Prior to making my way to Florida to join James, he sent me a text message one afternoon. It was a picture of a baby in a car seat in the back of someone's car. His message to me was simply, Isn't that the most amazing thing?
It is statistically unlikely that what happened with our Ewan will happen again with the babe now in my womb, but what happened with Ewan represents one hundred percent of our experience, making broader statistics about child loss that include the hundreds of people that get to take their children home irrelevant to how we feel about this pregnancy.
Though this pregnancy is evidence of our choice to hope that things will be very different this time around, there is no guarantee that something terrible won't happen again. Although unlikely, it is not guaranteed. We don't know what it is like to give birth to a child and bring him home. We do know something about holding a child while his heart slows to a stop, while his skin turns a pale gray-blue in front of you.
I've spent a lot of time in the baby's room lately, unpacking and finding places for everything. All the baby things we possess were purchased with Ewan in mind, so it's impossible not to think of the little colorful animals meant to dangle in his line of sight while in the stroller as his. The crib, the bedding, the clothing, the diapers, the baby shampoo -- all were bought with him in mind. I'm surrounded by things that serve to remind me of the home life we longed to give him, but he never experienced.
And today it was more than I could take. Even as I prepare for the child I have not met, I ache for the one who left us. I am at once hopeful for this new child and tearful, clawing at the floor in my grief for the one I have lost. I beg God not to take this child in the same way, trusting that He hears, but not yet knowing if I will embrace His "yes", or if I must surrender to His "no."
I've told a lot of people about that picture of the baby in the car seat, and like my husband, I'm in wonder. It does happen. People do bring their children home. Isn't that the most amazing thing?