This summer is so different. I was expecting to be pregnant into July. Instead I am picking up the broken pieces from last summer. After learning something was wrong, losing Nelle, and becoming pregnant again, I neglected a lot. Our yard had unmistakable signs of neglect. Putting it back into order is both satisfying and painful. I winced as I picked up dead branches and laid down mulch, knowing exactly how the yard had gotten into this state eagerly look forward to my “On This Day” postings, reminders of this day one year ago, two years ago, and further back. Lately, it has become increasingly hard. The photos from a year ago remind me that I was about eight weeks pregnant. Family and close friends knew, but the world at large did not. My smile hid a delicious secret. It was a summer of nausea in June, relaxation in July, fear in August, and loss in September.
I am reminded of an event I attended last summer with some friends. One asked me if we were going to find out the gender. I responded that we were having a girl. I was restrained, even then, responding that I would be more excited when the nausea subsided. Always restrained, muted, protected, even with no reason to be.
So this has become a summer of repair. Focus on the house, and routine, and control when everything else is beyond my control. I had already planned on the things I “couldn’t do” because I was supposed to be pregnant/have a newborn. Instead, I’m throwing myself into everything I had set aside.
Last summer, the kids switched day care locations – same school, different town. Today, the first official day of summer camp, I was greeted by a teacher from their old school, who will be with them for the summer months. My excitement to see her was replaced with a pit in my stomach. At this time last year, last time I saw her, I was 8 weeks pregnant. She was aware of my pregnancy due to my excited children. Would she ask me about the baby, completely unaware? I prayed that she had the good sense not to say anything. Or maybe she’d forgotten.
That is this summer. Who knows what next will bring. I can’t even bring myself to look that far ahead.