We had friends over last night and their younger daughter is the age the baby from my first miscarriage would be. I hadn't seen this friend for 17 months...it had been way too long, and mostly because I was dealing with so much and being around pregnancy/little babies was threatening to steal my sanity.
But last night...I didn't break down, I didn't feel jealous, I didn't stare at her like I wanted to steal her. I just kept grabbing her chubby little legs and arms and whispering like a psychotic grandmother into her ear, "You are so stinkin' CUTE!" Seriously, so cute I want to eat her up but I don't think her parents would approve.
She has this knowing little smile she gives everyone, like she's been on this earth before. You ever met a baby like that? One who seems to *know* more than a 10 month old should?
Like an old soul looking out of new eyes?
Anyway, her mom and I talked about how we as women blame ourselves for our perceived past "failings" in the realm of pregnancy, birth, delivery. How we blame ourselves for things that went wrong even though we really don't have much control over how things turned out.
The only thing we have much control over is our responses to those things. The universe hands you something and you have to figure out what to do with it. You have to trust God, yourself, your body, to take whatever this new universal handout is and make the best of it.
I've been thinking about it alot, thinking about what she said while we were standing in the kitchen and I was cleaning the top of the range with a razor blade. (She didn't seem to think that was weird.)
I watched the candle on the stove flicker as she told me she had to forgive herself, to tell herself, "Self, it wasn't your fault," and that that was a very, very powerful thing. She cried the first time she said it.
I'm getting there. Through all of this, I'm getting there.
I have to make Lu scream sometimes because of the procedures we have to do to her. "Mama, stop!" she cries. Each time it's like a stab in my heart...like it was my fault I couldn't make her perfect.
Like it was my fault my babies have died.
My fault I'm lighter a fallopian tube.
As women, we're taught to believe that our power lies in our reproductive capabilities. At least, in our society, I think it's true. Think about it: adoption is always seen as second choice and when we're wanting to get pregnant we call it "trying"...as though we have much to do with it at all.
I don't think the power lies in our reproductive capabilities at all. I mean, I think it can. But I also think a tangly web can be weaved where if you're in the situation where something went wrong and you truly didn't have control, you still believe that you did and it's your fault.
So, I don't think the power lies in the fact that we as women can or cannot reproduce efficiently.
I think the power lies in the letting go.