October 23, induction day. 4 weeks away.
Most women who get to this later stage of pregnancy can’t wait to birth their child and get their body back. But they also have the joy of a healthy baby to look forward to, while it’s more complicated over here. She’s inside me now, stable, moving and growing. Once she comes out a whole can of worms opens up. What has been in the future will now be in the present.
Don’t get me wrong, as any expectant mother I’m excited to meet precious Eva. I can’t wait to see her halo-like soft hair that we can already make out in the ultrasound photos. Her hair is dark when I dream about holding her in my arms. To see Max’s joy when he holds her for the first time, and Joe gazing into his mysterious girl’s eyes. To listen as family and friends try to pinpoint who she looks like. There is joy that comes with her arrival. But like everything involving Eva, it’s bittersweet.
Meeting Eva also means learning more about her condition and our future life together. That is, if we have a future life together. There is a part of me that wants my former body back, but what that means seems all too heavy to face. Eva will no longer be tucked safe inside of me. We will no longer have our secret connection that only I can feel and sense. When I turn on the blow-dryer she won’t be inside me to jump around to the loud noise, or when music is played in her presence. Right now I am her vessel, we are connected, we are one. Pregnancy is a place I’ve crawled to get back to, I adore carrying my children. This didn’t go as I had visualized and dreamed about. No, this is a darker, deeper side of carrying life inside of you.
When Eva leaves my womb I will never carry another again. With her come the last kicks I will ever feel from inside. This three-year long journey we’ve been on comes to an end, possibly without a child in our arms. Even though I have experienced loss before, I still dreamed about this pregnancy and birth in such a naïve way. Max’s was so magical I had to get back there again. I’ve pictured it since he arrived.
This time was to be a water birth with my seven-year-old nearby to witness the entrance of his much-wished for sister. Instead, he’s required to stay away as specialists standby to exam her, as I’m induced in a hospital bed at a level IV NICU. We will be an hour away from home, in the city of my youth. I’m giving my natural mama self the freedom to use an epidural if I want to. Yes, I want the best for Eva just like I did for Max. But I also want to be gentle with myself as this is a different situation—she is being born into solemnness instead of celebration.
Originally posted on September 26, 2017 at: Carrying Eva