It’s late summer 2020. The house is quiet and dark and I’m awake. Jordan is asleep beside me and the girls are tucked in across the house, their little girl hair sprayed across their pillows, their chests rising and falling slowly, rhythmically. I have visited them a few times already to kiss their cheeks and whisper prayers of thanks and protection over them. I’m so grateful for these people - my husband and my children. I love them so much it terrifies me. That’s a new feeling, the fear - like a fog that always hovers just over top of every moment of motherhood now, of life.
I’m only a few months out from feeling my whole life spiral out of control when Bonnie was rushed into emergency surgery for a septic joint. For weeks words like “could be cancer, could become septic, could lose the leg” were lobbed at me while I floated somewhere outside of reality. And the toll her illness took on my emotional, mental, and spiritual life still reverberates my insides in ways that sneak up on me. It is the closest I have ever come to my world crumbling and running through my fingers like sand. It was the first time in my life that I was the real grown up, the decider. The one everyone looked to for what we would do next. I was the one at the center of her care. - the one the doctors looked at first when they came in the room. It was the closest I’ve ever come to crushing pain. To losing what I love the most. I didn’t. She was fine after all of it. She doesn’t remember any of it. But I’ll never be the same. And tonight, months later, here we are in the the thick of a COVID surge. So right now, lately, I don’t sleep well.
After I check again that everyone is safe in the quiet dark, I stare at the fire alarm light blinking blue on the ceiling. A secret thought is running through my mind and I don’t understand it. It’s a whisper I can only hear in the quietest most secret place in my heart. But it’s scary because I know now in ways I didn’t understand before that this desire would be my greatest joy, but also could be the source of my deepest sorrow if I ever lost it. I want another baby.