When I found out I was pregnant this past March, and that not one but two lives were in my hands, er….womb, it sent me into a labyrinthian crazy space in my head. For those readers who aren’t familiar with the previous year of my life, you can read about my previous pregnancy here and here, but essentially, when I was twenty weeks pregnant last September, one year ago, I got to enjoy the words “It’s a boy!” at the ultrasound for about 30 seconds before it was followed by news that led my husband and me down the worst path we could have ever had to go down, resulting in a diagnosis for our son that was “incompatible with life”, and ending that pregnancy at 24 weeks. The English language has been around since 450 AD, and there still isn’t a word that describes that time accurately for me.
So I spent the first part of this new pregnancy, this re-do, with hand wringing, brow furrowing, lots of self-doubting in my decision to give it another go, and an overall feeling of negativity and cynicism. It was a pretty dark time. Then that lifted a little, when the genetic testing and pictures started coming through with nothing but good news. Normal results, positive affirmations from the doctor, and optimism from my husband who asserted that he had a “good feeling” about this time.
But I can’t honestly say that I was happy yet. I was feeling ambivalent – not quite trusting enough to dig my toes in and enjoy being a mother-to-be. I spent a lot of time shaking my head at my changing body, rolling my eyes at my stupid lack of energy and still possibly punishing myself for my last failure. While I wouldn’t actually admit that I was waiting for the new reveal of what was going to be wrong this time, I also wasn’t too forthcoming with any excitement about the future of these babies.
And now, things have shifted again. My ambivalence is gone, and replaced with happiness. I’m finding my body less annoying and more entertaining – and actually love it when my friends, my son, and my husband get to feel these two boys doing what they do, with the rolling around and kicking and punching (one of them seems particularly adept at kicking my ribs). When people offer me compliments, I’ve stopped assuming they just feel sorry for me and actually take in the kindness and let it swim around in my belly. I am going to have these two boys, and it is going to be ok.
I don’t know what’s changed, but I can only guess that me getting out of the shadow of my last experience, and into the light of this new one had to take its own time. It had its own timeline, one that I couldn’t think myself out of or talk myself into. I passed the landmark (landmine?) of the ending of my last pregnancy, 24 weeks, a while ago. But emerging out of its darkness just took me a bit longer. And here I am, now finally a new experience, with the only precedent set being that of my pregnancy with Roan, which went beautifully.
And this all leads me to a point where I think I can write about these guys now. Somehow, my fingers haven’t been able to type anything out up until now – I’ve tried. And then I’ve deleted. But look at me now! Five whole paragraphs and they haven’t disappeared! Who says progress is impossible for weirdos like me? (Um, I think it’s me who said that). Anyway – here are some answers to questions I’ve been asked , and some things I’m just putting out there:
- I’m due in mid-November. Roan is convinced his brothers are coming on Halloween, though. And he could very well be correct. And I think that’d be a super dope birthday.
- Yes, I’m freaked out just the tiniest bit by the concept of breast-feeding two kids. Not only does it seem a little sci-fi and weird, it just seems well…ok, let’s leave it at weird.
- I don’t know how they’re going to be delivered. My priorities to my doc were expressed basically this way: get them out of me in the safest way possible, for them. AND I don’t mind at all, even a bit, being as comfortable as possible. So, though it could be an unpopular sentiment – I love drugs, bring them on.
- Can you feel them kicking? Sure – lay your hands on me, somehow I don’t really mind. Just don’t comment on my wonky belly button. I know it’s absurd. I will look into belly button plastic surgery if it remains so wonky.
There’s more to say, but let me finally address this text message from my good friend Laura, who lives in a distant magical land called St. Louis:
OK. No more of this waitin’ around. I need a belly shot like yesterday. Pretty please?!?
And part of my reluctance to wrap my head around having twin babies on the way has been a definite and deliberate refusal to have pictures of my belly taken. So in the interest of self-torture and progress, I give this gorgeous photo to the world, with hopefully a better one on the way….