22 letters to you. Letter 8. Dear Réalta

Dear Réa,

I think and worry often about giving you and Emmet siblings. Often it occupies a great deal of my mind, I go through every option, outcome, ideal and worst case scenarios.

I replay both pregnancies I have had in my head repeatedly. It does not take as long as it should have.

I wonder, each day, what would it be like to have you here? But I struggle to imagine you both together, and with me simultaneously, because in the real world, that would never have happened.

At least in this world, I got to have both of you with me, even if it was for such a short while, in my imaginings it is hard to picture you both alive, both with me. You could not be, if I had had Emmet. And Emmet could not be, for me to have had you.

I could hardly choose between you. You are both my babies and I love you both equally, yet in very different ways. It’s the paradox. The impossible choice. There is no right answer to soothe my soul.

And then there are yet more impossible choices. We are eventually going to be perusing adoption, which I look forward too. I am just playing the patience game with life on that one for the time being. Stability comes first,especially as when I was pregnant that was my main fear, that I could offer you so little. I felt inadequate and under prepared, and so I am working on fixing that before a child or baby enters my life in that way again.

There is still a nagging part of the dumber side of my brain that wants to pursue DIVF, but the other part of my brain, the more rational bits take a long hard look at my body, and the fact I dislocated my hip getting into my wheelchair yesterday morning (Thank you Ehlers Danlos, the gift of my Genes just keeps giving…) kind of spun everything into perspective and I did a lot of soul searching in the early hours of the morning. Much as I am doing now. And while I am often momentarily swayed by such ideas, ultimately it always comes back to not going to happen.

I have chronic hip instability, back problems, issues with my internal organs, I can’t digest food properly all the time, and I am dependant on various medicines to function. It would be 9 long months of intense joint instability, pain, fatigue, needing to come off certain medications, go on others, or go without. Added to that; Pregnancy after loss is probably the world’s biggest mindfuck ever frankly.

A few weeks experiencing pregnancy after loss was bad enough, and I didn’t even know 100% if I was carrying a baby (that turned out to be you Réa.) until the worst of my fears had already come true and I was loosing you.

Not to mention the fact that it’s really common (but nobody talks about it) with hEDS (aka EDS type 3) to suffer from reoccurent pregnancy loss and early rupture of the placental membranes in mid to late stage pregnancy. Pre term births are a known risk for mothers with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, and for that reason infant survival rates are lower.

No thanks. Count me out for that one. Having biological children and pregnancy seems like such a lovely, rosy and perfect scenario, until I think about it and decide that you and Emmet are better off with never having any more siblings, and my never having more children, ever, than trying that route.

Rationally I do not want another pregnancy, but someone should really inform my bloody hormones.

I worry I shouldn’t swear in my letters to you. But then, I don’t feel to much as if it matters, seen as I hardly think my saying the F word is going to effect someone who can and will never read a letter. My nephew, your cousin, swore when we were on the phone the other day. It was very hard not to laugh as your aunt told him off, I had to pretend that I thought it was absolutely horrifying and not that I was shaking silently with laughter because it sounded so funny being said by a small boy.

I am glad in an awful awful kind of way, that at least if you are gone, that my genes are not passed onto you. Because nobody needs that level of bull crap in their lives.

I also feel deep and inescapable guilt for feeling and admitting that. Because I want you back and to never have lost you, while simultaneously knowing that nothing I can do could protect you from your own genetics, any more than I can change mine.

You cannot grow up sick because you cannot grow up. Now I know far more about the inheritance risk of my condition, I am relieved that my issues are not the burden of a living child. And given the current state of my body, I am sadly but undeniably relieved not to be experiencing pregnancy anymore.

I would give anything for you to be here, to still be pregnant, but I also have to be honest and say that I do not necessarily think that, just because I want it, that it’s a good idea.

I hate to admit that. I hate it. I am not glad or relieved in any way that you are gone. I never could be. But I am in the worst way relieved that you are safe from it.

My biggest fear was, and is not sickness but of living life with my babies never growing old. That fear is true, real, I live it every day and am helpless and can do nothing to change that fact.

I have no living children, I can’t escape that. I am both a mother and barely a mother simultaneously. I also have the knowledge that if my pregnancies had been successful, both of my babies would be at high risk of inheriting a (very possibly) life limiting genetic disorder.

The worst has already happened. Twice. Any type of illness seems to pale in comparison, because at least I could hold you, see you, watch you grow, I would gladly have both my babies back, but also, I never wish to try again.

My terror of falling pregnant again despite taking all the precautions is tenfold. I now know it is almost certain I will pass this condition on if I have living children. That in itself is a whole new set of fucking awful. It also means that I know, if it were to happen again (Please. Lord. Not. Again.) that there is no way I could go through with it, and that too is probably the worst thing out of all of this.

I cannot say that I do not want biological children. I do, so very much, and while, I can in theory achieve that dream, I cannot ever hope to carry it out in my own good conscience.

Adoption is not a consolation prize, or a second best. Before I was ever pregnant it has, for my whole life, been my first option for growing my family.

I say this in case a reader thinks I am bitter, I am not. Angry perhaps, yes certainly, upset, yes. Bitter, no I am not bitter that these are my choices. I do however grieve deeply what has been taken from me by the randomness of the universe.

If I’m honest I never saw myself growing old with anybody as a life partner, but I always saw kids in my future, and chickens and a goat. But if the kids weren’t an option then as a child I said I would simply have another goat.

I do not really know why I want a goat, or what I planned to do with one, let alone two. Chickens I can see the logic in, but not the goats. Or the donkey that I also wanted.

I think other children in my class wanted to be Cinderella or the Stig from Top Gear or something. I planned on being happy and living independently on my own with exactly 6 chickens, one child and a goat, or no children and two goats.

I swore I was going to have short hair as an adult (I have done that and plan to do so again) always wear Doc Martins, (I do that), and drive an orange VW beetle. Sadly however I cannot drive.

It wasn’t until I was ever pregnant that I wanted to be so again. It just wasn’t on my radar, because if I am honest, I never saw myself ending up with anyone.

Although just to reassure anyone, especially my partner, who may be reading, that I do not own a goat and do not plan too any time soon.

I have a feeling that the subject of the goats may come up with your daddy. I hope that we can laugh about it.

It’s good to laugh.

You are always on my mind,

Mummy x

2 thoughts on “22 letters to you. Letter 8. Dear Réalta

  1. Pink says:

    I also have no living children. However, there are many ways to be a mother if you fear pregnancy will lead to yet another loss. Think about your future options. Talk with your soon to be husband and decided what’s best for you. All the best. Here’s to no more losses.

    Liked by 1 person

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