Friday, July 6, 2012

Lost Baby Announcement



Asalamu Alaykom,



There are some phrases that don't make sense because we don't want them to make sense.  Take the title of this post, "Lost Baby Announcement."  That means that the announcement for the baby has gotten lost in the mail. 

But that's not actually what it means.  "Lost Baby Announcement," means that I'm announcing a baby was lost.  The funny thing---if indeed there is a, "funny thing" in this discussion---is that I didn't know there was a baby to be lost.  Finding out you've been pregnant and at the same time finding out that the baby is no longer viable is a strange moment. 

I didn't look.

The doctora took out the IUD and tried to show the proof.  I turned away.  In a way now I wish I had looked.  My husband looked.  I think men need to look at unsettling reality.  Women?  Maybe we don't.  Maybe we can't.  It's hard to look at things we'd rather forget.  We aren't able to look once and then go on to the next activity.  We endlessly roll around those images and "what ifs".  No, it's better that I didn't look.

I can't say I'm sad but I am quiet; introspective.  It's a sobbering moment to realize that while you were carefully weighing a life option God took care of it for you.  As John Lennon said, "Life is what happens when you're busy making other plans."  Yet, because I had chosen five years ago to have a Mirena IUD in place, I destroyed one of my husband's biggest dreams. 

For all these years, I really liked having the Mirena.  My months went by easily.  I never suffered like I had with the Paraguard.  I was feeling good---until this Spring.  Now, I realize that the Mirena had stopped releasing hormones.  I was no using effective birth control.  I was using an abortive method only.  According to sheiks, this is still halal but, as a woman, it doesn't feel good to me.  I hadn't known.  Now, that I do know...what do I do with that information?

It hardly seems fair to be in a loving, halal marriage with a man who wants a baby and yet to stop the process.  That's my heart talking.  My head is telling me other things.  Believe me, I'm not without balance and there's a lot to explore on this issue.

I find myself playing my own version of "Vanilla Sky" and looking for clues after the fact that I actually had been pregnant. 

"I don't know how I got so fat!"  I remember saying that and really wondering how I'd let myself go.

Jumping jacks in class felt like a bladder burster.

Then there's all those times I've been falling asleep before my little guy's bedtime.

I do think of Mr. Boo.  He's like an only child over here in Egypt.  Family means so much in this country.  To have another child means to have someone who will be with my son; as a Muslim and an Egyptian-American. 

To have a child with my husband means that our marriage is validated.  The whole community here supports my husband's role as Mr. Boo's Baba.  However, it's not a completely sealed deal.  For us to have a child together means that our family is complete in the eyes of others.

And, "yes," my mother would kill me if I had another child. 

Right now, I need to stop thinking so much and just take a deep breath.  There had been so much abdominal pain these last days that I couldn't really do that.  Now, I am free from the discomfort alhumdulillah.

Alhumdulillah for everything. 

Yesterday, after the doctor's appointment...actually before the doctor's appointment...I had my husband agree to take me to the dress shop around the corner on Faisel Street.  I hate going to the doctor so much that I need to imagine a kind of carrot in front of the cart.  We went.
Amidst all the dresses, there was a small section of kids' clothes.  There was this cute little romper suit in bold stripes of blue and white.  On the front there was a duck in an inner tube.  We stood there smiling and admiring it with these wistful eyes.  I didn't want to buy it for my nephew at the house.  It wasn't for him.  I hung it back up again.  I had to walk away.  We bought a nice dress for me instead. 



On our way home, we walked down the street Wafa wal Amal, which connects Faisel to Al-Haram Street. We saw a crowd of police.  Sure enough, there'd been an armed robbery at the Hermes Exchange.  My shopping request had come from some place inside me which felt right.  In the end, that request meant that we avoided being in the wrong place.  Thank God.

Alhumdulillah. 

May we all heal from pain, listen to our souls and grow from our experiences.


7 comments:

Bonnie said...

I'm so sorry Yosra :( Even if you didn't know it is still a big loss at the thought of what might of been. I'm thinking and praying for you xxx

Yosra said...

Asalamu Alaykom Dear Bonnie,

I've been doing my own thinking and praying about YOU. Maybe we are connected more at this time than before. It's hard to know what to say to someone when they admit to a down time. I hope what I wrote on your blog was helpful. I know what you wrote on mine was :)

Ya...it's a loss. It's easy to dismiss it as a "nothing" but if it was a "nothing" then why do I feel the loss?

I would have kept the baby if it had been viable. In a way, I would have loved its persistence at wanting to be my kid. I guess I love that it tried...against all odds. Islamically, its not considered to have a soul at that time so I can feel some solace in that.

Alhumdulillah.

By the way, I've made the decision not to continue on my way to another pregnancy at this time. I will make the appointment for another Mirena---though it might not stay for another five years. After a year, I can re-evaluate. I got stuck into thinking NOW or five years from now and really that always messes me up. It can be on MY timetable not some arbitrary one.

My best to you, Bonnie. Feel free to contact me if you need. I've thought of reaching out to you but I didn't want to be intrusive.

Love and Light!

Yosra

Yosra said...

Asalamu Alaykom Bonnie,

Thanks so much for your comment. I had to publish it to read it but I deleted it right away because I wasn't sure if you were sharing it with everyone or just me. I'm maybe hyper-sensitive about what people share with me. I don't want to betray anyone but publishing what they didn't mean to say publicly. Let me know if you want that comment here and I'll publish.

You and I are linked for sure and I love you as my sister. You are never shy to explain who you are and where you have been. That's why you'll be so good for dawah with Non-Muslims. The world can relate to YOU because you are REAL. And sometimes (like me) you've had some really sucky things happen. What you describe is a real low---extremely low. Can't get much lower. So many levels of soul-crushing at one time. It's a wonder you survived. The strange thing is that this is NOT the time you've just been through. Even I had to re-check. This is years ago. So, you have been through so much---too much. Reminds me of...ME!

Let's ask God to lighten our load. Let's go to Ramadan with our hears imploring God to make it easy on us. Ya RAB!

I appreciate everything you said and agree that the future is not really for me to figure out right now. I can figure it out bit by bit. Like...do the dishes now and then figure out what else needs to get done. Big thoughts start as little inklings.

Did you get my thoughts on forest fires? I left it on your blog. I never saw it posted. Basically, I just said that forest fires look like complete devastation. However, they are the catalyst for certain seeds which only burst open from the heat. Those plants were just waiting for the forest fire. The fire brought these certain seeds to life. Inshahallah whatever turmoil has visited your life, I hope that it enlivens a part of you which will sprout anew. You are golden like this.

Love and Light!

Bonnie said...

No I never got it!! I was wondering what you were talking about when you said you left a comment.... ma'ashallah it's so beautiful and I really wish I had read it earlier. I will share it with my husband, I am sure he really needs to hear it right now.

The one thing I can see from living in Bangladesh is that the people are so strong, strong in a way that I don't think I could be....they know death is in a sense only the beginning.

You can publish any comment of mine as you know I am an open book ;)

I'm thinking of you too. No matter what soul crushing thing you go through it only serves to make you stronger. Ma'ashallah I hope one day I will possess the calm self confidence and reassurance to others that you embody.

Yosra said...

Asalamu Alaykom Bonnie,

Here is what you wrote before (which I deleted):

"Oh Yosra never think I wouldn't love to hear from you because I would. The shock is easing and I know after this I am never going to be the same but I have resigned it all to the will of Allah as much as I can. The fragility of life is something I have experienced many times before but not quite like this.

The possibility of a baby is not something that needs to be decided right now nor should it under the circumstances, I learned the hard way that replacing something immediately is not usually the best option. A few years ago I experienced a miscarriage, I was married but I did not want to get pregnant at that time however I did and I was happy albeit scared, when I told my then husband he promptly packed his bags and left ( a theme for me it seems) I spent a month lamenting over the idea of a baby only to go for an ultrasound to be told it's heart had stopped beating and I was only about 5 weeks along though I should have been nine so for a month whilst I had thought I was pregnant I technically wasn't. I didn't really know what I wanted until the choice was not mine to make.

I hope your husband is doing OK, if this was something he truly wanted then he will be feeling the loss of the possibility quite strongly."

Thanks again, Bonnie, for being that "0pen Book."

Can't figure out: are you in Bangladesh??? That's a very tough place to visit...like the undevelped part of India. I had a friend in the U.S. who was married to a man from Bangladesh. Goooood brother, mashahallah who loved her for HER love of Allah. Not sure if they're still together but I hope so. I saw her pics of their trip to Bangladesh. Not much in the way of material goods but lots of family love for sure. Maybe how we should be. Wherever you are, I wish you and your hub (!) well. I'm so far behind on your life, I didn't know you were remarried. Mabrook :)

I'm glad that you like the imagery I used (and you never got). It came to me while I was thinking of you. No one is ever sure what to say but I just say it. I figure if something jumps to my mind then it's for a reason--inshahallah a good reason.

Hon, you honor me too much when you say those really nice words! WOW! Subhanallah I don't know I come across that way to you. I feel like I fall apart as much as anyone. I'm pretty sure I cried today. Often I feel overwhelmed. Alhumdulillah for the center we all possess. That is where Allah is and I don't want to bounce too high or too low because that takes me away from Him.

Tonight, I wanted a picture of a cake I made. And the batteries WOULD NOT work. And the flash WOULD NOT work. I had my man and my 1/2 man clowning around and yelling at me to take their picture. I wanted to shout and get mad. I wanted to show some big feeling but I stayed focused instead. That's where I'm at now. I am more focused. I'm not sure if it's age, or tiredness...no...it's got to be wisdom, right? LOL! So, anyway, I'm checking the batteries and then the settings. Sure enough my hub had hit a wrong button last time. In the past, I would have made a deal out of somebody screwing up my camera. Now? It was fixed so no problem---let's move on. I took the pics and it remained happy.

I'm saying this because I want you to understand that it's a conscious choice for me to stay in this mind. I haven't always! And I have to fight against exploding in anger or in tears. I just don't want to...so I don't. I used to bounce too high and crash too low. This way of even-keeled thinking isn't as much fun but it's also not as much upset. Alhumdulillah it's more peaceful.

I wish peace for you and yours. Truly, you deserve it!

Write to me again anytime. I'm here!

Light and Love!

MarieHarmony said...

Dear Yosra, I am really sorry for you. But reading your words, it seems you handle it with this strong faith that ease the pain.
My prayers go to you and your loved ones. Know I am here always. xx

Yosra said...

Asalamu Alaykom Marie,

Thanks, Hon :)

It's one of those things you have to handle so you do. I guess what makes it hard is that I am really wondering if I'll have more children or not. That is THE TROUBLE with having a younger man for a hub. He will have this wish for a child for 30 years and be able to act on it if he so desires. Me? I've got... yesterday...like I'm really too old now (at 44) but I would push the envelope if I felt I had to. If I don't have to? Then I probably won't. Hurts knowing that I had a chance from God that was also eliminated by God.

Thanks for prayers and love. They are the best from those you care about.

Light and Love!