Maybe Mama

I’m not sure if I’m a mama. I guess it would depend on who you ask. I’m not sure myself, because my body isn’t growing a life anymore. And in the fall I won’t have a baby to hold in my arms.

A month ago I had a miscarriage. I never saw it coming (Though, whoever does?). I had a “missed miscarriage”, which I didn’t even know was possible. Going into my routine 12-week appointment, I still had all the symptoms of being pregnant. No one, including the medical staff, knew anything was wrong until the ultrasound at the end of the appointment. I have never known such devastation, such grief and loss. I don’t even have adequate words to describe it. But for me, I didn’t have a miscarriage, my baby died. My baby died. And there is no undoing that. I read somewhere that there is no getting over it or moving on; just growing your life around the hole and moving forward. Which seems about right.

A month on, I’m finally feeling like my head is above water. I can look at that first sonogram, when our baby was healthy and strong. I can go to work and see the teacher next door, due mere days apart from me, with her new little baby belly, and not need to go hide in the storage closet so I can have a panic attack without my students knowing. I’m not crying daily. I’m going to grief counseling. I’m starting to sing along to the radio a bit again. My husband and I just went out on a date. Smiling and laughing doesn’t feel so foreign. I’m journaling a good deal. I painted the room that was meant for a nursery; I couldn’t stand to have it just waiting for a child who wouldn’t be coming. I’m starting to recover hope.

Naturally, the loss of our little love is never far. Will never be gone. So, I’m a maybe mama. But despite the unfathomable pain of losing my baby, I will always be so grateful that for a little while they existed.

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