E and I always agreed that we wanted more than one child, even if the final number is still up in the air (it is one thing to fantasize about how many kids you want and another thing altogether once you’re living in the reality of child rearing). That day in the hospital when we found out A had died, I already knew I wanted to try again. But I also want to allow both E and I enough time to grieve and heal a bit. What is enough time? I don’t know. Nobody knows. No one can tell me because it’s different for each person.
I promised E we’d wait at least 6 months before even discussing it so we could focus our energies and emotions on grieving and honoring A’s life and memory. April marks 6 months and it’s taken all of my self-control not to speak to E about having another baby until now. I am beyond ready to get pregnant again.
I’ve been dedicated to getting my body, mind and spirit into the best possible shape in order to fairly provide baby #2 with the best beginning and the best Mom I can be. For 6 months I’ve been taking prenatal vitamins, a folic acid supplement and a calcium supplement to replenish my stores. After gaining 60 pounds with A, I spend considerable time contemplating what I eat and exercising consistently in order to get as close to my pre-pregnancy weight as possible before conceiving again. I don’t want any additional complications from issues that arise with being overweight and pregnant. Although the hours of reading, researching and questioning doctors have not provided a conclusive answer about why A died, it has provided a sense of peace that I’ve done my due diligence; that I’ve tried my darnedest to determine what happened and can now move toward acceptance that we will never know for sure. I take the grief work very seriously, believing that if I pay it forward now, I will be better off in the future. Journaling, counseling, support groups, honesty with my feelings, whatever I can do to move the process along and heal.
Like I said, I am very ready to start trying to conceive. But I know a subsequent pregnancy will be remarkably challenging in many, many ways and I will need E’s support more than ever. Thus the importance that he also feel ready. I planted the seed (sorry for the pun) a couple weeks ago explaining to E that I was more than ready and asked him to think about if he was ready.
We haven’t spoken of it since. It’s very hard for me not to bring it up again. It dominates my thoughts. I’m sure I could convince him into trying to get pregnant right now, but I absolutely do not want to influence his decision of when to start trying. I genuinely need him to feel ready of his own accord.
This of course does not stop my brain from calculating birth months if we got pregnant in April, May, June, etc. Or from fastforwarding to how we’ll plan for the birth (most likely an induction), or baby names, or how long to wait before announcing, or how our family and friends will react, and on and on and on. I just can’t share these thoughts with him. I bite my tongue so as not to pressure him.
No amount of subsequent living children will make me miss A any less. But a living, breathing baby in our arms and in our home will help to fulfill some of the loss we’re dealing with (more about that in this post). To my fellow bereaved blogo-mamas who are trying to conceive (Tash, Kate) or currently blessed with new hope (Aoife, Mama Bear, Renel,) and those who’ve lived through subsequent pregnancies (Jess, Mary Beth, Janis), I hope to join your ranks soon.