You know how sometimes you have something sit so, so heavily on your heart and in your mind, but you just don’t even know how to say it or write it?
You know you can’t be alone, but you are afraid to say it or write it because you don’t know of any easy way to do so. Any way to get it out without it coming across in a totally different way than you want it to.
Yeah. That’s this article.
If you are reading this, odds are you suffer from infertility, or are a surviving parent to a baby who is no longer living, or, in my case both. Two babies no longer living, in fact.
You’ve no doubt done what I did when I experienced my first loss…scoured the Internet for any and all people to whom you could relate—mothers who suffered losses like yours, who are surviving just as you are and who get it.
You look for those who get it in a way no other person could get it.
Those with whom you can live “it” together.
I found my group. A pretty large group, actually! Three years later, I’d consider many online friends I met right after Matthew died closer to me in heart and spirit than some I have in real life. They commiserated as only another mourning mother could because we all lost our children around the same time, and making that group even smaller, many of us got pregnant again with our “Rainbows” around the same time too.
We added parenting living children of similar ages to parenting children no longer living to our daily discussions and life-sharing, and of course, the inevitable…the pregnancies and births of second rainbows.
As I went through my IVF cycles a year after Luke was born, they were my biggest cheerleaders! When I was able to post pregnancy success, I have no doubt that some of these beloved friends cried the very same happiness tears I did. Even more joyous, many of these same moms became pregnant themselves, either shortly before or after I did!
A new season of life…and a group of women with whom again we could go through the same things…pregnancy (again) after loss but this time raising a living Rainbow. A unique group, no doubt.
Then we lost him. We lost Trey. I went RIGHT back to that grief place…and they continued to move on in their pregnancies or their trying to conceive.
Talk about isolation and displacement. While I am grateful they got to go back to the world of pregnancy and possibility, it still hurt that I had to go back to the world of infertility, loss and disappointment.
Of course these precious women are still dear to me, and still are the dearest of cheerleaders in whatever I do. Of course, I am nothing but joy-filled for their new pregnancies and new babies because I know how much they suffered and how much they love their sweet little Rainbows.
But I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel like I belonged as much.
Especially since we will not have any more children. I’ll never belong in *that* way again.
I just wish I had all mine. I wish MY second rainbow lived. I wish I got to move on with those ladies in the same way…instead of the sad, wistful way that I feel—sort of third wheelish, if that makes any sense.
And let’s just be real. This is an awkward topic because heck, many of you reading this ARE those friends of mine…in the very boat I’m describing…so it’s weird, right? But you get it.
I know you do because your hearts hurt when you tell me you are pregnant (even though they SHOULD NOT! I am BEYOND joy-filled for you!). You wish almost as much as I do that it wasn’t this way.
That we were still pregnant together. Or our babies would again be close. You wish it with all you have because you love me.
And I love you.
I know it’s a weird place sometimes. Trust me, I know.
Then again…that’s this life, isn’t it? The life without our children. Never again ‘normal’ and always with twinges of weird in figuring out one’s place.
Do you know what I’m saying? Do you ever feel as if your place in a group you once felt so strongly you belonged may be different now because of life circumstances? I’d love to know…please share!
I’m small, but scrappy! I have a fierce passion for my family, friends and life in general…I’m a military spouse who has battled infertility for over 13 years, as well as the loss of two babies gone too soon. I love to laugh, and am grateful for every second I celebrate with the ones I love. You can find me at my blog Lori Does Maryland or on Facebook Lori Mullins Ennis or on The Twitter here Lori M. Ennis