“I wanted a perfect ending. Now I’ve learned, the hard way, that some poems don’t rhyme, and some stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next.”
― Gilda Radner
One year ago today I sat with my husband in a cold hospital room, holding a daughter I would never bring home, born too early to live in this world. In that moment, I felt like I could barely breathe. I didn’t think I could never move forward from that place of pain.
Today, I feel peace. Sadness too, but overwhelmingly peace. I don’t think I will ever understand, in this lifetime anyways, why things had to happen the way they did, but they did. And I mourned, I grew, and I am overcoming a little bit more each day.
Today, even as I type, I can feel a new life growing inside me. I know Zeke is not a replacement for the child we lost, and I would never want him to be. But I do feel like he is a new beginning. One year ago today, I had no way of knowing where I would be today. I didn’t know if we would be able to get pregnant again, or if I would ever even want to. Now, as much as I will always wish that Hope were here with us, I can’t help but think that I would never have had the opportunity to be a mother to Zeke If I hadn’t experienced that loss. And I feel that the stonger, wiser, better me that has developed over the past year will be better Mom to him than I could have been before. It’s a bittersweet thought, but good has really come through this pain.
I will always think of my daughter, and miss her, and love her. I will think of her when I hear a certain song on the radio, or see the daffodils bloom in the spring, or when her brother, Zeke, is born in just a couple of months. I will think of her when I least expect it; when I am driving down the road, or fixing lunch, or hiking on a beautiful Arkansas trail some Autumn day years from now. Maybe I’ll smile or maybe I’ll cry. Or maybe both.
I love you, Hope.