Wednesday, March 9, 2011

More to Say

My thoughts regarding our recent loss have been all over the map. Since I am unable to sleep again, it must be time to start writing.

I have alluded several times to the near dissolution of my marriage. What happened is this - in January of 2008, my husband came to me and admitted an affair. I'm not going to go into the details of what we went through here, but it is pertinent to how we acted and reacted for that entire year. We immediately began to start picking up the pieces and repairing our lives. In fact, we began a sort-of manic campaign to become a perfect family. We began marriage counseling. We started trying to have a baby. We bought this house in May of that year. We just started moving and picked up speed and refused to stop.

Just as we began the moving process, I had a miscarriage. Almost the same circumstances as this time. Some vague symptoms led to a positive home pregnancy test. The miscarriage started just days after we found out. I was 7 weeks pregnant. I told myself and everyone else that it was no big deal, and I picked up right where I had left off. I kept up, and even stepped up the pace.

We painted one of the rooms in our new home as a nursery in hopes of babies to come. I can't even remember now if we painted it before or after our loss. Since we didn't have a baby on the way, it ended up filled full of the things that couldn't find a home in other rooms. We shut the door and only opened it to add more junk. I never talked about the miscarriage again unless I was filling out medical forms.

The thing about grief, is that it doesn't go away when ignored, it just waits. It hangs out in your subconscious and maybe even festers a bit until you either deal with it deliberately, or accidentally create a space for it to poke through and force you to deal with it.

For me, it came flying out through a crevasse opened just a month before Lily Ruth's birth. I came home from a weekend away with my Mama. Don and I were separated, and continuing to wound each other grievously. I had fled in hope of some breathing room. I returned home to find that even though I had specifically told him that I was about to re-paint that room, he had come in and finished the nursery in the style that we had originally begun it. All I could see was a monument to a baby that I had been unable to bring safely into our family, and a room full of 'nobody listens to me'. I raged. I screamed. I ripped the (newly installed) chair rail from the walls and hit other walls with it. Then I went out and bought paint, and with permission from my doctor and help from my loved ones, proceeded to cover the room (and myself) in Spring Green.

When that was done, I took some time to sit still and talk to myself about the baby that I had lost. I even told Lily Ruth about the sibling that had paved the way for her - without it's loss, she never would have been able to show up when she did.

This time it's different. We're different. Our family isn't in peril. We're better than we've ever been, and that makes a big difference. I'm being more mindful. I'm trying to be present and to honor where I am and what is happening. It's just hard. I can't lay around contemplating life all day. Hell, I can't even loll about contemplating my belly button for 10 minutes. I have a beautiful, healthy daughter who needs and deserves my attention. I have a family who needs and deserves my best. I'm up. I'm moving... slowly...

Losing a pregnancy this early on is weird and hard and awful. Most of the people that know you aren't aware yet since it's too early. You've barely had a chance to emotionally acknowledge what is happening, but your body is changing so fast that it's scary. By week 6, you're already puffy because digestion has slowed down. You're uncomfortable because your uterus is closing off and stretching. Your blood volume is starting to increase, and your hormones are already WAY out of whack.

There's also a strange emotional limbo. I know that the baby was still poppy seed sized. I know that a miscarriage at this stage is incredibly common. It's hard for me to reconcile the facts with my need to grieve. It's also hard for anyone who hasn't experienced this to understand why I'm still sad.

When you miscarry, your body doesn't just immediately feel regular again. It takes time just like after birth. Your baby is not yours to keep, but your body still pays the price. It's not fair. It sucks. It hurts.

We already know that patience is not my strong suit. I want my body back. My non-puffy, non-achy, body. I want my emotional control back. I want to stop snapping at the man who loves me. Good thing he has thick skin.

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