Saturday, October 2, 2010

Negative with a side of Tattoos

It seems like the minute I acknowledge things are going well everything goes to hell.  I write Z and I are spending our 10th anniversary evening at a hotel, instead we find out we lost our baby and suddenly the anniversary doesn’t matter at all.  I know if I don’t believe the sentiment “Everything happens for a reason” I also don’t have any business believing if you show a tiny bit of happiness the universe will take it away from you.  But man, is it hard not to go there. 

A few hours after I wrote my last blog post I passed another blood clot.  The day before that I thought I’d gotten my period two few weeks early.  So maybe I did get my period and it is just really heavy.  Or maybe I didn’t and I got rid of the rest of whatever was camping out in my uterus.  Or maybe I did and I also passed the extra mystery item as well.  I am just so frustrated.  I want this to be over.  I want to know exactly what is happening with my body.   I am tired of limbo.  Thankfully my yearly exam is next Friday, so perhaps I can persuade the doctor to do another ultrasound and see if my uterus is empty.

I’ve written about all this stuff before, and I’ll probably be writing about it again.  I can’t get away from it.  For those of you kind enough to read my ramblings I’m sorry about the repetition, about beating the dead horse.  Unfortunately I don’t see it stopping any time soon.  The loss is not yet subsiding. 

If I did get my period I only have to wait one more until we start trying again.  I am so ready to be pregnant again, so ready to not hate all the pregnant women I see at the grocery store, ready to coo over newborn babies rather than look away.  But when I do get pregnant again I have realized I will be suspicious the entire time.  Clearly I cannot trust my body anymore.  It didn’t know the baby died either.  Until I feel the quickening I will be living for every doctor visit so I can see or hear the life inside me.  Then after the baby begins to move I will spend every minute waiting until the next movement.  But I won’t feel safe until I see the baby after he or she is born.

With T I hated the whole pregnancy.  Sharing your body with something that is the textbook definition of a parasite is not fun.  I’m not a good sharer and anything that makes me have to pee upwards of 7 times a night is not my friend.  I wanted my body back, not that it is any great shakes, but it’s all I’ve got.  I was intensely curious about who T was and eventually I was really excited to meet him, but the entire time he was in my body he felt like a complete stranger.  A stranger who was making me utterly miserable. 

I don’t envision the miscarriage will suddenly make be a gracious pregnant lady.  I will still hate it, but at the same time I will be grateful for it.  And suspicious of it.  I’m not looking forward to the conflicting emotions.  I have no idea how to navigate them. 

Someone very close to me suggested I get a token for myself, something private that is my personal remembrance of the baby we lost.   She did it for herself after a miscarriage and it brought her a lot of comfort.  The idea didn’t resonate with me at first, but I have been thinking about what my other friend said about dealing with the loss and not depending on the next pregnancy to “fix” me.  I want to get a tattoo as my token. 

I was 28 when I got my first tattoo.  I was a grown up and I thought long and hard about my decision.  I have five and I don’t regret a one.  I think tattoos can be beautiful.  Don’t get me wrong, I also think they can be heinous.   But to me they can be art and I love mine.  I also love Z’s.  If we do have a girl someday we are going to have to figure out how to explain that yes, Daddy has three naked or semi naked women tattooed on him, but it is because naked women are beautiful and we can admire them without objectifying them.   

All that being said when T was born I felt self conscious about my tattoos for the first time.  And I started worrying about things like what the parents of his future friends would think.  Don’t get me wrong, my conviction that they were the right decision for me hasn’t changed.  I certainly am not ashamed of them.  But I don’t think I want many more.  The only ones I do want are ones in honor of my children.  I have been planning to get one for T for more than a year now.  Z got his last spring.  But I need to arrange a trip to Baltimore.  I am very picky and while Z wants work from ever place we have lived I will only go to one person.  He moved away from NYC and opened his own place a few years ago, so now I need to make the time to go to him. 

I haven’t been in a rush about making the trip, but now it feels very urgent.  The tattoo for T will be pure fun, like all of my work so far.  But the second one will be different.  It will be my token.  It will be beautiful, and it will simultaneously help me move on and remember.  

Twins.  And you can sort of make out Z's T tattoo on his forearm.  


  1. i, too, have 5 tattoos! hooray! so healing and empowering and just plain lovely. i have dreadlocks too, and the judgement i get, specially from the tourists in our little town, is UnReal.
    but whatevs.
    cuz i rock.
    and so do you.

  2. We had planned to plant a lilac bush outside of the baby's room and after the miscarriage I decided that it would be my memorial for the baby.