I wrote a post on June 18 showing off my baby bump at 20 weeks, when Ada was as big as a banana. The photo was taken the day after Ada’s anatomy scan, and I wore a pink ribbon because I was so excited to find out she was a girl. I painted my toenails pink and dreamed about how we were going to raise this little girl to love science yet be feminine (if she so chose). It was one of the happiest times of my life.
About a week later, a woman hit our car from behind as we were on the way back home from Buy Buy Baby, where I had purchased a baby bath thermometer so I could safely relax in my new master bath. A week after that, Ada silently passed away. I didn’t know that she had died until the following week, at 23 weeks, when I went in for a routine doctor’s visit. The only clue I had that anything was amiss was a little bit of cramps, which are fairly common in pregnancy, something that my doctor at the time dismissed. I keep playing that time over and over in my mind, looking for clues, wondering what happened, wondering if we can connect the car accident to Ada’s death. If not, that means there is another reason why Ada died, something I can control even less than I can control traffic. Whatever the cause, my body failed to protect her, and failed to let me know anything was wrong. I know it’s not my fault, but I can’t help but think that my body is the cause of her death. It certainly didn’t help.
Today is the day after Rose’s anatomy scan. No pink ribbon today; I woke up crying and wore all black. I somehow managed to function all day at the office, but I started crying again the moment I got home. I desperately want to be happy to have reached the 20 week milestone yet again, but the fear and sadness is stronger. Will my body fail me again? Fail her? Fail my husband? Every day, I think this might be the day. Every time I check for a heartbeat, I think this might the time I won’t hear anything. I come up with elaborate plans for what I will do, who I will call, where I will go – even though I know that if I don’t hear a heartbeat it is probably too late. I’m so thankful that I can feel her move sometimes, but I wonder if it will be the last time. When she’s not moving, the panic that she may already be gone slowly increases. I really don’t want to be so negative but it’s just there. Like a darkness that can not be resolved, too dark to penetrate with any light.
Word is getting out in my office that I am pregnant. It’s sort of funny, I thought most people knew since I’ve been huge for weeks now, but I guess they didn’t notice. It is a big office. I’ve gotten a few “congratulations” and I know they are being nice but what are they congratulating me for? For being lucky enough to have eggs left, I suppose. I smile and say thanks, but part of me wants to say “save that for when there is actually a baby”. I feel like Rose deserves better than this, but what can I do? How could I even consider a baby shower or anything like that when tomorrow may be the last day? At least I am looking into prenatal classes, that’s my little shred of hopefulness, plus the hospital will refund the fees with a doctor’s note. I’m reading Pregnancy 411 again, but the labor chapter will be useful no matter the outcome. A big part of me just doesn’t believe this will conclude with a living child.
I want to be celebrating each day that I have with Rose. I should be happy. I should be taking photos, not with fruits, but something, anything. I’m glad we are going for the 4D ultrasound on Saturday, though I wonder if I will cry as I did during the anatomy scan. I keep telling myself that I’m going to call around and schedule professional photos so I can have some good pictures of me and Rose, in case this time is all we get. I just don’t have the energy. It’s too overwhelming, this hopefulness shrouded in fear, the fear of being hopeful. I am thankful that I have the energy to write, at least. Writing takes a little of the charge out of the emotions, lets me think though the “why” behind the sadness. It might not make it better, but I’m glad to take off the burden for a moment. Now I just need to sleep.