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The Gap That Is and Isn’t

4 Jan

There’s a community I used to belong to. A community that saved me on my worst days. A community I left with a protesting whimper.

Every once in a while I check in. I pop into the old reader and see what’s going on. Every time I see why I left. Every time I understand it was the right decision for me.

But I still check in. I see the debate. The infighting. The pain. The ongoing triumphs and tragedies.

And when I do, I get thrown back to the days I was a train wreck myself. I find myself being what made me so angry so long ago. A spectator.

So on nights like these, when I go through and click on links from the yearly list I stopped being a part of…

Nights like these are when I cry for my Nadav.

I cry for him and sneak into Bunny’s room, just to see that my little girl is breathing.

Then I pick myself up and realize that I am still glad I left.

I left because I have chosen to move on. This space is still my space, I am still a part of that club. But I choose not to be an active member.

I choose to forget the meaning of BLM and TTC and PCOS and TWW.

On nights like these, if Shmerson is up, I usually tell him I miss Nadav. Because on nights like these I do.

*****

I read about a mother telling her four year old son again about the older brother he’ll never meet. And I wonder – will I tell my four year old daughter the same?

No. She is here and ever present. He was here and fleeting. He was and always will be a gap. An abstract. Something that could have been, that never was. Someone I loved more than anyone I loved before him. Until now.

Had he been there, my lovely amazing wonderful little girl would not be.

And she is here. And she is present. And messy. And scary. And wonderful.

No. I won’t tell.

There will be a day, when the time is right, when I will tell my little girl the reason her dad was the one who dropped her off at daycare every day.

The reason he talks to her teachers and not me. The reason I cry sometimes when I read her a story. And sometimes when I tickle her. And sometimes just when I look in her eyes.

The reason the paintings hanging on our walls are abstract.

That they are what he is to me. And abstract that hangs on the wall in my daily life. Often overlooked, sometimes lingered upon.

I will tell her one day. But she will no longer be my baby girl when she learns the reason her momma used to be a much sadder person.

*****

I read about a mother about to lose her son at 19 weeks. I click to her home page and see she now has another on the way. I see how slowly she is embracing the physical. The present. The “what is” and not the “what should have been.”  I am happy for her.

I read about a mother visiting her daughter’s grave. I wonder where my son is buried. I cry and cry and cry for him.

But then I stop. I look at my daughter sleeping. I pick up discarded pacifiers from the floor. I straighten her blanket and feel a sense of calm.

********

Loss broke me. Loss shattered everything i was. I am still picking up the pieces. I am rebuilding. Trying all at once to capture what once was and reconcile it with what is.

I am building up. Slowly. Slowly.

Building my career. Building my sense of self. Building my identity.

Nights like these I dive back into a world I lived in for years. A world I loved and hated. A world that saved me. But a world I am no longer a part of – at least not in the way I used to be.

A world I choose to stay away from because I am building bridges over gaps rather than staring at them.

I build and build. Sometimes the bridges fall. But mostly they stay up.

Nights like this a brick falls off of the bridge, into the big gap. The one that had to happen for us to be here. In the present.

Building bridges, building contentment.

******

Today I was folding laundry. Bunny can’t stay away from our bedroom when I fold laundry. She loves climbing on the bed, getting eaten by the tickle monster and bouncing up and down to the horsey song.

Shmerson and I look at each other and smile as she struggles to stand on the wobbly bed so she can bounce.

I look at him and say:

“You know another great thing about waiting another year or two? By then she’ll be in municipal preschool so we won’t have to pay for daycare twice.”

He nods.

I start singing the horsey song and Bunny bounces until she falls back, giggling.

There is no gap when that laughter is heard. There is only her. Only us.

“Abba. Mama. Una. Yiyi.”

Shmerson, and me, and Luna and Lili. There is no gap when her voice fills the hallway, squealing those names gleefully.

“Abba. Mama. Una. Yiyi.”

Lili.

I look up at his paintings. Wipe my nose. Long day tomorrow. Wonder what I’ll make Bunny for dinner.

Good night.

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9 Responses to “The Gap That Is and Isn’t”

  1. Courtney January 4, 2015 at 02:42 #

    You know that I didn’t go through what you did, but I am such a believer in fate that I think id view this situation the same way. I would be sad, but also know that what I have wouldn’t be without that awful loss.

    I think you sound so at peace. That’s wonderful! Bridges over gaps… Absolutely!

  2. Suzanna Catherine January 4, 2015 at 03:29 #

    I love this post! You are such a strong woman and you have worked so hard to get where you are. Please keep writing. Bunny sounds absolutely adorable. I hope 2015 is happy and healthy for you and your family.

  3. Angel January 4, 2015 at 04:10 #

    I never had a blog in the IF world…but I lurked for an awful long time finding support by reading of others who shared my silent struggles. I remember during that time a great division between those still waiting to parent, and those former IFers who we’re moving on to their parenting journey.

    What I have concluded is that it is perfectly right to find others who are in the same place as you in that time. It is also perfectly right to move on to new communities as your life changes. There ARE two sides here – as unfair as that may be, it’s true. And like a non-IF parent can’t understand the special need we sometimes have to check the breathing of our sleeping littles is SO not the same as their need to check on their littles, an IFer who is not parenting cannot understand your life today.

    It’s just how it is. It doesn’t make us disloyal or unsupportive- it just means we are part of a new place.

    So pop in to remember if you wish and to offer support to those you love. But never, ever feel bad for leaving that place. It’s normal and necessary.

  4. Kari January 4, 2015 at 05:13 #

    Beautiful.

  5. Steph Mignon January 4, 2015 at 05:47 #

    This is a beautifully written post! And bittersweet too. You so eloquently describe how you’re learning to appreciate the wonderful things you have now, while coping with the pain of loss.

  6. chon January 4, 2015 at 12:09 #

    Just going to emoticon it 😘

  7. Daryl January 4, 2015 at 22:18 #

    Beautiful post. The building is so important, for your family, for yourself, your identity. These are wonderful, positive things.

  8. Mrs T January 6, 2015 at 00:49 #

    Damn you’re an amazing writer. ❤

  9. Brave IVF Mama January 7, 2015 at 07:01 #

    Love this post. And glad you’re in a good place. Happy new year!

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