Monday, March 31, 2008

Anniversaries

I can’t even remember the last time I posted here. I’ve thought so many times, “I need to write something or folks are going to think I disappeared.” So here I am posting. My motivation is honestly just today’s date.

March 31

This date has so much meaning in my life for two very different reasons.

The first is a happy one. It’s the anniversary of the first date I had with my husband. It was supposed to be a group of co-workers meeting at a local club. Surreptitiously each member of the group found themselves otherwise occupied. Both of us arrived at the club expecting to find the big group. Instead it was just the two of us. We spent that first night talking over a few drinks and getting to know one another. Eight years later, the conversation hasn’t stopped. He’s the most amazing human being I have ever met. He challenges me as a person and has helped me grow as a partner. I can’t begin to imagine my world without him. I’m glad that I don’t have to. I hate to admit it, but he’s the first person to whom I have EVER been physically faithful. The truth is that he’s the only one I ever felt was worth it. Our relationship isn’t perfect by a long shot but we’re always willing to work at it. It’s a work in progress. And like I said, the conversation hasn’t stopped. I truly think that’s been the key.

The irony of this date is that it also marks the anniversary of the death of our first child. Miscarriage at seven weeks; delivery 33 weeks too early. You look at it your way; I’ll look at it mine. It was the most devastating moment of my life. I can’t say that time has made it any easier. The wound is still vividly raw. I can say though that time has made it easier to talk about openly. For so long I never mentioned the whole experience outside of close friends because I didn’t want to share it. I didn’t want to hear all the platitudes. I didn’t want to have to explain why I was so unbelievably devastated. I couldn’t articulate the sense of loss that I felt. When I tired, it seemed so trite. Even close friends and family did an awful job at trying to understand. Even my beloved Mr. Beans was no help. No one “got it.” Six years ago today my whole world crumbled and nothing would ever make it better. Sitting on the edge of my bed holding the .357 in my hands I couldn’t give myself a reason to go on. But obviously I did. And one day turned into another and another and another. There were good days and bad days, but I trudged along. Eventually, I moved forward. I didn’t “get over it.” I just went forward - one psychological foot in front of the other. Sadly, just 14 months later, another baby and another tragedy. But that’s another story.

I wish that had even known what the hell a blog was back then. It would have been such a light in the fog. I had no idea there were so many other women, many so much braver than I, who were dealing with the same emotions and situations that I was facing. It was only about two years ago when I stumbled across this corner of the world. Oh how I wish it were earlier!

So the point to this post?

Today I try to make March 31st a celebration: a celebration of the start of my life with Mr. Beans and a celebration of my first-born child. Remembering a first date isn't difficult. No one minds when you mention it casually over dinner. The other relationship isn't one discussed so easily. I sometimes think I’m the only one still remembering that tiny being who was with me for such a short time. It used to bother me immensely but now, I’m okay with it. I was the only one who had the honor of experiencing that life while it was here so maybe it’s fitting I’m the only one honoring that life now.

I found a poem during those lowest days that I recited to myself many times. (I’m sure those from the IF community have seen it countless times.) I’d like to post it here because it meant so much to me then. It said what I just couldn’t say myself.

Just Those Few Weeks

For those few weeks--
I had you to myself
And that seems too short a time
to be changed so profoundly.

In those few weeks--
I came to know you
and to love you.
You came to trust me with your life.
Oh, what a life I had planned for you!

Just those few weeks--
When I lost you.
I lost a lifetime of hopes,
plans, dreams, and aspirations...
A slice of my future simply vanished overnight.

Just those few weeks--
It wasn't enough time to convince others
how special and important you were.
How odd, a truly unique person has recently died
and no one is mourning the passing.

Just a mere few weeks--
And no "normal" person would cry all night
over a tiny, unfinshed baby,
or get depressed and withdrawn day after endless day.
No one would, so why am I?

You were just those few weeks my little one
you darted in and out of my life too quickly.
But it seems that's all the time you needed
to make my life so much richer
and give me a small glimpse of eternity.

(Poem Copyright 1984 by Susan Erling Martinez)

3 comments:

DD said...

Yes, that poem...it makes me tear up everytime.

I know that each year, the pang will certainly be there, but I can only hope for all of us that that little string in our heart doesn't hurt as much when plucked but turns into a beautiful single note on the remembrance of what was.

Becca said...

The poem is very poignant but the words you wrote touched me much more. Of course there will always be people braver than oneself but that doesn't mean that facing these horrible things and making the decision to survive them isn't one of the bravest things a person can do.

Happy anniversary and I'm glad you're back to blogging (even temporarily!).

Third Mom said...

Happy anniversary, bittersweet though it may be. I've missed seeing you online - although I've been absent a lot, too. I hope things in your world are good :)