Friday, 4 April 2008

April Five

When I discovered that I was pregnant, I couldn't help but do what I had done with all my previous babies - work out the date of my last period and use a chart to discover when the baby was due.

And here we are, almost at that day - the fifth of April. In reality he would have been born a week or so before this because it would have been an elected caesarean.

Some will say that I should not remember his EDD, should not mark it in any way. However, I believe that I did not grieve properly at the time and so I will use part of this day to make up for that error with some quiet reflection on what might have been... if I had been brave/selfish enough to ignore all the possible repercussions and proceed with the pregnancy.

People have said that I never should have looked at my baby on the scan. Yet, at the time, I knew in my heart that if I didn't, I would regret it for the rest of my life. Yes, yes, circumstances meant that I made the only decision truly available, but that doesn't mean that I don't yearn for my child. The baby I made with a man I adored and that I wanted desperately to give him.

Maybe it's because I was already a mother that I couldn't just view him as a 'thing' to be got rid of. A horrible inconvenience. He was never that. And I will never forget feeling him move inside me on that last evening and again when I was being scanned for dates and could actually see him wriggling about like a dervish. I can't even begin to venture down the road to which my mind leads when I think about that.

With my other babies I prepared religiously for their conception. I took the right vitamins, the folic acid, ate the correct foods and avoided ones that could endanger my prospective foetus. This baby was totally unplanned and I did not have that luxury. I had been drinking and taking painkillers and training vigorously. That, combined with the fact that I was 46 years old, meant that statistics were totally against him. The chances of physical deformity or genetic difficulties were higher than not. Add all the other problems and ramifications into the equation and I just couldn't afford to take the risk for either of us.

It was a time that shook the foundation of my relationship with Ruf to its very core. Being able to write everything down made the process of communication just about possible and I believe it was only being able to talk to each other about it, via whatever medium, which saved us.

I know that, in the circumstances, I did the right thing but that does not make it any easier. It certainly doesn't mean that I will not regret having had to reach that decision for the rest of my life.

So I will take some time to think about him and make this post as a Requiem for the child that could not be but who will always be remembered.

Closure? Perhaps...

But Fate will never let me forget... for it is also my birthday.

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