I feel the need to preface this post with a disclaimer as my proofreader was surprised at the sudden turn in tone …
It might seem sudden but it’s real. It’s raw. It’s just me. There’s a sudden change in tone.
When I became a mom, I started carrying around a pocket calendar. You know the ones: folded, 3″ x 6″ calendars covered in plastic. I started documenting everything in those little pages for a few reasons:
- Especially early on as a first-time mom, I needed help remembering everything.
- I find that I can remember things better if I write them down on paper.
Did I duplicate the process and put dates into my smartphone? You betcha (bubbs). But there was (and is) something that I just appreciated about writing things down on paper. Perhaps my dad’s printing profession wore off on me. Who knows.
I would grab a new pocket calendar just as the new year rolled around and the Target dollar bins started stocking them. This was also probably another subconscious reason why I bought them, I suppose. I’m a magnet to those bins.
At the beginning of 2016, it was no different. I located my favorite design in that bin and started filling out those tiny squares. We had so many things already on the calendar. I remembered things as I should. Justification for purchase achieved.
And then the biggest moment of our early 2016 happened: we found out we were pregnant. We prayed and loved over this moment. The positive pregnancy test occurred in late 2015, but our first appointment would not occur until January 2016. That’s when calendar craziness ensued.
First prenatal appointment.
Running late, I dashed into the appointment by myself to gather my check marks and second appointment date. Rapid heartbeat. Movement. Measurements. Second appointment. Check. Check. Check. Check!
Pregnancy in a small calendar gets crazy.
Once that first appointment is scheduled on the calendar, you’re off and running. After the first appointment, you not only put the next appointment on the calendar, but you start putting the weeks of the pregnancy on the calendar. All the way up to 40. This basically takes up the majority of the year.
A number each week.
Second prenatal appointment.
My husband and I bounced into the second appointment on time. Week 13. Check.
To make a long story even longer, we left without making a third appointment.
I can remember my doctor’s words like it was just yesterday.
“I’m sorry, there isn’t a heartbeat.”
“I’ll give you two a minute, and I’ll be back to discuss your options.”
“It’s your decision.”
“[The nurse] will call you this evening once we get the procedure scheduled.”
“We scheduled your d&c.”
I put the time and location in my pocket calendar.
I was confused. Shocked. Mad. Devastated. Heartbroken. You name it, I was it.
I still had so many more numbers to go before I was ready to meet my baby. I put down the date of our first hugs and kisses in the calendar. We still had weeks … so many weeks … to go.
My control over this situation – over my emotions – was completely 100% lost.
What happened next is something that will be saved for another post, but let me just say that calendars … they don’t forget. They are reminders.
No matter how much a date on a calendar hurt us, the date will always be there. And that is when memories take over.
I can’t tell you how many times I have started and stopped this post. I started writing it shortly after our loss. Then I walked away. Then I revisited the pain a few weeks later… And then, like calendars do, it reminded me of my official due date for my little 13 week baby. It would have been another September baby…
I don’t know exactly how to end this post. It’s been a while. And now, after months of trying again, here I sit 26 weeks pregnant with our next girl still unsure, confused, nervous … but hopeful. Honestly, how do you put something into words that is so wrapped up in emotion? How do you let go of pain just long enough to get excited for joy?
I traveled down the dark road of grief. We cried the ugly tears. We shouted. A lot. I collapsed. We clung to one another and tried to convince each other that it will be alright. That this life is out of our hands. And I learned a very important thing …
Even though the numbers stopped early for us, we will never forget the early delivery and the gift we gave God during the month of February 2016. At week 13.
We will never forget you, my sweet baby. February is with us forever. Thank you for being our angel.