This isn’t how I hoped things would turn out. We didn’t get our miracle.
Yesterday, we said goodbye to Baby #2.
I was hopeful. I really was. Not perfectly faith-filled, but I prayed and believed God could do this. And I was asking Him to.
But things didn’t turn out that way.
My appointment yesterday (which was postponed from Monday) started out like all the others…into the sonogram room, my home away from home, it seems. The tech started the internal scan. I saw the sack right away, so I was initiallly hopeful (but I don’t think I ever really know what I am looking at). Maybe? But then she said, ‘We have an issue.’
Deep breath. Here it comes. I wasn’t able to speak, but thankfully, my husband took charge: “What is it?”
“I don’t have a heartbeat.” Just like that. All this build up – the weeks of praying, agonizing, crying, wondering, worrying, laying it all out there – it was over.
Then, she began to point out a few things on the screen to J. I was just watching silently, somewhere between numbing myself, trying to keep myself from being swallowed in grief and hopelessness, trying to save face in public. All I could manage to get out was, ‘Did it grow since last time?’ She shook her head. “No, the same size. Actually, a little smaller.”
She took a few measurements, J asked some questions, and she pointed out a few things to him in response to his questions. Then she left us, telling us to take our time in the room before coming out. Then, no more acting. I just started crying – couldn’t even speak. I just felt like I should apologize to J. He was great – comforting, reassuring, praying. Me? I just couldn’t believe this was happening. Again. I had really hoped. I had really thought this time….
I was lost in space somewhere, waiting to meet with the doctor, avoiding eye contact with everyone in the waiting room. When we met with him, he was kind and sympathetic but couldn’t really offer us much explanation at this point. But at our last visit, he already began the blood work-up and testing for us. The rest would have to wait until after I was done with this pregnancy. Thankfully, we were able to start the testing right away, after this miscarriage, my second; I know a lot of people have to wait until they miscarry three times first.
He assured me that we would do our best to get to the bottom of this. I didn’t know this, but it turns out that not only is he a fertility expert, but he is also a miscarriage expert. That lifted my spirit just slightly. We were in the right place
I went on to ask all the usual questions: Was it from the Clomid? (No, that is a myth). Could we eat better or improve our health? (No, that wasn’t the cause). Was it something I did? (No. Nothing like that). So, again, we are back to waiting.
Of course, there were more tears in the parking lot. More tears in McDonalds, as we went to kill some time before I went back to work. And more tears throughout the day. (Yes, I did go back to work. I just didn’t want to be alone with my reality; working somehow made this less real – I could at least try to escape it for a few hours.) But of course, as is becoming my habit, the real tears were on the drive home.
So here I am (again). Left to contemplate the past month. Yes, really – it is has only been one month. One month since I found out I was pregnant. It all just went downhill that fast. I barely had one full week to enjoy it, before there was any ominous bad news.
I don’t really know how to put into words what is inside. I alternate between numbness, resigned acceptance, frustration, anger, disbelief, confusion, incredible sadness, disappointment – and even waves of hopelessness. I know all of this will pass.
Just not today.
When I let myself think too deeply, it just becomes to painful to consider. I know I will get to all of those truths that keep me from sinking and hold me together.
But maybe not tonight.
I want sooooo want to go down that ‘it’s not fair’ and the ‘why’ and ‘why me’ road. I want to ask, ‘Why does everything have to be so hard? Why can’t anything ever be easy? Like it is for everyone else? Why do teenage girls who get knocked up by their boyfriends and don’t want the baby in the first place get healthy, easy pregnancies? Why do these things never happen to them?”
But even in my present state of mind, I know that line of thinking is futile. It’s not about what is fair and what isn’t (as if any of us have the proper perspective on that). This is life in an imperfect world. These things happen. But it is just hard to understand. I don’t think it will make sense right now. I think the understanding will come later (if ever).
And I don’t really think that trying to understand is the way to go at this point. I think it is just about grieving, letting myself mourn my loss, letting myself be sad.
I know all the truths that will hold me up and are still true, no matter how I feel – that God somehow has a plan in this and sees why this was the best outcome, that God promises to work everything for good (even this), that my mind has no idea how God is working this into a wonderful, eternal good I can’t even imagine.
But knowing this doesn’t really make it hurt less. Those truths hold me up, but right now, they don’t really take away the pain. It doesn’t make me any less sad that half of our family is in heaven, and we will never get to meet them here on earth. But for some reason, knowing that there are two of them up there together makes me miss them more. What would our little family have been like down here? And I am sad that I will never get to know that.
I know that God understands my feelings. He gets me. He gets women, He understands what my heart is feeling. But I admit that I feel a little bit like Mary – how she didn’t even want to come out and see Jesus when He finally came – after Lazarus had died. She was upset that He could have done something to save her brother – but didn’t. And even though Jesus knew He would raise Lazarus from the dead, He still cried with her. Even though I know that He has a glorious plan still to come out of this, I know He is with me in my sadness and my broken heart.
So that’s kind of where I am. Sad. Coping. Trying to get through the day without thinking about it. Getting hit with a tidal wave of emotion when I get home – when I let myself think about. Trying to act like normal. Trying to keep myself from sinking into a pit of sadness. Fighting the temptation to be bitter.
Sometimes I almost feel like I am succeeding. But then I remember why I have this nagging, weighty, boulder-in-my-heart feeling. Oh, yeah…that’s why.
The good news (and bad news at the same time) is that I have been through this before. I know I will get through. I know life will return to normal. I know that God will see carry us through this. I know God will give me the right perspective. I know joy will return to my heart.
But it just might not be tonight.
(Photo Credit: Walt Stoneburner)