This weekend I stayed a night with my sister. She had told me in advance that she had a birthday party to attend the following day. On Friday night, she said, “I don’t know how to quite bring this up, but you can come to the party tomorrow if you want to, and you would get to meet my boyfriend’s son, but it’s a party for *baby’s name*”. This meant that the party was a 1st birthday party for her friend’s baby girl who was born just a couple of weeks after Luke. This is her friend who told me that when her husband found out about our Luke, he didn’t tell her right then because they were on their way to a doctor’s appointment and he didn’t want to “freak her out”. I never loved that comment. Anyways, I was feeling happy and strong and told my sister that she didn’t need to worry about bringing such things up to me and that I would think about going. I seriously considered attending, but I decided not to because it was far away and I had other things I wanted to do during my time in Phoenix. It didn’t seem like a huge deal.
Then the next morning came. My sister was wrapping a gift for the baby in bright paper and talking to me about it. The contrast suddenly slapped me in the face. Here was my sister, wrapping a gift for someone else’s baby’s 1st birthday party, while my own baby did not get to have a 1st birthday party. It hurt. I told her I was glad I had decided not to go because now it was making me feel sad. After I left, I broke down and sobbed. I want my Luke to get bright presents and have a party. It’s not fair. I wished she hadn’t told me about it after all because I found myself thinking about it all day and feeling jealous of the event that was happening.
But, as I always remind myself, Luke is having the best time in heaven and is truly not missing out on anything. Nothing on Earth could be better than what he has. But it still hurts down here for us. I still miss my baby and wonder what he would be like if he were here. I still wonder why we were chosen to bear this loss. I hope God tells him how much I love him and miss him.
After I got home on Saturday, Josh came in from working out front and said the neighbor wanted us to come down to see a baby. For a second, I thought he meant a baby bird or bunny as lots of those have been around. But he meant a human baby. I had honestly forgotten that my favorite neighbor’s daughter-in-law was pregnant (maybe my brain intentionally blocked it out.) So we went down and saw the 3-week-old baby boy. He was very cute and slept with his mouth open the whole time. It was a strange thing for me. I look at that baby and think about Luke and I also think about this new baby boy. Sometimes all newborns begin to look alike to me. I think about what I’ve lost and what is coming. It is both heartbreaking and exciting, all intermixed. I chatted with the mom about bottles and this new device called a “mamaroo” that her baby loves (I think I have a pretty good handle on all this baby paraphernalia and then something new like that is mentioned and I realize I still know nothing.) It was nice to be part of the pregnant women/new mom club that I mourned losing, but it is also scary. I don’t want to anticipate too much. I feel like there are landmines just waiting for me to step on them. I haven’t talked to this stranger about Luke’s loss, but it is there in every baby conversation for me. I dread the discomfort that reveal would bring, but then I also want to shout, “Yes! I know where the birthing center is because I had a baby there last year! Hello!”. Or “Yes, I’ve had milk come in because I’ve had a baby!” etc. I wonder what this is all going to feel like in 3 years, 5 years, 20 years…