It was the first pregnancy related thing I've posted, thus "outing" myself in facebook land. Comments are nice and sweet. But it makes me feel crazy vulnerable to have done such a thing. But the twisty part is that I decided that if the baby dies, I would want people to know that he/she existed.
And obviously those close to us, and anyone who reads this blog, have known for a bit that I'm pregnant again. But I guess this part of me that's messed up by grief and loss knows what sort of reaction I would want should things go south (again) and I am more inclined at times to prepare for that potential reality. Though good gracious, I hope it's an unlikely reality. But even if statistics are on my side (ha! as if that means anything) I still feel vulnerable having such precious and important news "out there" where people don't understand the true complexity of it all and how fragile I am about it.
But here's the thing - it's so much better this time than it was when I was pregnant with Finn.
I can literally envision bringing home a baby easier this time around. I'm planning to actually decorate the nursery (once Finn is out of it) and would like to get a lot of it done before the baby arrives. When carrying Finn, I could barely reopen the things that had been packed away in tupperware. It felt too risky. Like I would jinx myself if I did any such planning because the first time I was foolish enough to prepare for a baby, we had no baby to care for. I have even bought a few things - like an Ergo that I got on a super sweet deal on zulily! I pin pictures and daydream about a future with two living children.
I'm gaining more weight than I did with Finn. I seem to be on the same weight gain path that I was with Cale and I think that has more to do with the stress incurred during Finn's pregnancy and not the insane amount of ice cream I've consumed this go around - though I shouldn't rule that out.
I don't always, but many times I feel at peace. I feel a sense of calmness that helps me savor the moments with this baby - the kicks and the nudges and enjoyment that comes with the gift of carrying a child.
I think part of that is the fact that I have been so very lucky to have had a good outcome. Finn's safe arrival proved to me that I can carry a baby and birth him, bring him home, and live out a version of happily ever after, you know the version that stems from the cruelest and darkest of stories. And just maybe, we'll get so lucky to do that all over again.
Another aspect that keeps me more relaxed is that I'm busier. Sounds like an oxymoron, but even though I'm not working like I was last pregnancy, but I'm chasing a two year old and playing choo choo's and reading stories and going to the library. Finn is such a wonderful distraction from my own thoughts and fears and therefore relaxes me. He's a constant reminder that sometimes, things work out in the end.
But of course the fear is still there. It creeps in at night when I'm alone with my thoughts. It creeps in when I worry it's been too long since I last felt the baby move or I just hit a grief trigger that sends me right back to losing Cale and knowing I'm not immune to lightning striking twice. When I check out eBay for double BOB's there's a thought in the back of my head telling me to wait until I have two kids to actually put in such an expensive stroller, that I shouldn't even look now. When I talk about the baby I still tend to preface things with "if" and not "when" and it took me until my sixth month in this pregnancy to even want to talk to Finn about my belly and a baby. Miles asked once why I wasn't ready and I said "I don't want to have to un-explain it to him."
In fact, one of the most difficult thoughts I have is that if we lost the baby, I don't know how I would be able to grieve and still be a decent mother to Finn. It's a thought that scares me and stresses me out and makes me cry just typing this. Because he's such a sweet boy and he's so happy and he deserves a mom that gives him her best and snuggles and laughs and tells him over and over what noise a garbage truck makes or a digger even though I don't really know what a digger sounds like. But I don't know how I would be that person if I lost this baby. When pregnant with Finn I feared going through the same grief process we did with Cale, I feared how I would handle it all. But now the worry isn't just for myself, but for the boy I did get to bring home.
So . . .things are different this time around - they are a little easier, a little more optimistic. But the fears and the stress, it hasn't gone away, not by a long shot. And all we can do is wait. Wait and hope and pray and cross our fingers and toes that in about two months, the cute little guy in this picture will have a sibling he can hug and kiss, and even poke and pester. Oh, how I wish.