Sunday, September 25, 2011

stormy weather #2

I'm sitting at the computer watching a wind storm blow in across the valley.  The leaves are whirling through the air, and the rain is coming down in buckets.  I miss a good storm.  It rarely happens here, and I always feel so lucky that I get to watch a storm brew from the top of the mountain.  I have had my own storm brewing for the past week.  My emotional state has been completely up and down, and it's been a bit of a tumultuous week.  Now that the miscarriage is over, I've been trying to get back to my normal life, but it hasn't been as easy as I thought it would.  School has been challenging.  I have great students, but teaching a split has provided me with some interesting experiences, and I am trying to sort it all out.  There were many days this week where I left school feeling incompetent, and not sure if I could make it through the week.  My thirty-seventh birthday was on Wednesday, and I was glad to welcome a new year, but am really beginning to feel the ticking of the clock.  I know I'm not old, but in the world of fertility, I am the dreaded over thirty-five, approaching forty.  There are pregnancy books specifically written for getting pregnant and being pregnant if you are over the thirty-five mark.  It's so degrading and discouraging.  There are so many women my age having babies, but it seems like we are looked upon by the medical world as "risk-takers," because of our age.  This week, Michael and I have started opening our hearts and conversations to the next step in this crazy journey.  I want to believe that I still can become pregnant and carry a baby to term.  But, there is the underlying fear that it won't ever happen.  And so I fluctuate between exploring adoption, versus trying again. It is constantly cycling through my thoughts.  And then today, as I stood in the checkout counter as Superstore, a young baby began to cry. I don't know where it was coming from, but it continued, and it was almost as if the whole world went into silent movie mode, because all I could focus on was the crying of the baby.  It was the tiniest cry, but it filled the room, and I was taken right back to hearing Luka cry in the hospital.  I watched as a woman rounded the corner of the canned vegetable aisle, and the crying grew louder.  I just wanted to pick up the baby, and comfort it.  I remember holding Luka, as she cried, knowing that she was hungry and I couldn't feed her, because she was too weak to suck, and my milk wasn't producing.  As I tried not to sob in my line up, I watched the woman pick up her child, and the crying immediately stopped.  Suddenly, I was brought back into the world of Superstore, the beeping of the checkout counter, the buzz of activity, and I began to place my items on the conveyor belt.  Life goes on.  However, in that moment, I understood how deep my desire is to be a mother.  I'm not sure when or how it will happen, but as I drove up the mountain, I made the decision to persevere, and I won't let my age stop me.  I will hold a child in my arms before I am forty.  I will.  The wind has calmed down outside and the sun shone for a moment and created a beautiful rainbow in the valley.  Storms never last, and I know that next week is a new week.  Like the storm, this too shall pass, and somewhere in this journey there will be a rainbow, with a pot of gold, just for me.

Saturday, September 17, 2011


It's a cool Saturday evening, and the rain has finally settled in after having battle with the sun all day.  The smell of homemade chicken soup is wafting through the apartment, and I just woke up from an afternoon nap.  And now I write a blog that I didn't expect to write on this journey.  Michael and I have experienced a miscarriage.  A blighted ovum, according to the medical world.  I was almost nine weeks pregnant, when due to some spotting, I went in for an emergency ultrasound.  They found a gestational sac, but no baby. My levels were tested, and they were falling. Apparently the baby never developed but my body believed it was still pregnant, and continued growing an empty sac.  We were just starting to get excited, and the promise of new life was giving Michael and I a rejuvenation in our own lives.  Every day that I woke up still pregnant, the layers of cautious optimism were peeling away to allow for hopeful excitement.  I was starting to look forward to showing my round belly, to take out the maternity clothes I had packed away, and was imagining the birth of a baby in April.   But those hopes have been blighted.  And the trusting process, of believing that I will ever have a healthy child of my own, has once again been taken away.  Yet strangely, although this was a huge disappointment,  I am not devastated.  I feel like I am stuck between totally giving up, and persevering until we succeed.  Maybe I take comfort in the fact there was never really a baby.  What I do know, is I need to take some time to heal my body, and move forward with my life.  I need some time to get back to the gym, and get my body back in shape.  I need some time, to really figure out if I want to take the risk of being disappointed again.  There are many questions that need to be answered.  Do we see a fertility specialist?  Do we think about adoption?  Two different paths, and I'm not ready to dive into either of them. Yet.  I'm going to take the next few months for me.  Last night we had our first improv rehearsal.  I wasn't going to go, because I was so tired from a rough week, and a stressful day at school.  But I am so glad I did.  It was so much fun to play, be silly and take creative risks. And I laughed.  A great way to end this week.  I woke up this morning, thinking how much has changed since last September.  Michael is making furniture and is happy being a teacher on call.  We have great friends and I still wake up and marvel at the gorgeous mountain view from my bedroom window.   The word blighted is defined as something that impedes growth,  or impedes progress and prosperity.  Something prevented this pregnancy from developing, and I will never know why.  What I do know, is that I am still growing and progressing as a person, and at this moment, that is what is most important.  Will I ever get pregnant and carry a healthy baby to term?  I hope so.  But life is a mystery, and for now, I choose to get back to my life.  Michael is cutting vegetables, and the soup is almost ready.  We will break bread, eat hot soup, while I drink and savor a big glass of red wine.  A toast to what may or may not come, but still filled with hope and possibility.

Sunday, September 4, 2011


September.  A time of reflection, hope and new beginnings.  It's strange, how when the leaves are falling and everything is going dormant for the winter, everything in our lives is beginning anew.  School, new classes, new seasons of television shows, and trying new things.  I love this time of year.  Always have. The sun setting a little bit earlier, crisp fall apples from the Okanagan, new clothes, and yes, I was one of those children who loved going back to school.  As least from what I can remember.  August was a good month, and one of the first month's since Luka died, where I haven't cried every day.  In fact,  I've been pretty happy.  Enjoying the hot summer, meeting new people, spending time with my husband, and just focusing on the now.  In the last few days, as we've rolled into September,  the memories of Luka have begun to surface again.  She's never far from my mind, but it was nice to feel free from the thoughts and the pain for a while.  Putting that in writing, makes me feel guilty.  I don't want to forget, but the lightness I have felt has been so refreshing.  And as I go back to school, and feel the fall evening air, I wish she was here.  Last year, we were so freshly mourning, that I wasn't even aware of the arrival of fall.  Now that I am so much more present, I wish I could share my favourite time of year with her.  I'm nervous about school this year.  My first year teaching a split class, lots of changes at the school, and Michael being a teacher on call.  It's going to be very different.  But I know it will be a good different.  It's just going to take some adjusting.  My goal is to just enjoy the students I have in my class, focus on them and their wonderfulness, and try new things outside of school.   I'm going to try my hand at improv, and will continue to go to yoga.  And of course, continue to hope for new life.  In all this newness,  I hope that a seed will grow.  I just have to continue to believe that it will happen.  In the meantime, I'm going to enjoy evening walks with Michael and Sassy, cool weather, macintosh apples, Sunday morning pancakes and bacon,  and the gentleness of Luka in the fall wind and the changing colour of the trees.

I found this on my pillow one evening before I went to sleep.  It is now posted above my pillow, to remind me that anything is possible.  I love my husband.