That was my reaction. Not, “huh?” as in the question, but “Huh.” More like… “Interesting.” I had bought the tests that were very clear: “pregnant” or “not pregnant”. This one said “pregnant.”
God… I wonder what you’re doing here.
I didn’t tell Mr. Poon right that second. First, I made him lie on the bed with me so we could talk. I had just had a conversation with someone else, about some options we had regarding our jobs and grief/bereavement. I was catching him up on those options, and our choices.
Then I told him.
Telling him made it more real, and made me more excited. It wasn’t that I wasn’t excited before. It’s just that it was… complicated.
Just over a week after my mom passed away… less than a week after her funeral… I found out I was pregnant.
Jason was excited, too, and we took that time to rejoice together, and to marvel at God’s timing. If there was a word for “joy born out of sorrow”, that is what I would name this child. Out of one of the darkest times of my life, comes one of the brightest.
Also in the “complicated” was a bit of fear and nervousness. I knew my child had, in some of its first few days of existence, been exposed to the most extreme stress I’ve probably ever been in. I lived in the ICU for several days. Though my spirit had peace, my body was in constant turmoil. My stomach was in knots, parts of me living and dying by the visits that came every 2 hours, hoping for an upturn or a bit of good news about my mom.
Not the ideal way to begin life, I thought. So I worried about how that might affect this little one. Honestly, I wondered if he/she would make it.
Then I wondered if I would make it. Not “make it”, as in live, but if I could handle doing this without my mom. I thought, “I don’t want to do this now… without her.” And the realization that if I would’ve known just a little earlier, I could have told her!
One of those things I had to grieve almost instantly, and am still grieving, was never getting to make that announcement. I probably would’ve invited her to Austin for lunch, so that I could tell her in person. I desperately wanted to get to tell her.
My sister told me that she and my mom had talked about Jason and I having kids, and that my mom was excited for that to happen. To hear that she felt that way was a relief, and a bit healing for me. I won’t explain it all here, but my mom has a unique history with birth announcements – she wasn’t known to handle them particularly well. But I had told her and my sister that Jason and I were thinking it might be soon, so to hear that she approved, even if from my sister, was comforting.
We toured a birthing center today and, as we left, I realized that I would have certainly been calling her during that time, to tell her what we thought about it and what we were thinking through as we continue to make our decision. Or maybe she would’ve wanted to come along, to experience it with us.
I felt the heavy loss again, and the contradiction. The contradiction of beginning a joyous new journey, but with one less companion.
And, of course, one more companion, too.