Stumbling towards hope

Being out in the world occasionally makes me feel like a terrible person.

For example, my pregnant coworker.  I know, absolutely, that it isn’t her fault that I don’t have my baby.  It’s completely illogical for me to feel the way that I do.  The two things, her pregnancy and mine, are separate.  And yet…she just needs to have her baby and go away. I’m not proud of the strength of this feeling.

Four days after the baby shower I broke down and asked a colleague to remove the decorations from our staff room (because she’s awesome, they were gone by my next break).  I couldn’t spend another minute in the shadow of a huge banner proclaiming “Baby Boy!” and a string of blue carriages as I tried to eat a cup of yogurt in peace.  There’s a limit…there’s just a limit to what I can take.

Watching that woman’s physics-defying belly out of the corners of my eyes as we coexist in the hallways, I feel a visceral yearning, sharper than it’s been in weeks. She gets to have her baby boy, and I want mine. I want my son. I miss my son.

Lauren and I are both quietly aware that we’re gearing up for some ouchy days ahead.  My due date will arrive soon, and a few weeks later it will be Christmas.  There’s no acceptable answer to the question of how we will spend the holidays…all of the available options are painful.  We were going to spend them as a family of three, and now we won’t.

And somehow, we’re mustering up some hope anyway.  We’ve taken deep breaths and chosen a new donor  (there is no evidence at all that what happened to Ezra was genetic, but we decided not to risk it.)  We’re going to give it another go, probably in the next few weeks.  It’s the most terrifying thing in the world, to try to choose to believe that we won’t lose again.  To choose optimism in spite of fear, in spite of all the things that happened to all the babyless mamas in my grief group, all those lost children. To choose hope.   We’re trying.  We’re trying to hope.

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About tamarainwriting

I'm a queer, married, child and youth counsellor, in Toronto, Ontario. My wife and I had a beautiful stillborn son and we have an amazing one-year-old daughter. It's a complex journey.
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14 Responses to Stumbling towards hope

  1. CGsaysstuff says:

    Hugs to you.
    I know how much it stings to live in the shadow of the happily pregnant coworker, mine had her baby on my due date. A tiny irrational voice in my head whispered, ‘that’s YOUR baby’. Luckily, my rational brain has a much louder voice these days.
    Thinking of you both, knowing that that upcoming dreaded date will sting and hurt like hell, but hoping that your optimism will ease the pain just a little bit.

  2. Rachael says:

    Oh goodness. I just came across your blog recently and this post just breaks my heart for you. I’m so sorry this has happened to you! I am hoping to follow your journey to a healing place, someday, and a peaceful place. Sending you lots of hugs and virtual cookies from one stranger to another!

  3. Natasha says:

    I am one of those persons who stumbled on your blog. I am married to a wonderful woman, we have a son, and live in Vancouver. I don’t tend to comment. But your posts are heartbreaking and full of courage to continue forward. Blessings on your journey.

  4. lucadorosmom says:

    Hi Tamara. I’m holding hope for you and your wife. We are likely to start in the new year, so we can trade stories soon. I know your pain, I understand this grief. Be easy on yourself, and keep hoping.

  5. I just found you through Glow In the Woods and your story resonated so much with me. My partner and I tried for two years to get pregnant and then lost our twins who were born prematurely at 23 weeks. I’m a teacher, too, and still remember by colleague’s baby shower, held on the day we’d thought our twins would be born. Definitely one of the hardest days ever. That was my overwhelming feeling, too, through the last months of her pregnancy–what I would have given for her to just go away. You are a bit more gracious about it than I was. 🙂 That was, unbelievably, nine years ago. We’ve had three pregnancies and two healthy little girls since then–now 5 and 8! That colleague and I strangely ended up having our daughters in the same class for three years at another school (hers the oldest in class, mine the youngest). It all still seems both like yesterday and like a lifetime ago. Strength to you both in this journey, which will of course still hold many unbelievably difficult days but also, I feel certain in unexpected ways, so much joy for you in days, weeks and years to come.

    • Thank you so much for writing. I’m very sorry to hear about the loss of your little ones. It does me so much good to hear from people who have gone on to have much joy. The loss stays, but the future comes anyway. It’s good for me to hear it.

  6. Jenni says:

    I too found your blog through glow. My thoughts are with you and your wife. My husband and I lost a son (our 2nd loss in 18 months) recently and I too have a co-worker due with a boy in a few months. Thank you for helping me realize that I am not alone in my feelings. I will hold you in the light.

    • I’m so sorry about your babies. You are definitely not alone…I realize how not alone I am more and more each day. There are a lot of us; we’re just not super great as a culture at talking about it. My thoughts are with you and your husband as well.

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