As my due date nears, my anxiety heightens. There are times I am filled with such absolute panic that I have to stop and try to catch my breath so I don’t make myself sick. I ask myself questions like…What will he look like? Will he look like Nash? Will it bother me if he doesn’t? Will he be okay? What if he dies? What if something goes wrong? How do I do this? How do I mother a child after losing the only one I ever had? What if he dies? Did we make the right decision? Did we get pregnant too early? Did I give myself the right amount of time to grieve before having to take care of another baby? What if I don’t trust anyone with him? What if he dies? Can I do this? Will it make me loose more memories of Nash? Will I feel more guilt loving another baby? What if he dies? Will people expect my grieving time to be up? Can I have this much anxiety and still be a good mother? What if he dies? Will my over protectiveness offend people? What if he dies? Can I let go enough to let him be a child? What if he dies? Will my fear cripple me? What if he dies? Can my marriage handle this? What if he dies? Will we be the parents we were to Nash?” What if he dies?!?!?
I’m terrified, horrified, excited, overwhelmed, scared to death, ready, not ready…my moods change on a dime. One minute I feel that I can’t wait any longer and I feel the need for him to be in my arms right now! The next minute, I’m so scared of anything and everything and wish I had four more months. I feel completely prepared and not prepared all at the same time. My whole life I have dreamed of being a mother. After having Nash, I realized just how amazing it really is. I poured every drop of love I had into being his mommy. I loved him more than life. I have never felt so attached, so connected, so in love as I did with Nash. It was an amazing time in my life. The best time. To be in a situation where being a mother scares me to death is so left of center for me. This isn’t the way it’s supposed to be. I’m mad that I feel this way. I want to be just as excited, just as naive as I was when Nash was born. I’m not though. I’m broken and damaged. I’m half of who I used to be.
How do I be the mother I always dreamed of being with all these anxieties and fears? I don’t want to remember my baby dead. I don’t want to remember his funeral. I don’t want to know this reality…my reality. I want to go back to a time when having a baby was a joyous thing. The most special time in my life. When I was not this fearful, anxiety-ridden, depressed person I have become. I can fake it for the whole world, but I can’t fake it for my baby. He will know. He will follow my cues, he will follow my example. He will know me like only a child knows his parent. I can hide my feelings from everyone else, but I can’t hide them from him. I give myself pep talks. As it gets closer to his birthday, when I feel fearful, I tell myself, “You can do this! You haven’t messed anything up yet! Be fair! Love him without holding back! Love him without fear! Suck it up; he deserves that!!! He deserves the best! Let him see you as the mom you were supposed to be and not the one who has been tarnished by tragedy.
I think back to certain times, seemingly insignificant at the time, but huge now. I remember dancing in the kitchen with Todd as Nash watched us, smiling. I remember the three of us sitting on the couch as I read Nash books. I remember him watching us as we talked with these huge eyes of love. The love was thick in our home. Nash made our connection even stronger. I loved looking at him, looking at us. He was happy. He saw love. The love we had for each other and the love we had for him. He was going to grow up in a home where he never felt anything less than loved. All I want is to be able to go back to that. To be that mother. To be that wife. To create that same environment for our rainbow baby. I can’t though. I can’t go back. This is my life now. All I can do is have faith that I can love him the way he deserves and hope that I make the right choices to keep him safe.