If you read my last post, you know the next couple weeks are huge regarding pregnancy milestones.
Today I'm 27 weeks and 1 day and I'm feeling overwhelmed. Usually when I'm feeling strong emotions the words just pour out. I can type without much thinking behind it. Sometimes a post comes to me and I "write" it in my head without even being at the computer. This time I feel I need to write, but the words are not coming to me. So we'll see where this goes.
A week and a half ago we had a very positive appointment. At 25 weeks 5 days, my cervix measured 3.1 cm long without any funneling. That is a normal length! With Ethan my shortening and funneling was discovered at 24 weeks 4 days. So I was more than a week later gestationally at my last appointment with this baby and the results were so clearly different. This did bring some peace of mind. This pregnancy really is different.
I can't help and compare though. To think of those pregnancy milestones. To think of what was going on during Ethan's pregnancy at this time. To think how making it to a certain day means staying pregnant longer than I ever did with Ethan or Marcellus.
The progesterone shot I got on Wednesday compares to the last shot I got with Ethan. Making it to my appointment this upcoming Wednesday will mean I will have officially stayed pregnant longer than I did with Ethan. Making it a week after that means I will have hit Marcellus's gestation. Tomorrow compares to the day I went into labor with Ethan. And it turns out the days of the week from Ethan's pregnancy match up with this one, meaning it was a Sunday I went into labor with him.
I'm hopeful. I really am. I'm hopeful this pregnancy will go much longer, perhaps even full term. I am getting better about saying "when we get to..." rather than "if." I am making plans as if this baby will be born in November. But the comparison is always there. My history is always there, in the back of my mind. Taunting me a bit. So while I am hopeful we will get to (or at least close to) full term, I fully understand it is not a guarantee. This baby could be born anytime. That is reality.
Another thing I've realized as we get closer to and more and more hopeful to get past Ethan and Marcellus's gestations is a different type of grief has come up. The more I envision this pregnancy progressing into the third trimester the more I am grieving Ethan and Marcellus's pregnancies. Don't get me wrong, of course I would much rather be grieving that than to have this baby born also premature. But that doesn't make it disappear.
I am left wondering why. Left with the intense realization of all the things I missed out on with them in their pregnancies. Left with the intense realization of what I missed out on at the very beginning of their lives. When they came into this world I couldn't even hold them. They couldn't even be with their momma. They had to be whisked away to an isolette and machines and doctors and nurses instead. And of course I know too well all the things I missed out on and will never have with Marcellus. But right now I'm just speaking to pregnancy and birth.
So to even have hope of something different for this baby is overwhelming. Overwhelmingly wonderful. But also overwhelmingly devastating to think of how different it was for his or her brothers.
And so while I am thankful for each and every day of this pregnancy, especially those to be experienced past Ethan and Marcellus's gestations, each of those days is a reminder of what I didn't get with my boys. Each of those days throws it in my face that I didn't get to that point with them. Each of those days brings up grief of its own.
What a mix of emotions I have right now!
Marcellus, before we even knew your life was going to be cut so short, I was grieving for your pregnancy. That our bodies were separated much too soon. That my womb, where you were safe, was empty and you were instead fighting for your life. 28 weeks 5 days. How unexpected it all was. How unreal it all sometimes feels right now. Suddenly being in labor so early, the c-section, the NICU and of course most of all, your death. As much joy as we felt during those 12 days (well 11, because the last day you were so sick and it was primarily filled with fear) we were also grieving during those 12 days. Grieving our home birth, grieving a natural vaginal birth, grieving the typical birth and newborn experience - yours was so mechanical. Grieving not having you with us 24/7. And while none of that can compare to grieving your death...those are still things I grieve. 28 weeks 5 days. Much too soon. If only I could have kept you safe in my womb, maybe you'd still be alive......
I'm so sorry. xoxox.