Friday, 4 November 2011

I would mostly call myself OK, these days. Cautiously. But yeah, mostly OK. The anxiety is a million times better than it was, and I'm so thrilled to get to mother J, my little darling.

I would like to think that I'm aware of other people's circumstances on fb - not even those I know about, so to speak. But those who I don't know have lost babies, too. I try and keep it low-key. But I can't resist sharing pictures of him. Strange, when at first D had to twist my arm to put any pics up at all.



When someone tells me she's pregnant, these days, I can - and do - react in the socially acceptable way. Oh, fantastic! Congratulations! How far along? That's what people in the non-babylost world want to hear. And to be honest, these days, it really is the first thing that comes into my head.

But from that second onwards, I have to stop myself from saying the second thing. Because what I want to say at that point isn't to share my most recent pregnancy, or tell stories about how the little creature in my pram or my arms. How he tormented me with not-moving, or his birth story, or how fantastic a baby he is.

I want to say, I lost my first baby. If you get bad news, if you end up walking this path of the babylost, please tell me. Even if you can't see me because you can't bear to see my happy ending - and that's OK! - let me point you in the direction of glow and blogging and the places that helped me. Let me know your baby's name, if you want to, so I can remember him or her. Let me tell you that it's OK to back away from people who don't support you, or even to cut them off entirely. Let me think of you on the dates that hurt.

A neighbour told me today that she's pregnant, and that she has her first scan on Monday. The neighbour who helped us push our car out of the snow the morning we went to the communal cremation ceremony, at that. And I so had to stop myself from saying 'you remember that morning our cars were stuck in the snow? Guess where we were going that morning!'

Seriously. She told me she has her first scan on Monday. I said 'I hope everything is perfect'. I meant it. It was the only honest thing I could think of to say that wouldn't freak the poor girl out. But at the same time, I was thinking I hope everything's OK. I hope you don't have to go round telling people it's not. I hope, I hope.


Catherine W said...

I'm so thrilled you have J. He really is a lovely little guy.

I also have to suppress a great number of second things that spring to my lips when someone tells me that they are pregnant. And I still find it very difficult to answer questions about J's birth, number of children etc. All a bit of a muddle.

I think that what you told your neighbour was perfect. Hoping with you xo

Hope's Mama said...

Yep, Beth. So much of this is true for me too. I was just thinking about this topic this morning. When I hear news of a new arrival now, I can react happily and "normally" without wanting to throw my phone at a wall. I used to always think "why me, why not their baby" now I mostly feel a mix of joy and relief that their baby arrived safely and they didn't join our shitty club. We don't need any more members.
But yeah, sometimes with those pregnancy announcements, I want to say "good luck" because that to me seems the thing that most people need - and bucket loads of.

stinkb0mb said...


Angela said...

Me too. My sister-in-law is due at the end of January. Last month she had a bit of bleeding, her placenta had detached some, and she was calm as can be about it while I wanted to scream at her to stay at the hospital and refuse to move until her boy is born safely. She rested up, the placenta reattached, all is well, but I spent the better part of a week biting my tongue. I have a hard time keeping my responses appropriate around the pregnant.

J is wonderful. I love the pictures you share on fb.

Imperatrix said...

Good luck sounds like a perfectly fine thing to say. Just, without implication in the tone. You aren't lying, you aren't freaking them out with what-ifs, and you aren't pretending.

Sounds like a plan.

Aoife said...

I haven't had to deal with too many pregnancy announcements since we lost Seamus. The only announcements I've had are in this community, and one in real life. The real life announcement was from a close friend who struggled with infertility for YEARS. So each of the announcements has actually been joyful for me. I feel that somehow those who have struggled to build a family, be it through loss like ours, or infertility, they deserve it. They know how precious it is. I have confidence that they will do all the right things and treasure their babies as babies should be treasured. I feel terrified that nature may roll her dice and take away another little life, but nothing is taken for granted by a mother who has had a loss, or a mother who has struggled with loss or infertility.
On the flip side, I dread the announcements from the fortunate ones - the ones who have never had to deal with loss or really struggled to get the baby they want. I don't know how to react around 'normal' pregnancies... complacency makes me shudder, and a 'relaxed' attitude is just so alien to me. I've imagined what I'd say... I think 'congratulations' would stick in my throat... but wishing luck seems more apt. I don't know. I guess I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.