On August 28th, 2006 I was standing in front of the dry erase board at work, reading patient charts when suddenly I had this overwhelming rush: "what if I really am pregnant this time?" I felt almost as though my life flashed before my eyes, in that moment I pictured making my grandmother a great-grandmother again, connecting generations of my family's women with another branch of the tree. The intense feeling passed fairly quickly but the imprint of it stayed with me and when 3 days later I learned that yes, I really was pregnant, I wasn't surprised. Foolish though it may seem, I still believe that that moment (at 7dpo) was the moment of implantation. The moment my babies became connected to me.
When I lost them I was devastated. Sadness is pervasive, but almost more than anything I felt lonely. I'd been speaking to my babies since that first day, begging them to stay with me through all the scary bleeding. I'd tell them I loved them, of course, but I also had a simple running dialogue with them. We lived my life together in those 9 weeks and when they were gone, when I could no longer share my every experience with them, I felt like a close companion, a confidant had died. The golden thread connecting them to me had snapped.
I've known I was pregnant for a full month today. I've seen this healthy baby on 3 ultrasounds, watched her (his?) heart beating twice. I feel nauseas much of the time, my breasts are tender and the bloat is immense. (Seriously. It's ridiculous.) But regardless of *knowing* what is going on within my own body, I don't feel it. Not like last time. I talk to this baby on occassion, but it feels forced. I rub my belly often, but mainly due to the water retention, not any maternal feelings. I know there is a baby in there, but I do not know this baby. Not like last time. And I feel sad and guilty about it.
I wonder if my twin pregnancy was a bit of a perfect storm, bringing about the intense connection. I bled from day one (well, 2dpo to be specific) so I spent many hours begging those babies to be strong for me, to hold on while my body did what it could to make them let go. My husband was out of town for a month from 3 days after getting that first positive. Spending so much time alone I'm not surprised I made friends wherever friends could be made: in this case, within my own body. The idea of pregnancy was so new to me, as was the idea of trying. It seemed in some ways magical, mystical rather than a scientific process.
In contrast, with this pregnancy I have, for the first time, had not a single scare. I thank god for the lack of blood, but I'm also without reason to suspect that this little squirt is going anywhere and therefore not likely to beg him (her?) to stick around. My husband is very much present, sometimes leaving me wishing I had some time alone, so I talk out loud to him rather than internally to a person I'm not sure has ears. I've had 3 ultrasounds since learning I was pregnant - but hundreds in the past 2 years while attempting to get pregnant. I've looked at them as a science experiment over the course of many treatments - how can I now expect to switch to a mindset focused on the blissful joys of a newly minted mother-to-be?
Knowing the above, I shouldn't be surprised that I feel distance. But I wonder if it's something more.
I wonder. I wonder if although I feel very few bursts of fear, check my pantyliner for spotting rarely, genuinely believe that this time we will have a baby come June...I wonder if the fear I expected to feel is still there. Still lurking and poisoning my pregnancy. I wonder if my unfelt fear is manifesting itself not in incessant worry and panic, but in a disconnect. Preventing my seemingly hopeful heart from being broken once again when the other shoe drops. I wonder if that golden thread is tied not around the beating heart of my baby, but rather the fear that I may never know this one either. And I wonder when *that* thread will snap.