I'd thought about it. While putting my son to bed, buckling his car seat, eating around the dinner table. Adding a second child seemed like the perfect timing. Liam was out of diapers [finally!] and becoming more and more independent and those ovaries started to ache. And so we started the conversations, slowly at first. More and more, the excitement for a growing family was building. It was time.
Then it happened. Mid-December I had a feeling that I was pregnant. Thomas was getting ready for work Saturday, December 19 and as he was sipping his morning coffee sitting on the couch I snuck into the bathroom and took a test. I was pregnant! So elated and overwhelmed, I kept it in thinking this might just make the perfect little present under the tree.
The week before Christmas seemed to pass ever so slowly as I was keeping this secret. As the days crept by, the bleeding slowly started. But it went away and I brushed it off. Christmas Eve night, we struggled to sleep. Thomas excited for Liam to open up his presents and see his shiny new Radio-Flyer tricycle, me for finally sharing my secret.
It was the last present. A tiny red bag containing a pair of baby shoes and a picture of Liam holding the pregnancy test. I was trembling in anticipation and as husband opened the bag, his eyes grew like saucers and tears started to fall. "You're pregnant? You're really pregnant? LIAM, YOU'RE GONNA BE A BIG BROTHER!!!"
It was a wonderful next few days but then the bleeding started again. This time it seemed more serious. I called my OBGYN to make an appointment and as we were settling on a January 27 first appointment, something didn't feel right. I had this suspicion that I needed to get in right away. I called my mom and told her my concerns. She agreed that the bleeding wasn't normal and if I felt uncertain in any way, to get in ASAP. I called the doctor back and the receptionist let me leave a voicemail for the nurse who called me right away and scheduled me for the following afternoon.
The day of the appointment, I was nervous. Not a "we get to see our baby" nervous but a "we're not pregnant" nervous. We sat in the waiting room for what felt like hours.
We were called back; I was given the cup and then we waited some more. The nurse came in and said "The test says Not Pregnant." Those two words. Not pregnant. The tears fell and my lips started to quiver. I knew it. I just knew it.
We sat in a new room, waiting to take a blood sample to test hormone levels. I tried not to make eye contact with the woman across from me, whose belly looked about 7 months along. I feared she'd know the blank look in my eyes and see the tears. As we were checking out, the receptionist says, "Okay, now you need to go see the sonographer. She's down the hall."
"I don't need to do that," I snapped.
"But when we made your appointment..."
"It won't be necessary!" I interrupted.
Telling the family was the hardest, putting a voice to our loss. You hear about miscarriages, but you never really believe you'll be on the loss side. Until you are.
It's getting easier these days but I still mourn that precious little life. There are moments the grief creeps up on me. But watching Liam gives me so much joy. His life seems more precious and those "I love you, mamas" seem so much more sacred.
I'm sure next Christmas will be hard and when August rolls around (what would have been our due date). Those Facebook announcements seem like a punch in the face. But God remains faithful. He continues to remind me that He, more than anyone, feels my pain, understands the void my miscarriage left, and counts my tears. I have heard His voice more clearly during this heartache than any other time in my life. I can see Him through this; He continues to rebuild this heart of a mother, one piece at a time.