“There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.”
— Washington Irving
I woke up the other day and as I was laying in bed I was thinking, if I don’t start my period today I will take a pregnancy test, Stacy and I have been trying to conceive for 13 months. We had been getting fertility treatments (more on that process later) and I decided to take a month off, to give my body some time away from the medications. Maybe I will be one of those stories– the woman who gets pregnant after fertility treatments stop?! Maybe it will be like when I found out I was pregnant with Grey, no real symptoms, just not starting my cycle and hoping pregnancy was the reason?! I thought–don’t get too excited. I went to the bathroom and there it was, old aunt flo. Damn, damn, damn! I laid back in bed and I thought that I don’t have to cry about it, I have been through this before. But, yeah – that didn’t happen.
I spent most of the day crying and wondering why? Why won’t my body give me another baby? Having trouble conceiving after loss adds another layer of intense grief to my every day pain. At first, I was so hopeful that we were going to give Grey a sibling. But, as time continues to pass and my time away from Grey gets longer and longer, I am often filled with fear and sadness. We are still trying, I am not ready to give up, but now we are also exploring other options on how to expand our family.
I think about everything that I am missing out on, pretty much daily. My son should be 19 months old– walking, taking, growing, eating, laughing, falling and playing with his cousins and friends. I should be going on playdates, taking a gazillion pictures and planning fun things for us to do. We should be lounging at the lake or hanging out at home with the dogs. I should be a over-worked, exhausted and happy mom. Grey was supposed to bring me closer to people. Lately, I feel so far away from everyone and very, very lonely. I get nervous going out into the world, scared to meet a stranger who may ask me if I have any children. I feel embarrassed and ashamed that I am not strong enough to ask about or to spend time with the kiddos who are the same age as Grey. Not that I have not been around children, I work with families, I see babies and children every day. I just dreamt so much about my future with Grey and his friends and their mama’s – I am still working through that loss as well.
I think back onto the person that I used to be; happy, fun, a party planner, a positive person, someone who was there for her friends and family. Another loss mom and I were having a conversation about our grief and she said, “it makes you feel so selfish.” Whammo! Yes! She was so right and I felt relief when she said that. It is in my nature to be a giver and, right now, I just don’t have it in me. It is okay to be protective of myself and my emotions. Still, I mourn be the old me, I want to go back to when it was us and Grey and the future. Time feels like it is standing still for me while everyone around me is growing and moving and living.
I wonder sometimes what it is like to be someone who shares their truth more? I admire some of the loss mom’s out there that can share their feelings on social media regularly. Would it make me feel better if I was more like that? I likely can’t change how I share my truth and how often I do it, maybe that will change as time goes on. This blogs helps as it is important to talk about infant/child loss no matter how heavy it feels. Right now, I take things day by day and acknowledge little successes. The way I feel now won’t be the way I feel forever, will it? I think about a future and try to imagine it being happy.
Focus on hope