the following post is pretty clunky - it is pure stream of consciousness writing which I have purposely not edited, but which I have written in clumps over a few days. Apologies for it's length and probably it's self-indulgence ... I just needed to get it out.
for thirteen-ish weeks now I have been writing a blog post in my head that was to be published a few days ago. In my mind the post was to start with a slightly blurred black and white image, and the title was always going to be, "my latest creative project". Funny and oh so clever I thought. I was literally busting at the seams to share this story.
unfortunately that post is not the one I am now writing. Instead I have been battling with my desire to share this news and wondering whether it is something I should keep to myself. In the end I figured as I lay in bed wide awake the other night, that I would not be able to post about anything else until i had written this. Added to that is the very 'real' (in an unreal kinda way), connections I have made through this medium to some seriously lovely, kind hearted people who I trust with the fragility of this moment.
my latest creative project was the baby I had been carrying for the past twelve and a half weeks - our early Christmas present due on December 19 (hence, our quick little 'mummy and daddy' holiday recently).
a week and a half ago we went out to breakfast with some friends who are expecting their first baby any day now and as I perused the menu looking for "baby-safe" options I chatted excitedly with my friend about how much she had to look forward to. I couldn't help but feel so grateful in that moment that I only had six months to wait until I too could again experience that crazy, hazy beautiful newborn baby time.
but when we got home from breakfast I just felt weird, not tired, but I still felt the need to lay down - like, really lay down, in bed, door closed blinds drawn under the covers type lay down. I ended up falling into a really deep sleep for two hours and when I woke up I felt this low weird cramping on my right side. I got up and did a few things before going to the bathroom where I found some spotting. And I just knew.
suddenly it seemed to make sense that I had experienced virtually no morning sickness since about the eight week mark and had not really started to show as much as I had expected I would by this stage, especially considering it was my third pregnancy. I didn't tell Jamie about my symptoms until that night and even though he seemed pretty calm I was still fighting this overwhelming intuitive feeling that something was wrong. I called my doctor the next day and whilst she didn't exactly tell me not to worry she said there was not much point coming to see her, especially considering I had my scan scheduled for early the next morning anyway.
waiting for that scan was torture and yet at the same time I didn't want to see what I knew I was going to see. And really nothing could have prepared me for the image of our poor little baby, so tiny and so obviously lifeless. I felt so sorry for the radiographer who would have known immediately what she was seeing and who went about measuring and recording stuff anyway. And when she did the measurement of the heartbeat and the lines just dragged straight along the bottom of the screen I felt my world just crumple in. What followed was that weird business like stuff - getting dressed, having to walk back through the waiting room full of expectant parents trying to hold back my sobs, having to wait to see a particular doctor and needing to make arrangements for surgery in the following days.
I won't go into all the details of the surgery. I'm sure given the statistics of miscarriage there are many of you reading right now who have had to experience the nature of this procedure, not to mention the recovery.
and yet in the midst of all this there have been so many opportunities for gratefulness. My beautiful, thoughtful, kind, strong and loving partner and husband who I know is feeling exactly the same way I am and yet who has had to be the one to make all the phone calls, make breakfasts and dinners, and today has even taken both kids to a party. My gorgeous children who I thought I felt grateful for anyway but who I now think are miracles to even exist. For my parents who dropped everything to come and sleep on our floor so they could be here early on the morning of my surgery. For friends who sent flowers or some soup, or even just the offer of help should we need it. For my sister who came down here to stay for a few nights to help me to look after the kids when Jamie went back to work. And finally for my dearest friend, Antonia who is just my tower of strength and who always knows just what to say, for sending me this message from a book called Safe Passage ...
"We need a grieving room for all of us who are mourning, a quiet, safe place of solace where emotion is sacred and the continual falling of tears generates the energy for our healing. We need a grieving room with thick walls to keep despair outside and hope secure within, and, on the floor, comfortable pillows to remind us to rest."