Hello, Strong Mommas and Inquisitive Guests! KuKd Survivor Tribe Members Unite!
KuKd is, simply put, getting knocked up and knocked down through miscarriage, sometimes bizarrely referred to as "spontaneous abortion," stillbirth, termination (yes, a lovely word...call it "interruption" if you'd prefer), or other infant death through yucky medical disasters. Since one in three pregnancies ends in such a way, there is a much more extensive tribe of KuKd females than most people think. We look like ordinary humans, like that chick from from Species; no physical identifying traits, no special code names (although I do propose a secret palm-tickling handshake).
Let me say this up front: I'm not a wallow in misery kind of person - at least I don't want to be one. I do relish the occasional wallowing-and-nose blowing session and sympathetic remark, but - inspired by the beautiful Kris Carr (that CrazySexyCancer blog queen) - this is not a wallow in misery kind of blog. Getting through my own KuKd without allowing it to harm my inner core has been a key priority of mine. Ten months after my own Ultimate Shitty Event, I wouldn't say I'm totally over it, but I've done a lot of thinking lately and have nailed down some key elements that have helped me HEAL, or at least get closer to it every day. At risk of sounding like a preachy-ass bitch, let me outline them below:
HOARD: that handful of superhumans who remain after everyone else has moved on, who continue to ask how I'm doing, who honestly want to hear my answer (the long version), and who encourage me to keep writing my book. They look me in the eye as I'm talking, without interjecting with some comment about how their hamster just miscarried too (how awful!). They're a rarity, those friends and family members (they know who they are), so I'm hanging on to them for dear life, milking the hell out of them, snorting them like crack cocaine, fully and unabashedly reveling in the fact that they still feel deliciously, juicily sorry for me. Bring it on! And I'm learning not to feel bitter toward the others, not that I'm not still astounded that the entire fucking world doesn't quit their jobs, stay home all day, every day, forever and ever, and sob over the loss of my and Kevin's baby(ies).
EMBRACE my childless self, the me that I was before becoming a Mom, the one I am now, having been shaped further by being KuKd. Okay, so this whole baby-having thing didn't work out, and might never work out. So I didn't satisfy my own sick desire to contribute a miniature-me to the world, at least not this time (and honest to god, how many more babies do we really need anyway?). I'm figuring out ways to be okay with that, such as using my dog as an esteem-booster instead of a child, going on every weird and rustic vacation I can think of with Kevin, and exploiting my own personal trauma by writing a dang book. That sure as hell wouldn't happen if I had a rugrat to attend to.
ALLOW sadness when it comes. I was a Mom. I suffered a whole huge bitch-ass loss, let me just put that out there. I feel melancholy sometimes, guilty as charged, and we permanently keep a role of toilet paper by our bedside for when the tear damn cracks. So sue me.
LET go. The last, most brutally difficult aspect of HEALing and surviving, and possibly the most important element, has been letting go of this life of motherhood that I had planned out for myself. I'm not totally there, but I'm getting there. It means letting go of my prego friends, mommy groups, baby clothes, resistance to eating tuna, baby name books, all that crap that once consumed me. I've tossed them out, stashed them away. It helps to walk over the 92nd st. bridge near my house, look down at the permanent snake of unmoving cars on I-5 south and the identical, grim-faced adults sitting alone in those cars, and realize that the two little ones I've lost wouldn't be little forever. Eventually, they would have just turned into a couple of bland, white adults sitting in and contributing to Seattle's wretched traffic scene. Just two more ordinary average people to consume useless electronics and take up space. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.