I have a little announcement.
This little announcement is 12 weeks old and is about the size of a lime.
This little announcement is due at the end of February.
I’m pregnant and our entire family is so excited. If you subscribe to my weekly emails, you already knew this exciting news (I told y’all there was exclusive content!) but it felt like time to make it real and truly OFFICIAL.
I got pregnant two months after the end of my last pregnancy, which means I’ll have basically been pregnant from 2013 to 2015. GOOD TIMES! The good news is that this pregnancy feels completely different.
I remember sitting at the end of my bed and figuring up my due date. February. It sounded like the most gorgeous word in the English language. I wasn’t filled with dread or anxiety. I just felt overwhelming joy.
Now, that doesn’t mean the first trimester has been a walk in the park. I’ve been tired. I’ve been nauseous. However, I always assumed being newly pregnant during the middle of summer would be terrible, but not so much!
You see I suffer from a peculiar combination of conditions during my first trimester of pregnancy. Despite the fact that my temperature is high, I get cold INSANELY easy. I don’t know if it’s like having a constant fever or what but my air conditioning is set on 75 degrees and I can still get chilly. Weirdly, even though I’m cold, I don’t want ANYTHING warm to eat. No hot coffee or my afternoon tea. No soups or casseroles. I like my food and drinks nice and cold. Go figure.
As you can imagine, this combination made me completely and totally miserable during the last pregnancy. I was stuck in the middle of the Polar Vortex and could do nothing at all to warm myself up. Plus, I was sick all the damn time.
SO, being cold and nauseous during the season of steamy hot days and frozen drink has been dang near pleasant.
Of course, my physical condition is only part of the equation.
I was feeling so good when I got pregnant. Two months of intense emotional work had left me feeling like the loss of our baby was something that happened TO me – not something that was currently happening. I mistakenly assumed I would continue to feel like that.
The first couple of weeks were fine. I really wasn’t worried about miscarriage. I felt healthy and strong. I felt good about this baby. However, the closer I’ve gotten to 16 weeks, the point in the pregnancy when our last baby passed away, the harder it has gotten.
I still feel so good about this baby. I truly don’t worry endlessly about something terrible happening. It’s just I feel like I’m being forced to relive last time. Every growth milestone or every doctor’s visit where I hear a strong heartbeat is just a sad reminder of last time.
At my last visit, the nurse had trouble picking up the baby’s heartbeat with the Doppler. I didn’t panic. I knew the baby was fine. The doctor came in with a portable ultrasound and showed me my beautiful baby and its little heartbeat. Of course, my beautiful baby was also asleep and very, very still.
I could see the heartbeat. I knew the baby was ok. And yet I was back in another room, watching another screen, with another baby who was very, very still and not ok.
I wish my little one had been doing backflips but I supposed it was a good reminder that this little one doesn’t know and doesn’t care about last time. It is decidedly not his or her problem or burden to bear.
And yet I don’t know how to detach my sadness over my last experience from this one.
I can’t forget. I can’t wrap up my grief in nice little package and pack it away.
I keep thinking of the Charles Valiant quote, “Joy is grief inside out.”
I feel inside out right now. There is so much sadness made stronger by joy and joy made stronger by sadness going on within me.
It’s hard. It’s intense. It’s beautiful.