Carry On, Warrior
Ger said to me last week “I’m worried about you.”
I paused, and then replied “Have I done anything that causes you to worry? Because I thought I had been doing really well lately.”
He acknowledged that it was a valid question. The source of his worry was that there have been a lot of triggers in my life lately that have caused me to break down, if only momentarily. The weight was likely building.
That. And today is my Due Date with Iris.
We both saw it looming. Last week was acknowledging that she would have been born, as a c-section scheduled prior to my due date. But today was The Day. I passed my Due Date with Nelle in January in a flurry of tears, but also pregnant at the time – so I could be overwhelmed with both sorrow and joy. Not this time. It is profoundly silent.
I asked Ger if he was ok. Did I need to be worried about him. He replied, “On this, I am your shadow – where you go, I go.” He follows my lead on how we should be handling the various dimensions of this chapter of our lives.
The pain was as fresh as the day after we lost her. The day that we lost her was cradled in shock and disbelief; pain set in the next day. I cried until I choked on air and vomited. My dreams were disturbed and I dreamt I was spinning and falling, waking up in the middle of the night dizzy.
I took it easy today. It was harder than it has been in the past, but I knew that I needed to take a step away for my own sanity. Lying in bed in a dark room all day seemed like a sure way to feel worse, so I put up an out-of-office reply and made plans. Ger and I went to Home Depot and bought some plants. Went to downtown Geneva and walked around. Had a lunch date. Came home exhausted and ready for a real nap. Hopefully yoga later, if I can take care of myself enough to hydrate in the next few hours.
As I was preparing to go out, I was frantically looking for the lotus flower necklace that a friend sent to me after we lost Nelle. It was so thoughtful and delicate, yet hurt so much to see at the time. I set it aside, knowing that when I was ready, I would wear it. Today, I was ready, and could not remember where I had tucked it away. I wouldn’t let us leave the house until I found it. Finally, located it: in the box that holds all of the things that remind me of my girls. I put it on.
I found a stone heart while we were walking through the shops of Geneva. I bought it so that I can wrap my hand around the smooth, cool stone whenever I need it.
This day will come to a close, and for everyone else, it is an ordinary day. A due date means little when you’re not having a baby. The outside world does not know it is my due date. No one is asking if I am uncomfortable or telling me to “hang in there.” Even the dates on my back, the day she was born, has nothing to do with the day she was due.
This day will come to a close, and I will have to carry on tomorrow.
“Worry talk is a ritual worth keeping. Because if we empty our hearts every night, they won’t get too heavy or cluttered. Our hearts will stay light and open with lots of room for good new things to come.”
-Glennon Doyle Melton, from Carry On, Warrior