Saturday, October 04, 2014

Capture Your Grief--Day 3

"Before"

I don't even know where to start with this one.  Sometimes I feel I have to go way back.  Way back to before I had any kids.  When I was so naive.  When I didn't know that things could go bad.  That babies die. Because I've always felt that it's not fair when children die before their parents.  At any age!  It just seems to go against what's right in the world.

I remember being pregnant with Katryn, and my friend lost her baby.  We were due around the same time.  Looking back (because hind-sight is 20/20) I realize what  horrible friend I was.  I was so selfish, and didn't give her the support she probably needed.  I actually see that in many aspects of my life 'before'.  And even now.  But we're all growing and changing, right?  We're all hoping to become better everyday.

It was probably when Martin was born that it really hit me that things CAN and DO go wrong.  Too often.  Many people don't bring their babies home with them from the hospital.  I remember reading Martin's chart once, while we were hanging out in the NICU, and seeing the first sentence the doctor wrote about him right after he was born.  "Infant male born blue and unresponsive".  The shocking feeling I had at the point is hard to describe.  It was a realization that my little boy almost didn't make it.  There was a very real chance he wouldn't be here.  It was terrifying to realize how close we came to having to say goodbye to him.

After all of that, and Martin's "aftermath" as we like to call it (y'know, the O2, the feeding tube, the RSV, the years of therapy...." I felt I could handle anything a pregnancy could throw at me!  We thought we had dealt with it all with him.

Turns out there are things much worse than what we went through with Martin.  Much worse. Our eyes are definitely opened to reality, and we are fully interested in those 'there's a small chance' situations because those are where we tend to find ourselves.

Sometimes I do miss the before me though, the one who didn't cry at a drop of a hat at random things.  That's a little hard to deal with sometimes.


1 comment:

  1. Your family has gone through so much in such a short amount of time; it boggles my mind.

    You were so, so supportive during our little Benjamin trial, which was so easy compared to what you went through with Martin. It was hard for me to not be angry when people tried to sympathize who I didn't think deserved to sympathize. You know, the people who would say, "Oh, we were in the NICU for three days after so-and-so was born. It was awful." And I'd think, "Oh, was it awful? Because my baby is a month old and is STILL in the NICU. But thanks for trying."

    But now that I'm out of the trenches, I'm a lot more sympathetic of anyone spending any amount of time in the NICU. Because it's always scary. Does it really matter if you're scared for a day or scared for a month or for a year?

    I had a similar situation with this recent bout of infertility (I feel comfortable calling it that because we've been TTC for a year after about a year and a half of lactational amenorrhea (which is a fancy way of saying: breastfeeding infertility)). The very first person to comfort me when I broke down at church was a friend who recently had a miscarriage and who had been suffering from infertility for several years (her oldest, and only, child is eight). And then another friend reached out to say they know how hard it is because they had to try for seven months for their first one.

    At first I jarred at that comment because seven months isn't the medical definition of infertility, but then I realized that not having a baby when you want a baby is just plain difficult. My feelings of disappointment aren't any stronger, I don't think, the longer this goes on.

    Is it sad that it took me this long to realize that my trials in life are valid...and so are everyone else's?

    Sometimes I feel like I'm a slow learner. :) But maybe that's because my life has been too wonderful. My trials have been my greatest teachers. Apparently I still have a lot to learn.

    I'm so glad you're blogging again. And I admire you for tackling such a heart-wrenching project. I love what you're sharing.

    I believe there are holes in our hearts that will never be filled; and I don't think we'd even want them to be (because who would want to "move on" from such a beautiful baby like Kale?). We simply must learn to live and function with the holes, and while I don't share your particular holes, I love what you're sharing about your journey. This current you is wonderful (even if she cries a lot).

    Thank you for teaching me about grief.

    ReplyDelete