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.
I commend you for your honesty. I can only imagine how hard it must be to be mothering children whose births (timing wise) were only possible because of the timing of the loss of others. Those babies of yours, ALL of them, and all of them have been blessings in their own right. Never feel like you have to move on. It's impossible anyway. Sending you much love. Remembering Nicholas, Sophia and Alexander, and celebrating Maya & Bobby with you.
This is a beautiful post Michele.
"I accept the hurt because I believe in the future." Exactly so. Even though I wish for you that it wasn't.
A truly amazing post Michele. Thank you xxx
Michele, you are truly amazing. You are so strong....its very inspiring.
You will have visions of Nicholas, Alexander and Sophia throughout the rest of your life and on a smaller scale your other little ones as well. *hugs*
Oh Michele, I am so with you on this post. I have moments with Jasper all the time where I swear my Jordan is looking out at me, experiencing this moment with us.
Yes. Haunting but so incredibly beautiful and bittersweet.
This is a beautiful revelation & explanation! Praising God that Bobby & Maya are doing so well! Continuing to pray for you all.
Michele, this is a beautiful post. You said it perfectly. I was just thinking the other day how if I hadn't miscarried my first child, I'd have an 8 month old right now. But I'd have likely missed the chance to have had nearly 5 weeks with my second then.
I'm so sorry all your beautiful, wonderful babies can't be here with you. But I bet they're all having a great time together celebrating Bobby & Maya's three month birthday today!
Michele, this post is so beautiful and moving. I don't understand at all what you have gone through, but when you write about it I feel like you're allowing us a little peek into your heart and all you've endured. You are strong and while the reason for what happened to your Alexander, Sophia, and Nicholas will never be clear, the fact that you treasure them and grieve for them at the same time is so deeply touching. There are never words, but I just want you to know that reading this really made me stop, think, and pray for you, Peter, and all of your little babies.
This is such a beautiful post, and as always, your honesty and your thoughtfulness touch such a deep chord within me. Thank you for sharing your heart - it is a rare privilege to be allowed to see so much of a person. Thinking of you and of all your children.
Although I never had a pregnancy (that I know of), We did get to see 2 of our embryos on a screen before they were implanted. I do know that we had 6 other eggs that fertilized and grew for a couple of days before they stopped. I do believe that life begins at conception and that all my babies are waiting for me in Heaven...
I say all of that to say, in a small way I know how you feel. If the 2nd IVF had worked--if my two babies had continued to grow into healthy babies, my son AJ would not be here.
Long story short, after the news of our diagnosis (my eggs are not healthy) spread thru my family, my cousin offered to have a baby for us. She and her husband had had all the children they planned and wanted to get pregnant one more time and give the baby to us. Within 2 months she was pregnant, and although her 3 other children were born full term, our AJ decided to come at 29 weeks, weighing 2lbs 9oz, 14 inches long. We were in the NICU for 6weeks 4days.
He just turned 3 in October and is the most amazing little boy I've ever known. He filled my heart and my empty arms. And even though there are still days that I grieve inside for the pregnancy I will never have, I wouldn't change a single thing that has happened. If we had been able to have our own children, AJ wouldn't be here...and this world is a much better place with AJ.in it :-)
This is a beautiful, completely true post, Michele.
What a magnificent post.
Ach Michele. I read your post this morning, before I went to work, and had tears in my eyes all the way there as a result. I still don't know what to say even though I've had all day to think about it.
I know that I see my Carleigh whenever I look at my daughter Kyndra. I have no doubt they would've looked alike.
I know your feelings. I had triplets and only my Sara survived, (Baby C and she turned 30on Wednesday) and the only thing that made and still makes any sense to me when was a dear friend said to me,
"They are all there in Sara's eyes", and he was right.
Sara was an identical triplet born at 26 weeks. When I first saw her in the nursery she had three lifeline lines in her palm. I am a palm reader. It was a wonderful moment.
I have few words other than to say I wish you peace and increasing joy as you hold all of your children in your heart.
Peace, my friend.
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