Parenthood is the worst heartache you’ve ever experienced mixed with a heady and intense love. T didn’t teach me that lesson, the baby we lost did. Don’t get me wrong, I think T will remind me plenty of times over the years. But somehow I’m glad that I’ll be a little more prepared for it. Because the first time it hits you the pain is unbearable. And for me, that first time pain will never be associated with T. I will always be grateful to the baby we lost for so many reasons. When I get pregnant again I will not experience the pure joy and hope and delight I had with that pregnancy. The fear of losing the baby will color everything. That joy certainly wasn’t there for me when I was pregnant with T, I was too scared. Every pregnancy is, of course, unique; and my little lost baby gave me so much happiness in the few weeks I carried it. So in a tiny span of time that baby gave me so much joy and taught me I could bear the unbearable. What an extraordinary teacher it was, every day I grieve that I will never get to meet who he or she was supposed to become.
As we head into trying to have another baby I’ve been doing a boatload of thinking. I want a baby just as fiercely this time, but the want is tempered by my realization that the reality won’t be a fairy tale. I was the one who initiated our attempts to conceive this past summer. And my motivations were not in any way reasonable. My hormones were fluctuating because I was breastfeeding less as T started eating more solid food. The moment my period came back I couldn’t think of anything except having another baby. I was mourning the loss of my infant’s transition into a baby and then a toddler. I was delighted he was developing so rapidly, but at the same time it was all too fast. In my desire for another baby I didn’t want to replace T, I wanted more time with him. And the desire was so strong I couldn’t even think straight. I couldn’t remember how much is sucked when T was brand new and I was nursing every three hours for months on end. I couldn’t remember his never ending crying in the night when Z and I would take turns walking in circles around our first floor sometimes crying in frustration ourselves. I couldn’t remember how lonely I was because Z had just started a new job and we lived in a new place and most of my waking hours were just me and the kid. I had tunnel vision baby fever in the most clichéd way possible.
Well, my hormones have stabilized and I do remember all that stuff. And T is such a good time right now, he cracks me up every day. I wonder why I was so anxious to give up my solo time with him. Our lives have stabilized tremendously. Z is around much more this year. We get to sleep through the night the vast majority of the time. We have settled into a blissful domesticity. The great thing is I want a baby just as much despite realizing how hard it will be. I want T to have the gift of a sibling close in age to him. I do want to have another chance to delight in a newborn, especially now that I know how fast it really does go. If I successfully carry another baby to term I think being prepared for the difficulties will make it a happier transition for all of us.
Little man wandering around Kinkos as we waited for our second batch of Christmas cards to be printed. Have you not received a card from us? Send me your address and I’ll put one in the mail!
That’s my hat he has on…
Grandma got him the awesomest hoodie ever.