Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Peace and Acceptance

Over the last few weeks, I felt I was getting to a point of, dare I say, peace or acceptance?  I think I am getting to the point where I recognize that I don’t have to be an emotional mess to love Avery or that I don’t have to cry myself to sleep every night to know that I still miss her deeply.  I’ve been having more “good” days than bad recently and I’ll admit it, it feels nice.  And even during those days where I am doing well, I still think of her so much.  It’s always been my fear that in doing well I would do what I fear most; move on (even typing that phrase I cringe).  I think I am coming to grips with the fact that I’ll never move on but rather find a way to move forward each day with her in my heart.  It’s been a relief of sorts coming to this realization.

I was been doing quite well, until yesterday.  Yesterday was quite a day for us.  We met with a new OB/GYN office just as a consultation.  Not that we are ready to fully try again, but this time around, I wanted to talk to someone first.  I wanted someone to look me in the eyes and tell me they would do everything they could to bring us as much peace of mind as they could should we give pregnancy another shot (I love my former OB but I simply cannot deliver at the hospital in town, too many memories-good and bad).  The doctor we met was truly wonderful.  He didn’t make me feel uncomfortable or rushed even though the lobby was packed.  He listened and sympathized with us.  And while both he and I understand that he is not God and he cannot promise this won’t happen again, he made me feel more comfortable with the idea of another pregnancy. 
Towards the end of the appointment, we were discussing what we found out from Avery’s medical exam and he asked if we had genetic tests done.  I always assumed the Medical Examiner’s office would have conducted those test but I really didn’t know for sure.  So for peace of mind, he ordered a genetic panel to be run on me.  At first, I was happy to feel like we were taking the first steps towards that “peace of mind” I will so desperately long for should I get pregnant again (although, let’s be real, no amount of tests will ever calm my nerves, we all know way to much about what can and does go wrong during pregnancy) but now, I am a ball of nerves.  I am so afraid that my husband and I will strike the unlucky lottery again and both are carriers of some recessive chromosomal abnormality.  What then?!?

This got me to thinking about Avery’s medical exam again (honestly, I obsessed about it all night while I couldn’t sleep).  I have left several messages in the past with the medical investigator who handled her case to ask about the genetic test to no avail (surprise, surprise).  So, I decided to call again today.  Wouldn’t you know it, he didn’t answer.  So instead of leaving a message, I called the receptionist.  She was nice enough to pull Avery’s records and to let me know that genetic tests aren’t “standard procedure” and are not conducted unless the exam presents a sign that one would be needed.  So, the excuses I received week after week of not wanting to leave any stone unturned and wanting to feel confident they looked at everything they could while we waited 5 long months for them to tell us nothing was complete crap.  They didn’t turn over EVERY stone. 
I am no medical expert but really? How hard would it have been to send the lab work out for genetic tests?  I am so very disappointed in the system.  Now I feel like maybe there was something genetic and even if my tests come back normal, she still could have had something.  That peace and acceptance I thought I was coming close to, now feels even further away.  I am doing my best not to dwell on this as I wait for the next few weeks for my results but it is so difficult.

And while I just went on for much longer than I wanted about my worries, I am also heartbroken for another family.  A family I don’t even know.  A family in my community who went in yesterday at 37 weeks due to lack of movement to be told the baby’s heart had stopped.  Another family has joined this dreadful club.  They didn’t want to be members, but like me they are now members for life.  I don’t know this family but I haven’t stopped thinking about them since I heard their story last night.  That one in four statistic feels like it is getting smaller by the day.  My OB asked if she could share my contact information with them should they want to reach out and I of course said yes.  I hope that one day they will have the strength to reach out and talk about their precious baby.  The bond between those who have lost is so strong, the connection is so real and I am so thankful to have those to talk to who are part of this community.  Nobody else gets it like those in the babyloss community. 
Another family is in pain tonight, another future that was once full of dreams is forever changed.  And I cannot help but think “why?”  Please keep this family in your prayers as they face the weeks, months and years ahead of them without their baby. 

So yea, that peace and acceptance I was feeling closer to well, it’s not so close anymore.  How can it be when this continues to happen to other families?  How can it be close when I am once again questioning Avery’s health and the outcomes of future pregnancies?  There is just so much heartache in our community and it is all weighing heavily on me today.
How can one find peace when the storms seem to come continuously?  This journey feels like being stranded at sea.  Sometimes the waters are calm and you can make out land in the distance and others a storm comes and knocks you off course. I am still stuck in hurricane season where the storms come fierce and often but I have hope that one day, the seas will be calm more than they are rough.  I have hope that I will find peace and acceptance one day, but for now, peace and acceptance linger on the horizon as I navigate through these choppy waters of heartache and questions. 

1 comment:

  1. I think we're destined for a life full of choppy water, being a part of this club. But my therapist and I have been chatting about this lately...and I think the only way to deal with these ups and downs constructively is to live in the now. To try not to get ahead of ourselves, but also try not to dwell on the past and everything that we wish we could change but can't. Just be NOW. Today, you're allowed to be down. And the past few weeks, you were feeling better...and tomorrow is a new day to feel whatever you want to feel.

    I'm finding that trying to switch to this line of thinking is making me feel MUCH better on a day-to-day basis. It's hard, because I tend to get way too analytical and think in future-tense...but it's helping.

    I'll be keeping that family close in my thoughts...and I hope they eventually reach out to you too ♥