July 4th is cause for celebration in this country. We celebrate our nation’s birthday and the freedoms we hold so dear. But for me this weekend will always be the anniversary of different sort as July 2nd was the day I lost my first pregnancy.
As I thought of what to write about that day, this year, I returned to the post I wrote 365 days before. I liked that post. It speaks to me even though a year has passed. It remains relevant in all aspects. And since most people who read me now (at least who comment now) didn’t read me then, and it didn’t even get any comments when it was posted, I thought I could put it up again. So here it is, in it’s entirety. The only thing I changed was the number of the anniversary.
Yesterday was the 2 year anniversary of our ectopic – the day we spent 12 hours in the ED bleeding, getting blood taken, having hope, having hope crushed, getting ultrasounds, MVA’s and finally methotrexate shots to dissolve the child that threatened to damage me irrevocably. Today marks the two year anniversary of the saddest day of my life. Today I hope to watch fireworks with my partner and daughter down by the water. Two years ago I spent the 4th curled on my couch having cramps and bleeding as I thought of my baby dying inside of me.
I want to say “what a difference two years make,” but honestly, even with the blessing of my daughter in my life (which I will never, EVER take for granted), yesterday and today are still painful. I’m not denying that they would not be more painful if I didn’t have my daughter, or worse, if I were still trying. I’m not saying that her presence doesn’t dull the pain, but that is all it does, dull it. Isa’s presence, in and of itself, does not heal the pain of the loss of my first child. Knowing she was inside of me didn’t heal the pain when my first EED came and went and it doesn’t heal it now. The baby I lost on July 3rd of 2009 was a different child and I will always be sad for his or her loss, no matter how many healthy, live children I may have.
Today I am thinking a lot about all the people I know who have also suffered losses, most of them still hoping desperately to some day have a healthy child. There has been a lot of heart wrenching news shared on people’s blogs recently and every time I look at Isa I wonder why I get to be so lucky. It makes me angry that I get to have a healthy baby and others who have suffered so much more than me are still unsure of if or when they will have their own. I had a relatively easy go of all of this. Sure my ectopic was a horrific experience and the anxiety I had over getting pregnant due to amenhorrea and other past reproductive issues made the year we were trying very stressful, but all in all, my struggle was so much less than so many others. It’s hard not to wonder who is keeping score.
The easy time other people have also make me wonder. I remember when two goods friends announced their pregnancy, after only two times doing the dirty without protection (the guy’s comment was, “I guess I didn’t need to be worried about my potency” and “I thought this was supposed to be hard” – to which I responded it is for a lot of people, it took us months and months of perfectly timed sex and we still lost of our first pregnancy). Our other friends who got pregnant immediately after they threw out BCP and my cousin, who also got pregnant before really starting to “try” and had her baby last year. It’s hard not to feel jealous of their experiences and again wonder why they have it so incredibly easy while others have it so incredibly hard.
Mi.Vida says I can’t think that way because it will drive me crazy. Perhaps he’s right, but it’s hard not to see these things in terms of “fair” and “unfair”. I try to remember all I read about loss and suffering in Buddhism. There is no rhyme or reason to suffering, it just is. The only thing that can change suffering is the outlook of the person suffering. There is no wrong or right, fair or unfair, there only is. That is such a hard reality to acknowledge but I do my best to accept it every day.
I hope everyone has a good 4th of July and that you can find something to celebrate today, even if it’s simply the freedom we enjoy here in this country. Please know that just because some of us didn’t have as hard a time as others, we wonder why it’s so unfair just as fervently as others. And to all of you who have suffered loss, be it of a pregnancy (or many), a child, or the years of pain lost to IF, my heart goes out to you now and always.