here we are, july 31st. On May 14, I delivered a healthy wee baby boy, whom we named Connor Brady. Here is the post I put up shortly after his birth, on a board I frequent:
This is a post I have only dreamed of making for the past 9 months. I couldn’t actually believe I’d get to type it out, but here I am.
On Thursday, May 14th, at 9:02am, our son Connor Brady was welcomed into the world. He was born via cesarean (planned) and was 6lbs, 11oz, 20 inches long. He’s such a teeny tiny (Evan was 8.3, Isla 7.6), and I am overcome. It is such an overwhelming mixture of emotions. Just before he was born, the doctor said “And here… comes.. Connor!” and she pulled him out. I felt a huge weight lift out of my abdomen as he was held up. I said nothing. I was completely quiet while I waited (it was when Isla was pulled out that we realized she was in trouble, not before, so I wasn’t reassured yet). He let out some gurgly wails, and all I could think was ‘he aspirated.. he’s in trouble’… I still didn’t breathe. They took him to the side table to clean him up a bit, and I looked over (as I had when I saw CPR being performed on Isla, same place exactly – ugh) I saw they were giving him oxygen; his hands and feet were purple. I still said nothing. I just waited, numb. A few minutes later, they bundled him up and brought him over to Tim and me, and showed him to us. I quietly asked “Is he really okay?” and they all said Yes! Their faces meant it, they weren’t just saying it. No one was panicking, no one was freaking out.
And then I cried. The tears just fell from my face and I let them. His face against mine, my tears falling on his beautiful pink cheeks was just so overwhelming. I cannot express the gratitude, the relief, the absolute awe I felt in seeing this new baby. His eyes open and alive, looking at me took my breath away, and I felt like I was dreaming. Months of worry and doubt poured out of me as I just looked at him, almost disbelieving he was really mine.
The tremendous difference in holding him versus holding a baby that I knew was going to die, that I’d have to remember every inch of, give up and never hold again was too much. I get to keep this one, hold him, and not let go. I get to feel his breath, hear his cries, love him and hope for him. NO moment in my life compares to this, not even Evan’s birth, prior to my loss, when I assumed everyone got a baby at the end of 9 months. I am humbled by this little baby, and filled with gratitude. I am reminded of the preciousness and fragility of life, and of just what a gift he is to my family and me.
I am so grateful for the support I’ve received from everyone. People have been so very compassionate and understanding and it has made a huge impact on my healing and anticipation of Connor. I cannot articulate just how blessed I feel.
Here are some pictures of our new little miracle:
So, it’s been a really emotional journey thus far. While I was pregnant, so much time and energy was spent trying to keep the baby alive and to bring it into the world screaming. Then that happened, and I was euphoric for a week straight. Sleep deprivation? No problem. I’d rather be up with a screaming baby than not. Absolutely. But here we are at 11 weeks, 1 day. The euphoria and novelty has subsided a bit, and the reality of a very fussy newborn (which I’m still eternally grateful for, don’t get me wrong) has set in. I am having a hard time. 😦 Wow, does it ever feel shitty to say that ‘out loud’. How weak and ungrateful it must sound to others, particularly others who’ve lost and not been fortunate enough to have a sub baby. I remember when Evan was a baby. He was a “good” baby.. Textbook. Didn’t really cry, had a fussy period in the evening etc… but generally a good sleeper, good eater, happy, healthy little baby. Connor is a different baby. He’s much more fussy, more difficult to console, cannot be put down and just overall more needy. I find 99% of the time, I manage well. But then there’s that 1% that just finishes me. I break down. I am incapable of coping, I just crumble and weep, sob even, and I don’t know why. Grief seizes me all over again, and I ache for my baby girl, and my arms, incredulously, feel empty without her. I love Connor deeply, fiercely, but the pain in my heart is still quite real, and quite strong. Tim always says when I get ‘low’ like this, to call someone, be with someone so I’m not alone. To help me cope. But there are times when I feel so incredibly lonely and empty, because no one understands this pain, this horrible isolation and I can’t be bothered to try to make them. So I don’t call anyone, I don’t be with people. I’ve now called my husband sobbing at work, and he’s coming home. I suck. I can’t even find happiness with this new gift we’ve been given. I think back to before Isla was born, how happiness was a sometimes thing for me, and how I struggled with depression for years prior. And now that Connor is here, the miracle and wonder of his birth, mixed with grief.. will I ever find ‘true’ happiness? What a cliche, I know, and how unworthy I am of asking that question. Most look at sub babies as the cure. And they certainly do fill those empty arms, but there is no cure for the deep, deep pain and aching grief of loss. No matter what, I will hurt for her till the day I die. I hope I am able to appreciate all the good, and see all the blessings in my life along the way. Under this black cloud is no place to dwell. Get home soon, sweet husband. I need to sob in the arms of one who knows, supports unconditionally, and doesn’t judge. God I miss my baby girl.