Follow me on the crazy, hopeful, discouraging, funny, and ultimately successful (one way or another) path to parenthood while facing infertility.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

A Living Ghost

I received a panicked email yesterday from someone I knew when we were trying to get pregnant through IVF, when I was religiously going to Yoga for Fertility and the associated support group, before I felt that my story was so hideous and I was so far from the hopeful "just think positively!" hoo-ha that I had to stop going.

She needed something due to an issue in her cycle, and I happened to have that something sitting in my home, something that I had been wanting to throw out but could not in good conscience do it when someone might need it.

And that someone did.

So I went over and dropped it off, and she was so very appreciative. And peeking from around the corner of the doorways and the dining room table was the ghost.

Not a real ghost.

A little girl, about two years old, with curly dark hair.

I have no relation to this little girl. I don't know her. But still, she's like a living ghost to me.

This friend from another lifetime was my friend during our 6th IVF cycle, our last FET that was genetically both mine and Bryce's.

We were "cycle buddies."

And, we both got pregnant, within a day of each other.

Which was great, until...

She stayed that way.

I didn't.

Her updates and milestones became what could have been mine but weren't to be. The birth of her daughter in April reminded me that I was supposed to have had a baby in April. Everything became a physical, representation of the baby that wasn't for me. I had to distance myself for my sanity.

I felt (and feel) like somewhat of a horrible person -- this person did nothing to me but have a pregnancy survive in contrast to my own abrupt loss of everything we'd dreamed of at that point. Her daughter is adorable.

But I will never see her without wondering what my daughter or son would have looked like. Would he or she have been shy, too, peeking around the corners and only coming out of the shell to wave and say, "Bye bye?"  Or would he or she be a sociable thing? It's so hard to believe that our child would have been two and a half, talking, running around, pretending to be someone else as toddlers do. It seems like such a longer stretch of time since that seemed a possibility. I will never see my friend without wondering what could have happened to make things so different, to make our fortunes twist the way they did, why things worked for her and not me.

I left without being visibly sad, and sat in my car for a few moments just thinking about how different things would be if our babyling had made it through.

And then I stopped and drove home, knowing that What Ifs are futile and a waste of energy, even though you have to acknowledge them before they are summarily dismissed. Our baby is out there, somewhere, and while I can't even begin to picture what our baby may look like at two and a half because that is part of the grand mystery, I know he or she is coming, that he or she is real, and that he or she will be the baby we're meant to love and raise and see grow up in actuality, not as a ghost in our minds.

14 comments:

  1. I had a loss cycle like that, too. ((Hugs))

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's tough to have that sort of comparison, and then to feel like a jerk for not wanting to put your face in it more than absolutely necessary... I'm sorry you went through it as well.

      Delete
  2. Grey's niece was conceived around the same time of my second pregnancy, which ended in miscarriage. And though this little girl did nothing wrong, it's hard still to look at her and have those "what ifs."

    Like you, I'm learning it's okay to have these feelings, despite what others might think or feel about them. Because with loss like this, healing is a long process, but one that has to happen. And the "what ifs" are part of it.

    Thinking of you tonight and sending love.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you -- that's it, the what-ifs, and the acceptance of knowing it's okay, if tough, to have those feelings.

      Delete
  3. I had a friend who transferred on the exact same day as our first cycle. She got three, I got none. It was very hard (and still is) to watch them grow up, always wondering what our little ghost Ivy and Petri might look like.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That would be so hard. So many ghosts in the process.

      Delete
  4. I just got a video from my friend of her nephew- who turned 4 yesterday- the 4 year anniversary of my loss. It is so, so hard. Wishing you good luck in your adoption journey.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That sounds incredibly hard. It's so hard not to see what could have been when there's such a close connection to a loss and someone else's situation results in success. Thank you for the luck!

      Delete
  5. I am glad that the promise of Mystery Baby keeps you hopeful through these difficult moments. It's hard not to think of the parallel universes that might exist/have existed if things went differently.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. Yes, a parallel universe--that sounds about right. Somewhere where everything worked out easily and without loss or pain and those babies made it. They don't exist, which is hard, and more so for the comparison with someone who had what should have been for you. Mystery Baby is totally a ray of sunshine in all this though -- he/she is real and coming for us!

      Delete
  6. It's a hard moment. There are a few of those little ones among my friends...the "what ifs". Thinking of you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. It sure is, and those what ifs can just get you sometimes, even if you feel like this is all a distant memory.

      Delete
  7. You are so kind to help a friend. I'm sorry you were surprised by the little girl. It sounds like a difficult moment to keep composure, especially if your heart feels like it hit hard. I have a friend with a little girl who reminds me of the what if's. Hugs for you!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Ugh this speaks to me. A close friend who lives 5 minutes away was due 2 weeks to the day before me. I have to close my ears when someone asks her "How far along are you?!" because if I hear the answer, I will do the math against my will before I know it.

    ReplyDelete