It's all kind of crept up on me. Today -- one week out from Voldemort Day* -- is International Bereaved Mothers Day. I ALMOST felt brave enough to post something about it on social media this year. For whatever strange reason, I'm finding it easier lately to be a little more open (among the non-members of this Club Nobody Wants to Belong To) about my daughter & her stillbirth -- although not so much, still, about infertility & being childless not by choice. Let's see... which is "better/worse" in the eyes of my family & friends & the general public? -- being reminded I am childless? -- or being reminded that I actually, really am a mother -- the mother of a stillborn baby?
Anyway. I didn't post anything, because I don't want to rain on our Older Nephew & his pregnant wife's parade. It's her birthday this coming week, as well as her first Voldemort Day as a mother-to-be. Nephew has already bought her a beautiful necklace for the occasion. BIL has never been anything but kind to me, but he's a nervous/anxious guy (even more so than dh), completely on edge with this pregnancy, and he's said more than once that he doesn't want anyone or anything stressing out these two parents-to-be. I don't want that someone to be me.
And so, I keep my literal and cyber mouth shut :p (outside of dh's company, this blog and a few private forums). I may post something next Sunday, along the lines of wishing a happy m-day to my own mom, and a peaceful day to everyone who is missing someone special in their lives (which I have done before). That covers both friends who have lost babies, as well as those who have lost their mothers (which seems to be a far more acceptable form of loss to speak about).
Nephew's Wife had another ultrasound yesterday. She's now 12 weeks along. ("She must have gotten pregnant on Valentine's Day!" SIL mused. "Really?" -- sez I, whose due date was one day apart from NW's, and whose LMP date for my pregnancy was February 8th.) We didn't see her, but she sent a picture to SIL which we all crowded around the cellphone to admire, and we did see Nephew, briefly.
"It was so cool," he told us, adding that they saw the baby moving around and waving its arms. "She was saying hello to you!" laughed SIL, the proud grandma to be (they don't know the gender yet, but we're all kinda/sorta hoping for a girl, lol).
I kind of winced at that. Just before they plunged the amniocentisis needle into my stomach, they located the baby via ultrasound, and I saw a little arm waving at dh & me, as if to say, "Hi Mom & Dad!" A happy & sad memory all at once. I felt horribly guilty and anxious about the amnio -- we were only doing it because we already suspected, from the blood testing I'd had done, that all was not well -- and as the needle went in, I burst into tears & started sobbing, "Oh baby, I'm so sorry. Mommy's so sorry."
The onslaught of Voldemort Day posts hasn't started yet on my social media feeds (thank goodness!!)... but I've already seen photos from several proms, and of a shopping expedition for a "moving up ceremony dress." Which reminded me that my friends' & relatives' kids in the States should be getting out of school soon -- kicking off a full month of proms, graduations, "last day" photos & moaning from the parents about where time has gone and how big they're getting and what grade next year and so on & so on & so on, until the last "last day" of school and last graduation here in Canada in late June. As I've said before, I don't mind the odd photo -- but they just keep coming & coming & coming, wearing down my spirit, like Niagara Falls on a stone.
Hang in there, everyone...
* Voldemort Day = my personal nickame for That Painful Sunday in May Which Shall Not Be Named :)