I saw two pink lines and the wave of shock and tremendous joy consumed my body. I twirled in a circle over the bathroom floor, with my hand over my mouth, trying to keep from crying or shouting. This is what I’ve wanted. This is it. And it happened 11 months after our fertility baby came, totally natural and spontaneously.
An hour of shock and endorphins wore off and I began to settle back into my familiar space of being practical, rational, and suffocated by the next steps: The HCG tests to make sure this isn’t ectopic, which will take about 5 days. Then, if we pass that, we breathe a little more until 9 weeks, because I miscarry around 8 weeks. Then, if we get passed 8 weeks, we let a little more air in until 12 weeks. And then, we breathe shallowly for the rest of the pregnancy, praying and hoping and trying to put on a naive face until we hopefully deliver a healthy baby.
An OB once told me that I was an anxious person. I fired her.
Of course I’m anxious. When I actually get pregnant naturally, I lose babies. That’s what I know. That’s the road that’s embedded in my core; the valley that exists down the very center of my body. The one that I inevitably slide into, because that’s the familiar. So, I stifle my excitement about a surprise pregnancy. I stifle my fears. I stifle it all. Like a flame without air, my emotions can’t come to the surface to dance and be free. They just sit in the ashes of the babies before them.
And I realize, in this moment, that miscarriage has stolen presence from me.