Today is not the easiest day. Although I did think it would be harder than this. I think it has been the lead up to this day that has been the hardest. The sense of anticipation of what this day signifies. Yesterday I was an emotional wreck. I was horrible to Chris and the kids. And I just felt flat the whole day. Today I feel calm.
I guess I should explain why I feel like this for those that don't know. Last year we had what we thought was a miscarriage. It turned out it was actually an ectopic pregnancy but it wasn't picked up until quite a few months later. So the whole process was very long and it was a very difficult time emotionally for me and our family.
Today, the 15th of August, signifies our angel baby's due date.
If you'd asked me a couple of months ago how I would feel on this day I would have said I would feel angry, bitter and resentful of all that I have gone through. A few months ago, I was angry at the universe. I didn't think it was fair that I had to go through this. I would always ask, 'why me?'. I've gone through periods of feeling such bitterness towards other pregnant women and their healthy pregnancies. It used to make me scream inside when women complained about their pregnancies. Why couldn't they understand that I would give anything to have those trivial ailments of pregnancy if I meant I could have a baby growing in my tummy?
I missed that beautiful feeling of growing a baby in my tummy, of feeling the first movements and kicks. Of watching my tummy expand week by week. Each week I used to think of how many weeks pregnant I would be and what I would be experiencing/feeling at that stage of development. Until I just lost count of where I was up to. And then I would feel guilty.
Something has happened in the past month or so which has enabled me to start the healing process. Maybe it's just a shift in my thinking, I don't know. But all of a sudden I'm starting to see what this little baby has brought in to my life, instead of what's been taken away.
For a start, it's made me a more compassionate and empathetic person. I have a greater understanding of loss and what it means. I can now offer support and understanding to others who have gone through similar experiences. It's funny just how little understanding you have of mothers who have experienced loss until you actually go through the same situation. So many people haven't known what to say to me after my loss and think that mentioning it once is enough. What they don't understand is that the grief continues for a while and it helps to keep asking how you are doing. Acknowledging that you were pregnant and you held a baby in your body for a little while and in your heart forever is an important thing.
I have developed some beautiful friendships, with women who have shared the same experiences as me. Their support and love has been invaluable to me.
I have also learnt to appreciate things in life a lot more than I used to. I am grateful for the two beautiful children I have and for the miracles they are, and for having such a wonderful, caring and supportive husband. I know now that I will never take another pregnancy for granted. That I will appreciate and embrace all the wonderful changes to my body that a pregnancy will bring and the beauty of growing a child within me.