March 08, 2009


Several people have asked to hear the story of how I told my husband I was pregnant. I assure you, it is not as exciting as you'd think.

The first time I got pregnant, back in 2007, that was the fun time. That was when I surprised him with the news early in the morning and we both got really excited and giddy and couldn't go back to sleep. But since then, it just has never been the same. The second time, I had to wait for him to call from Iraq to tell him that I was pregnant but that the nurse already said the baby would probably die. So it's not like we're going into this fresh; we will never be able to recapture the carefree happiness we felt the first time.

My husband reacted exactly the same way I did: happy and grinning upon first hearing the news, but once the reality sunk in, he pulled back and grew as distant as I have. We're both cautiously pessimistic, shielding ourselves from what we see as the eventual crash and burn.

We are now completely unable to trust any signals. I had two miscarriages without any bleeding or pain, but now I have had nothing but bleeding and pain. The first time I was morning sick, but there never was a baby in the first place. The second time we had a healthy heartbeat a few days before the baby died. Nothing makes sense to us anymore, so it's easier to ignore it all.

Even if they tell us that everything looks fine this week at my ultrasound, it won't make us feel any more confident or any happier. Our last baby looked fine at 7 weeks, and look where that got us.

So I hate to disappoint you, but telling him was fairly anticlimactic. We've been down this road too many times before to naively believe we might actually become parents in eight months.

Posted by Sarah at March 8, 2009 12:26 PM | TrackBack


Posted by: Darla at March 8, 2009 12:38 PM

I haven't had exactly your problem, but I completely understand the problem of not knowing what is going to be, and being helpless to do anything about it. A religious person would tell you to trust in God (that whatever happens, it's according to His plan), but perhaps the first of the 12 steps can help anybody: Admit that you're powerless to control (this aspect of) your life.

The Black Swan talks about this a little: That you can achieve a kind of serenity once you know that anything can happen. I haven't achieved that! (So don't think I'm preaching.) But it has helped me a little.

Posted by: David Boxenhorn at March 8, 2009 01:26 PM


I deliberately avoided asking you about this because I already knew the answer.

Uncertainty hurts. So does realizing that some things are beyond our control.

I haven't achieved that "kind of serenity" David refers to, and I wonder if anyone truly can. The author of The Black Swan himself admits he is not entirely at ease. But even before I read the book (thanks, David!), I have been drifting in that direction anyway. Wasting mental energy on the uncontrollable was not - for me - sustainable in the long run. There are people who can maintain rage and frustration indefinitely, but I am not one of them. It hurts to let go, but it can hurt even more to hang on.

I'm just trying to build on what David said. It might be good advice for others.

I don't intend to give you advice, because I think you are doing the right thing. In fact, I think you are already doing what he said. You are in pain - both physical and mental - but you will not give in to the temptation of illusions. You know what is beyond your power. You will not fool yourself. You have intellectual integrity. That is why I admire you so much.

Posted by: Amritas at March 8, 2009 02:11 PM

I hope that in a few months you can feel just plain excited.

And for the record, as someone who some consider 'religious' I would never tell anyone that whatever happens is part of God's plan. Terrible, awful things happen everyday that I don't believe are part of his plan. What you both have gone through just isn't fair.

Whatever happens, I wish you peace, and I hope and pray that a time is coming sooner than later when you can just revel in joy and expectancy.

Posted by: val at March 8, 2009 03:48 PM

*hopes & hugs*

Posted by: kannie at March 8, 2009 04:01 PM