Monday, December 19, 2011

Mr. Play It Safe was afraid to fly. He packed his suitcase and kissed his kids goodbye...

After the last story that I was told about a stillbirth, I started wondering if they're kind of like plane crashes.

They're terrifying, and yet the odds of your plane going down are lower than you winning the lottery or something like that.

These stillbirth stories are tragic, upsetting, horrifying stories...and somehow, somehow people keep telling me about them. At least once every other week, I'd say. Something that happened to them. To their wife. To a friend.

But then I gave it some thought, and realized that plane crashes, while sensational, can't be as common.

A friend of my cousin's died in the Lockerbee explosion. But other than that, I don't think I have any friends of friends who have died in plane crashes. Knock wood, of course.

But the late-pregnancy miscarriages, the stillbirths (which is what they call them after 20 weeks), Christ, it seems like every third person has a story.

And they tell them to me.

And then, then after they've told me the worst piece - that the baby died in-utero at five months, six months, full-term...they all of a sudden look stricken, look down at my belly, and stop, and say, "I shouldn't be telling you this."

Silently, I think, "No fucking kidding."

Out loud I say, "I can't really talk about this."

The most recent person to do this to me is a friend of Nick's. He was telling me that their first child was incredibly premature - and now she's a healthy 19-year old. This led to him telling me about the 5-month stillbirth...

But in a case like this, once you know the worst of it, you don't want them to stop. Because you want to know the WHY?

You want to know that this won't happen to you. Was there a logical reason?

No, not that they know of. There was nothing apparently wrong with their baby. It just happens.

You can't worry about everything, all the time. But somehow, I do try.

It's like the punch in the face versus the $1,000 for leaving your house kind of thing. I just haven't had Nick lay it all out for me in those terms yet.

13 comments:

  1. I hope these stories stop coming your way and are replaced with encouraging ones that warm your heart.

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  2. No fucking kidding is right. I would be tempted to cover my ears and look stricken as soon as I knew where the story was going.

    It's amazing that people are so eager to talk about personal tragedy. Who knows - maybe these people feel like if they can talk about it, it can't get them anymore. But they don't think ahead to who they're telling. They just need to tell it. I find myself telling people about my miscarriage occasionally (and being amazed that I'm not bursting into tears over it still). But jesus, not pregnant people!

    I kind of hesitate to ask this, but is it mostly men? Or women who have not been pregnant? Seems like anyone who'd been through the worry of pregnancy would have a bigger clue about that sort of thing.

    Hugs to you, kicks in the neck to them. I'm so glad for you that she's moving around in there. Also I'm filled with envy! I loved that so much.

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  3. Jesus Christ, WHO DOES THIS?? The only person that should be talking to a pregnant woman about the risks of stillbirth is her OB. Everyone else, shut the fuck up.

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  4. Hey, LG, if I make you a "Please only happy birth stories, my baby is listening" button, will you wear it? I'm looking it up on Cafe Press now.

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  5. HK - Thank you, my friend! I am going to start nipping them in the bud if I see them coming.

    Laura - I'm not sure what it is, but it's kind of like if you have kids/are pregnant, you know where they're coming from or something. It's all very fraught, which of course I certainly do realize it. And yes, mostly men, but some women as well. It seems like almost everyone knows someone that this has happened to.

    And lemme tell you, grateful as I am to be pregnant, and hopeful as I am that I stay preg until she is due...I am so over it. I love the kicks but I'm envious of you for having your healthy daughter on the outside!

    Wendy - I think people get caught up in talking about pregnancy and this shared experience or something. I don't know. I didn't have all these loss fears with Jordan, but I was also completely ignorant as to how many losses there are (thank goodness)!

    Stacey - You are awesome. You know I will. Hugs to you, my friend.

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  6. Here's a good baby story.Not scary so read on) My 24 y/o daughter who has been estranged from me for a year (as you know, had a baby girl last Thursday. My daughter had a liver disease at 9 y/old and had her colon removed and has had a rough time the past 15 years. But her baby girl was born absolutely perfect and looking like me and it made my daughter call us and we saw her yesterday. She named her daughter Mason which is what I suggested a year ago she name her 1st baby as I thought it sounded wonderful with her last name. And mother and child came though with flying colors! And I'm a Gramma now. And on our baby steps way to healing I hope. Thank you for your well wishes, and good thoughts all along. I send them back to you and your daughter tied with hearts-ease and peace.

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  7. I'm loopy from the whole thing...don't mind my mistakes today...

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  8. So sorry for unthinking people. May they steer clear of you or keep their mouth shut the remainder of your pregnancy.

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  9. Lisa, I'm kind of new in this blog department. I just graduated college with a degree in English and sec. ed. and always wanted to write more often than I did. But I didn't think I'd be any good at it and needed an incentive, some inspiration.
    Then I came across your blog and your writing and stories were so fabulous that it really made me want to write more! So I did. I started a blog, and just kept writing. And I never stopped. It's been three months, so let's keep our fingers crossed. haha
    Thank you for the inspiration!

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  10. Jaysus what the hell is wrong with people? So far no one has come to me with one of those stories--thank goodness because I couldn't handle hearing all the stories it sounds like you get shot your way. Maybe you should keep a roll of duck tape with you and just silently hand it to people who start to tell you these stories. Then when they stop and give you a confused look you can make a motion for them taping their mouths shut. And they'll either be too confused or offended or laughing too hard to continue with their scary story.

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  11. I feel like people should be censored before talking to pregnant ladies. There is just too much anxiety and angst already - you don't need any excuse to worry more than you already are.

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  12. That is horrible. When I was pregnant with H, an old friend who was actually not somebody I considered a friend anymore texted me and asked if I was okay because she had a dream I had lost the baby. How is that EVER okay? People like that should be shot. Seriously. You are going to have a healthy, smooth pregnancy that ends with a beautiful baby in your arms. I can't wait to hear the name you've chosen for her. :)

    On another baby related note, we just found out last night that we are expecting! We've decided not to tell anyone in our families just yet, but I had to tell someone!

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  13. Lynn - I am SO HAPPY for you! This is wonderful news in 50 different ways! Thank you so much for sharing with me. This just makes my week.

    Dana - Thank you for the wishes. Unlikely, but would be nice.

    Cristina - I love hearing that! Thank you for telling me and thanks for the kind words! I hope you enjoy the blog world and the journey! I feel like I've grown so much from it.

    click clack gorilla - That's actually a really funny idea. People will think I'm kind of sketchy to carry around duct tape, but when it comes in handy...!

    Hillary - Yes, SO much anxiety. I didn't realize I needed to worry about it so much until people started telling me.

    Jenn - no, that is never OK. Do not share any bad baby dreams, ever. Nonono.

    And congratulations! Oh, yay! Thank you!

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