Here I am once again. 28.5 weeks pregnant. sitting in the space of distant disbelief that labor (and a child) is coming while feeling the obvious discomfort of 3rd trimester pregnancy.
Yes, we are expecting our third little one. well, really, our fourth.
I think its taken me so long to write here about this pregnancy because it's almost like if I started to write, I would be forgetting the one that came before it. In November, we conceived. I was incredibly thrilled. It was fall, and beautiful. For 4 weeks, we held in our excitement, trying to refrain from telling everyone we knew. This baby felt full of hope and happiness. We just had moved into our new place in southern NH, started to get grounded and it felt like the perfect event to christen our move. I never expected to lose this little one.
Early in the morning on December 3rd (Noah's birthday), I woke up in the dark feeling cramps and warmth. Immediately, my stomach lurched and I ran to the bathroom. Sitting there, watching the redness swirl, tears stinging my cheeks, it wasn't a question. I knew I had lost the baby. The irony of welcoming a baby 5 years prior and losing one the same day felt cruel.
Even though we knew each other for a short time, the grief I felt shook me more than I can explain. The miscarriage was painful. It felt rushed as if it were shoved under the rug. It was Noah's birthday. I couldn't let it out. I cried in the kitchen when the kids weren't looking. Every trip to the bathroom, I wondered if that was the time my baby was flushed down the toilet. I confided in a few friends. Just knowing that others knew helped. Bryan cried with me when I woke up in the middle of the night reliving the intensity of that two days of "labor". Laboring to let go is something I hadn't stopped to consider before.
As the days went on, the space in my chest felt hollow and numb. I was aching for this little one. Intuitively, the strong sense was there that this baby was a little boy. It's almost as if his presence was hovering over me at night. Wisdom and peace.
Bryan and I didn't talk really about trying again. I googled fertility after miscarriage maybe a hundred times. It wasn't that I wanted to replace the baby. I just realized how much we wanted to add to our family. Somehow I knew instinctively it would happen again soon. During this month, I grew closer to Bryan. Spiritually, I needed his strength. Our day to day lives didn't change, but I clung to him because it felt that he was the only one I knew could empathize with the sense of loss I was experiencing. The baby had been ours.
Christmas morning, I took a pregnancy test. I knew it would be positive. The tiniest, faintest line appeared. I tried to tell Bryan without really telling him...I knew that he would be angry that I had taken a test earlier than my missed period. We were trying to protect ourselves. If we didn't know, we couldn't be hurt when my "period" came. We didn't talk about it until New Year's Eve. Officially, I had missed my cycle, and the tests all showed dark lines. Cautious waiting. Rejoicing didn't quite happen.
This time, morning sickness took hold and didn't let go for 15+ weeks. There were nights where I sobbed because I truly felt like I was dying. The. worst. constant. nausea. I took unisom to sleep at night. There were days where I was throwing up trying to clean up my own vomit. Looking back, I'm not sure how we all withstood it. Bryan and his mother did my dishes, cleaned, fed the kids and generally carried me. We waited until 12 weeks, 3 days (after a dating ultrasound) to tell the kids. It wasn't until I saw my baby on the monitor that I truly believed it was real. The tiny heart beat, arms and legs, spine, everything intact, hiccuping. Me, crying and shaking on the ultrasound table from bittersweet relief.