Four years ago today.
This time four years ago...
...This time four years ago, I was laying in bed with my husband, calling my family in between bouts of crying. Listened to the sympathy pouring out from the phone. Feeling... so alone, like a piece of me had vanished into thin air without any warning.
Four years ago today I lost the Raisin, my little tiny baby. Felt it pass from me with pain I imagine to be that of actual labor - mingled with the pain of loss, of grief. So much possibility, so much potential... gone. Little Catherine would never watch me water marble my nails and beg me to do hers as well, or ask me why Princess Garnet ran away and would she ever go home? I would never get to watch Dave teach little James to shoot a free throw, or watch Hayden impress his small half-brother with parkour and kung-fu, and teach him how to do vaults as well. Little parkouring basketball-playing Jimmy. Never.
Such a powerful, small, final word.
I had the Raisin with me for a rather short time - I was only aware of him for two months - and yet in that short time that tiny little life became a huge part of my life. I would sing (badly) to it, talk to it, think about it and wonder and hope. And all of that was brutally ripped from me, leaving me bereft, confused, devastated.
I honestly don't know how I dealt with it. I remember that pain, that grief - far worse than when my grandmother or father died... worse than when my beloved Elayne died. (I know Elayne was a cat, but she was my cat... and I think I imbued my hopes of childhood on her.) Like... again, like part of myself had been ripped from me without any warning.
It's been four years, and I still think of the Raisin frequently. Not every day, but lately... a lot. The pain is still there, but it's different now. Faded. A memory of pain. Almost like the entire miscarriage happened to someone else... but I remember it too closely for that to be true. If for no other reason that the endometriosis that has infiltrated my body, a reminder that yes, you were pregnant, and you screwed that up too and hello there! I'm the consequence.
But of course the memory goes way beyond that.
I know people have asked, and probably still wonder, if I'm ever going to try again. The answer is no. No, because the probability of carrying a baby to term with endometriosis thrown into the mix is slim. No, because I don't want a baby... I want the Raisin. No other baby will do. Little Kitty or Jimmy, that's all. No, because I'm afraid of it all happening again, a Groundhog Day of failed pregnancies. No, because... because two people have filled that ache in my heart, the void that the miscarriage left. I know Hayden and Linz are someone else's kids... but I've come to love them as my own, in every way but having given birth to them myself. I know I've only known them a relatively short time, but in that time they've also become part of me and soothed the wound that the Raisin left behind.
That wound, once so open and seething that even seeing another baby would send me into tears, has faded. It's not any longer a pain that makes me want to crawl into bed and huddle into myself and stare at the wall with blank unseeing eyes, or drink until I can't feel anything at all. It's a kind of... wistfulness, almost, a wistfulness that makes me look around the house and think, Three and a half years old. What would little Jimmy be doing right now? And all I have to think about is what Jason and Melanie's Serenity was like when she was three and a half. Would Jimmy/Kitty have been similar? It's a wistfulness that makes me smile a little sadly at babies and small children and their mothers. I was almost you.
Wistfulness does kind of hurt, but it's not the soul-wrenching agony of fresh grief. I'm thankful for that. Because while having the grief fade kind of makes me feel like a bad person, like I should emotionally flagellate myself daily to, I don't know, somehow make up for my body's failure... no one can endure that level of pain for very long. Much as I think I should, I know I couldn't.
And so I feel that wistfulness, and I endure that.