When Alexander was stillborn 3 years ago it devastated me. Any communication I had with friends and family that had to do with this tragedy mainly consisted of me critiquing the situation and how the hospital handled it. I grieved the loss of Alexander alone, digging a hole as wide and deep as the gulf coast between myself and my friends and family. No one saw the pain and deep exhausting sorrow I felt.
After the stillbirth, the hospital held a memorial service in their garden where his ashes were spread. I did not attend this service. I was unable to muster up enough strength to go. It made everything feel so final, and I just was not ready for that. I couldn’t shut the door on my emotions and face the reality that this all happened, and it was over, my wishes would never be realized. I chose to continue as I was, critiquing everything that happened, and suffering my devastation alone. I’m finding that I’m alone in most situations, but in this moment of my life I found it easier.
The hospital actually holds two memorial services a year in May and October for those children lost in childbirth. I have never attended one since his death. Even three years later I’m not ready to face that it happened and it’s real. I’d rather trick my heart and brain into pretending that it didn’t happen. However, I’m finding it harder to hide the older I get. The thought of another child has been finding its way into my thoughts. I’ve begun actively researching the processes of artificial insemination. Obviously the idea of having a baby makes me think of Alexander. I thought it was funny when one of my friends mentioned him a few weeks ago out of the blue. Shortly after that a family member brought him up. This made me think that perhaps some higher power is telling me to address my feelings so that I can move forward. It feels similar to when I was pregnant but hadn’t realized it yet and everywhere I went or any show or commercial somehow involved a baby. I chuckle at myself (a lot) because I don’t consider myself a believer of fate, or of seeing ‘signs’, but I have to admit all the way up to confirming that I was indeed pregnant, I saw signs everywhere.
I suppose that the real question is this, do I want to move forward and attend the next memorial service? Is this something that I should do before choosing to have another child? Do I even want to have another child? I have almost raised my son to adulthood. Who would choose to be a single mother? I would, but funny how even the doctor looked at me with an odd stare and told me that I needed to go through the counseling before beginning the process of having another child. I wasn’t clear about whether it was the loss of Alexander or my relationship status that caused him to believe I should seek therapy first. I did have a moment were I wondered if they treated married couples this way too, or if it was because single status was unique. And what would this do to my family? I have kept myself separated from their feelings and emotions, so I’m not sure if they have moved on enough to accept my making a decision like this.
So here again I find myself alone with mixed emotions running through my mind. The weight on my shoulders heavy. Only time will tell where this story will end.