I had to talk myself through my last prenatal visit because I was unexpectedly triggered just by being there. I’m proud of how I was able to recognize where I was mentally headed and how I was able to regain control over my thoughts and emotions; bringing myself back to my peace. Prenatal visits are supposed to be exciting, right? Especially those that include ultrasounds because you have to opportunity to see your baby and watch her move. You get to point out any noticeable features and debate on who she’s going to look like.
However, when you’re pregnant after loss, it isn’t always that simple.
The further along you get, the further removed you think you should be from any negative thoughts but they find a way to creep in. It may not be the thought of something going wrong with your current pregnancy because that’s not what it was for me. It may just be the memory of the losses of your past. It’s going to the same medical center, looking into the face of the same doctor, hearing her reports of how healthy your baby is but not really hearing her because your mind is rehearsing the last time that she said she couldn’t find a heartbeat in your last baby.
I won’t allow PTSD to hinder our experience with Brielle. I’m learning knew ways to heal and grow, specifically through bonding with her in my belly. Every day that I wake up, I make the conscious decision to celebrate my pregnancy because that’s what my baby girl deserves. She deserves me to be present in this moment, honoring her growth and health and not accompanying it with grief from the past. So I take pictures of her growth as my belly expands. I dance with her inside of me. I talk to her and pray with her. I sing to her and we celebrate every single day as a milestone of its own.
Most people know that music and the Arts have always been a huge part of my life, so I’ve been asked, “What’s in Brielle’s ears?”
Well, her mama for one! We’ve been writing songs together. Though I’ve been doing most of the work, she’s just been doing to inspiring. I’ll tell her to kick if she likes how it sounds. She rarely listens. Who knows if she’s actually engaged. I just like to believe she is.
Ever since I’ve learned that Brielle can now hear in my belly, she’s been listening to Chaka Khan, Ella Fitzgerald, Tasha Cobbs, Adele, Alicia Keys, sermon series from Pastor Mike Todd of Transformation Church and her favorite, Beethoven. Amongst all of these sounds, she leaps to Moonlight Sonata by Beethoven and that’s how I know we have a little musical genius. It’s Classical music that gets her moving the most. It’s said that if a baby hears something enough times while in the womb, she’ll be able to recognize it after birth. If this is true, I look forward to Moonlight Sonata being the remedy to put her down when she needs calming.
I’m thankful for the gift of music because it’s been a great tool pushing me forward in our pregnancy journey; helping me to connect with our baby and build a bond in the womb in spite of the past traumas.
We are here at 25 weeks, just a few weeks shy of my third trimester! I don’t think it’s gotten easier. Instead, I believe I’ve gotten stronger. My faith has gotten stronger and my support system has gotten tighter. That’s why I can look back and wonder where the time has gone. I thought being pregnant after loss would be the longest 40 weeks of my life but each day I refuse anxiety. Each day I am growing through PTSD. Each day I heal a little more.