Note: This is a story of loss of a pregnancy. Exercise discretion if you are sensitive to this matter.
I curled up under his arm. The warmth of tears on my face are dried by that special secret spot between his shoulder and neck, that place of peace I have known for ten years. I feel immediate comfort. I am scared, but here, in this spot, I am safe.
My son sees us. He runs, runs to grab his puppy dog, Six. He climbs up onto my husband's lap. He curls in, with his long eyelashes and sweet smiling cheeks, sits face to face with me.
My eyes fill with tears. Here we all are, curled and cuddled in comfort and peace. My mind, for just a few seconds, stops. I feel the love of our family. I feel the safety, the hope, and the faith that everything will be alright.
I have this moment.
A cold draft wafts up and under the crinkly paper. We are in the dark, waiting to see something.
My husband was rushing from work to meet us at the doctor's office, but got stuck in traffic. So, here, I lay, with my son, and the doctor, and the machine, searching.
The air is thick with anticipation. Anticipation of the words I don't really want to hear, but in my heart I already know.
I feel my son's soft touch. He taps my arm. Gently. Softly. As if he knows too. As if to say, It's gonna be okay, Mommy.
Gratitude for my son's tenderness and patience is interrupted.
There is no development. So, you are pregnant, but you're not.
I search his face. His soft tender eyes seem guarded behind his glasses, as if he's waiting for me to crumble. We sit in silence.
I drive home. My son chatters in the back seat.
An Overwhelming Moment of LOVE
We go to the park. My husband, my son, Miss Percy and me. Go to play baseball.
The wind is blowing. The grass is freshly cut, soft and green. Miss Percy flips her tail with delight.
My husband's hand melts into mine, fingers intertwined, holding on for comfort. I feel the warmth of the sun on my face and shoulders.
It seems surreal what's just happened, and yet I feel a calm surrender, a deep peace. I can question why...I can wonder what I did wrong...I can be outraged with the injustice of having to go through all of this again...Or, I can simply feel the sun on my face...The sweet embrace of my husband's loving hands...The excitement of my son's swing of the bat.
The crack of the bat. A Homerun! he screams as he runs around us.
I have this moment.
Bad Things Happen To Good People
In those quiet moments, when I am alone, my mind races with questions, emotions, sadness. What did I do wrong? Did I deserve this? Why didn't God protect us? Why weren't my prayers answered? Why does everyone else get what we want?...Those questions start from a negative place--inherent in them is the belief that I am not enough. If I did more, this would not have happened to us. If I were more perfect, everything would go the way we expected. If God loved me, he would have answered my prayers, would have protected me from this pain. The truth--I couldn't do more, be more perfect or pray harder. The truth--God loves me, no matter what. The truth--God lives in me, in my heart, in my emotions, in my pain.
I will never have answers to those questions, at least not answers that give me any sense of personal dignity. I want to know a loving and supportive world, one that fills my heart, takes my breath away and surprises me with the faith and trust I have kept hidden away for so long.
Bad things happen to good people. There is no other answer. Nothing to explain why there is injustice and pain. It just is. And, as I surrender to what is, and let go of the things I cannot control, the question shifts from Why do bad things happen to good people? to How do I choose to respond to this bad thing happening?. There is personal power in choice, and I choose love, acceptance, and serenity.
There Is Development
My heart is growing. Even though I am sad, and disappointed, and lost in grief, I am loved, and I am enough...and, that means I am okay, no matter what. I feel it...the willingness to simply embrace the moment...the support from those around me...the security that it will be alright...that we will move through this. Knowing this second Angel Baby is not lost in solitude, but with the deepest levels of love surrounding us, blesses my healing soul with gratitude.
I have this moment.
Further readings that may also provide insight and meaning.
Do I Save It, Just In Case
Escaping the Present Moment in Two Lines
Rabbi Kushner, An Accommodation with God, on NPR
Bouncing Back, by Karen Salmansohn