“There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.”
― Frank Herbert
It is time, isn’t it. It feels right. Sad, but right. This space has served it’s purpose. Now it can be like my copy of
sitting on the shelf, held together with a rubber band, the hardcover spine long-gone, more pages dog-eared than not but always there if I need to pull it off and devour it all over again. Infertility is still a part of our lives, but since I’ve been told that getting pregnant would be a VERY bad idea and, while we still have tot-sicles it is unlikely we will have the financial or emotional means to tackle a gestational surrogacy, infertility has become a footnote to my health. The Twins will always be with us. I will ALWAYS be in mourning and I still think of them every single day, but I’m not so much lost in the Woods and I am just wandering across a neverending plain. I can see others in the distance and sometimes even run into someone to talk to and I can feel the sun on my face and there is a nice breeze and even a few flowers. It isn’t so scary and dark and deep. No one ever wrote a horror story about being lost on a plain. I can live here. So it’s time to let this space become a fixed point and a reference instead of a living document.
We have a new adventure now. S and I have been given this amazing opportunity to shepherd Olivia Moonpie through life and it is QUITE an experience! And, it is a responsibility we take very seriously. We have documented the past three years with thousands of photos and videos and voice recordings because the smartphone is always close at hand and sometimes, that’s all the brain power and energy we have. I’m ready, now, to start documenting and remembering and recording a little differently. I’ve missed the words.
Thank you for being a part of this endeavor. When I started this blog so many years ago, I had no idea where it would take me and I never imagined that so many of you would be a part of it. I wish it hadn’t fallen victim to my inability to do anything extra-curricular the past three years, but if I have learned one single lesson over the past seven years, it is that life is what it is and you can sit and bitch about it or accept it, deal with it, and move on. Spilled milk, y’know? Those of you who are still reading here, and those of you who used to and may someday check back and find this like a message in a bottle on the beach…thank you. You kept us going through some very dark days. We don’t forget.
So, please, join us at A Good Mother and help us as we guide Olivia Moonpie through the next few years and hopefully teaching her to be a compassionate, funny, curious, self-assured humanist in a world that doesn’t always seem to value those characteristics. A good mother…it isn’t what I claim to be, it’s what I’m trying to become.
I feel like I’ve been living in a cave for three years and I’m just stumbling out into the sunlight. My eyes haven’t adjusted to the brightness yet.
Recently, I read an article about living in “The Blur”… those days with a not-a-toddler when you feel like you’ve grown a second, not-terribly-evil-but-incredibly-demanding head and you start to wonder if you will ever get to eat a meal while it’s warm, pee by yourself, read a book, sit down for a second, have a conversation with someone who can actually pronounce their S’s, and go through a day without getting a body fluid on your clothes that isn’t your own. I almost cried because I realized that someone DID get it and she was already on the other side. It was sort of like that feeling of relief I felt when Dr. N gave me a diagnosis and a plan of attack because FINALLY there was something concrete to go on and some reassurance that we would get through it.
Just lately, I’ve started realizing that The Wonderful Olivia Moonpie is starting to play on her own. She’s more potty trained than not, and while I have to “HOLP” her, she can usually get started on the process by herself. I actually read a novel this past month and I didn’t have to restart it five times because so much time elapsed between reading the first five pages and getting to pick it up again. We are working on what it means when Mommy closes the bathroom door (thank you whoever invented locks because she just learned how a door knob works.) I can even say, “I’m going to go take a shower while you finish your milk and watch Max and Ruby.” and SHE WILL FINISH HER MILK AND WATCH TV WHILE I SHOWER!!! She can come get me if she needs me now instead of my taking the world’s fastest shower while constantly hollering “Are you OK?”
I think I’ve made it out of THE BLUR!
And I have missed this. I’ve missed interacting with other grownups. So much has changed in our lives in the past 12 months. Did you know we moved? I hired a personal trainer! Olivia Moonpie can ride a tricycle like a pro and she is learning to swim!
But, this place was about getting here. I’m such a different person now. It sort of feels like we wrote the final chapter on this particular book and it’s time to put the pen down. Also, I feel like this blog serves as a reference for those still struggling with infertility and infant loss. I know when I was so deeply lost in that Wood, I didn’t want to see new posts about trips to the Children’s Museum and photos of birthday parties.
I have a question. All the time, we have people commenting on how awesome Miss Moonpie is, how well behaved she is, how smart, how self-assured. They ask how we did it. So, I’ve been tossing around the idea of starting my own “Mommy Blog” (I know, 2008 was a long time ago in internet years. I’m sometimes a slow-adopter) and sharing some of what we have learned these past three years, and testing out theories as we go forward trying to raise a healthy, happy girl in the age of twerking. Let’s just say, I’m hoping Malala makes more of an impression on her than Honey BooBoo. Would anyone be interested in that? You all have stuck with me for so long, are you interested in going on a new trip with me? And more importantly, would you help me get the word out? ;P
Sitting here, enjoying the peace and quiet of nap time, listening to the breeze in the trees and spending a little time playing online. You let your guard down.
You see an article about yet another mother learning her child’s image has been taken and used in an internet hoax, used to provide some poor, sick individual with the attention they crave at the expense of another. And you think of the photos posted to another blog, in another life and you worry. So, you suck it up and you load the page for the first time in years and you see the photos of her and she is so tiny and so far away. And as soon as you reassure yourself that her life hasn’t been taken for someone else’s purposes, you sink below the waves as they crash over you, knocking you off your feet. Taking your breath away.
Because there should be two others here, having to be reminded to play quietly while their sister naps. Helping get dinner ready before Daddy comes home. Filling this space that is always. going. to. be. empty.
Five years is nothing. It still feels like yesterday.
Moonpie turns three this weekend. She is the best and most wonderful thing to ever happen in my world. I wish watching her hit this momentous milestone, taking this final step out of baby-ness didn’t bring so much baggage with it. I hug her longer than she would like sometimes. I fight against my desire to wrap her in bubble wrap to keep her safe from every sharp corner, every bump and bruise. She will have to suffer with a baby monitor in her room probably until close to the point of indecency. She will struggle under and I will struggle against my desire to over protect because this grief? This awful sneaking thief that catches me unaware so many times? It taught me that you absolutely never know. That all that is beautiful can go to shit the second you look away and nothing and no one will be able to stop it and all you can do is Be Here Now. This moment. That’s it. That’s all you can be absolutely sure of. Treasure it, suck every drop out of it…even the moments when you are so tired and angry and wish you could be anywhere/anyone else…because the sweep of the second hand can change everything and five years down the road it catches you unaware.