It's Okay, I'm Used To It.

February 10, 2018

By Sanda Rathamone




"Oh Susanna, don't you cry for me. I come from Alabama with a banjo on my knee." 
As we approached the entrance to the Dollar Tree, a man asked my husband for some change or a dollar. My husband said something like, "Sorry, I don't have anything." He really meant it, he was down on his last dollar.

Walking away towards the automatic sliding glass doors, the man yells something like, "Yes, you do! You have free love!" I'm going to make a guess that he was complimenting us as a couple. 

When we were in the check-out line, I was tempted to grab a pregnancy test. I've always wondered if those dollar tests actually work. Because if they do, then I have spent so much on First Response, that you could call me ridiculous! I have thrown away those sticks more than I have ever thought I would. Plus, they're probably not good for the environment either... 

On our way out, my husband starts reaching for his wallet and hands the man his last dollar. He then says something like, "Thank you! You guys are having a baby huh?!"

I wasn't sure what to say; it was unexpected! Although he did put a smile on my face and I replied with an excited, "Maybe!" and kept walking. 

He yelled, "Name her after the both of you!" 

"A couple that prays together, stays together!"  

In the car, we thought it was a sign and felt giddy over what the man had said. I mean... I was a little over a month late on my period and have been feeling tingly and achy sensations in my breasts and nipples for the past few days. Yet, a part of me thought not to confuse myself because achy breasts were also a sign of a period in the coming days. Then again, my periods take their sweet and precious time to arrive...

I remembered how achy breasts and ultra sensitive nipples were one of those very early pregnancy symptoms. Oh how the shower would torture the nipples!! 

Unfortunately, premenstrual symptoms are really hard to differentiate with early pregnancy and I really do hate it! I hate it because the only way to tell if I'm not pregnant is a period or a negative pregnancy test. Symptoms do absolutely nothing for me. 

On our drive home, I told my husband that I have been seeing the name, "Susanna" here and there. I have told him before that the name reminds me of us. (I thought of Susanna for a girl before we knew Elijah was a boy.) "Sou" is his childhood name and would be the "Su" part and my name, Sanda, would be the "sanna" part. It was like Susanna was the perfect combination of us! Not to mention how my name is actually a combination of my parent's name...

Wasn't it the perfect name, like the man had said about naming her after us? And, where did he get "her" from anyway? He didn't say, "girl or boy," he said, "her," which made it all the more interesting... 

Before getting out of the car, my husband tries to touch a part of my belly...

Could what the man had said be true? 

We have been thinking about having a girl. Though just after losing Elijah, all I could think about was having another boy. It has now been long enough after loss that I am open to the possibility of a girl... 

This morning, I woke up with my husband telling me his dream. 

He said, “I had a dream that you took a pregnancy test at night and it was negative. I thought it was weird because you’re supposed to do it in the morning? Right?” 

I didn’t know what to say, I couldn’t say anything... last night we were just talking about naming a girl. 

I laid in bed for another couple of hours and got up because I started feeling cramps. I knew that something was wrong. I saw a little spot on the comforter and hoped that it wasn’t true. I looked at my husband and tried to smile, quietly went to the bathroom with a new pair of underwear. 

I looked at this dark spot on the fabric of my underwear and felt so disillusioned. Here comes that cyclical roller coaster of hope again. The hope and excitement from last night was wiped from underneath me and flushed away - like literally. I wiped, froze, and flushed. 

I knew it. 

I was bleeding.

I wasn’t pregnant. 

There was no baby. No baby to hopefully name, “Susanna.”

I washed my face and brushed my teeth for as long as I could. I wanted to scrub all of my feelings away, so that my husband wouldn’t notice the hopelessness and expectations in my eyes. I tried so hard not to cry. Because why cry when a part of me knew that I wasn’t. Because there were many times that I have felt this and gone through it that crying wasn’t going to do anything. 

I walked back to our bedroom. I had on a new pair of underwear and a pad, and closed the door. I looked at my husband and told him that there was a reason why he had that dream. 

“Because I’m on my period.” 

He said, “I’m sorry, babe.” And hugged me. 

With a shrug, a simple “It’s okay" was what came out of my mouth. Like it was nothing. 

I wasn’t sure if I had felt his disappointment. I wasn’t sure if he was really sorry. I remembered that weeks ago, he had just told me of how he wasn’t ready for another baby, which made me even more disillusioned with myself and this stupid hope for a baby. 

He was out of the room for a little while and as I was getting things ready for the day, all I wanted to do was throw things and kick the wall. I wanted to feel anger, but I couldn’t. All I felt was an emptiness; I no longer had the feelings of disappointment because I had reached the limit, MY LIMIT. I had reached a point to where I have become used to it, used to pain. 

How many times did I have to be disappointed to be happy? 

As I was getting dressed, he stopped me and asked for a hug. We hugged for what it seemed a long while. I tried so hard not to cry on his shoulders, I didn’t want him to see how I had really felt. Then again, one part of me felt numb, nothing. 

On our way to his nieces’s first birthday party, he asks with a hopeful voice: 

“It’s not implantation bleeding?” 

“No.” 

There were too many times that I had hoped that it was just implantation bleeding. And I had heard from somewhere inside of him that he had hoped, too.

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