As this pregnancy continues to progress very smoothly and very quickly, I sometimes forget to take a step back and truly be thankful for this happy, healthy, bouncing baby that is growing in my belly until everything hits me at once. It seems like I travel from feeling guilty because I am so happy about this pregnancy and I’m afraid I’m not recognizing Deidre as much as I should, to feeling pure anger that Deidre’s existence is still lost on some people, to feeling intense excitement for the impending arrival of the newest member of our family in a split second. I know, pregnancy hormones are partly to blame for this. I also know that the green monster of jealousy decides to rear its ugly head from time to time as I watch people around me play with their little ones and that nagging thought in the back of my mind returns, screaming “That should be us! That should be Deidre!”. Is that fair of me to think that way? No. Am I proud of feeling that way? No. Am I working to try to get through those dreaded feelings? Absolutely.
I’ve talked about this quite a few times on the blog and I know this is something that I will probably continue to talk about in the days, months and years to come. I am not ashamed to admit that I still suffer from her loss or that I still acknowledge her and talk about her as my daughter. To not do so would completely go against everything that I am as a person and a mother. I am not afraid to admit that I do get angry and break down when someone does not feel the same way that I do. That is now a part of who I am and will never change. She is my daughter, and I will protect her and her memory until my dying breath.
Over the past year, I have learned so much about myself and feel like I have changed in ways that never would have happened had we not been led down this path. The range and amount of emotions I have felt are so immense it is hard to really grasp every one of them. At first, I was afraid that I would never be able to open my heart up with the fear that I could feel that sort of pain again. The more I took the time to understand and accept what I was feeling, the easier it was to cope. It made my relationship with my husband stronger that I ever thought possible. It made me thankful and grateful for our family and friends. Finally, it made me decide to want to re-open my heart and have a beautiful loving family to share her memory with.
Losing a child is probably one of the worst experiences I will ever have. It challenges your beliefs. It can make or break a relationship. It shakes you to your core. It changes who you are forever. How you decide to let it change you will be one of the most defining moments in your life.