Monday, June 29, 2009

birth? death? birthdeath?

It has been almost six months now, and I have yet to find the words to write the story of your birth. Not ironically, it is those moments--the last flutters, the foreign sensations, the tears, the cradling, the love, the heartbreak--that lurk in the corners of my mind, presenting themselves at the most awkward times and bringing me back. Bringing me right back. Six months of wrangling such memories has taught me to give them boundaries, however. I do not dismiss them, as that is essentially impossible, but instead I tell them to wait. Not now. I will deal with you later. I will visit you again when I have time, space. I will visit you when I can feel that pain with the intensity I need to, when I can cry those tears freely, as long as I want, because my baby died, and I'm not over it.

But I am okay. In my logical mind, I know that everything is as it should be. I know your soul is whole and well and part of my life for a very important reason. We probably planned it this way. And yet, that very human, very mortal part of me, that instinctual mother, does not understand. They say when you have children, it's like watching a piece of your heart walk around outside of your body. It's like that, exactly that, only you are gone, and so is that piece of me. There is an emptiness in this world, my current, tangible reality, that will never be filled.

And still your little life, your death, your absence, have changed me in ways I could not have imagined--changes that I am now grateful for, that I would not give up if I had the chance. Your birth and death were a beginning and end for me, too.

I started to write it a couple weeks ago, and it just comes out wrong. I cannot find the tone, I can't find the words. Do I just write it, the standard play-by-play of events that traditionally ends with pictures of squirmy newborns, a lament about sleepless nights and the new found love that comes with the discovery of your child? How do I put it that, in the moments after you were born, everyone was crying but you? That I witnessed my own father cry for the very first time? That there were no apgar scores or measurements, just a nurse bringing you in your blanket and asking if I wanted to see your defect? How do I explain the last time I felt you move, that I still wonder if it was the last time you moved at all? Are there even words?

1 comment:

margaret said...

I'm so sorry. For you, for me, for all of us missing our children. I wish I had something of comfort to say but I am struggling to find my own peace. Although you must walk your own dark journey alone, there are those of us that walk beside you in ours. Hugs