Tag Archives: pregnancy loss

2 Years

20 Feb

He was born and died on a Tuesday

But after a while, I realized that I couldn’t hate all Tuesdays.

He was born and died on the 21st.

But after a while, I realized that I couldn’t hate all of the 21sts.

He was born and died in February.

I still hate all of February.

Last year, on February 21st, we planted an almond tree, and I went in to get my cerclage to keep Bunny safe inside me. The end of one year marked the beginning of a new journey.

This year, on February 21st, we’ll be spending the day looking for a new home for us, so we don’t have to commute so much. So we can truly have the time to enjoy our family. Another new journey begins.

Two years ago, on February 21st, my son died and was born. I guess that too was the beginning of a journey.

I hope every February 21st will be able to mark beginnings and not ends.

Tomorrow will be sad, tomorrow will be happy, tomorrow will be hard. Tomorrow will be mostly about looking forward, not looking back.

So today I want to look back. But not flash back. Look back, with hindsight, with insight.

Look back and thank my son.

Thank you Nadav for teaching me about bravery.

Thank you Nadav for making your parents’ marriage stronger.

Thank you Nadav, for teaching me that I can overcome anything.

Thank you Nadav, for giving me perspective, and making things that once seemed insurmountable now seem trivial.

Thank you Nadav, for setting up the chain of events that eventually led us to your amazing little sister.

Thank you Nadav, for teaching me what it truly means to be a parent. For making me a better parent to her.

Thank you Nadav, for making me take a moment to appreciate every coo, every smile, and yes, even every cry from her.

I think that one day, when she is old enough to understand, when she is old enough to learn about her big brother, she will thank you too.

Thank you Nadav for visiting us and giving us these gifts. I just wish you could have stayed longer.

***

Tomorrow, please look at the sky, or a pretty flower, or your spouse, or your children, and think of my son. If only just for a moment.

Because he deserves to be remembered.

I would give him more than that if I could.

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Eff This

28 Apr

I spent two years building and nurturing this space. I’ve changed my mind. I don’t think I want to abandon it after all.

But heed this oh ALIers, I will not take any shit from anyone. If one person dares to make a bitter comment I will unceremoniously serve you with a can of whoop-ass. I don’t quite know how to whoop ass virtually but that doesn’t mean I won’t try.

Yes, I am pregnant. I am also terrified. I’ve spent the last two months on modified bed rest. I’m now two and a half weeks away from viability. I am now a week away from the date I lost Nadav. I am having daily panic attacks.

I cry when people ask “how are you”. This is how bad things are. So if anybody dare question my pain and difficulty, step away now. I don’t want you to read this. I don’t want you to read anything I write because you are an insensitive selfish asshole.

Seriously, go away.

Everyone else, feel free to hang around. Or come back. or whatever. I don’t know how often I’ll post here now, but I do know that things are getting really hard around here, and some bloggy venting certainly won’t hurt. And this is where I would like to do it.

So if there’s anybody still out there, welcome back. I hope you stick around for a while.

Unless you’re a bitter asshole who can’t handle the fact that I’m pregnant and freaking out about it. In that case I really want you to go away. Comments are fully moderated for the time being, so it won’t even get you the attention you may be seeking.

Ok good. Point made. Hi there everyone!

**Edit for a technical note**

My domain name needs renewing, so for the time being find me at the wordpress.com URL. Hopefully I’ll get that sorted soon. In the meantime, hope it’s not messing too much up. :-)

Sunshine and Unicorn Farts

30 Aug

I haven’t been spending much time in this space lately. Here’s what I’ve been doing instead:

Painting

Podcasting (Thank you all for listening and commenting, btw!)

Working

Planning our trip to the States

Healing.

A couple of weeks ago, I started feeling a shift. After an intense EMDR session where we talked extensively about Nadav, I spent a couple of weeks in a haze. Then one day I woke up, and for the first time in almost two years I was beyond just the basic “functional”. I was energetic. I was prolific. I was brave.

After a slow simmer for a very long time, I have boiled over in the best of ways.

Nothing has changed. I am still not ovulating. I am still not pregnant. I am still mourning my son.

Everything has changed. I am dealing with things differently. I am handling my situation. I am finding courage to do things I haven’t dared to do in years.

This was a process that came to a head, that finally paid off. That finally made me stop saying the words “I am so freaking tired.”

I’m still tired of the waiting. I’m still tired of my body failing me. I’m still going to fight to make that stop. But I’m starting to put at least a part of my energy elsewhere. I’m starting to finally realize that wallowing won’t make things move any faster.

So if I’m not here as often, know it’s because I’m busy putting my life back together. Know that you all get major credit for helping me do that just by continuing to come here. Continuing to comment. Always being an amazing source of support.

My life isn’t sunshine and unicorn farts. But it’s finally starting to feel like a life.

Holy

1 Aug

Today an amazing woman, who’s daughter went through exactly what I did with Nadav, told me a story.

In the Jewish faith, there is a belief in a form of reincarnation. That our time on this earth is meant to fix something.

Jews believe that a child who chooses to leave this world early, is a holy soul with very little left to fix. In the case of stillbirth, a child who chooses to leave that soon is a “Tsadik” – a righteous soul.

The womb that carried that child is considered holy – with an extraordinary amount of love.

You guys all know that I’m more pastafarian than anything else. I’ve also been told the first part of that belief before  - I’ve been told that Nadav’s soul was a righteous one. I always dismissed it as a load of bunk and not much of a comfort.

But something about the way this woman said it. She said: You didn’t make him leave. He left. It happened. You didn’t make your water break, it just broke. His righteous soul chose to leave your loving and holy womb.

Something about this rings true to me, though I can’t quite put my finger on why.

All I know is that I feel a little better today.

No More Room

18 Jul

So some of you may know that I’m taking a class this week. It’s one of the pre-requisite classes for my Art Therapy Masters, called “Physiological Psychology.”

And it’s kicking my ass. I haven’t been in school for more than 6 years, and this isn’t just school – this is biology. Neurons and cortexes and whatnot. Me learn science! Me haz smart! Monkeys fly out of my butt!

It’s five days, 6 hours a day starting at 8:30am. Needless to say, my brain is fried.

So boy was I surprised when somehow, in the middle of this godawful class, I found some new perspective.

A couple of days ago I noticed that one of the students in the class spoke Hebrew with an American accent. I didn’t know anyone in the class, and I was looking for a partner to do the final project with me in English, so I decided to go up and introduce myself. Tammy, 36, mother of 4.

We starting chatting up a storm and pretty soon we were exchanging life stories. Unlike a lot of people, she didn’t give me a look of pity or treat me differently when I told her about the three early losses and Nadav. Though she has only had one loss her pregnancies have been full of complications and anxiety. I don’t know how she managed to “get” me. But I knew right away that this woman got me.

Today we continued our marathon conversation and the issue of me being unhappy with my current support system came up. You all know I’m not in a great space right now. Though I feel there’s been an amazing improvement with my therapist, there’s a lot of bottled up trauma and grief that I just don’t feel safe enough to confront.

So Tammy suggested a few alternative therapies that helped her deal with her high-risk pregnancies, and I wrote down some stuff to google. We continued to chat about life in general, and trauma in particular.

I brought up the fact that my biggest worry right now is the burden our first child (no matter how we come to him/her) will have because he or she will be coming to us on the back of all of this loss. She paused for a second, contemplating.

“I think I know why you’re having a hard time getting pregnant again.”

“Why?”

“Think about it. 4 babies. You lost four babies and in a way, you’re still carrying them. There’s no room in there for another one.”

You guys know I’m not one for spirituality. Especially in the last couple of months. Very little light has been let into my dark little basement of a brain. But something about what she said was deeply resonant. It felt right. Something about it rang true.

I am so filled with grief and anger that there is no room to create something that is pure love. Maybe if I let a little of the grief and anger go, I’ll be able to make enough room to finally be a mother.

It’s rare to make friends with a person so quickly and easily. It’s even more rare when that person has such a deep and profound impact on you just as fast.

 

Ok Maybe I Shouldn’t Break Up With Her

11 Jul

So, my shrink thinks that this whole self-harm, depression thing is my way of punishing myself.

I don’t talk a lot about Nadav here. In fact, I don’t talk a lot about Nadav at all. But I think about him constantly. And there’s one feeling that keeps on popping up that I try to push away but it refuses to go away: guilt.

Whenever I replay those 48 hours in my head, I don’t think about what was done, I think about what I could have done differently.

Mind you – the logical side of my brain knows I did all that I could at the time. But that doesn’t keep me from dwelling on how things could have played out had I done x, y, or z differently. If only I had googled this, or insisted on that – maybe there would have been a different outcome.

And it’s these thoughts that lead me to punish myself for what happened.

This is what tortures me every day. Today I finally told my shrink about it.

She pointed out something that kind of blew my mind. She suggested that perhaps my constant replays are my way of trying to regain control over a situation in which I had none. And the irony is that I give myself the illusion of control, at the expense of my mental health.

She said that anything I could have done differently would have been at the expense of myself. That when it comes to Nadav (and me having a baby in general), I let one cancel out the other.

She went on to say that perhaps I need to start working on two things:

The first is coming to terms with the fact that I don’t have control over the resolution to all of this.

The second is letting myself live in a world where I don’t get cancelled out to make room for a baby.

I think she’s right. Now it’s just a question of how the hell I pull off these impossible feats.

PS – thank you all for your awesome prompts! I will be taking them on, and bringing back Group Therapy Thursdays next week. Look out for the launch post in the next few days.

Here’s a LOL as a token of my appreciation:

Strands

26 Jun

Ok I’ll admit it: I haven’t been around because I’ve been wallowing. It’s been a hard week, between the due date and this freaking diet.

But let’s be honest, it’s mostly the due date. I’ve been doing my best not to think about it, but even when not thinking about it I’m pretty mopey. I’m really hoping this will pass soon. I’m sick and tired of feeling this way.

In AF news – there is no news. I’m finishing up the pills today and hopefully that will jump start things. The baby psychic  said July will be our month  (though granted I thought she meant last july). So here’s hoping my skepticism will be challenged this month, and that freaking psychic was right after all.

Seriously guys – I’m so over this.

Now to the point of this post. I apologize in advance if this gets rambly. I’m trying to figure it out myself.

So yesterday I was at the shrink’s.

It’s funny – since I decided to break up with her our sessions have been amazing. Just bringing up what my problems with her have been opened me up to actually talking openly again. I’m not saying I’m no longer considering leaving her. But for now – we’re making some amazing strides.

Anyway – a big revelation I’ve had about the way I operate is this:

I spend all of my time dealing with the day-to-day issues in my life almost to the point of obsession. Whether it’s pee sticks, or obsessing about a project – I think about the details of the present but never the big picture. At least not the present big picture.

I compare it to a ramble of thoughts swirling around a black hole. That black hole being who “I really am”, which is something I haven’t explored in a very long time, if ever.

The problem is that black hole. It’s not filled with things I love, because I’m not sure what I love any more. It’s not full of my dreams and aspirations, because I’m not sure what those are any more outside of a baby. It’s full of grief, loss, anxiety, depression, fatigue, and self-loathing, and that’s why I stay away from it.

When I try to put the pieces of my identity together I feel like I don’t have a strand to grasp. I feel empty.

This is not a new thing. It started before the miscarriages. But the miscarriages threw it into sharp relief, because before – at least I had strands.

Now I have nothing, and I don’t know where to start.

Last night, my shrink asked a question that would finally give me a strand to grasp on to.

The question was:

“What if you don’t have a baby?”

I answered: “That isn’t an option.”

“I know that isn’t a real option. But I want you to think about it as an imaginary option. What would happen if you decide tomorrow that you will never have a child – not through adoption, or surrogacy, or pregnancy?”

“Well that’s a damn good question.”

So I’ve been mulling that over since then. I even talked it out with Shmerson a little bit.

Living child-free has never been a realistic option for us. But talking it over made me realize how different our decisions would be.

For example – I’m not sure if I’d be considering going back to school right now. Maybe eventually – but not necessarily now.

What would I do?

I don’t know. Make a lot of money so we could take that trip to Japan, or maybe make a movie.  Take better care of my body, I think. Make sure to go to a lot more rock concerts.

I’m still mulling all of this over. I never thought it would be so hard to pinpoint my true core desires and ambitions. But the grief and the longing for a child have taken over so much of my life that there has been no room left for anything else. I’ve been going through the motions for so long that I have no idea what drives me any more.

Hopefully though, this question is the start of something.

It’s a strand I can begin to unravel, and I guess that’s as good a place as any.

Hey Everyone! Train Wreck Over Here! *Waves*

20 Jun

Ok boys and girls, it’s been a long time since I’ve put up a good rant on this blog. I figure it’s very much overdue.

But first, a disclaimer. I’m about to talk about things people in this community don’t like to admit – maybe not even to themselves – let alone in writing. Before I do, I want to make one thing very clear: I love and appreciate every single person who has ever emailed, commented, or even just quietly lurked on this blog. I know there are upwards of 700 of you out there, and I count this space as one of the most wonderful things I have done in my life, because of you.

Also, I would not have survived these last four months after losing Nadav without you. So please keep that in mind before you skewer me in the comments.

Ready? Ranty time!

WordPress’ site stat page has this handy little feature that shows you the number of views on your busiest day. Mine is 4,630 on February 22nd of this year.

That was the day my son died.  And yes, he died. He was a stillbirth. He was not a “late term miscarriage”. He was my son. I gave birth to him, I did not miscarry him. I went through labor and delivery like every other mother out there.

Unless this blog goes viral due to an incredibly brilliant post I pull out of my ass one day, I have a feeling that this little site stat will be sticking around for a very long time. So if by any chance I happen to miraculously forget that date, all I have to do is to go to that stats page.

I used to check my stats every day. Just a curiosity, and I admit, a little for my own ego. I don’t check them that often any more because of this little reminder.

During the period of Feb. 21st – 24th, I had upwards of 15,000 visits to this blog. A lot of those hits were concerned readers, or followers of my friends’ blogs who came over to offer support.

But let’s face it – a lot of them were the equivalent of rubber-neckers to a car accident.

Look, we all do this. We don’t admit to it, but we do. When we read somewhere that some blogger we’ve never heard of has suffered a tragedy, we click over. Yes, to offer support, but also out of morbid curiosity. Just for the opportunity to think to ourselves: “Thank goodness that isn’t me. Please don’t let it be me one day.”

I’ve done it. Heck, I still do. Granted, I’m pretty close to getting as low as you can go in this community. But there’s always someone with a bigger tragedy. One we think we understand but we don’t. One person that we look at with pity, and hope against hope that we will never have to walk a mile in their shoes.

I’m not trying to measure pain by any means. We play the hand that we are dealt, and each person has their own difficulties. I thought I understood pain just with PCOS. Then with PCOS and one miscarriage. Then with PCOS, two miscarriages, and a mental breakdown. Then with PCOS, a mental breakdown and three miscarriages. I thought I understood pain at three miscarriages, a stillbirth, and two mental breakdowns. Then I started crawling closer and closer to Nadav’s due date (cruelly exactly 4 months to the day after he died), while having to face another failed cycle.

A new low. A new threshold for pain. A new form of agony that I didn’t anticipate.

I’m telling you this not because I want you to pity me. In fact, if you feel pity for me, please leave now. I feel sorry enough for myself. I don’t need others feeling sorry for me. That does me no good. In fact, I rather you flame me and hate me and you not pity me.

I tell you all of this to point out that pain isn’t comparable or measurable. But there are certain forms of pain that attract rubber-neckers. There are cautionary tales that make others say “thank goodness it’s not me.”

I am one of those cautionary tales. And those 15,000 + hits during those four days in February are proof positive of this fact.

I remember being pregnant with Nadav, being a rubber-necker. I could never bring myself to comment on the blogs that I lurked on as a rubber-necker. Because I was painfully aware of being one. Sometimes I would chime in with an “I’m so sorry for your loss.” Or some other empty sentiment.

Yes, I was sorry for “her” loss. I felt sorry for “her.” I said to myself “please don’t let this be me.” I said to myself “thank goodness this isn’t me.” I don’t do that any more. Not even with train wrecks that are bigger than mine.

I’m sure every single one of you (or at least most of you) who haven’t been in my shoes have thought these things while reading my words. I’m not angry with you. I don’t want you to feel guilty for feeling this way. It’s only natural. I was there. I also hope you never have to be in my shoes. I wouldn’t wish this agony on my worst enemy.

I also know that most of you, even ones that initially came here as rubber-neckers, are no longer that. I know every word you write to me, even the occasional “I’m sorry for your loss” when you can’t find better words to say is a genuine virtual hug. I love you guys for it.

But here’s the kicker. Though I know there are HUNDREDS of you guys out there that are supportive, amazing, loving people, there always are a few rubber-neckers in disguise. There are always those few that write lovely comforting words, but their pity and their hypocrisy shine through their well-wishes. Under every word they say I can read that “thank goodness this isn’t me” undertone. I can read the pity. It’s hard to catch sometimes, but after two years on this train, I can spot these people.

And that pity hurts. That undertone of “oh lord don’t let me be this woman” hurts. It hurts more than silence. More than hate. It hurts more than the asshole who came on this blog three days after Nadav died and called me a murderer for some unknown reason (yes that happened and I deleted the fuck-face’s comment immediately).

Why does it hurt so much?

Because I am not a weak person. I am not a person who is to be pitied. Be on my level – heck – envy me- but by pitying me you make me feel small. Like my entire world is defined by my loss.

I am not small.

I am a strong, smart, talented, funny woman.

I have an amazingly strong marriage with a really hot, funny, talented, and brilliant man.

I have a wonderful loving family (hi sissy! Hi sissy-in-law!).

I have absolutely unbelievable friends both in real life and in my virtual life.

I am loved and I love ferociously in return.

I paint. I write. I think about movies I want to make, and sometimes even take pride in ones I’ve already made.

I rock out to awesome music.

I work really hard at my job and all of my clients respect what I do and pay me a nice salary to work for them.

I’m an amazing cook.

My dog is the smartest, cutest dog in the world.

I dye my hair awesome colors.

I teach twice a week and my students freaking love me.

There is nothing to pity here. If it weren’t for my effed-up plumbing, my life would read like an unbelievable fairy tale.

I know this and I am learning to be grateful for it every day. By pitying me, you are helping me ignore the good parts of my life. You are enabling my self-pity, rather than encouraging my growth.

Don’t cry for me. Cry WITH me.

Don’t feel sorry for me. Feel empowered by my experience.

As some of you amazing ladies have written in your comments on my heavier posts: Abide with me. Endure with me without yielding.

That is what gives me strength, and I hope it strengthens you as well. This is the essence of the best of our little online community. This is what we should all strive for.

In my final goodbye post to Nadav, I posted the song “Twinkle” by Tori Amos. This was not a random choice.

I want to call your attention to a particular section of the lyrics:

But I can see that star
When she twinkles
And she twinkles

Emphasis mine.

Those lyrics for me are about triumph. About overcoming loss. About growing from loss. That is what I am doing, and it’s what I intend to continue to do.

I sometimes dread going out because of the sideways pity glance I get sometimes from people who know my story. In life, I compensate for that by making jokes and blatantly and openly talking about my losses. I may as well wear a T-Shirt that says “Please! Ask me about my uterus!”.

Like Chandler from Friends, I use humor as a defense mechanism.

I do the same thing here. Here I compensate by using funny pictures with funny captions. It’s my little F-YOU to anybody who dares to question my strength.

Because for me, pitying me means questioning my strength.

Dammit I am fucking strong.

Deal with it.

Two days from now is Nadav’s due date. I will not be acknowledging it on this blog. Nadav was born. He was born 4 months too early, but he was born. And he died. June 22nd is not his. February 22nd is his, and always will be.

I have had an enlightening couple of weeks. I haven’t shared most of that insight yet on this blog, because I’ve been processing it all. I think I’ll use that date to tell you guys a little about the way I have grown by leaps and bounds in the last couple of weeks. About the revelations I have had and that I am processing. Or maybe I’ll need a few more days to process it and I’ll post a freaking lolcat. Who knows.

Either way, I hope you stick around to read about it.

To abide with me.

But if you intend to feel sorry for me, please do me a favor and go feel sorry for another train wreck.

Cause this train may be bruised and battered, but this train keeps on fucking chugging.

On Preggo-phobia

17 Jun

My first year or so on the blogoverse there was one thing I couldn’t quite relate to:  IF bloggers who couldn’t be around pregnant women. I didn’t get the whole “unfollow” thing, the lack of motivation for baby showers, the en-mass abandonment of blogs once pregnancies were announced. It never really bothered me to see other women’s success. I was totally ok with it.

Well boys and girls, it seems the tides have turned in Mo-ville. Yesterday’s fiasco, which I will shortly share with you, pretty much cemented the fact that I am officially preggo-phobic. Congratulate me! I have crossed over to the dark side!

It started getting really bad on our trip to Greece. There was a woman on our flight who I would guess was about 24-28 weeks along. She was thin and gorgeous and had the perfect bump. It infuriated me. She stood next to us on the bus from the plane to the terminal and I could barely contain the bile that rose up just from looking at her.

No reason other than the fact that a. She was pregnant and I wasn’t, and b. the biyatch was flying in her second trimester without a second thought. Next time I get to a second trimester – if that ever happens – I won’t even be able to pee without debating the risk vs. the reward.

From there it got worse. I could ID even the smallest hint of a bump. Shmerson began calling it my super-powered pregdar. By our last night in Greece, we were at a restaurant and I immediately spotted a woman who couldn’t have been more than 12 weeks along, who was not only enjoying a nice dinner in a nice hotel, but was also having a glass of wine with that dinner.

Oh, the rant Shmerson had to endure that night was one for the ages.

Once we got back, I was finding myself staying away from my google reader like the plague. It wasn’t just the women who had my due date that scared me off, it was everyone past the twelve week mark. It was every mention of a bump or nausea.

I was tempted to do a preggo cleanse on my reader until I realized that I loved every single one of these women and wanted a happy outcome for all of them. So I just opted to keep all of them in and merely keep my reading at a minimum for the time being.

Same thing was happening with post-pregnancy parenting blogs I used to read happily. I just couldn’t stomach it any more.

Let’s face it, I’ve become a “veteran” of the ALI blogosphere. Most of the women I started following when I first began blogging have long since moved on to parenting. So my reader has now become a veritable minefield. And let’s not even get into the guilt I feel for not commenting on those blogs any more.

I seriously just can’t take it.

Then last night came the veritable apex of the preggo-phobe craziness that has been my life lately.

I was invited to a birthday party. Now this is all well and good, I’ve been liking parties lately. But this party was for a woman who is part of a circle of friends who I last saw at a wedding when I was 18 weeks with Nadav, and they were cooing excitedly over my growing belly.

I was pretty much dreading going to this party, but I like this chick a lot, and I knew I had to see these people sooner or later.

Merely the prospect of going had me in a nice little grumpy state all evening. Then we showed up. The party was at this public park, so once we parked the car it was a bit of a walk to get there.

And guess what happens on the way?

Someone calls my name – I turn to see it’s an old friend of mine. A really nice woman who I’ve known since we were 15 and who got married about a year ago. She walks toward me with another woman, smiling and waving.

And both of them are sporting 20-week bumps.

This is the first thing I see as I enter the party.

I hug her, congratulate her, and proceed with a quick catch up. Then she walks away. As soon as she does, I quickly greet the birthday girl, and run off to a dark corner to cry.

All in all, a great start to the party.

I have NEVER cried at the sight of a baby bump before. Maybe it was because no one warned me. Maybe it’s just because of the whole impending due date thing.

Whatever it was, I needed a stiff drink to calm myself down enough to make me functional for the rest of the party.

I seriously can’t believe it’s come to this. When did I become this person?

Me no likey.

On the way to the party, the news came on the radio. A really rare species of rhinoceros, that is on the verge of being extinct, gave birth after a year-and-a-half long pregnancy.

Shmerson and I immediately looked at each other. It didn’t need to be said, but I said it anyway: “Maybe everything’s ok and I’ll just be giving birth to a rhino in a few days.”

Shmerson answered: “Well, that would be nice. Though I think you’d probably be a bit bigger if that was the case.”

This is what we’ve come to people. Freakish man-beast births have become the optimistic outcome.

This Post Isn’t Sunshine and Unicorn Farts

5 Jun

The first thing I did after losing Nadav was go out and buy a pack of cigarettes.

For the first couple of weeks, I was on about two packs a day.

I’ve talked about my struggle to quit smoking here before. I’ve had stumbles, and somehow between every loss I fall back into the smoking trap, only to struggle with quitting again.

This time it’s no different. I promised Shmerson I would quit before we get pregnant. And I was on my way to doing that.

Today I got yet another BFN, and the first thing I did after getting it was to light up.

If you don’t smoke, or have never been a smoker, it’s hard to explain how addictive this crap really is.

For me, smoking is my own little way of punishing myself.

I hate my body.

I’ve always had a bit of a rocky relationship with it, but these last two years have really done a number on me.

On days when I feel particularly weak, I find myself crying and telling Shmerson that I killed our babies. It’s a dark, scary feeling to have.

Though the logical side of my brain knows that this is not the case, there’s a place deep down inside of me that feels this way. At the end of the day, my body failed to carry our children and to keep them safe. I hate it for that. I hate myself for that. Though I know that everything that happened was outside of my control, I can’t help but harbor this hostility.

So of course, the logical thing to do when you hate something so much is to destroy it. Some people cut themselves. Some people starve themselves.

Me? I eat and I smoke.

And then I hate myself some more for doing it.

I am the heaviest I have ever been. So much so that I’m afraid to step on a scale. I can’t stand looking in a mirror. I hate every thing about myself right now, and I’m too far down in the muck to do anything about it.

It’s just daunting. There’s so much there to deal with.

And to make matters worse, I have the looming prospect of eventually getting pregnant again, and having to be in bed for six months, and ballooning even farther out of control.

I can’t just wake up one day and say “I’m going to change everything.” It’s impossible. I’m doomed to fail if I put myself up against something that impossible.

But the truth is, right now, I can’t even find the strength to say “I’m going to change one thing.”

Because this kind of stuff takes time, and I am out of patience. I am tired of waiting. I don’t feel like I want to throw any more time than is necessary into the dark black succubus that is my inability to carry a child to term. I need this to be behind me, and the sooner it is, the better.

That doesn’t leave time for self-improvement.

Last week, I had a meeting with the head of the MA program in art therapy in my city. She loved me. She wants me in the program. Not only that, she wanted me in the special accelerated program that would give me a Master’s in a year and a half instead of three, and would get me off the hook with some of the program’s pre-requisites.

Then I told her about my plans to get pregnant again, and the looming bed rest.

She said that there was no way I could do the accelerated program while on bed rest.

So now I have to take a year to complete my pre-requisites, then do the three year program. Because there’s no way I’m going to wait another two years to get pregnant while I do this degree.

So that’s 4 years total instead of a year and a half. Yet more time sucked into the black hole that is my uterus.

I will not have a resolution until I have a take-home baby. And I will most likely continue to hate myself until there is a resolution. I wish I could say things were different, but that’s just how I feel.

Over the past few weeks and in the coming weeks, babies are going to be born to some amazing women. Those women got pregnant at the same time that I was pregnant with Nadav. I was supposed to be one of those women, posting a happy update. Posting pictures. Telling a birth story.

I am not. And that pain is too much to deal with.

So self-destruction and body hate is my fallback position.

I hate that. I hate that I can’t be rational about this. I hate that I can’t be healthy. I hate that a BFN this morning drove me to smoking and chocolate. I hate that I was ever put in this position to begin with. I hate how unfair all of this is.

I hate that I can’t do better.

I texted Rachel this morning about my BFN. She answered “It makes sense. Your body isn’t ready!”

I answered back:

“My body is a douchenozzle.”

Yep. That pretty much sums it up.

The One With That River in Egypt

21 May

Before I write anything else, please head over to Belle’s blog and show her some love. She found out today that Pip doesn’t have a heartbeat. I am heartbroken for her.

****

Today marks 3 months since we lost Nadav. I didn’t mean to acknowledge it in any way, but the truth is that I’ve been feeling really down the last few days and I only yesterday really understood that there’s a correlation.

On Friday Ababaderech came over and we had a really long talk. He has a tendency to reach the truth with me when we talk. It always happens that within the hour he has me confessing my darkest fears and feelings. Friday was no exception.

Our conversation brought a lot of feelings up to the surface that I’ve been suppressing.

The fact is that I spend most of my days in denial.

I’ve suffered from depression and anxiety for most of my life. Through all of that time I never contemplated self-harm. Not once.

Not once until these last few months. And that scares the crap out of me.

I very rarely let myself linger on Nadav. Wondering what he would have looked like. Wondering what kind of person he would have grown up to be. I don’t let myself  linger on it, because it’s too painful. Because it leads me to darker places than I’ve ever been before.

But sometimes, those thoughts come. With them, comes the weight of the last two years. The fact that as much as we’ve grown, here we still are: Two years later, one stillbirth, two ectopics, one blighted ovum, 40 pounds heavier, 3 surgery scars, one tube removed, a bruised uterus, a mild dependance on Xan.ax, and empty arms.

Holy crap that’s depressing to write. No wonder I get overwhelmed when the weight of it hits me.

So I don’t let it. That’s kind of my point. I spend every single solitary day ignoring it. Throwing myself into work. Obsessing about this cycle, planning our vacation. Doing anything but thinking about it.

I promised myself a lot of things after we lost Nadav. The truth is, I haven’t kept up with all of those promises.

Yes, I am living my life more fully. I am making a bigger effort to reach out. I am doing my best to appreciate the life that we have.

But I am still obsessed with bringing resolution to all of this. Whether it’s by giving birth myself, surrogacy, or adoption, I need this to be over.

I think I have a lot of unprocessed grief about losing my son. Sometimes I feel guilty about not processing it. Sometimes I feel like I’m lying to myself by continuing on the path I’ve been on.

But sometimes I think it’s the only way for me to get through this. That I know one day the weight of all of this will hit me fully. I know that one day I will truly grieve for my son.

But today is not that day. Tomorrow will not be that day.

The day I will truly grieve is the day we have resolved this. Because if I let myself grieve any sooner, I will break into tiny pieces and I won’t be able to put myself back together again.

So I let myself forget. I let myself escape into cycle days and pee sticks and lolcats.

Because anything else would be unbearable. Until my arms are full, I will do my best to ignore the growing emptiness.

 

Second Verse – (Pretty Much) Same as the First

26 Apr

So we went in for our second opinion yesterday, and Dr. Second Opinion: I officially re-dub thee Dr. Sunshine!

Seriously, the guy was AWESOME. If he didn’t practice over an hour away from here I would transfer.

It’s not that I don’t like the Russian. But THIS GUY, seriously. Is it possible to have a completely non-sexual crush on a 70-ish year old doctor strictly because of his awesome bedside manner?

Evidence of Dr. Sunshine’s awesomeness:

  • When recounting my story, and saying my water broke at 22.5 weeks, he sighed and said “just shy of the promised land” yep. You get it. *swoon*
  • When I started conversing with him in Infertile-speak, or in other words, giving him terms and information no normal woman would know, rather than looking at me strangely, he was freaking impressed. Loved that.
  • He started talking about “our next steps” then caught himself, and said: “Oh, right, you live more than an hour away. I don’t want you making that drive all the time.” Then he helped me figure out a way to tell the Russian what he said without actually telling the Russian that I went for a second opinion, so as not to hurt his feelings.
  • When I told him this is our last shot as far as I’m concerned, he yelled at me, saying: “Don’t say that, you WILL have a baby. I can tell what kind of woman you are. You’re way too strong to give up, and there’s no reason why this won’t work out.”
  • Finally, and this was my favorite part – the man gave me his personal cell phone number and offered to be my “Phone Friend” whenever I had a question.

Eh-hem.

Also, nothing he said really contradicted the Russian, and he agreed that the Russian is a good doctor and there’s no reason for me to leave him.

Wow, I feel like I totally just had an affair on my doctor. Ahh well.

As for what happened, he went into a bit more detail, from a different perspective. He said we’ll never know for sure what happened, and it could have been contractions, it could have been the cerclage failing, or it could have been the cerclage itself. We’ll never really know.

So, Dr. Sunshine’s recommendations:

  1. Slight medication change for the first trimester, and progesterone shots starting at 14 weeks (that’s to keep any contractions at bay).
  2. Cerclage at 12 weeks, same stitch as the Russian recommends.
  3. Bed rest, of course.
  4. He sent me in to get my glucose levels tested and my TSH tested again, just in case.
  5. He convinced me to skip the HSG, because he too doesn’t see a need for it, and two docs saying not to have that painful bit of hell is enough for me.
  6. As far as he’s concerned, we can jump in again right away.

So basically, not so different from the Russian’s prognosis.

Another thing that came up was a bit of a validation for me. He pretty much confirmed that they effed up my first D&C and that’s where all the problems most likely started. No point in getting angry about it all over again. But finally a doctor confirms what I’ve been saying all along.

Shmerson and I left the appointment feeling hopeful.

I can’t say the fear has disappeared. I don’t think it ever will. But a bit of hope creeped in thanks to Dr. Sunshine, my new Phone Friend.

AF should show her face in a couple of weeks, and then, we hold our breath and jump in.

Holy crap.

Wherein I Feel Like a Broken Record

21 Apr

So have you guys ever had this happen to you?

I want to stop thinking about being pregnant. I want to stop wanting to be pregnant. But I just can’t turn it off.

I’ve been keeping busy, working hard, doing things that are supposed to be fun. But it keeps creeping in. I can’t control it.

Today marks two months since we lost Nadav. Time has both flown by and dragged on. It’s the strangest feeling. I miss him, I mourn him. But a part of me feels like there are things about losing him that I have yet to process. Just the decision to try again has brought up a bunch of new feelings. I’m pretty sure that getting pregnant again will bring more to the surface.

This week I made an appointment for a second opinion. Ever since then I’ve been terrified of finding out that the Russian made a mistake. I know that’s probably not going to happen, but it’s been haunting me.

I HAVE to trust him. If I don’t, I’ll spend the next pregnancy even more terrified. I can’t do that. I have to feel like I’m in good hands. He brought us further than any other doctor has. I don’t want to switch doctors. He has a stake in this. He knows me. I have to continue to trust him.

Even though the Russian didn’t give me a magic solution, I’m kind of hoping that Dr. Second Opinion will give me the same information. It would just make things so much easier.

In the meantime, I’m in a constant battle to keep myself distracted, but the insatiable need to get all of this behind me keeps me from moving forward completely. I know I have (hopefully, please) 6 months of being in bed ahead of me. 9 months (please please please) of worry and anxiety.

Like I wrote to Court in an email a few minutes ago, I know I have this incredibly long and hard road ahead of me, and I just want to get on with it already.

Don’t know if that’s healthy, but that’s just where I am.

In other news, I dyed my hair pink.

And yes, I love it.

Open Wounds

14 Apr

A decision has been made.

As soon as we’re cleared medically (which means most likely next month), we have decided to jump into TTC right away.

I can’t say I’m happy with the decision, but I don’t think I’d be happy with any decision. This is the best decision we could have made for our sanity.

I can’t say it’s a good decision, but it’s the right decision.

This isn’t just about what the Russian said. This isn’t about getting the “project baby” show back on the road.

This is about us being tired. We are tired, and we want to know where this is leading us sooner rather than later.

The fact is that we have an open, festering wound that’s done nothing but grow in the last two years. No amount of time will heal this wound. Nothing will heal it. But there is one thing that will at least make it turn into a scar – and that’s a baby.

We can’t ignore this wound, so we’ve chosen to accept it. We will jump in, hold our breath, and hope against all hope that it will become a scar sooner rather than later.

I keep myself busy. I try to do things that are good for me. But the fact is that most days I feel like a walking freak show. I’m that babyloss mom. I’m that woman that miscarried all those times and had a stillbirth. I’m that broken body. I am not me.

That is the open wound. It’s one that will never go away.

I just hope that we can make it scab over soon. And that somehow through all of it I manage to maintain a bit of myself.

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