Editor’s Note: This piece is reposted with permission from Tammy Moyle over at www.blitheblog.com. This goes out to all of you who struggle every single time a friend announces a pregnancy.
My husband and I met and married pretty quickly. Our first date was January 3rd and we were married by December 12th. So I guess it was no surprise when we found out we were pregnant that March following our wedding; we liked to work quick!
We were making plans to attend our wonderful cousin’s wedding in Northern California and decided we should make a little romantic weekend out of it and spend a few days in Wine Country as well. We were completely surprised when I woke up the day before our trip to a positive + sign on a little white stick. But oh so excited!
I think I was especially excited because it is what I had dreamed of since a little girl! Meeting and marrying Prince Charming. Having a cute little baby with him and becoming the dearest of words: “Mommy.” Our excitement overflowed and so did the planning. I am pretty sure Babies R Us saw me weekly if not more….. Multiple baby showers in the various states I had lived in were planned. A nursery was designed and set up. Name books were underlined, dog eared and highlighted. It was all I could talk about and think about. I breathed baby all day.
When I was about 28 weeks pregnant we visited one of those 3D Ultrasound picture studios. With my bare belly sticking up, and friends and family on Skype, thanks to state-of-the-art technology we were able to see our little boy’s chubby cheeks and tiny fists floating through his watery home in my womb. Of course I cried. Such a beautiful experience!
The next morning, as soon as I hit my office chair, I emailed out to all my friends, family and co-workers the ultrasound pictures of our beautiful baby boy. Immediately emails and texts came rolling back in saying how cute he was and how they couldn’t wait to meet him! And my cup overflowed.
But what I didn’t know was there was a woman I had made cry. I didn’t know she had been trying for 4 years to get pregnant. I didn’t know she had multiple in vitro fertilization attempts that didn’t work. I didn’t know she had 6 miscarriages that she had grieved through in the past few years. I didn’t know that my baby pictures I rejoiced over and emailed to her just broke her heart because I could have a baby but she could not.
Days later I was told of her sad news through a friend. I was asked, per her request, not to mention my pregnancy and baby around her nor to send out any more pictures. And, even though I saw her almost daily, I was to not mention my pregnancy whatsoever. And I am ashamed to say I got angry. Here I was, in the happiest time of my life, and I needed to be quiet. I needed to hold my joy. And I felt cheated. Cheated out of the joy of my pregnancy.
But what I didn’t realize at the time was she felt the same way: she felt cheated out of the joy of being pregnant. She felt robbed of the chance to have life growing in her womb and being called mom. She was heartbroken. And I had just added to her grief.
Years later, I am now pregnant with baby #3. I have been blessed to have had no complications or real issues with any of my pregnancies. And yet I feel overwhelmed most days to have 2 toddlers and a newborn on the way. I get frustrated when I can’t get into the shower because my daughter won’t let me put her down. I get frazzled when I can’t make a meal because my son is screaming every time I walk into the kitchen because he wants to do puzzles NOW. I get emotional because I still never get to sleep through the night.
And yet I know that same woman, whose heart I broke, would ache for these moments. She would give anything to feel this wanted or needed as a mother. She would happily embrace all the child issues I take for granted.
Please head to Tammy’s blog for the rest of this piece.