…and it’s a girl.
Today my sister in law called to tell me that she and Uncle M are going to have a girl in March.
I had expected it to be hard.
I mean, one way or another, I think it would have been hard news for me. Them having a baby so soon after we lost Hudson is just sucky and hard, but also wonderful, and not their fault at all.
But they’re having a girl, the nail in the “Hard Times” coffin.
I spent the day making a cake with my other sisters-in-law. Cake-making and delicious wine.
Because for now, I can have cake and wine.
All day I knew that Auntie K was finding out today: Boy or Girl. And all day I thought to myself, with a fair amount of certainty:
“It’s a boy.”
I thought this because I thought it was going to be harder for me if they were having a girl. And I let myself think those thoughts because I was so confident that they’d never know that I felt that way because it would be a boy, no problemo, no questions asked, wipe the brow, whew.
Except that it is a girl.
Their appointment was late in the afternoon, and after a few glasses of wine (and a few bites of delicious cake), my sister-in-law blurts out: “Why hasn’t K called yet? They know RIGHT NOW!”
It wasn’t but a few moments later that the phone rang. Auntie K called me to share the news. I think I knew when I answered the phone:
It’s a girl.
I spent the entire drive home probing and prodding at the darkest recesses of my psyche, trying to get choked up, trying to let myself be unabashedly upset about the news.
I couldn’t get there. I was just empty. Upon further diagnosis, I realized:
This is not harder for me because they are having a girl. This is just hard.
I am thrilled for them, and I would have been thrilled for them one way or the other, in this life and certainly even more so in another life, with other circumstances and our healthy four-month-old girl.
What has me heartbroken tonight is the fact that I cannot appreciate this news with the reckless abandon it deserves. Our shitty situation taints everything else.
This baby deserves better. My family deserves better. I want so badly to be “cool”, to be unhindered and thrilled. I know that if I were reclusive and weird and sad about it, the entire Dub clan would understand, and be wonderful about it. Instead of being thrilled for a baby girl cousin for Hudson, I am in this awkward, sad, uncomfortable and apologetic place. And I want so badly to do or say something that could make this all guilt-free happy for everybody.
Sure, Uncle M and Auntie K having a girl is going to be a more concrete reminder of the things we are missing: bows and ribbons and frills and pink-tones and cuteness. But wardrobe aside, they are having a baby and we don’t have ours, and that is what is hard.
I want so badly for my brother and sister-in-law to be able to experience this pregnancy in a different way. I know they will be incredible parents. They are amazing people.
I wish there was a way for us to isolate our hurt. To set aside our loss. To take our pain, to take baby Hudson, and keep her all to ourselves. Hudson should only make our lives more full, but especially today, it feels like we are so very painfully aware of all we have lost.
I love my family so, so much. I wish for them all the fullness and joy that can be experienced in this life. So today, I feel guilty and helpless and hopeless and sad.
But I also feel this incredible happiness (however bittersweet) that we are going to meet a niece in March. She’ll be a beautiful little girl, and she’ll be welcomed into such a loving home, surrounded by so many affectionate Aunties and Uncles, a Grandma and Grandpa who will dote on her like crazy. Her daddy will be wrapped around her little finger. Her mommy will be so craft-tastic in the next 20 weeks that she will have no shortage of homemade, girly treasures. Her Uncle (the Hubs) will be hopeless against her charms. And her Auntie (me) will do her best to set a good example, to be the “fun aunt” without spoiling her (okay maybe just a little spoiling), to take her on adventures and give her her first caffeinated beverage and maybe teach her how to play the piano.
And so for the next 20 weeks (give or take), and really for the rest of our lives, I am focusing on the ways this baby girl will make life more beautiful and wonderful. I’ve truly felt that God has revealed himself to me through the people in our lives, and this new little person will be no different, a tiny little revelation of God on earth. She’ll be beautiful, and loved, and full of potential, the dawn of a hopeful new time for our family. She’ll be spunk and wit and gooey smiles, cute outfits and handmade quilts and willful spirit. She’ll be her own amazing person.
And until then, on the hardest days, I have cake and wine.