Dancing in the Rain
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A Trisomy 18 Journey

Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass. It's about learning to dance in the rain. -- Vivian Greene

Monday, March 26, 2012

Questions and Pregnancy

People love to ask pregnant women questions. When are you due? Is this your first? How many other kids do you have? Is it a boy or girl? Aren't you so excited? You have how many more weeks left? The same is true when you have a tiny baby. Many questions and comments. How old is she? She must be brand new! Was she a preemie? How early was she? How much does she weigh? She's so tiny! Were your other kids small, too?
I have come to dread these questions from strangers. When I was pregnant with Julia I tried not to give people the chance to ask me questions. The answers were so hard and so complicated. I had too much amniotic fluid, so I always looked further along than I was. I was so anxious and worried about her various conditions. After she was born I would also answer questions in an intentionally vague manner. Yes, she was born early. She has a genetic condition/heart condition that keeps her small. Yes, she is tiny. During this pregnancy, the questions are still hard. Yes, I am excited, but I'm also grieving. No, this is not my first child. It is my fourth. Yes, I will have my hands full (but not as full as I wish).
I truly do understand that people mean well. Most of us think of pregnancy and the newborn stage as a happy time. My first two times they were. When you have a difficult pregnancy or when you have suffered infertility, infant loss or a miscarriage, pregnancy can be full of fear and worry. This is not because of a lack of faith or hope, but because some of us have been there, and we know that sometimes things are not okay.
I wanted to write this just in case the next pregnant woman you see is the 1 in 4 (!) women expecting a baby after a loss of some kind. Wish her well if you'd like, or just give her an encouraging smile -- something every pregnant mom-to-be will always appreciate.


Sandi said...

Jenny, I have not been where you are, but I can imagine the pain that those questions bring. I feel anxiety and feel myself retreat a little any time someone asks me if we are going to try again or not after our miscarriage. May God give you peace in these weeks and grace from others who don't understand.

Jess said...

Jenny, thanks for this post. You captured the emotions of pregnancy after loss so well. My thoughts are with you, and I hope you are able to enjoy the sweet moments of the next few months!

Miss G said...

Jenny, I just came over to check out your blog after quite a while and I am very happy for you to be expecting. I do not understand from first hand loss experience but I do understand from imagining and empathizing with others that this must be a faith building time for sure as you wrestle with questions and the knowledge that things do not always turn out as we hope. I pray that you have a very healthy pregnancy and baby and that your heart continues to heal as God continues to walk alongside you and Marc through this journey. Kelly

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