Friday, October 12, 2012

Numb



Warning:  Rather personal, painful stuff follows.
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Some of you may be wondering why four posts on modesty took so long to churn out.

[Or some of you, having followed my blog for three years now, will have attributed it to the general slacker state in which I live.  I'm okay with that.]

Truth to tell, I've been in a bit of a fog for the past few months.  It's starting to thin out a bit, thank God.  But writing in a fog is tricky.  Living in a fog is tricky.

It started in June of this year, as I was preparing to announce to friends and family that Matt and I were expecting our fourth baby.

We got to week 11.  

Then something went wrong.  Little signs of trouble, the kind that can't be taken lightly.

I was referred, for the third time in a month, to a clinic especially for women in the early stages of pregnancy.  Both times before I had gone alone and left reassured by a happy little heartbeat fluttering wildly on the screen.

A heartbeat is a miracle.

The third time around, Matt was able to take time off work and come with me.

A good and necessary thing.  Because this time there was no happy little heartbeat.  No wild fluttering on the screen.  Just a tiny little baby's form, grey and silent in a circle of black.  My baby.

The technician apologised and handed me a tissue.  Matt squeezed my hand as my eyes bored holes into the ultrasound screen, willing that heart to beat even knowing it never would again.  I cried. Terrible, fat, silent tears.

Decisions have to be made when a baby dies like this one did.  I've had to make them before.  And this time, Matt and I decided not to let things play out naturally.  We scheduled an appointment to return for a D & C. 

I had two days in between. Two days in which I saw and spoke to almost no one, except my little family.  I left the phone calls and the explanations to Matt.

We went back to the clinic on the the third day.

I know there are worse things that happen to people.  So much worse.  But that D & C was my own private hell-- wicked painful, mentally and physically devastating.  I was awake for it, unlike the last one, and that perhaps is what did me in.

In all my other miscarriages, prayer has been my natural response, my anchor of sanity.  But this time I couldn't pray at all.  Maybe it was the pain.  Maybe it was the drugs.  Maybe it was the ups and down of the previous six weeks, that blessed heartbeat there, there, then not there.  Maybe it was just knowing what the doctors were doing.

I probably shouldn't have been awake.

Whatever it was, I couldn't pray.  All I could do, over and over as the doctors did what they had to do, was repeat two lines from the French version of [of all things] Green Eggs and Ham, which I had read to my sons a few nights before:  

"Je ne veux pas, je ne peux pas"
(I do not want, I cannot)

It was a protest.  
I know that now.  
A way of saying, to Whoever was listening, 
I didn't want this.  
You know I didn't want this. 
How can You ask me to do this again?

But it was asked, and it was done.

And I was shattered in that operating room.

Back home to my three little boys.  Food brought in by my beloved church family.  Crying on my husband, often.  Eventually even going back to work.

But I've been stuck on the first rung of that grief ladder everyone talks about.  Denial.  Numbness.  Living but not looking.  Seeing but not facing.   Knowing but not naming.  I've buried myself in books and movies and TV for months, refusing (or perhaps unable) to look this thing straight in the eye.  A friend called a few weeks after the D&C with condolences for me, and it took me a few minutes to realize what she was talking about.

I did what I never thought possible:  just tried to forget.  I submitted to the fog.  

But it has to dissipate, eventually.  The numbness begins to fade.  I'm remembering things now that I tried to forget: the anxiety, the uncertainty, the trips to the clinic.  Mostly I'm starting to remember her, that baby I named and prayed for and thanked God for.  Whose heart I was privileged to witness beating, beating, and then silent, whose life I was blessed to nourish for nearly three months.  Who I loved so much it hurt, whose loss devastated me...continues to devastate me.

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Lord, I still don't get it.  
I still don't want it.
I just wanted her, and I lost her. 
But thank you for the numbness.
For allowing me the fog.
I needed it.
And I take it as a gift from You.

Your,

Kadee

5 comments:

  1. Oh sweet Jesus ... help.... love you and grieving with you...

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  2. Love you both. Thank you for responding to this one. It's a bit of a black punch to throw at the universe, and I'm thankful for your words. They comfort me.

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  3. I am so sorry, Kadee. I cannot imagine your sorrow. I will be praying for you and your family.

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  4. This is heartbreaking. I am so sorry for your loss. I am praying for you.

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