Missing Someone I Never Knew

I have to make the Blogger’s Apology.  I am sorry I haven’t posted in a while.  A looooong while.  Mostly, I hit a point in life where I was busy and then I was overwhelmed, and then life really decided to be horrible.

In August, my husband and I decided to try for one more baby.  We have 5 kiddos running around here, from the Ballerina, who is 11, down to Little Bird, who is 2.  But hey, we still have one seat open in the Yukon, and the kids have been asking for another baby, and, well, I really wanted a baby.  It wasn’t, oh, a baby wouldn’t be so bad right now.  I wanted a baby as thoroughly and deeply as I wanted a baby 12 years ago when we started trying to conceive our first.  After 16 years of charting my fertility through temperature and mucus signs, I’m pretty dang good at pinpointing ovulation.  We conceived right away in September.

I have a whole list of pregnancy and baby related blogging topics I prepared.  I was just waiting until we announced the pregnancy to my parents before posting any of them. We waited to announce because my stepdaughter is expecting her rainbow baby.  We didn’t want to steal her thunder, so to speak.  A week before our planned announcement, I started to bleed.  Just a little.  It was the Ballerina’s birthday.  The next day, the bleeding was worse.  After blood tests and an ultrasound and a few grave visits to our doctor (who is Little Bird’s godfather), we accepted the inevitable.

I don’t know how to release anger that has no object. The grief keeps bubbling to the surface, unbidden.

Our baby was gone.  And our baby was not just gone, but had been gone for a few weeks before the bleeding started.  Instead of giving my parents a cute card telling them they were getting a new grandbaby for their next anniversary–the baby’s due date–I had to announce a miscarriage instead.

Mom has been there.  She understands.  That doesn’t make it hurt less, but it helps anyway.

Family gatherings and fun pack October: 5 birthdays, trips to the pumpkin patch and corn maze, and Halloween, of course.  This was the first year I walked the corn maze with my oldest.  We walked around, found ourselves back at the entrance, studied the map and plunged back in again.  Twice.  I marveled at her determination to make it through, how she didn’t get frustrated or whiny.  She cheerfully scouted out turns and loops, backtracked to earlier divides, and we finally made it through the whole maze.  We picked out 5 amazing carving pumpkins, and 6 little pumpkins for the table.  Number 6 was a surprise.  The kids didn’t know I was expecting either.  It was a memory as full of pure gold joy as it could be, permanently shadowed with blue sorrow now.

We traveled out of town for my niece’s birthday, held at a roller rink.  The little ones played in a bouncy house and the big ones skated with their grandma and me.  They drank soda and ate cake and enjoyed time with the cousins.  I remember that my nausea was gone.  It was such a busy day, and I couldn’t have managed it if I’d been feeling ill.  Another memory losing its gold.  I felt better because the baby was already gone.  The hormones were falling.

After, I still had to host the Ballerina’s 11th birthday, then the Engineer’s 9th birthday, and finally rally all the kids together for Halloween.  There are small mercies, at least.  We spend Halloween with our doctor’s family, since the kids are all friends.  I didn’t have to tell anyone, again, what had happened.  He’d been the one who had to break the news to me, after all.

I was prepared to be sad.  I wasn’t prepared to be angry.  Not angry at anyone, mind you.  I’m not angry at God, or myself, or the doctors.  (True, I am angry at the company that manages my hospital, because they are nasty bullies, but I would have been angry with them in any case.) I’m just on the fight all the time.  I find myself looking for things to argue about, to nit-pick.  I’m not sure how to handle being angry with no object.  How do I resolve that type of anger?

Speaking about it is hard.  There seems to be so little to say, even though it means so much.  The baby was here.  The baby is gone.

I never met you. I miss you. I will always miss you.

For a week, I dreamed I was looking through my house, all sorts of houses, for something I’d lost.  I couldn’t find it.  In the dream, I couldn’t even remember what I lost, just that it was gone.  I was desperate to find the missing thing.  One night I roamed a maze of a school building through a haze of smoke.  The building was on fire, but I couldn’t find the Engineer.  I couldn’t even find his classroom.  On another night, I delivered a box of yellow balloons to someone.  The people filled the balloons with poison and sent them throughout the city to kill everyone.  I hid, afraid to return home and find my family dead from the balloons I’d innocently delivered.  When I did, the family was fine, except for the dead infant in my husband’s arms.  Grief keeps bubbling up.

Life needs a pause button for the grieving.  We need to be able to turn off the demands for a time, so we can collect the little pieces together.  There is no relief.  Jobs must be worked.  Children fed.  Activities attended.  Holidays celebrated.  A new granddaughter must be prepared for.  I know the darkness will lift, I just wish life would wait until it does before going on.

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