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.


  1. I think that the worries and the fears are normal with motherhood. Then throw in losing a child in the mix and those worries and fears are just magnified.

    You are so close my friend. We are all anxious and hopeful and excited to meet Caroline's newest sister.

  2. Wishing for peace over the next few stressful (and exciting) weeks! Hugs to you and all your girls.

  3. Prayers for your comfort for the next weeks ahead. I know how hard that wait at the end can be! Have you started asking your OB yet to just get the baby out a tad bit early like I did? :)

    Lots of love to you sweet friend. You are stronger than you think and you'll make it.


  4. You know, this is always much easier to say when I'm not the one with the big belly... but you already have her. You know? At some point in the next few weeks, you'll have this baby and kiss her and love on her. That thing is certain. And it's a beautiful thing.

    You are so close. Keep busy. That's how I handle stress as well. Either that, or I cry and eat a lot of potato chips. We are so thrilled to welcome this daughter into the world, too.

    And if and when I get pregnant again, I shall be eating lots and lots of potato chips. No way I'll be able to keep myself sane.

  5. I hope these next few weeks pass quickly and you are holding your third daughter in your arms, screaming and pink and as gorgeous as her big sisters.

    Seriously, you wrote it exactly as it is- I felt your stress in your words and I'm not so far removed from that feeling (even though it's been 8.5 months since I was pregnant) that I can't vividly recall it.

    Keep busy is right. Start a task you can't possibly complete in time for baby's arrival- will put the pressure on! :) ha!

    And netflix, start watching as much as you can to distract you.


  6. Sending prayers and hugs. I can't wait to see her! May God's peace be with you these next few weeks.

  7. Sending prayers and hugs. I can't wait to see her! May God's peace be with you these next few weeks.