I have tried to find the perfect way of beginning this post for weeks. But it hits me now, as I begin to type, that perfection is not something this post needs to be. In fact the imperfection of it seems to mirror the moment.
In December of 2007, after much struggle and much grappling of faith, I finally, finally became pregnant. Two perfect embryos turned into a second pink line and a positive blood test. I was pregnant for a few short weeks: long enough to allow the joy to come in, but brief enough to sense when things were not going right.
The process of becoming unpregnant is still happening. Still my body bleeds in a forever rinse cycle of purging and clean slating. Becoming unpregnant has lasted longer than the being, than the planning, than the entire month of December- a month now forever ruined in a way that I never thought possible.
Daily I think of the almost. The might have been. The could have.
My pregnancy tests are no longer turning pink and my emotional weeping is down to a trickle…but there was a something in a space that had been empty for so long. Just a glimmer, a speck of the infinite seascape of my dreams had taken up occupation in my middle. Now that it is gone I feel the emptiness so strongly.
My Grandmother calls out in her sleep for help and I go to her. We walk down the dark hallway. With each shuffle of a step she keens. It is a soft, feminine whimper that pulses out of her sleepy mouth in perfect time with each step we make. She makes these sounds in her sleep and I wonder if they are the sounds I make in my sleep. I wonder about the symmetry of my Grandmother losing her mind as I lose the lining of my uterus. The loss makes us both damaged.
I think about all of the empty wombs that were once the plush velvet sofa for a maybe, for an almost. I think about all of the times that I tried and tried and tried and fucking tried and bled and bled and bled and wept. The weeping so all consuming that it robbed me of my total identity.
I am often untouchable within my grief. If I am honest with you- most days I mourn the tries that did not work more so that the one try that did. My heart rattles with loss of all of the effort and energy. All of the false hopes and whispered prayers. I daydream about how life with a toddler might have been today.
I wanted to dedicate this day and this messy and unperfect post to my almost. I need to shed this skin of sadness and try to move forward. (although even moving forward is like scraping my knuckles across a brick wall)
This extra day will be a small box that I can put into the back of a drawer. I am putting you away iotas. I am putting you into a pale yellow box and letting you go. Maybe you are now a daffodil blooming in a friend’s front yard.
(something that spoke to me from e.e. cummings)
If you want to do a February 29th tribute on your blog please check the “participant” box within the comments. This will keep track of all of those using this day to grieve so that we can sit and visit those that need a friend. If you don’t have a blog feel free to share in the comments.
If you do not have a blog but want to share an image feel free to e-mail it to me and I will add it to this space.
Added: A photo from Venustat documenting the flowers she received after giving birth to her stillborn son, Richard.