My thoughts surrounding Jo Jo, combined with the general busyness of having a young infant, sometimes distract me from my grief. Then I stumble across a pregnant woman’s blog, inadvertently see her bump pics, and feel my body flush with rage, jealousy, and pure sorrow. I’ll never have those photos. Those third trimester, 28 week, 32 week, 38 week bump pics. I’ll never have a birth story that doesn’t end in death and tragedy. And I’ll never write a single blog entry about the milestones of the daughter who, instead of growing into a wonderful woman, died before she ever took a breath. I will always, always see these heavily pregnant women and feel this heavy ache. I will always see those women in the delivery rooms who get to hear their baby scream, or whimper, or just hear “congratulations!” in a hearty tone from a doctor or nurse, and feel an instant and immediate sharp stab of pain that digs into my heart and radiates outward.
And yet, there is a certain reassurance I get from knowing that the pain is still there, as sharp and full and ready to suffocate me as ever. It’s like I’ve suddenly seen a good friend I’ve lost touch with for a while. “Are you still there, good friend Grief? Ah yes, there you are. I thought I’d lost sight of you for a moment. But I see you’ve been here all along, just a little deeper down. Well come on in, pull up a chair, make yourself at home. We are soulmates, you and I. We are in it together til the end. You bring the rage and fury, I’ll bring the tears and heartbreak. Together we will paint a haunting picture. Together we will become more real than we are apart.”