*What makes a baby?*

I don’t know about you,
but I used to think
sex
made a baby.

(oh, how naive)

I also used to think
pregnancy
led to a healthy baby.

(oh, how naive)

Then I tried to believe
that faith and hope and love
would make a baby.

(oh, how naive)

It took us 11 months
to conceive
Malou.

It took us 10 months,
7 of which were spent
in fertility treatments,
to conceive
the baby I am carrying now.

And I know so many people
who have been trying
for a lot longer than that
and it just.doesn’t.work.

How can that be?
Where is the fairness in that?

There is none.

And that is hard to accept.

I wish so much
that intention led to children.

So my dear friends
who want nothing more
to have a child
to love and raise,
to teach and grow,
would get that.

So the poor women
who find themselves
in a situation where they
think their only option
is to abort
would never have to do so.

It really would be better all around,
don’t you agree?

Yes,
I am pregnant now,
and so very grateful for that fact,
and with every heave of my stomach,
I am reminded of
“the miracle of life”
as my friend B. described it.

But I still can’t believe it.

I don’t have faith
that this pregnancy
will result in a living, breathing
baby.

(By the way, it’s naive to think that
“positive thinking” makes a baby 😉
so I’m cutting myself a break
with my above lack of faith)

I have spent a lot of time
lately reflecting
on my pregnancy with
Malou.

In fact, I think of her more
than I do this new little one
growing inside me.

Is that wrong?

There is so much to feel guilty about…
if I’m excited about the new little one,
does that mean I am forgetting
Malou?

If I spent too much time
longing for
Malou,
wishing I was pregnant again
with her,
does that mean
I am not valuing
this new baby
for his/her individual worth?

I don’t know.

I just want to be a good mama.

To all my children.

I have an ultrasound picture
of the new little one,
which I placed in a cardholder…
but then I felt bad for
Malou
so I got out her little feet
imprints and put them in the
cardholder too.

It occurred to me last week,
and I told Tom,
we have two children.

I feel so lucky to even be able to say that.

Most people
wouldn’t call having a stillbirth
and a crampy, spotty
7 week pregnancy
“lucky”
but I truly do feel lucky.

Sad, also,
but still lucky.

Oh, Malou, I love you so much I just feel like my heart will burst. I will never forget you, sweet girl, my precious daughter. I know you, but I am just starting to get to know your sibling. And it is making me miss you even more.

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Published in: on June 24, 2009 at 18:31  Comments (7)  
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7 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Oh, how I remember that feeling that this pregnancy was doomed. For the first 10 weeks or so, I kept having this same nightmare that I started bleeding heavily and I knew the pregnancy was over. I would even have that nightmare multiple times in one night, and each time I woke up I had to reassure myself that it was just a dream. Then around weeks 16-18, somewhere in there, I went through a huge guilt phase. I wanted Ada. I missed HER. Who was this other strange baby growing inside of me?

    Believe it or not, you’re one of the main people who helped me accept my feelings and move past them. I believe I wrote a blog post about all of the things that I missed about Ada and all of the experiences I was having with this baby that I didn’t get to have with her. (Which is what made me feel guilty…) You said something like, “Well of course you want everything for all of your children.” It made me realize that I can miss Ada and wish she had things like a baby shower, but at the same time, I can enjoy those things with Eleanor because of course I want her to have them, too. Your comment really meant a lot to me and helped me to move forward.

    So I guess now you’re in my old shoes… All I can say is that your feelings are totally normal! And there will be rough times during this pregnancy, but you’ll also learn to love and appreciate the wonderful new life you’re carrying.

  2. These are all rational thoughts, Steph. I am sure most little girls dream of the fairytale wedding, dressed like a princess (didn’t we all play at that when we were little tots in mama’s old dresses etc?) and having babies in a pretty house and garden. As we get older we know in our minds that thos is not always the way but still dream and hope for it. It is hard and cruel when certain tragedies happen, especially a loss of life but we still love. We never forget the ones we have loved and remember all the good things about them, this is normal. But we humans have the mamzing capacity to love, love and love some more, just like elephants (true fact) so just take one step at a time and all will fit into place. Do what you feel right at the time then change it if you want a bit later. We move the furniture around in the house don’t we, so why not re-arrange our minds freely too? 🙂
    I think you are doing fantastically, keep it up.
    Hugs.

  3. I just found the post/comment I was referring to. I was farther along than I remembered. I remember that your comment brought tears to my eyes and I thought, “Yes, that’s it exactly! I DO love them both!” http://lifeafterada.blogspot.com/2009/04/most-pregnant-ive-ever-been.html

  4. Beth, thanks for your comments. And after your first one, I went back to your blog and found what you were talking about. 🙂 But I’m glad to hear your thoughts, because I think it seems like you’ve handled your current pregnancy so well.

    Carolyn, are you calling me an elephant?? ;=) Just kidding. As usual, I love your thoughtful comments.

    Hugs to you both,
    Stephanie

  5. I agree that it is totally normal to compare your first pregnancy to your current one. Even though Malou may not be here with us physically she was with YOU physically for 32 long weeks and that was life changing. So don’t be to hard on yourself! You now have the experience of carrying two children so of course you will compare like everyone else does 🙂
    Hang in there, only a few more weeks of yucky stuff…

  6. I don´t think Malou is thinking you don´t love because you enjoy your new pregnancy. She knows you won´t forget her your whole life. You will love both children as much as you can but I can also understand your feelings. I also compare Emilia to my first child. I ask myself if the first kid would be same like her or totally different. Would it laugh the same way? I think it´s normal to compare. No one will ever say you are not loving Malou if you love your second child and enjoy your life with him or her. So enjoy this pregnancy as much as you can and don´t be afraid of having this thought- this is just human.
    I´m glad everything is ok with Malous sibling and I hope everything is going well for you and the baby. I have spottings too but the babys heart is beating so I think positive.
    Best wishes
    Pati

  7. hello my beautiful friend,
    i’m so happy and filled with hope for you. i know you have a range of emotions and feelings going on and will probably continue to. that’s part of your particular predicament. i know there aren’t things that i can say to make you feel better and more solid and positive within this new pregnancy (which is amazing!), you’ll do that for yourself. i know you will. but i just wanted to let you know, that i am thinking about you all the time. all of us are. so hopefully positive thinking helps because there’s a lot coming your way from belize. i love you steph and your whole family.


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