Monday, January 24, 2011

De Nile

For 6 months I have been floating in a haze of denial.  Of surrealistic reality.  It took a while to really understand what this pregnancy meant.  What the AFTER meant.  That the accumulating piles of baby things meant that someday soon we would be PARENTS to a real child. 

Even feeling movement, seeing the ultrasounds, seeing my baby inside my womb...still...surreal.  I thought the reality had hit.  I was wrong. 

Even going into labor Friday night, going to the hospital, seeing what my body was failing so obviously at.  I thought reality had hit.  I was wrong.

Even hearing the news about WiseGuy, about Lola.  Breaking down in fear, in disbelief, being overcome with what we may be facing.  I thought reality had hit.  I was wrong.

Even being put on bedrest, having a hard time being vertical for very long because of the meds, knowing that every move I make has to be monitored.  I thought reality had hit.  I was wrong.

Before we left the hospital yesterday morning we visited the NICU.  To derive some comfort knowing that if Cricket arrives before planned that she will be cared for, that all will be okay.  We saw these itty bitty tiny babies, took home the tiniest diapers I have ever seen (newborn diapers are GIGANTIC in proportion). 

We saw a baby that was Cricket's size almost 3 weeks ago, now.  And one a bit bigger than where she probably is right now.  I couldn't even visibly tell the difference.  The 2nd baby shares Cricket's middle name if she is a actually a she.  They are so small.  So unbelievably small. 

That's when reality hit.  Those babies, that's what my child looks like.  That's what size she is.  That's how real she is.  She's not this idea in my head, this bump in my belly, the alien making my belly jump like Jiffy-Pop.  She is a flesh-and-bone reality.  She looks like those little tiny humans. 

She is not an image on a screen, a number of weeks and days.  She is not a dream anymore.  She is not something we have time to prepare for, or something we CAN prepare for.  Not really.  She is reality, a tiny human, who will soon be our responsibility.  Our reason for waking and sleeping and bringing home the bacon.  We saw her.  We saw how very REAL she is.

And now, I'm not in denial.

But then I realize I am.  Because despite the guilt I feel about my body failing my child, that my husband has to do EVERYTHING now, I still have a hard time wrapping my head around where we are right now.

I think, "The danger has passed, we stopped the contractions, I feel well.  2 weeks (or more)!  Think of all I could get done!"  And then I remember the fear.  And that I'm scared to stand for too long.  That I will be going grocery shopping in a wheelchair later, to be safe.  That every move I make could put Cricket in danger.  And it doesn't seem real.  That we could be here.  That after my body failed me in being able to conceive naturally, that it could also rob me of my idyllic summer maternity leave, of my natural childbirth, of my trust that complications in pregnancy don't happen in my family. 

How is this real?  How can any of us survive what we survive and then face the next hurdle?  Why? 

And why am I unable to wrap my head around it all the way?  Why do I feel removed from it?  Is that self-preservation?  And yet, at the same time, how can I feel so overwhelmed, yet positive?  Because it could be worse.  I know that.  Why this mix of emotions?  I really don't know.

Excuse me while I go float down De Nile.  It is, after all, a river in Egypt.


  1. I wish I knew some answers. I'm thinking of you, though.

  2. I think that it is normal to be in at least a little bit of denial about what is happening until your baby is born (and maybe not even until you are home from the hospital) and it hits you that this is really your child that you are responsible for...hang in there!

  3. I think the denial is normal and it comes and goes in the same fashion of what you can/ can't take at any given time. I am so glad Cricket is at a viable stage and you saw those babies to know it's possible for her to get here. Not exacly the way you'd planed, and hopefully not yet at all. But yes, reality hits with a freight train sometimes doesn't it?

    From my IRL friends who had no IF problems, I have heard them say the final month is when it really actually hits them also. So, maybe yours just moved up a bit because of this weekend!

  4. If you want an idea of 27 weekers, I posted a lot of pictures after B&M were born. My Sept-Nov 2009 posts are all NICU and picture filled. While I pray that you dont see the inside of a NICU except as a visitor, know that if Cricket is born today, he/she has an excellent chance of being perfectly healthy.

    Continuing to pray for you...

  5. still in total denial here about the "real baby" part, even as we build cribs and so on. every now and then the realization catches me off guard -- not always a pleasant moment.

    as for the birth part, i'm less and less in denial about that, much to my terror.

    somehow i missed your blog for a couple of days and had no idea all this scary stuff was happening! glad things have stabilized and that you are going home.

  6. ((HUGS)) I get quite a bit nervous about sorry you had to go through that this weekend! I hope Cricket hangs on in there and bakes as long as he/she can!

  7. My heart goes out to you. I have seen many pregnant women post about what size their baby is inside of them - peanut, cantaloupe, cucumber, watermelon, etc. but in all reality I am sure it is hard to come to terms with the thought that there really is a human body growing inside of you. That must be a really cool and nerve wracking realization all at once. I hope that little Cricket continues to grow strong inside of you for a while (even if that means your husband has to do things for you!) Wishing you relaxing moments to help ease your nerves. Thinking of you!

  8. Woman. I have given you an award or two. Details on my blog.

  9. I truly do believe this is all a method of self-preservation. I am keeping you and your baby in my prayers.

  10. I think anything BIG takes time to get used to. Just take it day by day. You don't really have to get it all now you know. Be gentle on yourself you've had a hell of a week or a hell of a year or two! xxx

  11. Hey there girlie for some reason your new blog post didnt update on my blog...Holly Hell you have been doing some crazy things or should I say our out of control bodies who like to do crazy things...First off Im so happy Crickett is OK and so are you and that they are controlling your contractions....

    Im not going to lie bedrest does suck but is necessary...exp now you are probably wanting to nest and do all sorts of things but you dont have to be told that rest is the best thing for now

    I can also sypathize with the no sex thing...Me and my hubs have been restricted from any sexual activity since pre IVF...Last time we had sex was day before x-fer..YIKES...We are like born again virgins:)

    Anways Im sorry I didnt write sooner but hang in there and take care

  12. While I haven't been in your shoes as far as early labor, bed rest and contractions - I do understand your denial. I'm still suffering from it. I'm aware that I'm pregnant, I think about the future, the days and weeks after we bring our LO home...but I don't think reality will hit until I'm holding him/her in my arms.

    I'm glad you got the contractions to stop and the doctors are keeping an eye on you! Hopefully Cricket holds on a little while longer!

  13. thinking of you!
    you are going to be GREAT! for real, you ARE! And whatever happens, that will be your story - it might not be the one you hoped for, but it will be yours nonetheless and it will end with a baby. YOUR BABY!! :)

  14. Having super positive thoughts for you!

  15. Hey! :)

    The picture at the top of my post was just one I found off of yahoo images. I think I typed in dancing and that is one that popped up- it is rather nice, isn't it?


  16. Ohhh hon, I'm sorry. Take good care of yourself. I believe in you and Cricket!

  17. Hey sweetie,
    I am so sorry you have to deal with this on top of everything else. You have had one tough ride and have every right to feel down and like you need to block your feelings a little. I can relate so much. When I got GD I felt incredibly robbed and just grieved for the non-complicated pregnancy I wasn't going to have from then on. It is very hard to deal with just take one day at a time and I hope and pray that little one stays snug in there for quite a bit longer! Don't let the fear ruin this for you completely. That's what I did and I was just choked with regret afterwards. I'm praying and hoping Cricket will be fine no matter when she decides to come! Take care :)

  18. this post gave me goosebumps. :)

    grow that baby, let the emotions wash over you and soon it will all fit together exactly like it's supposed to. don't forget - your hormones are raging so it's understandable that you're feeling a little bit of everything. (hugs)

  19. I have a bunch of those teeny tiny diapers here. The NICU is an amazing place and those nurses are amazing. If Cricket comes early I'm sure she will be well taken care of!


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