I've been having a rough time lately. I'm trying really hard to turn it around. Here is a story about that.
Having gone through two miscarriages and a full-term stillbirth and infertility, I have had my (un)fair share of resentment towards life, in particular, pregnant woman and small babies. It it not my fault that I feel resentment, but in the last couple of days, I have come to realize that it is not theirs either. I would never have chosen to have 3 pregnancy losses, but who would. I truly believe that it is very normal with these types of loses to see a pregnant woman and instantly frown or roll my eyes or huff or shake my head or whatever other initial reaction I have. I also believe it is very normal to see small babies and be sad, because they are what I ultimately want and I can't seem to have. BUT who am I to feel resentment towards these women? They did not ask for me to have problems. AND who is to say that they have not been through problems themselves? I don't know. It's not like I walk up to one of the 50 billion pregnant woman in the mall and say "excuse me, have you experienced any pregnancy loss or infertility by chance, because then I'd like to say congratulations, otherwise I'd like to say, b!tch." No, I don't do that and I can't do that, it's none of my business.
Three days ago, I decided I would no longer allow myself these "unfortunate" initial reactions. Instead, when I see a pregnant woman, I will be happy for her, I will be happy that she is getting a chance to experience the most wonderful thing, I will be happy for her that she has what I want. And when I see a little baby, I will look at that baby and I will smile, I will imagine what my Landon would have looked like at that age, I will be happy for that mother that she did not experience the horrific loss of her baby just hours before he was born, I will be happy that she has her precious bundle of joy, I will be happy for her.
Then I went to work.
I saw 50 million pregnant woman in cute maternity swimsuits and I rolled my eyes 50 million times. I saw 50 million little kids in cute little sun hats and life jackets and I rolled my eyes 50 million times. And I went home and I remembered that I wasn't going to do that and I felt bad, took some pills and went to sleep.
I woke up the next morning and reminded myself that I would be happy for pregnant women and I would smile when I saw little ones. Then I went to work, and I saw 20 million pregnant woman and I rolled my eyes 20 million times. And I saw 20 million little ones and I rolled my eyes another 20 million times. And I went home and I remembered that I wasn't going to do that and again, I felt bad, took some pills and went to sleep.
I woke up yesterday morning and I reminded myself that I would be happy for pregnant women and I would smile when I saw little babies. Then I got ready for the day and went in the kitchen and picked up the mail. I open a junk mail flyer and saw a bare pregnant belly and I rolled my eyes. I put the flyer down and reminded myself that I would be happy for pregnant women and I would smile when I saw little babies, and I picked up the flyer again and I turned to the pregnant belly and I touched it and I smiled.
I had an appointment yesterday with the OB. While waiting for an ultrasound for a follicle check, I was sitting in the lobby and looked at my watch and figured I'd be called back in the next couple of minutes, and I looked around that lobby and was relieved that there were absolutely no pregnant women in there and no women with small babies, thank goodness. I heard my name, but it was the woman behind the counter, so I walked up there. She told me it was my turn for the ultrasound, but there was an emergency in the back and would I mind waiting while another woman went in for an ultrasound... all I could think of was that a woman back there was in for a routine prenatal check up and they couldn't hear the heartbeat... of course I didn't mind waiting, I prayed for the "emergency patient" and sat back down in the now crowded lobby, next to a very pregnant woman, and I rolled my eyes. I reminded myself that I was to be happy and smile, be happy and smile, be happy and smile... I looked at her belly and smiled, then turned back to the floor fast. Good. I did it. Now if I can just get through the next few minutes, I'll be all set. Then a woman comes in with a car seat draped over her arm, she signs in and sits all the way across the lobby from me. I can't help but stare at her car seat, hoping for a glimpse of the baby, then she pushes the handle back and picks up a little baby wearing only a diaper, a tiny baby... about 4 and a half months old... same as Landon would be. I just stared and smiled. I couldn't take my eyes off that baby. I knew she was the same age as Landon would be, I just knew it. I literally couldn't stop staring, and I noticed she was looking at me. So, I got up and went and sat in the empty chair next to her and asked how old her baby was... 4 months. I asked when she was born, she said March 21... only 5 days before Landon, wow. I told her about Landon, and she told me she was really sorry and that she had gotten pregnant in June but miscarried last week and had a D&C. Then she asked if I wanted to hold her baby. Oh yes, I did! I held that happy baby and played with her while talking to her mom and I just imagined Landon, and how happy he would be and I smiled. It was awesome.
Usually, I would have just rolled my eyes and whatever else and waited impatiently for my name to be called, but I wanted to change those harsh feelings - however normal I feel they are, I also feel it normal to want to change them. I've had them long enough. I'm glad that I want to change them. Obviously, it won't happen over night, but it just might happen for real, and that makes me smile.
Had I just sat there and rolled my eyes, I would not have gotten to talk to her about Landon and about her lost baby, and I would not have gotten to hold that precious baby who is the same age as my precious angel, and I would not have gotten to experience that joy. I would have sat there in bitterness, and I would have went home and felt bad, and I would have took some pills and went to sleep.
I'm glad I got to hold a baby the same age as Landon, I really feel like Landon was there, I'm so glad I didn't just look away and roll my eyes...