Because there's this wall. There's this defense mechanism that I don't seem to have control over. I am trying to step around it, trying to make a point to acknowledge this pregnancy. Trying to feel some hope despite all the fear.
Trying to remind myself, that if I were to lose this baby too, not being attached wouldn't actually make me feel any better. (And in fact, it would probably make me feel a whole lot worse).
The reality is there's not going to be a time I feel safe in this pregnancy. There's just not. And I have to, I have to, preface all my statements with "if all goes well..." or "hopefully..." My dad asked me not to talk that way, and I told him that I have to. It's hard for me when others don't.
Maybe it's the wall talking. But I'm unable to picture us bringing home a living, breathing baby.
I've been hoping to bond with this baby more when I started to feel movement. I was feeling movement with Lydie by this time and I've been waiting for it. But last week, at my appointment, my doctor told me that my placenta is anterior. Which means it's sitting between the exterior of my belly and this baby, and it's cushioning all the kicks and punches. And many women with anterior placentas don't start feeling movement until the third trimester.
It also means that it will always be harder to feel movement, which takes away the little ounce of control I felt like I might have, being hypersurveillant about this baby's movement.
That scares the shit of me.
|Please ignore that whoever made this graphic did not know how to spell "explanation"|
And I'm trying to find other ways to step around this wall. The bump photos are one way to do that. Sharing this pregnancy is another. We are also trying out the nickname "Bowie" (thank you, Jen Watanabe). Benjamin and Lydia were both "the baby" while in utero. But we like the idea of nicknaming this Rainbow baby, thinking it will help us to connect.
And then there's the huge issue of gender. We found out at 20 weeks that Ben was a boy and 19 weeks that Lydie was a girl. We didn't see any reason to wait (Justin always comments that he's just as surprised at 20 weeks as he would be at birth). I
This time around, I've been tempted to not know. That's because I want this pregnancy to be as different as it can be. Also, and mostly, because I want a living daughter so very badly. I hear this is normal when pregnant after loss, to desperately want the same gender as the child you lost. And I've gone on and on about how I convinced myself in those first 19 weeks that Lydia was a boy, but only because I wanted a girl so much. How I was so shocked, so happy to have the opportunity to raise a daughter. How her nursery still holds enough clothes to outfit her until she turned two or three.
The thing is, I'm grieving that I didn't get to take home the daughter that I was promised for 15 weeks. That this mother/daughter relationship doesn't look at all the way it was supposed to. That those clothes sit there untouched. I'm grieving Lydie. And I'm grieving the loss of the relationship I was supposed to have with Lydie.
And I desperately still want that relationship. I want a little sister to wear her hand-me-downs. I want a daughter to sign up for soccer, not cheerleading. I want ponytails and rants about how stupid boys are. I want the girl who calls me when I'm 60, just because we like to talk. And I want Justin to have that father/daughter relationship too. I want him to have a daddy's girl, the way I have a mama's boy. I want him to walk our daughter down the aisle and share a first dance on her wedding day. He talked about those moments when I was pregnant with Lydie. And it hurts so much that he'll never have them with Lydie. And it hurts so much that he may never have them at all.
Hence the temptation not to find out. Would I really be upset if a living child was placed in my arms, and he happened to be a boy?
Not knowing the gender is making it so much easier to stop myself from picturing bringing Bowie home. And I don't think that's doing Bowie, or me, or Justin, any good. I think we need to work on bonding with Bowie. We need to continue to take small steps around the wall.
And I think knowing whether Bowie is a little brother or a little sister for Benjamin and Lydia is one way to do that.
If it's a boy, it's a boy. There's nothing I can do about that.
If it's a boy, there's the chance that Ben could have a living brother.
We find out in a week and a half now. Of course, that's also the big anatomy scan with the MFM, so we're also hoping that Bowie, no matter whether a girl or boy, looks healthy.