Saturday, October 15, 2011

Of babies lost and found

I found out by chance that today is Pregnancy Loss Awareness Day...
I know how that feels. I lost two pregnancies before I had Sophie. The first one was the hardest, because I had no signs that anything was going wrong and had made it to the twelve weeks mark, so we had started to tell friends. We were so happy. When we went for our First prenatal ultrasound, they told us that there was no baby there. It was a blighted ovum, a type of miscarriage where the baby just stops growing at some point and that is that. They told us this was very common, with 1 in 4 pregnancies ending up in miscarriage. Then when I got pregnant again, we had an early ultrasound. This showed a baby that seemed to be one week delayed in its growth. The next week confirmed our fears: this baby had also stopped growing. I was so devastated that the only thing I could do was read blog after blog about pregnancy loss and infertility. In one of them I found an article by Peggy Orenstein, called Mourning my miscarriage. She talked about the Jizo statues in Japan, the offerings made in memory of lost babies. It seemed like a sign; we were flying there in a few days for a wedding. So when we were in Tokyo, we went to see them. And they were indeed comforting. We chose two that seemed lonely and gave them bows and toys, and took some pictures to have with us forever, to see them as sweet little dolls, and not just as sad memories. I planned to make a little book with the pictures and never came around to it, but I still plan to. It is not as hard as one thinks to recover, but it is impossible to forget.

 When I got pregnant with Sophie, it was hard to believe that there was a real baby inside of me when we saw the ultrasound. But there she was. And now, even after two years of Sophie being born, it was still hard to believe it: another baby! A sweet face, feet and arms, jumping around as to clear any doubts. And then Sophie pointed out: no shoes, no socks! :) Oh, how I love this girl! She is going to make the wait a lot easier.
Cheers,

Gaby

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