Friday, January 8, 2010

How Do They Live . . .


I lay here in bed with Breezely in her crib, swaddled because that is how she still likes to sleep after five months of life. I can hear her crackly breathing because she's getting over a cold and has a bit of mucous in the back of her throat. She lies so still, and sometimes I find myself staring at her belly or even resting my palm lightly over her chest when I can't hear her breathing. Just to make sure.
Buzzy is sleeping in her big girl bed. In her Princess jammies with her 'bankie' bunched up around her chest, gripped tight in her chubby little hands. Her jammie covered feet dangle off the bed because she has no concept of space when she sleeps. I can hear her even, deep breathing but often when I can't, I will watch or touch her belly as well. Just to make sure.
So, tonight as my angels sleep on either side of me, I torture myself by reading blogs about women who have lost their angels. Women who spent all 9-10 months of pregnancy with such great anticipation of the birth of their first child only to have their dreams and aspirations come crashing down around them. One was born with leukemia. She was taken from her mommy at 28 days old. Another was born unable to breathe and in the resuscitation process suffered severe brain damage. She passed away at 3 days old.
Now, I have to ask this. How do they live? The moms. Day in and day out? I don't know that I would be able to. Having loved my babies from the moment I knew they were in my womb, obsessing over every detail of pregnancy for 9-10 months; their development (omigod they have a little tail, its head is so big, the perfect a flashing baby heart and the sound of the heartbeat, omigod they have little webbed fingers, omigod you can see the umbilical chord, OMIGOD ITS A GIRL, omigod her eyes are open, she's sucking her thumb, holding her feet, she weighs 5lbs now, only 4 more weeks, 3 more weeks, 2 more weeks, 1 more week)and then finally arriving at the day that they were born, only to have them torn away from me. I imagine my own life would cease to matter. To hold my beautiful, innocent baby, the life I had created (with the help of God of course) and have her stare back at me. To hear her cries and know I am her mommy. I am the one who is supposed to comfort her, protect her but I can't protect her from death because God has decided for me...for her. How does one go on living? How does one find the energy to open her eyes every morning, take that first breath and live through the day with empty arms and not relive again and again and again looking into her baby's eyes while she was alive. How does one live knowing that that innocent baby is buried, in a box beneath dirt and grass?
Tears flow freely as I write this post. I lost my baby too. But it was different. I wasn't given sufficient time to get to know him. I didn't give birth to him. I never held him. My pain was intense, but different. So different. There were no memories, no smiles or coos or cries or hours or days or anything to remember. Those would have made it worse.
I ask again, how do they live? The moms, when their babies are in heaven and not in their arms where they once were.

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