Monday, January 18, 2010

The Audacity of Hope

Hope, without faith and understanding, can kill you. I don't care what anyone says. The truth is: hope is a double edge sword and, if you aren't careful, it will fatally wound you.

Now, I'll be real with you, I've never been the girl to dream of weddings, flowers or spending "happily" ever after tied to a man. In fact, I've always thought of happy & men/sex as two completely separate and sometimes competing realities. That is, until 5 years ago when I met a person who made me want to spend a few breaths of energy considering marriage to, and children with, him. It didn't work out. No worries. But not before I learned a hard lesson. Being non-clairvoyant and in love, breeds hope for what is both real and imagined. The idea that he was the one I should marry...that was my hopeful imagination. The idea that we would one day have children, though I didn't know it at the time of our break, was my hopeful reality.

I was pregnant and not for the first time. The first time we were pregnant with, and lost, a set of twins early in our relationship. This time we were pregnant, though no longer together, with a girl. He was excited. I was scared. I'd already learned from the doctor's that due to some other medical issues I wouldn't be able to carry this baby full term either. I hoped for the best. I carried her for as long as I could. Named her after his grandmother who was always sweet to me and when the time came to push her half formed body into this world so that her fully formed spirit could go back to the Lord...I did that too. The ex was no where to be seen in any of it. He was excited when he first found about her but hell, his attention span was always short which in some way, I guess, explains why he cheated. But I digress...

I did what I had to do. Picked myself back up. Tucked the shattered pieces of hope I had for a surviving child away and walked into a new season. A little bloodied and bruised but not broken. I also had a new lesson to hold on to. I wanted children. I hadn't really known that until I felt my 2nd one grow inside of me. Hmm...I told you, hope is a double edge sword. How is the painfully humbling death of hope for one energy make you hope to breathe life into another?

Fast forward a few years...on to the next serious relationship. We're talking love, he's talking marriage, huh?? What did you say doc?? You guessed it, all of a sudden, we're talking pregnant! Again, he's excited and I'm scared. I know my track record. I know my body isn't ready...so does my doctor. She schedules me for all the required tests so we can have the probability of survival and keep hope alive chat. Two days for her to tell me the pregnancy wouldn't survive.

I'm not sure I can go through it again. So I start the abortion chat with myself, and as twisted as it may seem, I felt better. Don't get me wrong. I wanted my baby. With all my heart, I did. Somehow, convincing myself that I had a choice in whether this one lived or died made me feel like I had some say. Made the pain lessen. I knew I wouldn't ever do it but I needed to feel I had some control in this so hoping didn't seem like an empty gesture. I fed into it so much that I even told my girlfriends that I was going to terminate. Speaking it out loud made me feel as if I wasn't totally powerless and I didn't want to have to say a third time that something was wrong with me & I couldn't carry this one either. I'd rather have their support or indignation over a choice they thought I was making than their pity for the 3rd time. I'd rather feel like I had the same choices every other woman had. I didn't. Two weeks later, I lost that baby too.

For the first time, I let my mother know. She was the only one who knew the whole story and made it her business to set up camp in my house. She was with me through every hormone change and every moment of hope and defeat. Every moment of stubborn indignation and claiming I didn't care. She was there when I decided my baby was a girl. She was there when I decided to name her Cadence (the natural rhythm and flow). She was there when everything in me died and I had to be taken to the hospital. She was there when I couldn't get out of bed for four days for blaming myself for not hoping enough & for speaking it into being. She was there when I realized I hadn't heard from the "loving" father in 3 days since telling him Cadence was gone. She was there when the doc called to check on me and to "reassure me" Cadence never had a chance no matter what ideas I spoke aloud. Cadence's cell division was slow and stopped somewhere between the 4th & 5th week. I didn't even find out I was pregnant until the 6th.

If I never meet & marry my soulmate and therefore never have children, I'm okay with that. But I pray that I do. And I pray that if/when that comes to pass, my body will have healed enough that we can create a new energy together and both of us will be able to experience, for the first time, having children. I pray. Which, to me, is hope coupled with faith and the understanding that should it not come to pass I won't break. I may be bloodied & bruised but not broken. Because from all this I've learned, hope (without faith & understanding) can damn near kill you.

~Shai

6 comments:

  1. I ABSOLUTELY LOVED THIS POST!!

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  2. ((squeezing back my tears)) Praying for you!!

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  3. so honest, brutally honest and necessary. So many have experienced love hurts...I'm glad that you are willing to share your journey

    with love,

    peace n sunshine

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  4. Thank you T.

    Cilla - please continue to do so. Loving you!!

    Fharlie - thank you for listening & always being so supportive.I debated whether to allow comments on this one just because I didn't know what emotion to expect. Thank you to both you and Cilla for being so loving and supportive.

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  5. you just showed a strength i can only pray to one day muster. God is with you, Shai.

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  6. Wow!That was a lot to endure. Prayerfully in the future it will work with the "right" person. I've seen it happen to others only to result in a successful relationship and child birth after so many trials and tribulations. It's always possible.

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