This is a writing exercise from The Secret Garden that I decided to participate in. The author of this blog has also experienced the loss of a child and has created a few blogs in an effort to provide a place for other grieving parents to find support in the journey we all are traveling.
How do you see or imagine your baby now that you do not have them with you?
It really helped to read this entry for other moms because I feel like I have tried to imagine Chase as an angel in heaven. But because I really don't know for sure what my perception of heaven is, it is hard for me to accept Chase as an angel. Thanks to Carly, I can see him playing on Christian's beach one day with all their friends. But now, he is ony 3 months old and to me, he looks like a 3-month-old version of when he was born. Sometimes I sleep with my favorite photo of him and this is the image etched in my mind. I think of him being with us all the time...in the car, on the floor in the midst of his brother and sisters, in the crib, in our arms. There is not a moment in the day that he is not on my mind.
How did the loss of your pregnancy affect your choices/decisions about the birth of you subsequent pregnancy?
Again, after reading all kinds of material I have learned that I am not alone in wishing so bad I had a baby in my arms. I do want another baby, very, very badly. I also know, however, that I do not know for sure that we will have another baby. I think eventually we will try. But we went through a lot to get pregnant with Chase and only after those experiences did I feel so lucky to even be pregnant. I took it for granted--just like I took labor for granted. I don't trust the medical field like I used to. I doubt doctors like never before. I fear the rare diseases and abnormalities that happen during pregnancies. I was never one to love being pregnant so I was so looking forward to Chase being our last baby. At first I was scared about "starting over" with diapers and baby food and all that responsibility that a baby and toddler requires. However, our family was going to be complete and we were going to be ready to raise this last baby and move on in our "parenting lives". But now I feel completely different. I know that as much as I wanted all that before....now I need it more than ever. I will feel incomplete as a mother if I do not get to have another baby. That scares me because, like I said, I don't know if we will have anymore kids. Unfortunately, that is something I don't have total control over. But I will want to try, I do know for sure. By saying I feel incomplete as a mother does not in any sense of the word mean that I am unhappy. Or unfulfilled. I am very happy and am a very, very rich person because of this life that I have. My husband and my kids make me feel very special, very loved, very fulfilled. Not having Chase with us will always make me feel like we are missing out on something, that something is left out, that a piece of us is left behind. That part I will live with the rest of my life, I know. But the motherly instincts that were ready to kick in feel like they are all revved up and now have no where to go. I had so much love and attention that I was ready to devote to this new child and I didn't get to put it into action. I know my other kids have gotten a lot of it, but I needed to take care of a newborn to feel complete. And I know the kids feel this way, too, in some sense. They were so ready to welcome a new little sibling and help me take care of him/her that I feel like they were robbed just as we were. Karly was so very hungry for a new baby in her life that my heart breaks over and over again for her. I see the smile, the shear happiness on her face while she held her baby brother in the hospital just moments before he took his last breaths. She loves babies and rarely fails to notice a baby in the proximity, or the baby department in any store. I want this for our whole family, but again, it scares me. I think I am going to leave it up to "if it was meant to be, it was meant to be."