When I was in the hospital after Nicholas was born, I had a nurse named Carmen. I still thank God every day for Carmen and ask Him to bless her and take care of her. Not that He hasn't and doesn't but I'm just not sure what else I can say or do on her behalf. She was an absolute blessing to me and by extension to our whole family.
Carmen has more babies in heaven than she has on Earth, including a little boy named Aaron who they lost when she was 24 weeks pregnant. She knew, absolutely knew, our pain. Our struggle. She knew what I was feeling that day and talked to me about what I might feel, what might happen, in the weeks and months to follow.
Last night, as on so many previous nights, I was thankful for Carmen's little talks with me because I would have thought that maybe it was weird or not okay that all of a sudden I felt sad again. That sometimes it sneaks up on me out of nowhere. That sometimes Tommy will say something like "...and then maybe we can go to that Pho place for dinner" and I'll fight bursting into tears. Poor guy. He's probably at his wits end with me these days. But it doesn't make me as nervous or as guilty as I know it otherwise would because Carmen told me. Carmen told me she cried when her husband said he was going to mow the lawn.
So instead of being sad and then being nervous and then feeling guilty and then feeling even more sad, I get to stop at just feeling the first sad. Like last night. And this morning. Even though neither is it a Monday nor is it the 15th, both days that I've learned to brace myself for, I'm still missing my boy and feeling sad.
Maybe you already know this about me. Maybe you already know that I'm very good at sharing joy but am loathe to share our sorrow. So I post the good and happy things, which are all very true, and shy away from posting the sad, which are also true.
But maybe knowing that it's normal and okay to still be grieving six and half weeks later will help one of you. Maybe telling you about Carmen is what I need to do. Maybe something. I don't know. Maybe I just need you to know that even though things can be and are happy and good, I still struggle through moments, hours, of mourning. So I'm telling you all this.
At 2 a.m. when I was willing my thoughts to please, please quiet, I realized that I've stopped praying the rosary in order to fall asleep. Maybe I need to go back to that. Because I'm so conflicted. On one hand I pray for the chance to be a mother to another child, to raise him or her here in our home. But I'm also terrified. I'm truly terrified to go through another round of horrible all-day sickness for months on end. I'm terrified of loss, of doctor's appointments, of hospital beds and IVs. I'm terrified of people congratulating us again and then having to offer their condolences again. That interior conflict- I need the Blessed Mother's help with that. I need to be able to trust that God really knows and wants what's best for me and our family. Will you help me? Will you pray for my peace and healing and faith in His will?
I am so grateful for all of you. I'm so grateful for Carmen.