Monday, August 2, 2010


When I was young, I’d go with my mom on Saturdays, to the grocery store, and then the fruit market.

At the fruit market, I’d always beg for coconuts. Why? They were exotic and hairy and different. I promised her each time that I’d eat it. I swore I’d eat the coconut, just please please please buy me one!

She did.

I never ate one. Not once. Coconuts are gross. Even now, I only like coconut if it’s part of a curry.

For some reason, that memory is in my head.

What else is in my head is anxiety.

Now it’s not about Brody’s health, but his brother.

And nerves about this baby.

I’m waiting for results. I swear, this whole pregnancy I’m just waiting. I hate waiting. I’m resolving to stop waiting.

The results I’m waiting for are the immune testing results. Did my natural killer cells spike yet? Are they going to spike?

If they rise, the pregnancy is at risk. The treatment is IVIg. Which isn’t covered by insurance. Why? Because it’s experimental. Unless you live in any other industrialized country.
And it costs a lot. Like one dose is $2500.

My NK cells spiked with Brody at week 30. I did an IVIg treatment. They went back down.

I’m 22 weeks.

Two more weeks until the baby reaches viability too.

Also? I can’t get life insurance. Why? Recurrent miscarriages and pregnancy and history of preeclampsia.

I have some life insurance through work. But the thing that gets to me about the denial is that it feels proof that this is risky. And I worry for Brody. What if something – God forbid – happens to me? He’ll be left without me and I cry almost every day over something but this. . . I can't even begin to process that spectre.

I hate victimhood. I abhor people who are victims. And I feel like I am starting to become one. I have to start to be strong.

I’m doing everything I can.

Oh, the docs still can't tell whether the baby's heart is perfect. We need to return to the high risk place and check to see the cardiac outflow tracts. The obgyn says she is 95% sure it's fine, but the thing is, they just can't see it to confirm either way.

I have to stop worrying about what might be and start embracing what is. He's here, he's kicking, and he's survived in the toxicity of my body for 22 weeks so far.

I thought I loved Brody before I was pregnant but now that I am hormonal, I could cry looking at him I love him so much. I just want to be with him all the time. I lay with him until he's asleep most nights. I spoon him, and hold my stomach with my other hand. I could lay with him all night and all day.

The other day we were eating dinner and he said, out of the blue, “I can’t wait to meet my bruzza.” My heart broke and melted and built up three times its size.

Which is another worry. What if the pregnancy…. is not successful? How do I explain that to Brody?
A friend of mine just asked me – a someone who dealt with miscarriage and health issues of a child - what I thought about her having another child. She has serious health issues and if she gets pregnant, it’s an equal chance her health could get worse, get better or stay the same. I told her “if there is something that 5 miscarriages and Vacterl association have taught me, anything can happen, regardless of how we plan or worry. But as this pregnancy has taught me, that anything can be good, too, and not just the bad stuff that we've encountered.”

Where the hell is the part of me who wrote that right now? I need her. I need the little girl who shamelessly begged for coconuts knowing she'd never eat them to be with me. I need to throw off the bowlines. What’s that Mark Twain quote?

Ahh…. Here it is….
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

So this is me, sailing away from safe harbor.


Hef said...

I wish I had more words, because I can never find exactly what I want to say to you in my own word database.

Pregnancy is temporary. In 18 weeks at the very most, you will have an answer in your arms. Brody's bruzza is obviously just as much of a badass as Brody himself. He's alive and kickin, momma.

As for the rest of it- all the gunk- I'm sorry. Really, I'm just sorry. I don't understand why you have to live with such heartache, such stress, such uncertainty. It's unfair and it sucks and it pisses me off.

You've got a lot of people pulling for the sugarplum gang. Love and hugs and continued prayers.

SaRaH said...

Awwww, nuts. Coconuts. I love your mom for buying them for little you. You still ARE that little girl. What is more adventurous than being this incredible, honest, generous, brilliant, beautiful, funny lawyer lady who grew the incomparable Brody and is currently growing bruzza Castle?
For the heart check, we had to do the same with Nora. I was so alarmed, but the nurse told me that as a high level screening center, they couldn't just give me the information on the specific part(s) I was concerned about -- they were obligated to check everything carefully. Oh. And I can't get life insurance, either. Because of depression and pre-eclampsia. There go Joe's and Jeremy's big plans to knock off their wives.
If we need the IVIg then we'll get that shit. I wish I could take the fear away for you. Look, the whole ride is terrifying. We love each other fiercly and have no real way to protect each other or ourselves. A quote that stuck with me when my dad was sick: "it is a fearful thing to love what death can touch" You might as well catch those trade winds, dream and discover. You're not alone -- we'll all be grabbing your sails to catch your magnificent ride with you.

Shannon said...

I wanted to comment but could not say anything better than what these two amazing ladies said above.
Except that just the other day, in fact the same day you wrote this, I was talking to my mother about coconuts and how much I love them and how she used to buy them for me as a kid and now I never see them anywhere. WEIRD!
I love you and Brody and his bruzza!!