Category Archives: Sadness

Good Boys Deserve Favor Always/A Cow Eats Grass

Or as the third chair cellist in my middle school orchestra put it: A Cow! Ew Gas! That wouldn’t leave my mind as I thought of this poetry challenge….The bass clef mnemonic. I will try again. I don’t do lyric poetry:

A boy cries, Don’t eat fine grub!

He isn’t joking: kind lemons multiply,

Not over pie, quarks rustle slowly,

Through underground vents, while xenogeneic yeomen zigzag.

I would go through the list of blogs from which I got this, but just check out Slouching Mom for the list if you’re interested.

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We went to a wedding last night that featured karaoke singing. I of course didn’t get up and sing. But I did become overly exhausted by just sitting in an uncomfortable chair for almost 4 hours, and once again felt somewhat guilty for failing to be a chatty pregnant woman. I wish I would have the chance to discuss anything BUT babies and pregnancy yet somehow the protruding belly makes that difficult. At soon as I arrived, people began coming up to me, crying “Oh!” or as one guy we haven’t seen since he moved across the country said, “Nice!” (as much to Josh as to me). I thought I might try to revel in the attention as if I were any old pregnant woman. That worked for about five minutes.

I don’t mind people touching my belly, really, at all. I don’t want to compare notes on pregnancies or children. And yet of course they are preoccupied by my pregnant state if I haven’t seen them in months or years or we don’t know each other well at all. I’m preoccupied by my pregnant state and I’m stuck with myself all the time. I just always hope that being social will allow me some time for distraction but instead it puts it in sharp focus.

I’m making the wedding sound as if it were awful, but it was fine. I just want people to be cooing over a baby in my arms, not my belly.

Today, I have been pregnant longer than ever.

Triggers

I’m going through old notes to get prepped for writing my new chapter. I came across the notes from one book, that I remember very well that I was reading as I lay in bed in June of last year, unable to sleep because of my contracting uterus during the miscarriage. So I’d have a few minutes where I could read, and then even longer minutes of agonizing pain during which I might or might not drag myself to the bathroom to see what the hell was going on. Not a very good memory and I’m having a little trouble with the notes I later took from the book. While I laid in bed, I had a little piece of paper I was tearing up, making page markers out of. I don’t remember when I transcribed the passages from which I wanted notes. Clearly not that day. Fortunately, I don’t think it’s that important of a book.

So now I feel fairly miserable. I rarely think to myself that I ought to have a 9 month old infant now, because that memory has been so subsumed by the loss of Natan. I feel so much more strongly that I ought to have him. Like I’ve said before, I just kind of accept that loss as a painful, but inevitable event.  But when I see references to “your childbearing year” I can’t help but feel an angry, “You’ve got to be freaking kidding me.” I saw some crazy public service announcement on TLC the other day that suggested only a selfish woman would have trouble giving up coffee and alcohol for that “very short time” she’s pregnant, and my pregnancy book tells me I might very well miss being pregnant. And, people we know are suggesting we’ll be unable to accomplish much on our work once this baby arrives. Again, I say, you’ve got to be freaking kidding me.

Now I’m not actually lamenting my lack of wine with dinner. I’m lucky to be pregnant. I’m grateful to be pregnant. But this hasn’t been a “very short time.” By the time this baby arrives, if I’m lucky enough to carry him to term, I’ll have been pregnant enough months to practically birth an elephant (an exaggeration only by a few months). My doctor gets it. You all get it. Dr. K is very conscious of how damn hard it is to have gone through three first trimesters, two second trimesters, a miscarriage, and the death of our son in a very short time. Losing Natan didn’t make my uterus or my stomach muscles return to their never pregnant state. Part of the reason I’m going to contract a lot in this pregnancy is that my body “remembers” labor last time. Oh that’s nice, could someone remind it that that was the WRONG decision last time? Well, that’s what we are doing with the progesterone, and it’s working and I’m in love with whoever thought of trying it out first. And when I do get up to walk, I’m limping, because my left hip hurts from all the time I’ve spent leaning on it.  I will happily deal with that issue when the baby arrives.

I’m aware of the risk of postpartum depression. I’m considering talking to Dr. K or a psychiatrist about a preemptive round of an.ti-anx.iety meds for that period. And I’m definitely prepared to go to counseling at any instant.

But, and here is where I know I may hear of lot of protestation. To the folks who think we aren’t prepared for the difficulties of managing work with a baby, all I can say is heaven forbid they ever have to try to get back to work without the baby. Now those are some tearful and sleepless nights.

We’ve talked and thought a lot about strategies for helping each other stay productive with an infant around. We both have no obligations other than writing and caring for him and each other.  All of this of course assumes that the baby is born healthy, without a need for significant NICU time or other physical demands. But given that ideal situation, I think we’re going to be fine. Not because we’re naive, but because if anyone in this world has thought about what it means to have a living baby in the house, it would be us.

What to say

When Msfitzita first commented on my blog, she said she wished the losses had stopped with her Thomas. It’s been almost three months since Natan was born/died and over three months since I went into pre-term labor. It still seems so present to me that it seems impossible that other couples would have already had time to lose their infants. We should have been the last. But then it occurs to me that given statistics, I wasn’t even the last on the day Natan died. It was early in the morning on January 3rd, so there was time for probably seventy other babies to be born still or die in the US on that day.

I wish the deaths had stopped with Natan. What a funny thing to say, since I wish the losses had never started in the first place. I can’t bring Natan back, and at this point, we can’t bring back the babies who’ve died since. But while wanting our babies back might be wishful thinking, wanting the losses to stop is hope.

[This post was inspired by my stumbling onto “Vegetarian Mom with a Vegan Baby” and realizing her Birdie was born two months after Natan. Why why why]