Wishing you courage

"Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying 'I will try again tomorrow'."
- Mary Anne Radmacher

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Aerodynamic handbasket

I don't think about having a baby much anymore. Why bother wishing when I have no spouse and I simply can't afford to have one by myself right now. Without the gnawing hopes for a family I've started to question whether I really wanted that in the first place. I didn't always want to have children and I didn't have to try long at all to conceive (all of you living with infertility feel free to throw stuff at me). Last night my friends baby was at my home. A blue eyed boy smiled, giggled, cried, had a bottle, played, and fell asleep on the quilt my Mother made for me when I was a little girl. He was really fun and really sweet.

I want a baby.

I would have been a good mother too.

I had a plan in place for breastfeeding for at least a year to reduce Toren's risk of developing celiac disease. We were going to teach him sign language so Toren could communicate before he could speak. I was never going to complain about sleepless nights because how could I be upset with a little human who wanted me near. We were considering a Montessori style play area. He would ride with me to work and go to day care while I went to my office; I would be able to visit him during the day.

And those were just a few of the plans for baby-hood alone! Later there would be annual passes to the aquarium and botanical gardens. He would get exposure to music, technology, art, dance and science to see if he took after his dad or mom. There would be a swing set in the backyard, we would hang out by the community pool all summer with the other families. Most importantly Toren would grow up knowing that he was wanted and is deeply loved and cherished.

While Toren was in utero, my wish for him was that he would be a happy individual. I figured that also included him being healthy enough to be happy, I didn't need perfection for his body, just joy for his spirit. Did he jump ship because it was not possible for him to be happy in our family?


I wasn't always a basket case.

I put myself through undergrad graduating with honors while working (pastry chef) and performing in student showcases (classical ballet). I was accepted into a top University for graduate school. I did fairly well there even after discovering that the ex was searching for "discreet" affairs with strangers on the internet just days before classes started. My boss for my work study position wanted me to stay after graduation so I did because I love her and the study we work on. She encouraged me to get a PhD next but I just can't do that much thinking yet.

Ah Anna, remember when earning anything less than an "A" was upsetting? Remember piping icing pearls and shells over and over to classical music so they would be perfectly uniform on wedding cakes? Remember foot cramps from the repetitive barre exercises and baby's breath in your hair performing a Petipa variation?

Now I'm hardly flustered when the bank account dips below zero.

All of that hard work just went to hell so quickly.

Now I'm a fucking loser who can't afford all of my bills let alone be able to afford to take care of a child. I no longer feel like I ever deserved a child.

Before. Dancing with my Dad at my sisters wedding

Removed to protect my anonymity.  It's a cute photo though, lots of smiling and laughing.

After. Reflection in sliding glass door.

I'm really sad now. A song for today.


Anonymous said...

I found your blog through Sarah's and I just wanted to say I'm so sorry about Toren. Sending you some love...

Meg said...

Your plan for Toren sounds wonderful. I'm so sorry, Anna. You didn't just loose your son, you also lost that dream for his future. I hope you can find some happiness again soon.

Barbara said...

Not even a bit loser-ish.

Just grieving.


Lachlan's Mum said...

You always deserved a child and you still do - it's so evident from your writing that you loved Toren so much, you wanted nothing but the best for him. You wanted him to be happy, you wanted his life to be full. You had so many dreams for him. You are a wonderful mother to Toren, and if you decide to have any more children, I *know* you will be a wonderful mother to them also.

Anonymous said...

Grief is a monster. You are and will be a wonderful mother when you are ready. You are piecing your life together and that takes time. Be patient and extra good to yourself as you go through this process. I'm rooting for you!

janis said...

Oh, Anna.... ((hugs)) Hang in there! You have tons of goodness in you and you deserve all good.

Zil said...

While you may think of yourself in this light, I see you in a whole other way. You were and still are there to lend support to me. You have helped so much on this journey. I thank you for that.

Loss sucks. You're going through some hard times - no doubt. But you are hardly a loser. You have put yourself out there and it has been a lifeline for women like me. I would call you more of a hero than anything else.


angie said...

i will be the umpteenth to say, you are not a loser. i wish things were different and you were doing all those things with toren. you already are an incredible mother to him. with love.

Ya Chun said...

hm, this sounds familiar to some of my thoughts. I worked so hard at everything, academically, at my thankless job, with my pregnancy (and trying not to get my kid gluten). I have had a big priority shift. Now that I 'work' from home, I sometimes doubt myself, think, gad what a loser I am. But I know that I am making my own choices, and not worrying what others think about me.

you are in the middle of such a terrible shit storm. But I think you are coming out of it and will find your way. The money will work out and you will learn to live in your new life. And when you least expect it, a DECENT guy just may turn up. (I've got a whole story there on how I met my hubby - not nearly as rotten as yours, but still something that give me hope for you)

CLC said...

You are so not a loser. Don't ever think that. And you are a wonderful mama to Toren, even though he is not here. Thinking of you and hoping today is a better day.

Sara said...

My July 4th weekend was full of other people's adorable kids and fat little babies and I felt loserish and sad, too. (I barely avoided my bank account going below $0 last week, so I'm right there with you.)

I'm holding out hope that things can be awesome "after." Your shoes, for example. :)

Rebekah said...

The pictures you shared say so much!! I know my life now feels like a blurry resemblance of what I remember it being- life is starting to come back into focus slowly but its still sometimes a struggle doing things I didn't think twice about before.

Monica LeMoine said...

((Hugs)). I feel for you. Those sad days suck - hang in there.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I've been reading for a while, but this is my first comment. Wanted to tell you what my therapist is constantly telling me (& I ignore him most of the time)... please try not to be so hard on yourself. You are NOT a loser. You are a babylost mama, and your world has fallen apart. The fact that you're still getting up and functioning every single day is a testament to your strength and courage.

I too have sat down and thought "How the HELL did I get here? This can't really be my life." -- former homecoming queen is now an overweight, depressed lunatic. It's all a bit surreal.

I hope this comment isn't too invasive... I just wanted to say that I think you're doing great, even though I know it's hard to see from where you are.

Googies Girl said...

Thank you so much for your comment on my blog. I am very impressed & moved by your honesty. You are not a loser - not at all. Reading what you have accomplished in life proves you are an amazing woman. I sometimes sit and think "what the f*** has happened to me & my life?" also. I use to be normal. I understand how losing the one thing that is supposed to come natural to a woman can make you feel like a failure no matter what you have accomplished in other areas of life. I would give it all up to be a mom. It doesn't matter what job or degree or certificate I may have. What we really want & need has been taken. Your writing is so beautiful and you are an absolutely beautiful woman. And you are an awesome mom to a very special & loved little boy. I know how hard the difficult days are. Keep your chin up!! You have some people/friends here who really love & admire you!

P.S. - And don't worry, Some man will be very, very lucky to find you one day!!
Sending you a huge HUG! I will be following your blog & hoping for the best for you everyday!!

Catherine W said...

Annamarie, those two photographs break my heart.

You would have been a good mother. You are a good mother, even if Toren is not here with you.

I don't think he would have 'jumped ship', I think Toren would have wanted to come to his parents so much, those parents who had so many beautiful plans for him.

I wish that Toren was here to go the aquarium and the botanical gardens with you, to play on his swing set, to splash in the pool. That he isn't is enough to turn anyone into a basket case.

Hugs. xx