Monday, December 6, 2010

To the Nines

I have mentioned this before, I know. But it's really starting to sink in now. Calla was born on the 9th of January. O was born on the 9th of November. Of the same year. Making them 10 months apart. Irish twins, if you will.

I knew this going into the induction. Shit, I knew it going into this pregnancy. When I found out I was pregnant with O, I counted ahead to 37 weeks, and made the connection. At that point I just hoped he'd make it, dates be damned.

And then when given the option to be induced early, again I threw all sentiment to the wind and said, "Just get him out alive, as soon as possible, please and thank you."

So here we are, coming up on the 9th again. Sometimes I think of my life in terms of that Gwyneth Paltrow movie "Sliding Doors." Remember it? It's kind of like those old "Choose Your Own Adventure" books, except it shows the characters on two distinctly different paths. Scenarios A and B.

Scenario A: This Christmas, on the 9th, we're celebrating Calla's 11 month birthday. I follow her around as she tries relentlessly to stuff the ornaments into her mouth. And I don't have my sweet little newborn.

Scenario B: This Christmas, on the 9th, we're celebrating O's one month birthday. I am sleep deprived but happy, and dress him in all the tiny "Baby's First Christmas" and reindeer gear. And I sorrowfully remember the beginning of 2010, and miss my little girl terribly.

I know. I will slowly drive myself mad weighing these two scenarios, imagining the what-ifs. "Choose Your Own Edgar Allen Poe Short Story." The truth is neither one is completely happy, nor completely sad. If Choice A, then no Choice B. If Choice B, live forever remembering Choice A. As if either one was a choice, but you know what I mean.

So on and on, moving ahead, the 9th of each month will be a seesaw. Which, I suppose, is a fitting representation of how things really are. Happy and sad together.

But. Still. Really. How?

 Gods how I love this new little dude. He is just the sweetest, for reals. Homeboy sleeps in my arms, sleeps on my chest (sleeps in the crib? Eh, we're working on that one.)--and it is so delicious. But oh, the price I've paid to get him here.

He is here. I am lucky. I am in love. I am grateful. But I can still be sad, too--and dammit, I sure as hell am.


  1. I've been thinking about this too (and I don't even have Simon in my arms)..." If Choice A, then no Choice B. If Choice B, live forever remembering Choice A." It's comforting to know I'm not the only one who thinks these things...though I wouldn't wish this conundrum of round and round thinking on others. All I really should have commented was, 'Thank you'. Sending much much love.

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  3. I think the same thing all the time. My kids are 15 months apart, but I am certain I could have never had them both. 15 months is still very quick in my book (though I would have killed for quicker, so desperate was I to get pregnant again) and I just don't think I would have ever got pregnant again that quickly had she lived, especially if she was as keen on the boob as her brother. Hugh sigh, just wondering about that practically reduces me to a puddle.
    Even though I know I can only get Scenario A or B, it doesn't stop me from desperately wanting them both. I know we'd have made it work.
    Thinking of you on the 9th and both of your 2010 babies.

  4. Yes, Amelia was born at 40 weeks and a couple of days, and if I were breastfeeding her, I would not have gotten my cycle back so damn soon. This of course, resulted in this bun in the oven (32 weeks now) whom will be born 2 months shy of Amelia's birth/death day.

    I have two friends who delivered healthy baby girls weeks prior to Amelia, and now am getting the dreaded Christmas cards where these babies are 8/9 months old and enjoying sitting up and crawling. First Christmases for everybody ~ except Amelia. And even now, as I was very pregnant this time last year with her . . . it is bittersweet. Memories of the first weeks after finding out Amelia's diagnosis was terminal keep flooding my brain. Yet, here I am again ~ like an episode of the twilight zone, a bit more pregnant, but Christmas is here again.

  5. Like Sally, my kids are 15 months apart. I tell myself that they would both still be here if H had lived, but truth is, it's doubtful. I don't think I would have been in such a rush to get pregnant. I want H back so badly, but not at D's expense. It's a weird story we live. But there's nothing wrong with wanting ALL of your children here in your arms.

  6. I'm thinking of you and Calla today, I hope that O and E help you through.