My Promise to Myself
The ultrasound today went well (too early for a heartbeat, but one little baby-to-be safe and sound in my ute). Jjiraffe came with me because Mi.Vida was finally venturing back to work after being out for six days. I’m so glad she was there to distract me, and then to celebrate.
The last part of this last week has been hard. The crazy high beta number, phone conversations with my RE, scheduling this ultrasound even though I wasn’t feeling it was necessary. I wanted to be accepting of this pregnancy, whatever happened and doing all that just didn’t feel right.
I know that because I’ve had an ectopic before I’m at higher risk of having another one, but all of it just felt unnecessarily anxiety producing. I was an absolute wreck the last 48 hours, letting myself imagine all manner of horrible things. I forgot how stressed out ultrasounds make me. I forgot how stressed out pregnancy makes me.
I forgot the promise I made to myself.
This last week, while I was letting myself get sucked down the rabbit hole of early pregnancy monitoring, I read two important posts: Promises, over at Unexplained Rantings and Wishing it Away over at Tales from the Waiting Room. Both reminded me of a promise I made to myself in the months after my daughter was born. The anxiety of this week only solidified my resolve in keeping that promise to myself.
I have few real regrets in my life but one of the biggest is how little I enjoyed my pregnancy with my daughter. I was so scarred from my mother’s history of excessive loss and my own ectopic pregnancy that my anxiety ran rampant. I experienced those 9 months of my perfect, healthy pregnancy in a daze of fear and worry. Not until the very end did I really embrace it for the miracle that it was. I was so afraid of losing it that I didn’t really enjoy it. I robbed myself of that perfect, healthy pregnancy by constantly worrying that it would become something else.
I promised myself, in the months after my daughter was born that if I were ever pregnant again I would embrace it without fear, that I would let myself love without reproach. The worry won’t keep the bad things at bay and it won’t make it hurt any less if one of those bad things happens. The only thing the worry will do is rob me of the wonder I would be feeling at that moment.
I refuse to let it happen again. I refuse to rob myself of what I hope will be my last pregnancy.
So today, right now, I am making a promise to myself. I am promising myself that I will embrace this pregnancy with love. That I will feel joy at knowing there is baby-to-be inside of me. That I will adore this child despite the fact that he* could so easily be taken away.
This doesn’t mean I will assume everything will be okay. It doesn’t mean I’m rewriting the rest of my life with this baby in it. It means that every day that I’m pregnant I am going to REVEL in it. Every day that I’m pregnant I am going to celebrate this addition to our family, because no matter what happens, he is a part of our story. Right now he is with us. Right now is all there is.
Emily commented on a post earlier this week: “Wishing you good things and peace as you wait for this little soul to tell you how it will be a part of your family.” I really love that sentiment and have been reminding myself of it over and over again. This little soul will be a part of our family no matter what. He is loved and cherished now and will be just as loved and cherished no matter how long he is with us. Even if he is gone tomorrow, he is still a part of our family. And that brings me a huge measure of peace. Thank you Emily, for you wise words.
This pregnancy was an unexpected miracle. I can lay no claim over it happening, it just did, despite me and my need for control. It showed me that I am not in charge of everything, and sometimes that is a truly wonderful thing. I believe the surprise nature of this pregnancy, after our devastating diagnosis, is a gift to help me fight my rampant worry. This pregnancy happened in this particular way so that I had the best chance of keeping my promise to myself. I am not in control but I have faith that I will be okay.
I will be okay no matter what. And I will keep my promise to myself.
I love you Regalito,** with all my heart.
*I’m going to refer to this baby as “he” just because it’s easier than “he/she” or “(s)he” and I don’t really like “it.”
**Regalito means “Little Gift” in Spanish.