I'm not sure this post is going to come together like I want it to, especially in the amount of time I have to write it. But, here goes...
(For the record, I started it this morning and have just finished it at 2:25pm)
These are feelings that I've experienced since I was admitted to the high risk unit on July 13th. When I was on bed rest in the hospital, I eluded to a post of this title and truly thought I would write it while there. That was before I knew how absolutely terrible the internet connection was.
I thought I would only be feeling the "glad" part now that Matthew is here and alive and healthy.
Not that easy for me.
I'm a very sensitive person anyway. Add to that postpartum hormonal changes and lack of sleep and well, this is what you get.
While in the hospital, before Matthew was born, I was sad... Sad to be away from Gib and the girls. I was hoping to be in the hospital a long time and didn't like the thought of being away for so long. Little did I know that I would only be there a week.
I was also mad. Mad at my body. Mad at my uterus that it couldn't and wouldn't behave. I was mad at myself for not getting more done earlier on to prepare for Matthew. Truth is I was scared. I had bonded with him and loved him, but as far as physically preparing a place for him in our home, I was going to wait as long as possible to see if he lived or not. (may sound grim but don't forget that was our reality once before)
But in spite of feeling sad and mad, I was also glad. Glad to have a doctor who was super conservative and not willing to take any chances with me. Glad to be in the hospital just in case something did happen. Glad, at the time, to have the option of medications that could quiet my irritable uterus (that is until even the strongest of medications didn't touch those pesky contractions!). Glad to have the support of my hubby, girls and many family and friends.
Then Matthew was born...
I was so glad he was here, "alive, pink and breathing", as Dr. L from the NICU said.
But at the same time, I was sad he had to be in the NICU, even though I knew that NICU was better than death. I was sad to be away from him. But if he had to be in the NICU, I was so glad he was there. It was almost like a reunion with so many of the nurses who took care of Emma Grace, and it was like being with family when those I've kept in touch with were around. I knew that Matthew was being taken care of exceptionally well. Not just because of my connections, but because they are a great bunch of docs and nurses who genuinely care for all of the babies who reside there.
I was mad, too. Mad that nothing can be easy. Mad that my body failed me, yet again. Mad that nothing seems to work out as we plan. It's not about us or our plans, I know that! At times, though, it seems that when I look around, the plans that others make come to fruition without even a small glitch. I know...get over it.
Fast forward again to today.
God love me. I'm still feeling glad, mad and sad.
Well, I'm glad you asked.
I am SO, SO, SO very glad to have Matthew. And Jessica. And Emma Grace. And Gib. And Grady in heaven. And a God who loves me unconditionally and has plans for me that are better than I could ever imagine or plan myself.
But I'm sad that I'm done having children. As crazy as it sounds, even after everything we've been through, I would entertain the idea of having another baby. Gib, on the other hand, who must have a say in it all, does not share my feelings on this matter. Thus, the end of babies for our family. Not to mention the fact that Dr. Joe would most certainly fire me as his patient if I got pregnant again. Which I'm not going to do...I'm just saying...and I wouldn't want anyone else as my doctor.
But here's where the mad part comes in. It's not just that we're done having babies. It's the fact that that decision has pretty much been made for me. Physically, my uterus cannot carry another pregnancy and hold another baby. It's just not possible. Especially since they keep getting bigger with each one!
Now please don't misunderstand me. It may sound like I'm ungrateful which couldn't be further from the truth. I am incredibly thankful that I was even able to get pregnant. I can think of at least a handful of people off the top of my head who have a hard time even conceiving. And my heart breaks for them. I was able to be pregnant five times which is a blessing (just for the record I had a very early miscarriage in 2005 which might have been a blighted ovum).
But as I was talking to my friend Jenny the other day, we agreed that when a decision is made for you, it's much harder to swallow. Even though we were "done" after Matthew, pregnancy isn't even an option for me again. And that's where the mad part comes in, I guess.
I feel like I've rambled my way through this post. I hope you were able to follow at least a little and make some sense of it. As I'm typing, I'm thinking this could be alternately titled, "Grief of a different kind". Because that's exactly what I'm doing...grieving what didn't happen and what can't happen in the future.
It's all good though. Just working through this emotional junk. Not getting too bogged down in it but knowing it's there and lies dormant under the surface. Praising the Lord for what I have and knowing I wouldn't trade any of it for anything in the world. Even the heartache and pain of losing Grady and missing him every day. Grady, who by the way, would have turned 21 months old yesterday. Hard to believe!
And before I go, please add my friend Tessa to your prayer list. She is 27 weeks pregnant with twin boys and is now on strict bedrest at home. And my friend Jenny, who I mentioned in an earlier post, is also home on bedrest and doing well. Thanks for lifting them up!