I am ecstatic to be pregnant again. Having another child on the way has made me feel more centered and focused, more at peace, than I have since we lost Riley to miscarriage. But there’s also this measure of guilt.
I’ll say something like “the last time I was pregnant” in conversation, and then mentally wince because I’m referring to my pregnancy with Briana, not the pregnancy with Riley. And when I announced my pregnancy on Facebook and when I talk to people about it, we always talk about “Baby Number Two.” But in my heart I’m weeping, because for me, it’s baby number three. I just never got to give birth to one of my children.
But how do you deal with that in casual conversation with acquaintances and people on Facebook who don’t really understand? If I had put “Baby Number 3 is expected to arrive in May of 2015” I would have gotten very confused responses, even from family members and lose friends.
It feels like a betrayal to Riley. It feels like I am cutting Riley out now that we have another baby on the way. I started sobbing the other night, clutching the necklace my aunt gave me for Riley and just promising over and over I wasn’t forgetting. I never would. That some day I would tell Briana and our as-yet-unnamed baby about the sibling they never got to meet, and that Riley would forever be in my heart. But that I didn’t know how to make it easy to understand for people, so I just say “second baby” and cry inside. I hoped Riley understood.
I believe in an afterlife, where families are reunited and together forever. And some day, I will hold the baby I never got to hold on Earth, and I will hug and kiss Riley and give a lifetime of love in an instant. And everything will be okay again.
In the meantime, I am doing my best to enjoy this pregnancy. Being pregnant after miscarriage is terrifying and exhilarating and heart wrenching and amazing and awesome and lovely and sad all at the same time. I am trying to focus on the positives for the most part.
The nausea is starting to pass. I’ve gained back three of the nine pounds I lost. I’ve made it to the second trimester. I have felt the baby move (I felt it early with Briana, too) and feel the baby move a little more every day. In about five or six weeks we get to have another ultrasound and find out baby’s gender.
And I am reminding myself evey time I start to feel guilty, enjoying this pregnancy is not a betrayal to Riley. It’s a celebration of new life and new beginnings. It’s living in the moment. It’s a GOOD thing. I am thinking that, wherever my Angel baby is right now, Riley understands.