I will never understand why my life has become what it is. There will never be a reason good enough for me to accept why we were asked- no, designated- to have our children die. As one blogger put it, 14 year old crack addicts can easily get pregnant and have full term, healthy babies that they pimp out for a score and abuse- but not me. No, not the educated, financially stable, "good" woman who would do everything in her power to have a healthy pregnancy and a natural birth, to raise old fashioned, hippy dippy kids. No, not me. I cant ovulate without medication and cant carry to viability without surgery. And full term? Hah! That's not a card in my poker hand. And lest we forget natural labor or breastfeeding! Throw those out with the dirty bath water!
And yet... What is my alternative? If I were to have carried Nicholas and Sophia to 27w and 5d... If they had spent 70 days in the NICU... If we were preparing for their second Christmas out of the womb... If we had twin 2 year olds instead of infants... If, if, if... Then we would have no miscarried baby... No Alexander.... No third miscarriage.... No Bobby and Maya... If I were to have lost Nick and Sophie but our miscarried, sweet baby had grown and lived... There would be no Alex, no lost baby, no twins... And if Alexander had lived, I would have missed out on the momentary presence of one baby and the joy of these two that are in my arms.
But the way my life is, I got to have them all. I get to have them forever. I was able to have the momentary joy of having each of my miscarried children growing inside of me. I was able to feel Nicholas and Sophia playing together, to have Alexander kick me incessantly in the middle of the night. I was able to feel each of them enter this world... To touch them as they lived their entire lives full of love... To hold them afterwards and memorize each wrinkle, each part, the way they smelled and felt. And now, I have Bobby and Maya. I hold them and feel the weight of their little bodies. Smell their hair. Kiss their foreheads. Watch them as they sleep. Smile as they laugh...
I cant imagine a world without them. I cant imagine a life in which I only had Nicholas and Sophia. I need this life. I need to have them all. I cant imagine how empty I would be without them. And the price I pay is the heartache that I feel right now. The heartache at knowing I cant be with them as they grow up and have their own lives.
And I gladly pay that. Because without it, I wouldnt be their mother. And without that, I dont know who I would be.
Bobby and Maya have not "made it better". They have not healed my broken heart. They havent replaced their brothers and sister, although in them, we do have a glimpse of what life would have been like 2 years ago, had Nick and Sophie stayed inside a few more weeks and spent months in the hospital and then given us an introduction to twin parenthood. But they have shown us why we were taken on this journey. They have shown us that they were the reason. And, in loving them so very much, I cant wish for another outcome. I dont wish my babies had died; I wish that, somehow, in some magical world, I could have had them all. But, rationally, I know that had anything been different, then I wouldnt be here. Peter wouldnt be feeding Bobby next to me on the couch. I wouldnt be holding a sleeping, peaceful Maya on my chest.
It hurts just thinking about that.
Moving on is a fallacy. But I know that I have come to a new place in my path. I am in a place where the hurt is becoming replaced by acquiescence. Acceptance by not making objection. An inner knowing. A Virgin Mary state. I accept the hurt because I believe in the future.
I know that I will have moments where the sorrow will overwhelm me, where the pain will be so visceral that I wont be able to breathe. That I will have to pray for the strength to dry my tears. I know that there will be times when I am so overtaken with emotion that I will want to vomit. And that is okay. It is part of the journey. And I will remember to walk it, remembering the feelings of their tiny hands in mine.
Yesterday, as I was feeding Bobby, he was watching me intently and I told him "You have the most beautiful brown eyes I've ever seen". And, for a moment, it was Nicholas staring up at me. My breath caught in my throat and a lump rose. My sob was trapped inside, although I couldnt stop the tears that flowed. I'd never seen my oldest son's eyes, but for a moment, they were there, looking up at me through the face of his baby brother. It was haunting... It was beautiful...
It was the way it was supposed to be, even though it was never something I could have ever imagined.