Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A New Way of Thinking...

When I was pregnant, my mind constantly revolved around how we were going to move bedrooms around for our twins, how many nursing bras I would need, whether we would be painting the bedroom that would be the nursery (for girls) or just dress it up a bit for boys. Doug and I had a constant but friendly battle over names going, and I would have to say that a good 70% of my thinking revolved around babies, doctors, pregnancy, nursing, or some other baby related topic.

Actually, I have been either pregnant or nursing or both for the last nearly 16 years. All of it. No breaks in between. To suddenly have only me physically dependent on my body is weird. I feel like I am having a bit of an identity crisis. If I go to take a pain reliever, I stop and think first, and then realize, I can do whatever I need to, without consideration for how it will affect a wee one. To some this might be welcome, but it just makes me sad.

I need a new way of thinking about my life, my own body, and the way the future is stretching out in front of me. We've had so many miscarriages, and this last one is beyond anything we have gone through before. My husband is staunchly in the "no more babies" camp. I wish I were. Six months ago, I would have told you I was in that camp too, and meant it. But, six months ago, I was still nursing our baby, Yeb. Six months ago I was tired. Six months ago, I hadn't just lost my twin boys. I know that another pregnancy would not bring back my boys, but it might fill some of the ache. It might (I have long since learned that a pregnancy does not necessarily mean a living babe in arms) fill my aching arms, and it might help the tears stop. I know that this is a knee jerk reaction to loss. I have had this same reaction every time we have lost a baby. The urge to be pregnant, hold a baby, nurse a baby comes on so strong. I think I am driving my poor husband crazy. I know he understands, and I am also aware that he considers it a normal, though irrational reaction to loss. He is waiting for me to get over it, patiently. He gently reminds me of why it's not a good idea to have any more babies (aside from the fact that he turned 49 yesterday). But, BUT, BUTTTTTT. I am full of "buts". But I want a baby. But Yeb is still so small that it won't be that big a difference, but I have wanted a little girl for so long. But I am so selfish.

I know what my husband, who has been by my side for all of the last 16 years of babies, miscarriages, emergencies, sick babies, and so many other things, wants. We've been through a LOT. Not as much as some, but still... a lot. He needs to be able to be his age a little. Not a new dad every 2 years or so. But that isn't even why. He thinks I have been through too much. He thinks we've pushed our luck too far, too many times. 16 years, 12 pregnancies, 7 babies. Three babies very ill at birth. It's been hard, and scary. And incredible. It's been our life. I need a new way of thinking about life that doesn't mean babies... and that's hard for me. I have dreamt of nothing but having babies since I was about 12 years old. I just wanted babies. A couple of times I have gotten to a point where I thought I would be comfortable if we never had another baby. When I got pregnant with Luke, I was so tired, and I was a little dismayed. But, he was Doug's (and God's) idea. He wanted another baby - and so we had our Luke. Then, after Yeb - being born c-section and sick, we thought that would be a good time to be done having babies, but I never really ruled it out in my head. I had dreams of a sweet little pink bundle. Those dreams are hard to give up, even though I know that we have been abundantly blessed. But, I guess it's time. My body has become more of a death trap for a baby than a cozy place to grow. We are getting older, and we could even have grandchildren in the next few years. It's time to close this chapter and move on to the next one. I'm not ready. I still dream of that bundle of sweetness. I still want babies. I guess acceptance of this new phase of life will come in time.

If you are one of my babies reading this, I want you to know this...all the heartache, all the scares, all the hospitals and doctors and losses...every second I got to hold you, nurse you, love you. Each and every single second of that was worth all of this.


  1. Oh, this is a beautifully written post. I so completely 100% understand how you are feeling. I do not think it ever possible that I will be okay with being "done" - I actually hate the dreaded "d" word. Done! Who's done" Certainly I am not "done" - how can I be done? Having babies is what I DO. Who am I, if there is not a baby on my hip and one growing in my belly? I struggle with this. People have told me to be "grateful" that I have so many children, as if the desire for more means I am not grateful. Just because I am open to having more children does not mean that I am not grateful for those I already have. People have asked me, "Well, how many do you want, anyway?'' What they don't understand is that it's not a number thing. It has never been a number thing. I just enjoy motherhood so much, I enjoy pregnancy and adding on to our family so much, that I just never want it to end. Yes, I know that it eventually has to. But that doesn't mean I have to like it ;) I haven't ruled out the idea of another baby yet, not even after 4 losses in a row. But I can sense that I'm coming nearer and nearer to that reality. Lord help me when that final day comes, where I know for sure that I am indeed "done" - it will definitely be a sad time for me, something I will have to work through.

  2. "I actually hate the dreaded "d" word. Done! Who's done" Certainly I am not "done" - how can I be done? Having babies is what I DO. Who am I, if there is not a baby on my hip and one growing in my belly?" - yes - this is EXACTLY how I feel. You really hit it perfectly. You and I may be sorting this new phase of life, but no, it certainly doesn't mean we have to like it. I hope you get the baby you are hoping for. I have a feeling that a certain husband of mine is going to do his best to make certain we are "done". He thinks another baby might kill me. Two doctors have told him I am fine, but we'll see, I guess. Blessings, Megan


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