Oh man, oh man, oh man. I'm really nervous about this ultrasound tomorrow. I'm also excited, though. Like a little-kid-birthday-Christmas excited. Oh, but I'm nervous. I didn't have any tests early on--I'm completely dumb to what is going on in there, except that this kid moves a lot. I don't think that I'm going to be able to sleep tonight. Oh God, I hope that everything is okay.
I'm writing from my new/old laptop! This is the laptop that I couldn't touch when my husband first got it. Okay, not really, but I had to touch it very carefully. (Did that sound dirty?) That's a cool thing about having a husband who's works in internet stuff--I get his neeto hand-me-downs.
Yesterday was Memorial Day and we went to see Nate and Tom's dad, buried in the same cemetery, a few spaces apart. I've said before that they're in the Missouri Veterans Cemetery, so yesterday was a madhouse. But it was neat. They had the flags out on each grave, flags on flag poles everywhere. Family had already been to both graves, and we were the last ones there, probably. I hadn't been there since his birthday and God, I hate that so much. I hate that I can only go there every few months. Makes me feel like a shitty mom. I cried the whole way there, I cried there, I cried on the way home. It's like I spend my days with my head in the sand, but thinking of him at least every other minute, working on his garden, talking to him. And I'm okay with this. I'm just not used to seeing his headstone yet. It is the ultimate reminder. He's not missing. He's not coming back. Someday I might bring other children here and this is how they will know him. On a Memorial Day a zillion years from now, I'll be an old lady taking flowers to my baby that I can't even remember anymore. He's not coming back. I can't go there and just be sad and miss him. I'm overwhelmed by this new life, which at this moment seems entirely too long, one that I didn't ask for. It's panicking. And that's why I hate going to the cemetery. But maybe if I went more often, it wouldn't be so hard.
Here's a weird thought that I've been having. I've been pregnant for the last 17 out of 24 months. I like being pregnant (good thing), but I'm having an impossible time imagining what it will be like to actually bring home a baby. I'm only able to think in the moment, but I can't think of the end. It doesn't make me freak out or anything, in fact I'm kind of neutral about it. I mean, I'm not thinking about losing another baby--my head won't let me go there and I'm not pushing it. But it won't let me think about bringing a baby home, either. It's like, "You're pregnant right now, and that's all you need to know." Well, in my head it seems weird. Writing it out, it seems like a self-preservation mechanism. What do you think? For those with sub. babies, was there a point where you could think past being pregnant?
p.s.--thank you so, so much for your advice about the doppler. I am taking it to heart, for sure.
I have been around, honestly. I read everyday--I've just been having trouble signing in lately, so I haven't been posting or leaving many comments. I also feel like a wrung out sponge, physically and emotionally. It's been hard to think of things to say, even though I think a lot about all of you. Anyway...
I went to the doctor on Friday. This was my first four-week-wait between appointments and it was way too stinkin' long a wait. And my doctor won't let me get a Doppler. Unless I really, really want one. He says that it's like trying to monitor your own blood pressure, but it seems to me like everyone I read about that has one doesn't have a problem finding the heartbeat. I guess that he doesn't want me to freak out needlessly, but I've been freaking out for 17 weeks so what's a little more freakiness? I don't know, I may still work on this one.
So, back to the appointment.... We had an extra long wait this time and Tom had to leave before the doctor came in to talk to me. Fortunately, the nurse came to do the Doppler before he left, so he got to hear the heartbeat which was 165 bpm. (Nate always had a faster heart rate, so I guess there's no telling if it's a girl or a boy at this point. I've been thinking "boy" pretty strongly, but I had very vivid "girl" dreams last night--so we'll see.) It took the nurse longer than normal to find the heartbeat, which of course made me cry and Tom said, "That's why you don't need a Doppler." Whatever. Anyway, blood pressure is still good (which is something I'm going to worry about through this pregnancy) and I've only gained four pounds so far, go me !
Any time I have to go to an appointment alone or Tom has to leave early, I always cry and feel like I'm going to climb the walls. That place completely freaks me out. I was in the middle of pulling myself together and blowing my nose when the doctor walked in and made a huge deal about me having allergies and what I could take. I just went along with it. "Oh yeah, my allergies are terrible." (I don't really want to jump, screaming out of the window. I'm totally calm.)
He measured my fundus height for the first time with the tape measure and I'm measuring two weeks ahead of schedule. He said that's normal for a subsequent pregnancy and that it's a good thing. My only question for him was, "Can I fly at 22 weeks?" because we're going to Florida in June. He told me that it's a fine time to travel and said that it's later in the pregnancy when it's not advised. "Anyway," he said, "if something goes wrong, there's not much that can be done at that stage. And there will always be other pregnancies." His last sentence just hung there--I was so shocked that he, being a high-risk OB, would say something like that. My first thought was, Oh shit I thought you were cool. Yes, there could be other pregnancies, I'm evidence of that, sitting there pregnant after losing two babies. But it's also another funeral. It's another who-knows-how-many months of me hating my body, hating God, hating everyone and forever missing another child. It's not just, "Oh well, I guess I'll just pull up my big girl panties and try again." I should have said something to him. I always say that and I never say anything to anybody.
I feel like I've been so hyper-sensitive lately, like I'm regressing. Everything that is remotely baby related makes me uncomfortable or makes me cry. Things people say that I would normally shrug off, are really upsetting me. For example, at a neighbor's party this weekend the hostess came up to me and said, "Hey Laura! Still pregnant?" To which I replied, "Yeah, I seem to be." I know that I'm being sensitive, maybe it's hormones, but I don't think that you should say something like that when you know that the person has had a loss or losses. I so much don't want to be one of those women that people are afraid to say anything to for fear of setting me off or making me cry. I don't know.
I need to write more. I'm out of practice and my writing is sucky and disjointed, and I'm trying to fit way too much stuff into one post. Oh yeah--my "big" ultrasound is one week from tomorrow! Stay tuned!
The little dude or dudette is moving around in there! And don't tell me that it's gas, people. I know gas. I've been feeling it pretty often, especially for this stage, which makes me wonder if this kid just moves around like crazy or it just my big, saggin', baggin' uterus that makes it easier for me to feel. I felt Nate at about 16 weeks and he was very sweet and considerate the whole time. No kicks to the kidneys or anything. Hmmm, I wonder what this one will be like. It makes me sad and excited at the same time. ((sigh)))
Today I was running some errands and thinking that I should go out to the cemetery and see Nate. I haven't been since his birthday and I really should go and make sure that there aren't any old, gnarly arrangements left there. And then, like always, I become sad and angry that I even have to go to the cemetery. I didn't go.
When I got home, I checked the mail and along with the Compassionate Friends newsletter there was a mailing from Huggies proclaiming, "Play it Up! Your baby is 15 months old!" Fuck you, Huggies. Irony is such a heaving bitch.
This blog sucks. I haven't been writing not because I'm pregnant and I've moved on or whatever. I'm just really having a terrible time. I made it past that 12 week mark and into the second trimester (either yesterday or two weeks ago, depending on who you talk to), and I'm so excited about that. But now I'm already dreading the third trimester. I feel like there is a bomb strapped to my belly. I'm going to be tiptoeing through this entire pregnancy, however long it lasts. And that's the scary part.
Being pregnant makes me feel closer to Nate, but miss him more at the same time. If this baby gets here, I wonder if that will continue? And that makes me wonder if I'll ever be happy again? Is everything always, always going to be bittersweet? Will there ever be a time when I can say, "You know, I'm just completely happy right now" even if it's just for a moment? What a way to live.
Lately, I've been inundated with the "Is this your first?" question. Probably ten times already. I always say "no, it's my second." I don't volunteer any more information than that, if it stops there, fine. I usually doesn't though. "How old is your first?" they ask. "He would have been one in January. He died a few days after he was born." Then I watch the blood drain from their faces. I don't care. Honestly, it would make me feel a whole hellava lot worse for a long time to not acknowledge Nate just to spare their feelings for a few minutes. My very favorite response to this is, "Oh. It was meant to be." (Pat, pat on my arm.) We've all heard that a million times and I just don't understand this ham-fisted attempt at comfort. Why wasn't it meant to be? Was God sparing the world from something horrible? Was Nate going to be a serial killer? An evil scientist that developed some Ebola-like virus and would have killed scores of people? Was he saving Nate from a violent and painful death at some point in the future? Why wasn't it meant to be? That's crap. Utter crap. Keep your crap to yourself.
Other than being a complete nut, things are going well. My doctor has taken me off of the two week appointments and now I'm going to go every four. I go back on the 18th and then he's going to slip me back in two weeks later for the "big ultrasound" at 18 weeks. The plan is to do an amnio and c-section at 37 weeks. He seems extremely optimistic that the abruption was just the worst luck imaginable and it won't happen again. Lately, though, I've become convinced that something was overlooked in my pregnancy with Nate and no one is telling me. But that they are going to keep an eye out for this mystery thing and catch it before it happens again. I think that I had preeclampsia. I really do.
I've got a couple of posts swirling around in my head, so let's see if they actually make it on this blog anytime soon. I'm not trusting my track record lately.
I'm a 33 year old professional flutist married to an accountant and living in southern Missouri. I lost my son, Nate, to a placental abruption at 40 weeks. Hope was found and lost again with a miscarriage in September 2006. On October 18th, 2007, Nate's little brother,Ben,
arrived safely. I'm learning to be a mom to two boys--one here and one there.