The last few days I've really been struggling with how things "should be". What we should be doing instead of grieving for our sweet little boy. There are two should be scenarios, and this is NOT one of them. But somehow this is what we got instead.
First, I should still be pregnant. I should be 36 weeks pregnant today bursting with anticipation for my baby to be born. Both Mike and I would have just wrapped up our semesters a few days ago and this is when we would be getting everything perfect for the baby's arrival. In fact, Mike had written "super baby week" on the calendar. We still wouldn't know if we were having a boy or a girl. We'd organize all the baby's things and get the house in tip top shape for our homebirth. It would be our first Christmas away from our families since I would be too far along to travel. We would have decorations galore, done massive amounts of baking, gotten the biggest tree we could, and be thinking about what new traditions we'd want to start for our growing family.
Well since Marcellus was born early that should be disappeared pretty quickly. That was ok though because we had a new one. What we even thought was a better one. Instead of being discouraged Marcellus was in the NICU we thought of it as extra time we get with our baby. We would still get to start our life at home around the same time if I had stayed pregnant. We should be preparing for Marcellus to come home. The goal was Christmas or at least by the end of the year. We would still get his things ready. The only difference is we would know we were preparing the house for our boy. We would still be spending our first Christmas away from family. We probably wouldn't have gone all out on decorating or baking since we'd be spending most of our time in the NICU. We'd still be thinking about what new traditions we were going to start as a family. Maybe Marcellus would have been home by Christmas, maybe we would be spending it in the NICU. It wouldn't have mattered to us because we would have been with our family, with our little squirmy wormy. And he would be so big by now, being over 7 weeks old.
But there's a reason those are "should be" realities. We instead got this nightmare. Instead of being 36 weeks pregnant or having a 7 week old newborn, I have a dead baby that's been gone for 5 1/2 weeks. There's been no preparing around the house. In fact, it's a mess. We struggle to keep the laundry and dishes done and ourselves fed. We are still spending our first Christmas away from our families. We say it's because we can't afford to or we're just getting used to being settled back in after being gone for 3 weeks. While those things are true, really we wouldn't have gone back anyway. The thought of dealing with traveling alone is enough. Then there's the fact that we would probably ruin everyone's Christmas by being around or that people would just act like nothing ever happened. To top it off I can't even begin to imagine being around our nephew as everyone celebrates his first Christmas. I love my nephew to death, don't get me wrong I wish I was emotionally able to celebrate for him too. But I'm not and it would kill me to be there for his first Christmas when it should be my son's first Christmas as well. We have no decorations, no tree, and there's no baking. We did get a "baby's first Christmas" ornament for Marcellus, it sits on our mantel. As of right now our plans are to go out for Chinese and go to a movie, that is if I can get myself out of bed.
Well Marcellus, your first Christmas is coming up. I know you're spending it with Jesus, but that doesn't make it any easier for Mommy and Daddy. We wish you were here to be spoiled with gifts and more importantly for us to love on you.