One year ago today I ran my first half marathon and this morning when I saw all the arrows on the half marathon path, I was so remorseful that I didn't sign up to do it this year.
Running a half marathon is not what I wanted to be doing today.
In my grand scheduled plan, I wanted to be pregnant, and thus to sick/tired/lazy/unmotivated to run (and especially train for) a half marathon.
I told Dave I thought it would take us awhile to get pregnant with baby #5 and I wasn't sure why. This was my longest gap between kids, I'm older, etc.
But right on schedule the positive test came and I could hardly believe my eyes.
When I told Dave we were having a baby, he was so excited. SO excited! None of that "how the crap am I going to be responsible for a human life?" fear that's usually the under/overlying emotion. This time, Dave was owning it. He picked me up and spun me around the kitchen and he glowed. He knows he rocks this dad-business! I couldn't wait to tell this baby the story of how, despite coming after four other pretty darn cool kids, Dad was most excited when he found out about you (then I would say, "but don't tell your brothers and sisters").
But that baby was not meant to be. And it never happens how you think it will happen and how you hear of it happening to all of your friends and relatives. Where you have lots of anxiety with that first OB appointment because what if there is no heartbeat? It didn't happen that way for me. It happened in the middle of the night. Slowly. And at first I made other excuses and I told myself that this has happened to other women who went on to have a healthy baby. But by morning time I knew I was not having a baby anymore.
Still...I had so much to do that day. I didn't want to bother Dave with it because he was going to a movie that night and I didn't want to ruin his day. Plus our cousins slept over and all the children needed entertaining. And I'll never forget bright and early in the morning having Kendall and Maci come in demanding breakfast and I thought, well, really I've got to get on with my day. So I robotically poured cereal and changed clothes and loaded dishes. My thoughts kept saying, "you have 4 healthy children, you have no right to be sad about this." I reminded myself of my sisters' who have suffered heartbreaking infertility. I thought of my mom who birthed a baby at home that was too early to take even one breath, and I was so grateful I didn't have to wrap a baby in a towel and drive to the hospital to see if maybe they could figure out what went wrong like my mom had done. I thought of my many, many friends who are aching for just one baby. And I went on with my day.
My friend recently miscarried and talked about the tender mercies involved. I saw no tender mercies, because, of course with my ability to get pregnant easily and my strong healthy kids didn't I kind of deserve this?
Kelly came to get the boys (which of course I didn't recognize at the time, but was a HUGE blessing). They were going to go to Lagoon for the day but I told her what happened and before I knew it she had all the kids (mine included) buckled in the van and was driving away. I think I pretended to protest.
When the house got quiet I sobbed harder than I remember doing in a long time. I almost sent Dave a text because I couldn't get words out and I needed him. But I SO didn't want to ruin his day (well, until later when he got home). As I cried I wonder how in the heck so many women had done this before me. I crumpled and thought how much stronger they all must be then me, because this is something I did not want to do.
I went for a run which is the best therapy in the world and I lectured myself the whole time because I couldn't stop crying and WHY was I SO sad?
Dave was strong when I told him and of course he said he was mostly worried about me. And I tried not to cry and he told me of course I would and he tried not to cry and tried to say all the right things (which what are those?)
The physical pain of a miscarriage has got nothing on the emotional mess I turned into. If Kelly hadn't had the foresight to keep me busy, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have gotten out of bed once that week. I could not believe how sad I felt.
About the middle of the week, I went for a run again. And of course my thoughts turned to the events of the week and I started my self-running-therapy. And this was when I finally realized that this was me. This was sad and hard and heartbreaking, and it happened to me. And other people have had similar and worse heartbreaks, but I felt a strong love from Heavenly Father as I realized that I wasn't being compared to starving children in Africa, or anybody else and there problems and that I was allowed to ache for the baby I wanted but was not having.
After that things took a drastic turn for the better. Plus I have my sisters. The one in Japan who I can tell every thought that pops into my head via email and the one here who I can keep reminding about my misfortune and get some extra attention. Plus my friends have been awesome. And I noticed that my friends who've struggled so bad with miscarriages and infertility in the past have been the most sincerely concerned. Empathy. Even for me who has four healthy kids.
But man I really wanted that dang baby. And I keep trying to talk myself out of it and say, but the children are all potty-trained, and a good nights sleep is so amazing. And then I remember how sweet it is to feed a baby in the quiet house in the peaceful night. And really, I never have minded diapers all that much. So hopefully there is a little soul coming soon to my family. And that means I have to be patient. And I'm so bad at that.
Now she's Nine Months
6 months ago