Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Wanted: Peace of Mind




After reading Julia's, Lauralu's and Sandra's blogs and crying all over the place about them, I'm officially a paranoid mess.

I lost a baby a little over 2 years ago, at 13 weeks gestation. She just died. I had an excruciating backache for three days, then some spotting and when I went to the doctor, they couldn't find a heartbeat. I had a D&C two days later. I never got a reason, just a "Sometimes these things happen." And the rational part of my brain knows that, but my heart still can't really accept it.

I spent the first 20 or so weeks of my pregnancy with Isobel being a complete basket case. I was petrified all the time and was positive that every twinge and ache was the beginning of another loss. Even after I passed the 13 week mark, I was still a wreck. I didn't relax until she was actually in my arms.

And now I'm scared again. I don't have a real reason to be - there are no symptoms of anything going on, nothing seems weird, I can feel the baby moving around, and yet I'm making myself sick with worrying. What the hell is wrong with me? Have I become so adept at expecting the worst that I'm incapable of thinking the best will happen? Is it because I have a streaming head cold? Am I just hormonal? Is it because this baby is due 2 years to the week that the baby I lost was due? Did I not grieve enough at the time? That's impossible; I cried buckets then. I still cry about it, I still think about the little girl I never got to meet.

Whatever it is, I wish it would stop, because I hate feeling this way. I hate the feeling of dread and doom. I hate trying not to get too attached to this baby, just in case. It's a horrible, morbid way to live.

I need to still the mad scrabbling in my mind.

25 comments:

Jamie said...

Julia - you described my pregnancy with both of my daughters to a "T".

I lost a baby before I got pregnant with Brooke - with Brooke I had a horrible pregnancy, I spotted like crazy, was on bedrest, was sick as a dog and ended up with uncontrollable high blood pressure and she was born 2 months premature. It was HORRIBLE. Then, I had another miscarriage one year later, then I got pregnant with Danielle.

Yep - I was one paranoid Mom. I spotted with Danielle too - had numerous ultrasounds because of my high risk background ..... but everything turned out perfect - she was full term, the morning sickness ended about half way through the pregnancy and I felt good. I couldn't stop the little voice in my head - there just was no way to do it, until I held her in my arms. Giving birth to her was the only cure - for me.

How many weeks along are you now?

Telling you "not to worry" won't work, because you can't stop that little voice in your head. I guess you just have to rationalize with that little voice - and in time, hope to learn to turn that voice off.

And, you never truly get over the loss of a baby ... that's what makes us moms.

Take care, thinking of you lots and a hug for you (((((HUG)))).

julia said...

Thanks, Jamie. I'm 24 weeks today. I do tend to obsess over things like this and I have a really bad tendency to always expect the worst to happen. Sometimes it's a good way to be, but in this respect, it sucks.

It's terrible that you know exactly what I'm talking about, but it also helps a lot. So, thank you.

Rachel said...

I think I remember that you're a Sarah McLachlan fan - "Wait" is such a wonderfully written yet tragic song about pregnancy loss.

Vivian said...

Julia,
You are not alone in this, so don't feel like you are going crazy or anything with the feelings. I lost one after Taylor, before Daniel, and then lost 2 more and had Sarah. It can really make for some raw emotions during your pregnancy. I will be praying for you and the little one. Sending many, many, many positive thoughts your way.

daysgoby said...

Julia -

I wish I could do something more tangible than send you hope for a peaceful pregnancy and some relief for you from the fear.

Being flip: Would lots of chocolate help? 'Cause I can send some...

Serious again: You are a wonderful woman - a great mom and a terrific friend. I hope these last few weeks pass quickly and serenely for you.

blackbird said...

I think it's natural to have that period where, for no rational reason, you just worry.
And reading/hearing about other people's problems make it seem so fragile -
but in the back of your head you know it's all right...
but still we worry.

breathe.
wait.
pray.

Erica said...

{{hugs}} pregnancy is scary enough I can't imagine how it feels to lose one.

Sarah said...

Julia - {hugs}

While I haven't suffered a loss, 2 yrs before I became pg with Ally, my Aunt lost twin girls to Twin-to-Twin Syndrome. I thought I was going to die from the pain and had no idea how my aunt and uncle survived. Almost exactly 1 yr later my cousin lost her full term boy to a cord accident. I lost any and all faith after that.

My entire preg I was horribly nervous, seeing as how, me, the diabetic should be the one with problems! My cousin, though, taught me that trying to be "unattached" doesn't help, you will always be attached. The best you can do is hope for the best, and understand that nothing in life is guaranteed and to enjoy today and not fear tomorrow. I don't know how, but that brought me a little comfort (that and a great OB who humored me with visits whenever I was freaking out). {hugs}

Sandra Miller said...

Julia,

First, I am so sorry that my post made things more difficult for you.

Damn.

I was pregnant with Evan ten and a half months after losing Sam-- and yes, for almost nine months I was a holy mess.

There is nothing wrong with you.

You wondered if you had not grieved enough at the time of your loss. Hell, I'm still grieving and it's five years out. As Jamie says, you never truly get over the loss of a child. And the fact that your baby is due two years to the week your little girl was due, just makes it so much harder.

But Julia, you are 24 weeks.

And you can FEEL that little one. I know this seems almost Herculean, but try to focus on those things, and unless something happens, assume (with very good reason) that it won't.

Sending you so many (((HUGS))) this afternoon.

julia said...

Sandra, it wasn't your post. I'd been obsessing about this for weeks. I get like that. I'm a little fucked up, as I keep telling people. So please don't think it was you.

The rational part of my brain knows that things will most likely be fine. It's the irrational, rather crazy part that makes me get all worked up and stupid. Most of the time, I can quash that, but I guess things kind of crept up on me this week.

Thanks, though. All these comments have helped a lot. I don't feel nearly as frantic today as I did yesterday.

SUPERMOM said...

Julia
We will be praying for you to have a healthy beautiful baby. Think of the timig as being sent an angel from heaven. Not to replace your daughter but to heal your hurt from her lost. Each day that goes by brings you closer to having him/her in your arms. We'll keep praying for you

Patti

Juliabohemian said...

well...

I don't know where you stand on this subject, but you kind of opened the door for me there.

The kind of peace you desire can only come through Christ. It is prayer and the knowledge that no matter how bad things get, we are not alone, that has gotten me through so many terrible things.

Joke said...

Unrelated to anything, why do you have a statue of Dr. Bunsen Honeydew?

-J.

Kerri. said...

Julia, can you send your email address to me? I wanted to email you and I can't find out how...

julia said...

joke - it's not Dr. Bunsen Honeydew (although, he could pass, huh?). It's Jizo, a Buddhist boddhisatva. He's the patron of lost children and very popular in Japan. Many people make offerings to him for babies they have lost thru miscarriage, infant death and even abortion. He's become my talisman.

Julia - I'm afraid I'm a heathen and don't pray, per se.

Rachel said...

I have the same request as Kerri. Must..have..your e-mail. Please.

Juliabohemian said...

that doesn't make you a heathen. It just means that you aren't taking advantage of God's grace.

julia said...

Rachel - I put it in my profile. I couldn't find yours....

art-sweet said...

Julia -

I love the Jizo figurines and all that they stand for. I have some lovely pictures of them from our Japan trip and will try to email them to you.

Visualizing big hugs to you and your baby.

xo

art-sweet

p.s. Random proselytizing woman - please leave Julia alone.

julia said...

juliabohemian - I'm not religious. I may put up a post about why I'm not one of these days, if I feel brave enough to deal with the comments it might engender. I have my beliefs and I'm happy with them and have a live and let live philosophy. I don't get bunged up about other people's religious beliefs, I just don't want them shoved down my throat. I had enough of that when I was a kid.


art-sweet - I would love to see those pictures. I'm thinking of getting a Jizo tattoo one of these days, when I work up the guts. I am a big fat chicken.

Juliabohemian said...

thank you for addressing my statement. It's clear that you can speak for yourself (art-sweet)

Ms. Strega (Joan) said...

Hi, Julia--I lost a baby at 4 3/4 months gestation. I still grieve him from time to time, and always think of him; he would have been 20 years old this year. I'd had two healthy pregnancies before him and two healthy ones after--but was scared during my subsequent pregnancies. It is normal to feel these things, not crazy at all. I hope for a peaceful pregnancy for you--remember to breathe deep when fearful thoughts happen; it might not make the thought disappear, but it will help your body to calm down.

Joke said...

Well, since you are NOT under the protection of Dr. Bunsen Honeydew (and his assistant, Beaker) I am left no choice but to keep you in my prayers.

I hope you will reconsider your virulent anti-Muppetry. ;-)

-J.

julia said...

Joke, dahling. Violent anti-muppetry is a harsh and unjust accusation, especially considering I named my cat after Oscar the Grouch and have all the Muppet Show videotapes.

But thanks for the prayers. That's nice....

Joke said...

OK. You're not Orthodox, but at least you're Reformed.

I'll still pray for you. I can also find a Saint that could intercede, if you think you could benefit from a specialist. (It's in-network, so I won't charge extra.)

-J.