel my hope of having a baby slip further and further from my grasp."
I don't intend this blog to be primarily about infertility & loss, but that is bound to come up as that is some of what is happening in my life. So, i've swept up most of the pieces, but there may be a few shards left around i step on.