Saturday, May 1, 2010

The One That Got Away

In the first year Hubby and I were married, we were certain we would get pregnant right away. We were young and very naive about the ways of the world and about raising a child. We got married in January and Hubby enlisted in March. He thought it would be the best thing to do for his family, so he packed me up, sent me to my grandmother's house and flew off to basic.

He never made it past the first week. The recruiters had tried to slip him under the radar I guess and never told anyone about his left eye. Hubby has near blindness in that eye and a degenerative genetic disease. Once he got to basic, they took one look at his eye and sent him home.

It took 22 days for him to be processed out of the army and back at home. During that time, one of my best friends died, my grandmother, unknown to any of us, began the first stages of dementia, and my hormones started doing somersaults. When he got back, there was so much going on that neither of us thought anything about children for a couple of months.

One day he brought it up out of the blue, "Umm when was your last period?"

Half an hour later, we were sitting in my grandmother's bathroom with a test. It was positive. We were so sure I was pregnant. We were over the moon.

It took a couple of weeks to get in to see a doctor, by that point I had already started and stopped bleeding. I went anyway. They did bloodwork and it came back negative. They did an exam and the doctor said "Well whatever was there, if it was there is gone now. Want some birth control pills?" I politely refused, dressed, and ran out of there. I was uneducated in what to expect, what had happened to me, and how to respond to a terrible doctor that saw me as uninsured and unimportant."

We don't talk about that time in our lives now. One of my best friends found out she was pregnant a few months before all of it happened and I don't even talk to her now. Her baby has already started school and they have another on the way. I avoid looking at pictures of her little boy. I just can't bear to see him.

Knowing now what my body has gone through, I'm not sure we were truly pregnant, but it sure felt like it. The loss was there and it hurt so much. Still, I don't tell people about it. I don't talk about it and I don't join into loss discussions. I don't feel like I belong.

I do think about it often though. I think about that baby and what it would have looked like. I imagine what life would be like if we had a child about to graduate kindergarten and I wonder how different our lives would be.

My friend is at 22 weeks now and the doc has put her on bedrest. I see her online every day and I try hard every single time to work up the courage to say hi. I just can't. I put up a wall around that part of my life and I'm not strong enough to break it down. I know if I talked to her it would open up a floodgate for the past to come pouring in. I feel guilty, but I can't move past the fear.

I feel more anger than anything. I wish I had never taken that test. I wish I had never dared to hope that the things I was feeling were real. How can I grieve for a child when I don't truly know if they were there in the first place? How can I not grieve when there is a chance?

1 comment:

Kristin said...

Sweetie, if nothing else, allow yourself to grieve for the loss of a dream. Whether it was a false positive (fairly rare) or a chemical pregnancy, you did lose something. My love and prayers are with you.