I’ve felt equally enamored and annoyed by the popularity of “lists” these days. Though lists make me feel comfortable and give me an “end in sight’, their popularity and constant presence online being passed off as “news” is downright exhausting. But, in the end, they tell us something interesting which we know is digestible and finite. As Maria Konnikova wrote in a December 2, 2013, New Yorker article “A List of Reasons Why Our Brains Love Lists”, lists “create an easy reading experience, in which the mental heavy lifting of conceptualization, categorization, and analysis is completed well in advance of actual consumption—a bit like sipping green juice instead of munching on a bundle of kale.”
So, I wrote my own list in an effort, honestly, to process my life as a woman (and my other roles) over the past couple of months. (Trigger Warning: Personal and descriptive language, and if you are just hearing about this, the timing of your access to this knowledge is not personal, so please don’t be mad. See #4 and accept my earnest apology in advance!)
My 8 Truths in 8 Weeks
For the past three years my husband and I have tried to conceive. We naïvely believed we would get pregnant as soon as we stopped trying not to get pregnant. Arrogance can be hard on the ego and spirit. And, in September I accepted that it was possible the road to parenthood was closed to us. I was tired of feeling consumed by the focus it took and in the grand scheme of other considerations in our lives, it seemed the most reasonable response. Even after having recently (half-heartedly, I’ll admit) agreeing to revisit the idea of using “assisted reproductive technology”, deep down I was ready to throw in the towel; then, quite unexectedly, on October 4th, I got pregnant. Here’s my truth about the time since...
My husband is a rock upon whom I can lean and who trusts me: The realization of this potential for our lives has done more for the bond of our marriage than any therapy and my hubby has been behind me and my desires, wishes and beliefs with little hesitation.
I trust my body: Four weeks into my pregnancy I was feeling nothing significant pregnancy-wise and though I saturated my brain with information, Google searches and reassurances from others, I had a deep sense of knowing that something just wasn’t quite right and my confidence was low. I know my body and trust what she tells me and doesn’t tell me.
Nia is medicine: When I take the medicine of Nia, especially the concepts of self-healing, rest and creating a beautiful space in which to be surrounded, I receive more than I ever expect. Nia guides me in my most vulnerable moments and helps me be the person I aim to be in all the realms in which I live.
Put friends on speed-dial: In need, I must call on friends and supporters no matter their level of “closeness” to me or the appropriateness of “timing”, when I needed support I asked for it. There was no rhyme or reason to whom I told when; rather, I went with my gut and what I needed in the moment versus what I felt was the best “etiquette”. When I needed to “move to heal” versus lead class, I felt blessed to be able to call on someone at the drop of a hat.
Control is a four-letter word: I learned that information has incredible value and yet even with that information, in situations like, say, flying in an airplane or waiting to know if my pregnancy would “stick”, I still wouldn’t be able to fly the airplane or prevent chromosomal anomalies.
Loss incarnates in various ways while allowing for celebration:
In the past weeks, one of our remaining two chickens died, leaving our lone chicken Houdini. We fortunately were able to find a retirement farm in Los Lunas for her.
My husband’s grandfather passed away and now we celebrate his life’s adventures and release his wife to some reprieve after caring for him for many years.
A peripheral “Small-buquerque” acquaintance/colleague suddenly lost her life to a pulmonary embolism. She was in her first trimester with her second child. This horrific, unexplainable event shook me to my core but more amazing has been the outrageous amount of love that has poured out of our community in support of her surviving husband and young son.
And, yesterday, after 48 hours of bleeding and intense cramping I miscarried at 8 weeks. I very distinctly felt it pass and though I sat in the bathroom briefly stunned and unsure what to do next, two things became clear: 1. I felt much relief from the physical pain and the emotional and mental “not knowing” and 2. I wanted and needed to celebrate this short but important experience to heal my spirit. Hence, #7.
Ritual holds strong meaning for me: My trusting and open husband agreed we needed to perform a small ritual at home to honor and celebrate what we had accomplished...finally getting pregnant!... and to send off this short existence into a new incarnation. Hubby built a bonfire and with hands clasped together and a drop of whiskey to toast, we said “yippee!” and “goodbye”. The ashes will go into my flower garden transforming one energetic form into next spring’s blossoms. I am grateful for taking this time together to be sacred and tender in the space between what was and what will be.
Sometimes there is no life lesson, transformational experience or comprehensible reasoning to distill from an event; rather, it’s just the wave of life happening and I can choose to fight it or ride it but I don’t have to explain it. I realized last night during our bonfire that when we conceived exactly 8 weeks prior we had taken a camping trip to the 4th of July Canyon and that my due date was the 4th of July. I love number connections and, of course, wanted to “make something” of that. I briefly fantasized that it must have been ‘meant to be’. But what was meant to be, exactly? I don’t really know and can’t say I ever will, so I plan to spend my life force energy moving forward, one day at a time.