The other day I did something that I've been wanting to do for awhile now. I felt that I needed to be closer to my lost baby. I needed to feel sad, even if it was just for a few moments in my busy day. Does this make sense? I've been so busy since the holidays as I'm sure so many of you have been also. We returned home a week ago, quickly unpacked and then just went out of town for a few more days. Then we should be back home for a bit. Busy, busy, busy.
So, laundry, unpacking, re-packing, cleaning, dishes, pouring through 3 weeks of mail, bills, etc. It was all on the list. But what hadn't been on the list for awhile and something that I felt was missing was thinking of my son who left us almost three months ago. Laundry--check. Unpack--check. Re-pack--check. I even have taken time to fret about getting pregnant again. How can I not find time for that? Buy pregnancy tests--check. Buy ovulation tests--check. Track everything on the calendar--check. Cry when the pregnancy tests come back negative--check. Try to be positive and optimistic again--check. But where is Jacob in all of this?
Even though he was just a 13 week old little fetus in my belly, he was still my baby and a part of me. For that reason I spent some time late at night two days ago meandering on the Internet. I pulled up my favorite song...it's a new song I heard the night of my D&C. I won't post the link now but I will closer to the 25th--the anniversary of Jacob's passing. After watching that video and crying for a bit, I skipped around to other YouTube videos that grieving parents had posted. I cried for these parents too. They shared their stories of hope, of loss and of love. They shared their photos. They shared their grief.
Needless to say it was a night of tears as I remembered my loss. It almost felt fresh again. I thought of my pregnancy. I thought of my ultrasounds as I looked at the pictures of other babies including one poor little baby who died an hour after his ultrasound. I thought of my Baby Jacob. I cried for him.
I find myself in new waters once again. These have me treading guilt a little more often than I'd like and I'm trying to understand how to deal with these feelings. Follow me for a moment. When a couple miscarries they experience a horrific amount of grief. But the simple act of trying again and hoping for another child helps to settle that grief just a bit. I've been so focused on this. Our first three months following my D&C have had me very focused on trying again to conceive. We were given only three months before returning to the doctor. And then only three more months until seeing a specialist. Good grief, it makes my stomach fill with knots to just think about it.
But then this is where my guilt comes into play. Is my desire for another child overshadowing the feelings I have for losing Jacob? I don't know if this is making sense. Suffice it to say that I think I have felt guilty over focusing so much on 'trying again' and not on Jacob. Now I don't think I should be sitting in a cloud of sorrow every day, please understand that. I just...I don't know. I just missed my son and wanted to grieve for him again. I think I will periodically. All of my tasks and to do lists, all of my hopes for getting pregnant again will be there definitely. But I think I will feel better and heal better long-term when I allow myself to feel sad from time to time. And not just sad when I see only one stupid pink line on a pregnancy test either. I want to feel sad for my lost child--for my baby who I know is laughing amongst the angels. I want to think about him and to dream about him. I think it helps.
This is uncharted territory for me and I feel like I'm chopping a path through it as best as I can. That means that sometimes I'll be happily distracted with the day-to-day busyness of life. I might be making a snowman with my family and teaching my hubby how best to construct our jolly fellow of snow (he's a first time winter resident!). I might be playing Lego's with my boys. I might be pursuing my writing hobby and trying to take it to some sort of freelance career status. And of course I'll be tracking the days to spot our 'windows'. Then I"ll be fretting the closer the time frame gets to 'the end'. I have nicknamed it as 'the end' because in some ways that's how it feels to me but more on that later. How to afford fertility help should we need it? Ugh. Definitely don't want to think about that right now.
But somewhere through all of that I will work to keep Jacob nestled actively in my thoughts, not just in my heart. I've got lots of memorial projects planned to help me do this as well. I can't wait to get started on them.
For now I give myself permission to be sad and to cry for him when I need to. Or better yet, when I want to. Wow. That almost feels liberating. To know that I have a right to feel how I need to and when I need to I hope will lessen some of the guilt that I've been feeling. There is no prescription for how to handle a miscarriage. How wonderful it is to know this.
I truly believe that each of us makes our own path through pain, challenges and trials...especially through times of sorrow. My journey continues with my precious Baby Jacob in my heart. Oh, how I wish I could see him...just once. I still pray that God will give me a glimpse of him in my dreams. Sometimes I think I see a fuzzy picture of him in my mind. I hope that's a picture God is sending me. If it is, I hope that it becomes more clear. And boy, I hope that Jacob can see his mama smiling up at him.
I am thinking about pulling Jacob's ultrasound pictures out. I haven't looked at them since early November. Yup, I might just need to do that. As I drift off to sleep tonight, you can bet I'll pray again to see my son...and if a few tears escape and land on my pillow, that's okay. I might just go to bed with a smile on my face.
Until next time my friends, I hope you have good days ahead. But if there are some days full of tears, trust yourself to cry when you need to and for as long as you need to. Who knows, it might just help in the long run.