11 March 2011

On being open again

You bet we want more.

Call us crazy, but we are still all for having a family. When I had my six-week checkup with my OB in November, she asked us what our plans were. She said that people who go through a loss like this may want time to process, while others want to launch straight back into babymaking. We were somewhere in between, wanting time for me to recover and heal physically, and also time to deal with things emotionally while not also contending with a torrent of hormone-induced vomiting episodes. But we also need to balance this with the reality that we're contending with the calendar: statistically, there may not be a lot of fertile years left.

It has been both good and necessary to take some time to grieve and not to worry about when we want to add to our family, but we are kidding ourselves if we think that this is a process that will ever reach some kind of finality, that we will ever wake up one morning and say, "Hey, I think we're done being sad about Ewan's death now. Let's start having some more children."

So as we approached nearer to the point where Ewan would have been six months old, in my mind, we were "trying." It only took two months of this to realize the "trying" mentality was an incredibly bad idea for me emotionally and psychologically. With "trying," a negative pregnancy test feels not just like a failure, but also a lot like loss for the child that "could have been". Honestly, I was obsessed. Tears and anger ensued when discovering that month's negative results. I could see and feel that this mentality was unhealthy, but I was so caught up with "trying" and felt like I couldn't let go of it even though I saw how it was harming me.

But I have let go of it. It was surprisingly easy once I recognized it for what it was. I've let go of "trying" and am embracing "being open" instead. This attitude of being open is how we found ourselves expecting Ewan, after all. I'm not going to cease in my efforts to ensure that my body is an optimally healthy environment for a baby, but I'm releasing the death-grip I had on the effort to achieve pregnancy within a certain timeframe. I'm going to enjoy the fact that I get to share life with an amazing husband and invite that love to bring more children our way.

Ewan taught me so much, and continues to teach me. Though unlikely, it is possible that what happened to Ewan could happen to another child of ours. We decided early on, however, that we weren't going to make our decisions from a place of fear, but rather from hope: hope that we could have a "normal" experience, hope that next time, we will have a child at home -- except after Ewan, normal wouldn't be normal at all. Normal would be extraordinary. Because of Ewan, to say I can appreciate that now is a terrible understatement.

When that day comes, there will be a lot of wondering, and a lot of waiting. Breath will be held until we can see and know (in as far as we can know) that that little beating heart is whole. And when that day comes, it will be worth it no matter what happens. For me, Ewan is proof enough of that.