Thursday, March 15, 2007

My terraversary

(thanks mel for The Glossary that gave me today's title)

One year ago today, I miscarried.

The day started out badly - I'd already found out the day prior that this was coming, so I woke up with the knowledge that things were bad-bad-bad inside the ole uterus, and I was both heartbroken and vaguely disgusted. I've heard it's a normal reaction, but all I could think was 'there's something dead in me get-it-out-get-it-out-get-it-out!'

That was about all the info that the emergency room had given me. Dead baby. Go home and call your OB to schedule a followup.

No one said a thing about what to expect.. so I carried on with life as usual, waiting.

If by 'life as usual' I mean frantic activity designed to take my mind off of everything, that is.

I was craving life, all things living. I needed to replace the ugly feelings with something hopeful, and beautiful.

We bought plants. Over the course of about two weeks while I grieved heavily, I planted roughly 6 dozen flowers and about a dozen packets of seed. I needed to see that I was able to grow something, even if I hadn't been able to grow that baby.

It is heartwarming to me to see that the flowers I planted last year are still here this year.

I don't think it's coincidental that yesterday all my narcissus broke out in full bloom.

My little back flowerbed will always remind me of the baby I lost, since that was the area where I spent most of the days, crying and planting, mulching and weeding.. reminding myself that there was still beauty in the world, that life continued and that there were indeed still things that could make me smile... and it is the narcissus planted there that has bloomed.

I transplanted them in the fall, moving from the front flowerbed to my little memorial garden. I wanted something that would bloom and grow at the very time I would most need to see beauty... but privately, in my own back yard, where it's ok to cry when I pull weeds.

When the narcissus has given its show, and returned to dormancy for the year, it will be time for my forsythia to bloom. Echoing the sunny yellow of the narcissus, the forsythia will give me a little more color, and will hold me over until my daylilies begin their bloom.

Somewhere in there, my fairy rose will open its tiny, delicate flowers. That was the last planting of the year - one lone, pitiful rosebush that I put in on the very cusp of winter. I don't know when, or if, it will bloom this year, but it's growing and green this year, faring much better than I expected.

I will have color and beauty in my life and my back yard for nearly half the year, exactly as I'd planned it. Exactly as I so wanted and needed to see last year.

There are two flowers that I started from seed on the very day that I miscarried - my sweet william and my alyssum. Neither has done very well this year, but they are both tenaciously hanging on, reminders that sometimes, hanging on is the best you can do until you are strong enough to thrive and bloom. They have been hanging on since they sprouted, neither growing much nor losing their green over the winter. They are in limbo, waiting for their time. I know how that feels, and I am patient with them, hoping, but not expecting.

I know that there is beauty out there, I have grown it, and I have seen it. Even when it's not coming fast enough for me, it is out there.


I worried that no one but me would remember my terraversary, that my child's few short weeks would fade into obscurity, known to no one but my heart.. but Spring remembered. A late Spring, a late bloom for my narcissus and on the beginning of a painful terraversary, I saw beauty.

It is my terraversary.. and I have already received flowers. Baby has not been forgotten.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...
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Erin said...

It sounds beautiful. I'm thinking of you and your baby.

Krista said...

That sounds like a perfect memorial to your lost baby. I wish I had thought of it. I love to garden but even if it hadn't been December when I miscarried, I'm not sure I would have had the presence of mind to plant a beautiful memorial.

Adrienne said...

That's so very beautiful, ~r. ((Hugs)) on your terraversary.

The Town Criers said...

This is such an incredible post. So aching and so beautiful. I'm so sorry about your baby. This sounds like a gorgeous memorial.

Would you mind if I included it in the emoblopedia?