Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A Hard Day

Two years ago today was my due date for my first pregnancy. If things had gone like we thought they would, we would have a two year old running around our house, and I would be throwing a 2nd birthday party. I can't help but wonder who that little two year old would have been or what kind of party I would have planned. I know that it's totally pointless, but I can't help thinking about these things. It's always on my mind in some way, some days more than others, but it's there nonetheless. Today is just one of those really hard days. August is a hard month for me. Four days from today was my due date for my second pregnancy. Instead of getting ready to have a baby like I thought, I'll be attending a wedding. If that pregnancy had been successful, I wouldn't have been able to attend. I would either have just had a baby (because let's face it, most babies don't come on their due dates), or I would have been so pregnant that traveling wouldn't have been possible. It's days like today, weeks like this week, and months like this month that I get so tired. Tired of thinking about what could have been. Tired of wondering what our babies would have been like. Tired of missing my babies. Tired of feeling left out of mommyhood. Tired of the terrible ache that I feel when I see a pregnant woman or hear a baby cry or see teeny, tiny baby clothes. Tired of feeling like I'm alone in all of this and like everyone has forgotten. Tired of crying. Just tired. Before you think horribly of me, let me just say that I'm truly not wallowing in self-pity or in my emotions. I have too much going on in my life right now to wallow. I'll have a few more rough days, and then I'll be okay. Today is just one of those rough days.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

My Least Favorite Questions to Answer

"Do you guys have children?" and "Are y'all going to start trying anytime soon?" I hate having to answer those questions, and I normally try to change the subject when I sense one of them coming. But when we meet someone new, we're inevitably, at some point in the conversation, asked, "Do you guys have children?" What I want to say is, "Yes, we have two babies in heaven. And I miss them everyday." But I figure that's probably not the best way to continue comfortable conversation, so I answer with a polite, "No, not yet." That usually leads to the next question, "Are y'all going to start trying anytime soon?" I've been asked that question more times than I can count, but it catches me off guard every single time. It never fails. Maybe it's because it's so personal in nature, and I'm not really one to ask other people personal questions. Anyway, once I'm able to regain my composure, I usually answer with something like, "We're letting it happen when it happens" or "We'd love for it to happen soon" because most people would be traumatized if I were to burst into tears and say what I feel like saying. That would probably sound something like, "We ARE trying. And we HAVE been for what seems like an eternity. And it's been hard, really, really hard. And you have NO idea how much I ache, really and truly ache, to have a baby or how empty my arms feel every single day and how badly I want to hold our babies." However, I was always taught not to yell at people, especially people I've just met, so I choose a more appropriate response! I should say, though, that I don't always mind answering these questions. It depends on the relationship or the context, and I don't hold it against people when they do ask. I know they're just showing interest and trying to make conversation. I hope I'm not coming across as whiny or dramatic because I'm truly not trying to be either of those things. It's just that it seems like I've had to answer these two questions a whole lot lately, so maybe I'm venting. Maybe I just needed to share. Maybe it's my blog and I can write WHATEVER I WANT WITHOUT JUSTIFYING IT OR QUALIFYING IT! Kidding. Just kidding! Remember, I don't yell at people! =) And I promise I'm not crazy. Although I might be going crazy. It's likely due to my retarded hormones and my currently heightened emotions. At least, that's what I'm blaming it on. For now.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Weekend Trip to D.C. and Baltimore

The hubby and I took a weekend trip to Maryland to visit family. The main reason for our visit was to celebrate our niece's 17th birthday, but we also managed to squeeze in some sightseeing. D.C. was our first stop, and I thoroughly enjoyed the entire day. We only had a few hours there, but we packed in as much as we could. We went to a couple of the Smithsonian museums, which is something I've wanted to do for a long time. I love museums of any kind. There's so much knowledge and information, and the possibilities of learning new things are almost endless. It sounds so cheesy, but I could totally lose myself in a museum. When I was little I read a book about two kids who run away from home and go live in a museum. For an entire week they sleep and play in the museum. During the day they gaze at paintings and study sculptures and statues. At night they take baths in the fountain and sleep in antique beds. During their stay at the museum, they help solve a mystery involving a statue argued to have been carved by Michelangelo. It's a completely fictitious book, but I loved it. I wanted to live in a museum. I still think it would great. A little freaky, but great. Anyway, what I saw of the Smithsonian was awesome, and I would love to go back to see more. We also visited the Holocaust museum. It was a very sobering experience. As we were walking through, I was struck by the silence. There were probably close to 100 people at one exhibit, but you heard nothing. It was disconcerting, maybe even a little haunting how quiet it was. I think it was horror and respect, horror for the evil displayed and respect for the ones who died and those who survived. I've read countless books about the Holocaust, so I sort of knew what to expect. But the progression of the exhibits and seeing those artifacts, some of which belonged to the authors of a few of the books I've read, made it so immense and so tangible. The terror of that time was so real (obviously not as terrifying as it was for anyone who lived it, not even close), and I could almost feel the hopelessness that those people were bound to have faced. After we got back from the D.C., I read that the designer of the Museum wanted the design itself, the building and the exhibits, to evoke strong emotion. He wanted visitors to feel as though they are being closed in upon, like they are being watched, and as if they are alone. I truly felt all those things. One of the last exhibits is the shoe room where there are hundreds and hundreds of pairs of shoes that were confiscated from people entering various concentration camps. The quote on the wall is chilling. "We are the shoes. We are the last witnesses. We are the shoes of grandchildren and grandfathers. From Prague, Paris, and Amsterdam, and because we are only made of fabric and leather and not of blood and flesh, each one of us avoided the Hellfire" (Moses Schulstein, Yiddish Poet). We also walked. A lot. I don't think you're allowed to be a passenger of anything resembling modern transportation in D.C.. You may see tons of vehicles there, but I'm pretty sure you can't actually get in one of them. It's a rule. Maybe. Maybe? Okay, I made that up. But we did walk everywhere. Everywhere. All day long. And my feet hurt. Very much. But not only did we get in a lot of exercise, we also saw a lot of things while walking that we never would have seen had we ridden a bus. We had great views of a lot of the national monuments, got some great pictures, and carried on a lot of good conversation, all of which walking facilitated. I'm glad we walked. Really, I am! I loved D.C., and I hope that we make it back for another visit very soon.
We took at quick trip to Baltimore, too. We didn't get to do a whole lot, but we did see a lot of the city. And now I know that I want to go back and experience more of Baltimore. It's a beautiful city, especially by the water. The weather was fabulous that day (less than 80 degrees and breezy after it rained for 5 minutes), which I think added to the city's attractiveness. It was a great weekend full of sightseeing, lots of walking, TWO trips to Target, and celebrating a sweet, sweet girl's birthday (am allowed to still refer to her as a "girl" now that she's 17?)!