I came across this post in my drafts folder and I don’t remember why I never published it. Maybe I was feeling too emotional about the possibility of losing our baby? Well, our adorable Eleanor Chara is three months old now and so far she’s totally healthy, so I thought I’d go ahead and post this (belatedly). I guess I’m hoping that it might help someone else who might be feeling the same way to not feel so alone.
date: April 2014
I have been working really hard to get our house “settled” or “ready” for the new baby, which I think is part of “nesting” — but I don’t feel like I have really “bonded” with this baby yet. With both Adele and Everett, I felt like I knew them a little when they were born. This time, despite my alarmingly huge belly, I don’t even feel like we are actually going to have a real baby. I think it is because we had some drama with Everett that I am really aware that things can go wrong, that there are no promises that this baby will live or be healthy, so I think I’ve been a bit detached. Early in the pregnancy (although I didn’t really talk about it with anyone) I kind of assumed I would have a miscarriage. I’ve never had a miscarriage before, but I just felt unbonded to the baby early on so I thought it was God’s way of making it easier on me when the baby died. Well, here we are, just two days from my due date, and the baby is still here and kicking. For those of you who don’t know me in real life or don’t know the story, when Everett was one month old, he was crying uncontrollably and had a really low fever – but enough to be a concern in a baby so young – so we took him to the ER. That was Thursday night and they couldn’t find anything wrong with him so they sent us home. The next day we took him to the pediatrician and he just wasn’t acting right – lots of crying, wouldn’t eat, etc. They ran some blood tests and did a CT scan. The scan showed a bleed in his brain and they told us they were going to helicopter him to Children’s Hospital. They didn’t really want us in the helicopter (I might have been a little bit hysterical), so we got in the car to meet them there. On the way, Everett stopped breathing and had to be intubated (which also means majorly sedated). The next morning he started having seizures so they performed a craniotomy and tried to evacuate the blood that was putting lots of pressure on his brain. They told us that there were a lot of risks for brain surgery on a baby so small — they said it would be very easy for him to bleed out because it’s very difficult to get blood in him as fast as it comes out. Well, our little Everett Dunamis (Everett means brave strong boar and Dunamis means power) was powerful, brave and strong and LIVED through the surgery! Long story short, lots of drama, lots of doctors, lots of tubes and machines hooked up to our new little baby for two weeks until we were released from the hospital. And it’s not like everything’s fine now, you know. I mean, yes, everything is fine, but Everett has cerebral palsy and nobody knows how much it is going to affect him as he gets older. He’s almost three and still not sitting (although he is getting closer!) and not crawling (although he is doing a version of an army crawl!). Everett does make progress every day and he’s such a sweet boy! I love him so much and I am so grateful that I get to be his mom. I am just relating this because I’m trying to figure out why I don’t really feel pregnant this time around – therablogging =).
I don’t know if other moms who have had children with health issues have felt this way with subsequent pregnancies or if it’s just me. In fact, maybe it is all in my head, but I notice that most moms who have special needs kids don’t have any more children – maybe because they want to give their full attention to the special needs child or maybe because they are afraid that the next baby could have problems too. Or maybe they wouldn’t have had more kids even if the child didn’t have special needs. I am trying to have the perspective that Everett is part of a family, so not everything can or should be about him. I try to do as much as I can for him while balancing that with the needs of the rest of us.
For my whole life, I’ve been an eternal optimist and honestly never even considered the possibility that anything bad could happen in my life. I took it for granted that my children would be born completely healthy and everything would be peachy! Well, I still consider myself an optimist, but I think I’ve been mellowed out a bit by some challenging circumstances. Because I know that God is good and He works all things in my life for good, I don’t have any fear for the future. I know that He will still love me and take care of me. And I also know that God loved Everett even more than I do (which is a LOT!) and God will always take care of him.
Then again, I could just be analyzing this way too much. It could be that I can’t picture the new baby because we didn’t find out the gender this time, so I don’t know the baby’s name, etc.