I can’t think of a more clever way to share this, so here goes.
I’m pregnant again. 9 weeks along. Baby #4 will hopefully be joining the crew toward the end of May. And we are thrilled.
Things are still pretty early, but as I’ve said before, we share about our pregnancies right away and even after our miscarriage in May, we have decided to keep doing this. Because a life is a life, no matter how small.
In truth, this pregnancy happened a lot sooner than we had originally planned. My husband and I don’t really have a “plan” for our family, but after Dominic was born last summer, and we had 3 kids ages 3 and under, we both agreed that it might be nice to have a bit of a gap before the next little one came along. Like maybe experience a short time out of diapers or allow Gus to achieve “big kid” status before the next baby came along.
And then, much to our surprise, I got pregnant in May and lost the baby around 9 weeks. And everything changed.
Our miscarriage was gentle, as far as losses go, but a miscarriage changes everything.
Since our miscarriage I’ve realized just what a miracle our 3 living children are. They all started so tiny, so fragile, and here they are! It’s amazing! Since our miscarriage the tedious chores of changing diapers, washing clothes and wiping up slipped plates seems less painful and these years of little children and babies more wondrous.
And, after our miscarriage I certainly didn’t want to wait to have another baby.
I’ve known many women who have lost babies before, including my mother who lost 7 pregnancies including a couple of stillbirths, but I never really understood loosing a baby until I lost my own.
I didn’t understand how wrong it would feel to go from being pregnant to just…not. To have something alive inside of you, to experience that special “there’s new life inside of me” feeling and never get to hold that baby.
I didn’t understand the fear that comes after a miscarriage. Why did that happen–and will it happen again? Please God, don’t make me go through that again!
I didn’t understand all of the ugliness that comes with the grief of a miscarriage. The way I would look at happy pregnant women, the way I would pull away from my husband when I needed him most, the way I would dread the approach of that once due date.
And so, we tried and, thanks be to God, are once again pregnant.
So, I’m pregnant and boy have I been feeling it lately. The fatigue might be my least favorite part of early pregnancy, even more so than the nausea. Non-pregnant I am a notorious night owl, which is probably the only reason I have been able to build my blog and etsy shop during these crazy baby years. I love those quiet hours when the kids are sleeping…but lately I have been laying down any chance I can get and as a result the blog, the house and basically everything else beyond the essential has been suffering.
But, I am grateful for the fatigue and nausea. It serves as a constant reminder that I am still pregnant. Well, I’m as grateful as you can be while vomiting and walking around like a zombie, but I am grateful.
And really, even though this pregnancy feels so much different (in a good way) than the pregnancy I lost in May, these early weeks of pregnancy have been the LONGEST early weeks of pregnancy I have ever endured. Because I’m afraid.
Before the miscarriage I was confident, almost to the point of being complacent, during my pregnancies. I was healthy, my babies always came naturally, big and healthy. What did I have to fear? Miscarriage happened to other people.
And then I lost a baby, and I can’t help but fear.
But the fear is so frustrating! The welfare of my baby is almost completely out of my hands. I’m not reckless, but I wasn’t reckless when I lost that baby. I have the best medical care–but I’ve always had that.
I fear that I will loose this baby too and I feel completely powerless to do anything significant that keep that from happening. I want to control it, I want to protect my family from ever going through that pain again…but I can’t. There is a part of me that hesitated before getting pregnant again, for fear of loosing another baby. But the most profound truth I feel after loosing that baby is that my arms are aching for the baby I lost.
The days are passing, and I’m still sick and tired. And that is reassuring and humbling. And every night Gus prays for the baby in my tummy, asking God that this baby doesn’t go up to heaven quite yet, not like the other baby. And we are hopeful and thrilled, but forever changed by the baby we didn’t get to keep.
Because a miscarriage changes everything.