Thursday, September 21, 2006


As my original due date draws closer, I've found myself thinking more about the child who almost was. Today, I should be exactly 8 months pregnant. Instead, I'm getting ready for a midcycle scan this morning.

While I can't speak for every mother who has ever lost a child, I don't think my feelings are unique in this.

One of the comments heard most often after a miscarriage is "at least you can have another".

I know that the people who said that (or the similar "it wasn't meant to be this time") to me are just trying to reassure (me? themselves?) that my miscarriage was a one-time occurrence, just one of those things, statistically unlikely to recur.


I didn't want just any child, I wanted that child. The one who wasn't meant to be. The one who would have been born next month, who would have celebrated her first holiday season this year, who would have made my son an older brother at three. Who might have had my eyes or B's dimples.

By my third trimester with G, I already knew he liked to party at night, that he got hiccups regularly, and that he hated anything constricting his space. He wasn't just a dream of a baby without a personality, he was my boy, the one who was super-sensitive to me poking his feet through my belly, who got excited in the shower, and who freaked out for a long time after loud noises. I wasn't surprised when he was born with his days and nights mixed up, hating swaddling and bare feet and baths (he preferred showers), and taking a long time to regain his calm when things were too loud.

I didn't get the chance to learn any of that the second time.

I never really understood how or why a mom could be so hurt and so devastated by an early loss. It's not as if she really knew that baby. I was blindsided by the feelings of lost opportunity that I had. I never got a chance to know her. I never even had a hint of her personality, of her preferences, never saw her face anywhere but in my dreams.

I regret what could have been, even as I look forward to what might become.

.. and I am happy that I am doing more looking forward than looking back.


DD said...

I wish I had asked for written guarantees from all the people who said, "at least you can have another" since it's been two years now.

Heather said...

I've never been pregnant but I know that I would be devastated by a lose at any stage and I can't understand how others can be so dismissive. Saying it wasn't meant to be THIS time is like telling someone to just relax and they will get pregnant...
I am glad that you are spending more time looking forward.

Krista said...

I know exactly what you mean. Although I had the good sense never to voice the thoughts, I will confess that when my SIL went through a miscarriage at 5 weeks I thought, that's awful but at least it wasn't later when she was attached.

Then I had a miscarriage at 7 weeks and I realized how very, very wrong I was. I don't think you can truly understand it until you've lived it.

I am really glad you are looking forward more than looking back, that's real progress.