Yesterday I received an updated email regarding my pregnancy. The email said that the baby was the size of a lemon. At the time, I didn't think much about the comparison since each week there was some talk of food. The size of a walnut, the size of a this or that...and until this very moment, I didn't realize just how appropriate the lemony reference was. Let me explain...
At 2pm today, my husband my son and I walked into the clinic for our scheduled OB appointment. I was 12 weeks pregnant and we were all very excited about hearing the baby's heartbeat and sharing a special family moment. We waiting patiently and then the big moment arrived. The doctor pulled out the electronic stethescope to listen to the heart beat. He had trouble finding it which wasn't all that concerning. He asked the nurse to bring in an ultrasound machine and then a special vaginal ultrasound machine. It was obvious there was a problem. There was a large pink elephant in the middle of the room wearing a polka dot too too and everyone was afraid to acknowledge it.
Dr.: "It doesn't seem like you're as far along as you think"
Crystal: "So - the baby is small? But is there a heartbeat?"
Dr.: "I haven't found it yet."
damn pink elephant....
tears rolling down my face as I squeeze my husband's hand for dear life and my son gives me a hug and says 'mommy I love you'
Crystal: "Just say it - just tell me...I already know something is wrong"
Dr.: "Nikki - please take the little guy out to color or something"
Andre: "Mommy, why are you crying"
Mark: "It's okay Andre, just go with the nice lady"
Dr.: "It looks like the baby died at about 8 weeks - so approximately 4 weeks ago"
Crystal: sobbing...."now what?"
God give me the strength to accept the things I cannot change. God give me the strength to accept the things I cannot change. God give me the strength to accept the things I cannot change.
I had always said that I wasn't afraid to tell people when I was pregnant. I didn't want to be the girl that kept it a secret until 12 weeks because life begins at conception and even a life that is short lived should be celebrated just as much as that of a 110 year old. Now I really had to be strong in that conviction. How would I tell everyone and would they understand? Would they mourn with us just as they had rejoiced with us? Would they blame me? Would they say it's what I deserve for being an imperfect person?
It's really just as simple as the way we explained it to the children.
God needed another angel and he looked at you (Carmen and Andre) and he saw how amazing, beautiful, and caring you are. He said "I want an angel like that to snuggle with, to sing in my choirs, and to bring laughter to my house" and he took baby Jackson (the boy name we had picked out) to be with him. Baby Jackson is now Angel Jackson and he is bouncing on Grandpa Andre's knee and giggling. And someday Mommy and Daddy will join them in heaven and Mommy can run her fingers through his hair and kiss his perfect lips. But for now, Mommy had 8 amazing weeks where she sang to him and let him know that he was loved with absolutely all her heart by Mommy, Daddy, and his big brother and sister.
It's just that simple - God understands and I don't have to. The amazing part is how deeply you can fall in love with something so little - something that gives you absolutely nothing in return. When a parent says "I love you more than you'll ever know" they just might be right. I don't love baby Jackson any less than I love my other children and I smile as I picture him bouncing on his grandfather's knee. He may have been lemon sized, but he was the loveliest lemon in his mommy's eyes.
May your paths be abundantly filled with lemons, sugar, sunshine, and may those lemons be the loveliest lemons you can find.