We’re having a girl, I’m starting to show a little bit. These things give me a flash of what it must be like to be just normal and pregnant. They would probably make me really happy, and they do, but in a way that’s colored grey by fear and sadness. I joined a group on Facebook called Mothers of Omphalacele, I wish I wasn’t part of the group. It’s a little helpful and a little terrifying to hear people’s stories.
I had to go back to work today. My boss was gracious enough to let me have some time away and work from home last week. My first meeting was with our whole staff, so I showed up late and might have broken into a slight jog at one point to get out of the room after it ended. I made it to my car with no words and no eye contact. When I came back after a coffee break I went into my friend Donna’s office to bring her some of the lemons my mom gave me. Meetings, coffee, talking to friends, they’re lucky to have me. I swear I normally get a lot done at my job, but whatever, you don’t care. So Donna, we small talked for a while until she asked how I was doing. I had been texting her updates along the way but this was the first time we had spoken since finding out about the baby’s diagnosis.
She told me she was mad at God, she said in all her prayers she couldn’t help but express her grief and anger over what was happening with us. It was all she said and suddenly I felt less alone. A lot of people tell you they’re grieving with you, and although they might be, there are a few who are such deep empathizers that they actually grieve with you, the same way you do. So instead of having to say anything about how sorry she was for me, she just said exactly what I felt, so I sobbed.
After work I met up with my friend Kathleen who is a better counselor than I'll ever dream of being. She did this counselor voodoo trick where I had some emotional breakthrough, and felt the space to be completely honest about the grief. Then I left more aware of myself and what I was feeling while being less afraid and more accepting of what was to come. All I did was buy her a cup of coffee. But that’s all nonsense because the important thing is she gave me professional permission to binge watch TV in order to keep my mind from cycling down to worse-case scenario. So to the judgers I say, that’s nice, and push play.
I’m more grateful than ever for the people in my life. I’m not great at updating people about what’s happening and they still keep reaching out and praying for us. Then there is this tiny crew of people that we see a lot and they know what’s happening just because they’re there all the time and in it with us. They let us fall apart and they don’t try to put us back together, and that’s the very thing that seems to be putting us back together. These people see God in ways I can’t right now, but they let me sit in the fog of confusion and they sort of jump in it with me. We had Kathleen over for dinner the other night and Trever asked her to explain how she sees God. She had just spent the last hour telling us to be honest with our questions about God and ask them, she was very disinterested in fixing our faith. But when asked a question of how she sees God she answered and I remembered what I wanted to be true, I got a quick reminder of what belief feels like, of what a relief it is. But for now I’m still sitting here in the fog of grief and anger and I’m planning on singing Be Thou my Vision until I make my way back again.
High King of Heaven my victory won. May I know Heaven’s joys Oh bright heaven’s sun. Heart of my own Heart whatever befall. Still be my vision oh ruler of all.