Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Great Unknown

Throughout life, we're faced with many situations that put us on the edge of the great and vast unknown. I've never been good at taking the leap, trusting that things will work out. I've always been a worrier. Technically, I think I should be super skinny with the amount of unnecessary worrying I've allowed myself to do (surely that much stress burns some calories).

In my days, I've spent inordinate amounts of time stressing and worrying over zillions of things. I remember the fears I had in 6th grade when my family moved and I had to start a new school. I wondered if I'd ever fit in, or have friends, or a boyfriend, or be able to remember my locker combination or where homeroom was. I worried myself sick for weeks. I was miserable. But, in the end, my worrying didn't accomplish anything. I wish I could say here that my fears were unfounded, but I didn't fit in, I made a few friends, not even almost a boyfriend... for a while, then it got easier. Ahhh, to know then what I know now!

High school brought new worries, and then college with moving out and getting my own apartment... but it was just all part of the experience - the Growing Up Experience. It fell naturally into place after a bit of discomfort and nervousness. I honestly felt like things would always just kind of work out.

One thing I didn't spend much time worrying about was losing a child. I got pregnant with Caroline after more than a year of trying and after we made it past 12 weeks, I felt like I could breathe easy. And shockingly enough; I did. I planned for her, I prepared for her. Never imagining the great unknown right in front of the feet I could no longer see beneath my giant full-term belly. Then it happened: my world as I knew it was so rocked that it'll never go back into place fully. She died. 36 hours before the planned induction to keep us from going past due, she just died. All the plans, all the preparations, nothing mattered. How could this have really happened? I believed everything was going to just fall into place. I mean, I did it all right: college, marriage, career, babies. How could the plan have not worked? I was blindsided.

Now,I feel like I'm constantly worried about something. From flu germs on my Target cart (that Addalee just had to keep touching and touching), to a drunk driver killing a loved one on the road, to wondering if there might be something to those stories linking immunizations and autism, to Addalee's (normal childhood) fever really turning out to be cancer, to losing this baby too. I'm always under the pressure of trying to expect the unexpected. As if somehow knowing that something terrible is about to happen really lessens the blow. I feel like I don't want to be made a fool of again, like I have something to prove.

I'm only a few weeks away from (Lord willing) delivering baby girl #3. And let's be honest, I'm pretty well completely terrified. I'm scared of something happening like it did with her biggest sister, but I'm also scared of all the other unknowns. Will she be healthy? Will I have to have a c-section? Will Addalee have a hard time adjusting? Can I be a good mother to two (living) children? Will breastfeeding work better this time? Will she sleep well or be a fussy baby? (Will we ever name her?!?!)

I know I need to adopt a more trusting attitude, but I just don't know how. I'm scared. I'm hopeful. I'm still hurting. I'm still broken. I'm excited. And I'm anxious.

We went to baby Cooper's funeral last week. It was really a beautiful service. Jessica and her family had a good amount of support, and they held themselves together well. It brought back many memories for us. As Arthur and I clenched each others hands and cried quietly, I was taken back to that October Friday more than 2 years ago when we said our final goodbye to our firstborn, our hearts beyond shattered. I can't believe how far we've come, or how far we still have to go. In an effort to stay sane, my method of coping has been to stay busy. Instead of really dealing with how sad I still am, how fearful I am to lose another child, how angry I am that any family should go through that; I've been doing laundry and going through closets. Here's hoping I get a clean house, and a healthy living baby out of these next weeks...and things feel less unknown and scary the weeks, months, and years after that.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Baby Cooper and Family Update

Baby Cooper was born this morning. His mama began the induction process on Sunday morning, and it was a long and difficult process. His family held him and loved him, and have started down the long path of grieving their sweet little boy.

I appreciate all the support you offered when I originally shared her story. Please continue to lift them up in your thoughts and prayers.

Jessica does not blog, but I was thinking it may be nice for me to print comments and responses to this post and give them to her. Just as a way to show her that there is a whole group of wonderful ladies thinking of her and standing behind her. Because we all know that when the dust begins to settle and everyone returns to their routines, it's so easy to feel so very alone. I want her to feel surrounded by people that understand.

Thank you in advance for any words of love, sympathy, encouragement, and support you have to offer. You guys are kinda the best!!! :)

Monday, January 7, 2013

Difficult Days

Gosh, I've gotten so bad at blogging.  I hate it, because I really do have a lot to say, I'm just struggling to get it typed out.  

Our little family had a busy, but nice Christmas and New Year.  I want to, and plan to, update soon with pictures and memories, but today isn't that day.

Today, my heart is heavy for a friend.  She was one of the people who came to me in the early days after losing Caroline to share her story of loss, a baby boy in the 20th week.  I was so happy to have someone, in person, that had experienced so many of the terrible things that I had in losing my first child.  Her name is Jessica.  She is a wonderful mother, wife, and friend.  I'm so thankful to have her in my life.  She was pregnant with a baby boy named Cooper, 24 weeks along, and went to the doctor for a routine check this past Thursday and no heartbeat could be found.  Those words give me chills and make me nauseous.  Little Cooper passed away, and the world crashed down around that family's shoulders for a second time.  

It's been a whirlwind of visits and plans and details for them since then. She is currently at the hospital going through the induction process. My heart breaks for them, and I'm requesting any prayers and positive thoughts you can offer be sent up for them.