And if Alexander's life feels like a dream then what am I living now? I've officially been in in my third trimester for a week or so now and I'm falling more and more in love with the little life we've named Oliver everyday. It is so neat seeing his little personality emerge and develop by feeling his movements. Every time I feel him move I feel relief that I know he is still alive and I love him for it. Its a deeper love and appreciation of the life growing inside of me then the first time around. I don't have the carefree, giddy, anticipatory love and joy that most pregnant women feel as the plan and prepare for the new life that they will soon deliver. No, I have the deeper love and cautious joy, that is chopped full of worry and anxiety, as only a mother who truly knows how fragile life really is can have.
I've been talking to some fellow BLM's (baby loss moms) about this very thing. We have a longing for that innocent joy of pregnant friend who have never known a loss, but at the same time are so thankful for the lessons in love that our babies in heaven have taught us. It made me think back to the early days after loosing Alexander. (Now the tears come and he doesn't seem like a wonderful horrible dream for a moment.) People would ask me if there was anything they could do. (Please don't ever ask this question of a newly bereaved parent because the only thing going through their mind is "can you bring my baby back?" but that is a topic for another day.) If these friends had children of their own often my only response to this question would be to ask them to love and especially hug their children for me. That's all I wanted in those days to be able to physically love my baby. And If I could make Alexander's memory mean anything it would be to teach parents to have a deeper love and appreciation for their kids. I know that is one of the things Alexander has taught me. This deeper love is one of the things I have that makes Alexander seem real.
Then there is the tangible "proof" I have of Alexander's life on earth: all those baby items that were bought for him but he never used. His little brother, Oliver will use most of them because Oliver would be using Alexander's hand-me-downs anyway. I've been going through all of Alexander's things lately to get ready for Oliver's arrival in a few months. It hasn't been as hard as I thought it would, maybe because I've gone through them a few times knowing they would one day be for a different baby. As I'm going through all these baby clothes I'm reminded of the few outfits we picked out special for Alexander (in addition to all the outfits that were bought for him as gifts, and given to us as hand-me-downs).
|This is the very first outfit we bought for Alexander before we knew that he was in fact a he. Because well any child of ours will love robots as much as we do. It will be so special to dress Oliver in this outfit.|
I pray everyday that we get to take Oliver home and actually are able to use all this baby stuff this time around. I try to wait patiently, hope for the best, and cherish the life growing inside of me while Oliver is here. And that's really all I can do. I have to trust that God will handle the rest.