It was a big week here with a revelation that we had another boy, and then I chose the name of a little baby within 12 hours of being revealed, and my God, all the pregnancy work jumped out of the circle. and now I have taken refuge in the Lord my God, my God, and this is the truth.
And yet… I do this, I don’t know why, but when I get pregnant I like to get really bad news. The last time my husband came home from work and he found me standing on a chair, ice cream in hand, enjoying the birthday shows on TLC and Discovery Channel. And not the joy of being swallowed up by gingham-I was born-in a master’s room Children’s Story, and I’m talking about a drama-heavy When Childbirth Attacks! demonstrations. Issues of pre-eclampsia, micro-preemies, newborns and life-threatening disabilities. The shows were all about “Up Next!” commercial shocks include a shot of a doctor who is clearly distressed flying into the operating room or a pregnant woman turning away from the camera, sweating and tears.
“Why are you looking all over the world for these things?” my husband asks, clearly in a state of shock after just 15 seconds of bloody blood clots. And honestly I don’t know why I watch. I just kind of… had to watch it.
He promised me that I would not watch these demonstrations this time, and I kept that promise. He probably wouldn’t think much of my favorite NEWS, however, which are the same, in a blog post.
“Dead blogs” is what one of my friends (and such a blogger) called them. “Stop reading to us,” he ordered me, realizing that I was reading while still in my first trimester and crying on my laptop every day. I did not listen.
Children are dying. Placental rupture. Incomplete uterine arteries. Suspension for medical reasons. Extremely dangerous multipliers. Rope skins. The water breaks before it can. And the danger is always “we do not know what happened, but we apologize for your loss.” Now I can tell the bad story of any dangerous story you want to discuss. I’m like every bad part of the ER that involved a pregnant woman rolling in a day-to-day race.
I can’t explain this compulsion. I have no excuse for what, at the top, looks like a tourist attraction. I read the pain of other parents, I would cry out loud in their place, and then walk around thinking about my nursery and lovingly shaking, and pushing a little baby in my womb.
I just… need to know. I have to see that you can keep breathing after something like this.
Just knowing that dangerous things can happen during pregnancy will not help you at all, if they do. It will not make things less painful or cause you to quietly fold your arms and stop working when the doctor gives you bad news. However, it does remind me to appreciate every time I spend with my child, even the annoying “has October come?” minutes. If something went wrong and these weeks of pregnancy were all I had experienced with this baby, it would not make her real. Less of my favorite son, who has his older brother’s mouth on his name and his place in our family.
I don’t want to sound silly or humiliated here, or mean I’m using other people’s pain to remind me that… So I’m not really a bit better at the end here, except that one of the great wonders of pregnancy and childbirth is that you start to feel it all, in a way you have never met with it. That joy and sorrow and fear and doubt and joy and love are so inexhaustible and so intertwined that you can no longer separate them, and to ignore evil and destroy good.