I’m sure every parent, or parent-to-be, worries about what would happen if something happened to them, or to their partner. How do you cope with such a tremendous loss? How do the children? Will they get the care and attention they need? Will our families step in to help enough?
Even though the odds are against it, they are very real fears.
And like Brandon said, holding me very close, “Statistics don’t matter when it happens to you.”
He knows this because he lost his mom to a brain aneurysm when he was just six years old.
I cannot really even comprehend what that kind of loss is like.
When he and I met, a little over two decades later, it was still pretty obvious just how deeply he had been affected. Things like a headache, which had seemed so insignificant to me, caused him a lot of stress and worry. Little by little, though, he learned to trust me, and my desire to take care of my body; and I learned to communicate through the triggers to make sure he knew I was ok.
Now there’s no guarantee that nothing bad will happen to either of us, or even both of us. This is reality. I know my own imagination has little swirls of ‘what if’ popping up here and there, wondering how the birth will go, among many other things. But I keep reminding myself that these things are out of my hands, and honestly, stressing myself out only increases the likelihood of a complication. And somehow, even my normal control-freak self has managed to buy it. No matter what happens to me, now or down the road, someone will always be there for Brandon… and for Nora.
The silliest part is, for the past few weeks, I’ve been avoiding talking about this with Brandon. I was convinced that he hadn’t thought about those things yet, and I didn’t want to put the idea in his head. Really, I’m that naive sometimes. Even though he’d been acting a little cranky lately, I believed him when he said it was just working on the house, or juggling finances or some other lame excuse that I wanted to hear. Thankfully though, tonight we talked about it. I tried to pep-talk him out of his fears, but eventually I just broke down into tears.
I wanted so badly to promise that he would never have to deal with that kind of pain again, but I just couldn’t. That’s not the way these things go. But I did promise that he would always have everything he needs, like he did growing up with his dad and grandparents, my family would always be there to help him. Hopefully though, we will have many, many years of joy and sometimes torment with each other and our growing family. And by the way he held me, I think Brandon knew that this would be enough.
So tonight I will sleep with peace, tomorrow remind myself of how lucky I am, and keep moving forward, having faced the hardest part.