As she sobs into my chest, my arm around her, I remember the first time I thought about being there for my pregnant wife. I must have been around 12 years old. I had recently learned about how crazy, painful, and plain ridiculous the birthing process is. And I realized, in that moment, that I would have a hard time being in the room while my wife gave birth; to see her go through that pain and be able to do nothing ... that'd be terrible. I knew then, as I know now, that I'm too much of a "fixer" for that. I need to be able to help. But when it comes to bringing that kid into the world, I'd be powerless.
Fast forward a couple decades to last night.
My wife is pregnant for the second -- probably third -- time. One miscarried a few years ago at eight weeks in a horrifyingly bloody mess. It traumatized my wife but she managed to stuff that pain way, way, way down. But then, as eight weeks approached for this pregnancy, she couldn't hold it together anymore. She'd cry and couldn't sleep. She'd contain herself while friends and family were around and then melt down the moment we were alone. She was terrified it'd happen again. And so we had kept the news a secret, lest by telling others we'd jinx it (one of my wife's biggest shadow fears/beliefs).
Then someone shared the article I'm Pregnant. So Why Can't I Tell You?
I read it.
Then I sent it to my wife with the subject line: Read
And, after a few frightened hours of discussion, we started to spread the news. My little brother already knew (he's staying with us and has been an awesome support for Brittany through all of this). My little sister. Brittany's sister. Brittany's mom. My parents. A few people from church. Another friend. My older sister.
All were thrilled, elated, ecstatic.
Then, about 8pm last night, the spotting started. At first faint and dark. Then more regular and red.
That's when I found myself holding my pregnant wife as the world collapsed around her. And I could do nothing to help bring this baby safely into the world. That was hard -- way, way, way harder than what my wild preteen imagination could construct. I was powerless, helpless, and my wife was in emotional distress.
Somewhere between 1:30 and 3am it was over.
We'd lost our second child (probably our third).
Two hours later I got up to go to work.
Lunch, two hours ago.
My wife came down to visit since I'm in meetings this afternoon. She's doing well. Exhausted after the last few nights of little sleep, but the grace of God and the peace of Christ is carrying her through all of this. The midwife we had selected "just happened" to be in the area and could stop by and pray with her. One of our friends came over and just hung out with her. People have been supportive and she is sensing God doing something in the background.
"This is a new beginning of something," she tells me. "I don't know what, but God's doing something."
That He is.
But what, we don't know. I'm discovering this as I keep walking into ever more crazy situations where I am powerless to do anything and must rely on the goodness of God and the redemption of Christ to make stuff happen. And since His mercies are new every morning, I'm not at all surprised that He's doing new things in us as well.
How am I? I don't know. But we're hanging in there and hanging on for the ride.
Your prayers are most welcome.
Filmmaker, Writer, Pseudo-Dad
P.S. Fitting, I suppose, that this is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. If you haven't been keeping up with my Other Posts of Note, you can read two relevant posts here and here. And if you didn't take the time to read I'm Pregnant. So Why Can't I Tell You?, I suggest you do.
P.P.S. If you're wondering why I kept referring to our "probable third" miscarriage, we think that there was another one that initially appeared to be a "heavy flow" month but was probably another early miscarriage.