Our neighbor came over recently for a glass of wine. It was the first friend I had seen since the twins’ funeral. Truth be told, I don’t really feel like being around people. I told her about having finally called the doctor to set up the 6-week after appointment. It is something that I kept pushing off. I didn’t want to acknowledge that it was going to be six weeks. I didn’t want to be back in the office where everything was different and still OK. I didn’t want to have the conversation with the doctor about what happened, only to find out there are no answers…again. Or to talk about options, next steps or the idea of trying one more time. Yet I knew that this check up is important to make sure my body is healing properly. So I made the call, and through tears left a message, and then cried my way through a conversation with the nurse to schedule the appointment. That appointment is today. 7 weeks and 1 day later. And I’m terrified.
There’s the anticipation of going to the office. This was a weekly routine that Double A and I had down pat. While we had sworn off superstitions this time around, one thing we did every time was park on Bing Crosby. It was the 6th level of the parking garage, and after finding a space there during our initial appointments where we had received good news, Bing, singing Sweet Georgia Brown, brought us some comfort when we were scared or unsure as to what was happening as we moved forward. Now our memory of Bing is that of me doubled over in a wheelchair faced with the intense pain of contractions and the panic of if our babies were alright.
In speaking with the nurse, I made sure to take some precautionary and protective measures for us. We’re scheduled to go today when there won’t be any blissfully happy pregnant ladies in the waiting room. And I specifically asked her to let the ladies at the front desk know what happened so we aren’t faced with having to answer any awkward questions. Yet I know that walking those halls, and being in that space will bring back a flood of memories and new waves of grief.
But back to my neighbor. She told me about how months after her father passed away, her mother was trying to get back to her “normal” routine. Part of this routine included a 5-mile walk she once did every day. When she finally was up for it, she found she couldn’t get through it. Not the physical aspect of it, but the mental. Her friend told her that she had to change her routine, which in this case, meant changing the route she walked. That was now the route from her previous life. A life that still existed, but now in memory only. Life now was different.
I realized that I’ve been craving to change our routine. Only it isn’t anything specific, rather various aspects of life overall. First it was clothing. One of the initial things I did was of course to give back all borrowed maternity clothes, and push all that I had purchased to the back of my closet. But I felt this urge to clear out my closet and start fresh. I guess like I said in this post, maybe if I didn’t look like myself, I don’t have to be me. Too bad our bank account wouldn’t support this complete overhaul.
I find that I want to change other things too. I look around the house and ask Double A if we should paint the second bedroom. If we should get a new duvet cover for our room? How about we change out the shower curtain and towels in the bathroom? I’ve changed my music and what I can watch on TV or movies. We talk about moving, either locally or someplace far away, but we know running away isn’t the answer. That said, there’s something about the idea of changing out the old, of what our life once was, with things that don’t remind us of what our life has become.
I realize that none of these changes will actually change what has happened. None of these changes will bring back our babies, wipe out the hurt or actually make us feel better. Yet at the same time, I know that incorporating some changes and new routines are going to be what is going to enable us to move forward and carry on.
So today we will take my friend’s advice and change up our doctor’s office routine as best we can. There will be no Bing, rather a cold walk from my work parking space. We will still have to enter the hospital and walk those halls, but as Double A reminds me, we will do so, together. Today, we will be forced to face the realities of what was, what is, and what may not be. But that’s a post for later. For right now, we have to find the strength, courage and determination to walk out the door.