Five year ago this week, we found out I was pregnant. I was going to be a mom. A mom who’s journey was nothing I ever in a million years expected.
Sometimes I don’t want to be the mom who lost her son. I don’t want to be a member of that club that no one wants to be a part of. No one EVER wants to be part of that club. I want to be the mom who has two kids and they are both here, together. But then that makes me feel horrible, guilty, and like a bad mom. If I wasn’t “that mom” who has gone through what I’ve gone through, then I would not have had the amazing son I had whose path has changed our lives forever.
Since finding out I was going to have another baby, I’ve had these feelings of not knowing where I belong. What I mean by that is, I’m a mom of two. Two boys. And what you hear about a mom of two is that it’s so much harder with the second because of now juggling two kids at the same time. Well, I’m a mom of two kids, but obviously I’m not juggling two kids at the same time. When you have two boys, they wrestle, fight, and argue with each other non stop (any two siblings for that matter, not just boys). I have two boys and that will never ever happen. So, where do I fit in?
I’ve said a couple times that I’m “back in the Mom world”. But did I ever actually leave it? I’ve always felt like a mom, I just haven’t had my child physically here to be a mom to for the last (almost) 2 years. I didn’t have my child here for me to have the responsibility of being a mom to. There were no diapers for me to change or bedtime stories to tell. So, I really wasn’t in the “mom world”. The feelings of being a mom never left. The love for my child sure as hell has always been with me. It’s been an interesting place for me to be in emotionally. I know it will never be easy, but maybe it will get easier to be “that” mom. Maybe? I certainly hope.
If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me while I was pregnant, if this was my first and I had to tell them “no” and then have them ask how old my other child was, I would be a millionaire (or at least a thousandaire). I got to the point of not waiting for them to ask the second part of the question and I would just say “no, I have a son but he passed away a couple years ago”. I know the question will forever be asked in one way or another, and I will continue to answer the same way. But now I wonder how this new baby bear will answer when he gets asked “do you have any siblings?”. Adults will understand when he says he has a big brother in heaven, but will other kids know what he means by that? Will he even know what it means? It’s another facet we are going to have to explore of this journey that I wish I didn’t have to. Another part of being “that mom”. And again, I feel horrible for even saying that. Damn mom guilt.
So, with all that being said, there is one thing I’ve realized recently (literally while laying awake at 4:30am last night/this morning during a nighttime feeding). That one thing is that since having the baby, I have felt more like myself than I have in a REALLY long time. Yes, I’m exhausted, don’t know what day it is, can hardly put a sentence together half the time, but I feel like I am where I should be. I’m in the mom world again and it’s amazing.
While I know there are times when being “a mom who lost her son” is not who I want to be, I have to remember the pride that comes with being “that mom”, and knowing what kind of strength and love goes with that title. I have to remind myself that being a mom to two amazing boys, each in their own special, unique way is what matters the most.
And for now, I will gladly take the dirty diapers, lack of sleep, and smell of spit up to be in this part of the mom world again.