the best way to get this out is to just start writing.
As many of you know my husband and I have been trying for more than a year and a half to conceive our second child. This has been a really hard and trying time for us for a lot of reasons. I've gone through a lot of cycles of feeling so frustrated and upset that I'm not yet pregnant, and it's not an easy thing to share. Much more, most of my friends are not even married, or don't want kids, they try to understand but they don't. My co-workers are even more clueless since most of them don't even understand wanting one kid let alone a dozen. I get it, not everyone feels the want for a family let alone a large family. Others around are pregnant, or accidentally pregnant, or accidentally getting some girl they hardly knew pregnant. I work in the parenting section of a bookstore... some days I just want to knock down those stupid pregnant people. And don't get me started about crafty bloggers (I'm pretty sure every one of you has a house full of beautiful kids and twins on the way) -- Ok so maybe not but it sure seems like the sub-culture of crafty bloggers do have more children than the average american family. Ramble ramble ramble.
You get my point right? It sucks. And for whatever reason we're still here month after month, not really being able to express this sadness. I'm working on that, letting myself be sad about it, and really addressing that saddness. It's hard to not feel able to express it (like I said people just don't get it). I had the best advice ever last month, coming from my friend Amy who is the most mormon person I know, who also is very very well versed in Catholicism - I'm going to share with you the little note she wrote to me last month (she's talking about a homily from a Catholic funeral she had recently attended - the funeral was for a grandmother and her 5 yr old grandson who died in a car accident).
"During the homily, Father related the story of Lazarus, focusing mostly on his sister. When Jesus came, Lazarus's sister was not very pleasant, saying that if He (Jesus) had come sooner, Lazarus wouldn't be dead and she wouldn't be hurting so much. Many people (both contemporaries and scripture scholars) have criticized her response, but Father's point was that she was okay. Paul wrote in his epistle to the Thessalonians that it is OK to mourn for who/what we have lost. Mourning in itself is not bad. We are entitled to our feelings. Paul does clarify, though, that we should not mourn as those who have no hope, because thanks to Christ we have hope. Now, in this particular case, Father was speaking about death and the hope for resurrection, but I think Father's point/Paul's point applies to your situation too. It is not wrong for you to be sad or frustrated. So people who tell you otherwise just need to shush! It is important to have hope in God's justice, which I know you do. But remember that it's okay to mourn."
Amy said it so well there. I so sincerely appreciate her understanding of things. But I'm still getting all blocked about this sadness. I'm trying to keep myself grounded. I'm trying not to let this frame my every minute. I do feel blessed though, so many people have suffered miscarrages and stillbirth, and loss of a child. So many even within the people I know. My own neice (4yrs old) has cancer, a cancer that has no cure and the side effects of the treatments are a high probability of cancer in the future. In the last year my sister has seen several families they know lose children to cancer. One in particular, Matthew Barr, passed away just weeks ago - he was Rosemarie's age, he'd been fighting so long. I can't imagine, I just can't. But I kinda can.
Miscarriages. Is there anything worse? Stillbirth? My best friend's other best friend delivered a perfect precious stillborn baby last summer. My heart still aches for her. The baby was named for my friend - Anne Michelle, now up in heaven being held by Jesus. How can we wrap our minds around this?
That's where this post is going. I've just read a wonderfully written post over at Life Rearranged.com. So much for not crying; I totally bawled right through the post. The author Jeanette has recently had a miscarriage. Her telling of it is so well written. It's really touching. I know I haven't been through nearly what she has, but I still feel some solace; I feel like someone saying, "it's ok, be sad." We'll make it through somehow. But there's no reason for us to do it alone. She's encouraging her readers to donate to an organization Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep which hires and trains photographers to provide professional photo remembrances of stillborn babies to their parents, free of charge. I'm fairly certain that this organization is the one which took the beautiful pictures of Anne Michelle. Please feel free to check them out, and donate there if you feel inclined.
I'm working on remembering that while our life isn't always what we expect it to be, it's certainly still pretty darn great. My heart hurts for those in much worse situations than I, but it still hurts for me too. We're making it through and someday in heaven it will all make sense. For now I've got to take joy in the fact that these littlest ones who have gone are so purely happy up in heaven waiting for us. I hope one day to meet Anne Michelle, and Matthew Barr... and you know what, I'll bet as much as we pray for them, I'm pretty sure they're probably returning the favor.