So, I did go to the christening. I tried to find a convenient excuse; I was dragging my heels, but I went. There was no way around it really. We had declined numerous times on previous occasions.
Christmas party where baby # 3 was weeks old, baby # 3’s christening, housewarming where the friend’s wife was 8 months pregnant with # 4, Christmas party where baby # 4 was weeks old. So, I knew this may have been the last invitation extended our way. We went in and walked around, trying to find a familiar face. I doubted that there would be anyone their I knew and that didn’t help my reluctance to be there. It’s always hard to be married to a blind man at his friends parties. People don’t always come to him and he can’t really point people out. So, I sometimes am forced to do a desperate attempt at conversation with people he may or may not know. From the time he sat down, he kept asking if I was okay.
Anyway, I really talked to no one but the friend and his wife. The other women in the room all had kids with them and it left me a little tongue tied. I am one of those people who can usually speak to anyone. However, I couldn’t find a way around, "do you have kids?" I thought since the baby was 5.5 months that he’d be the youngest one there. He wasn’t and numerous other party guests had infants younger. I was surprised at how well I did. I desperately wanted to hold the baby, but was afraid to ask. She didn’t offer, probably because I was being weird that afternoon.
I went, I saw, I retreated.
My husband told me he was proud of me. By the time we walked out the door I could hardly breathe. I was glad for the rain and the thunder because it made it easier to let the sobs out and the tears down.
It seems to start slowly. Sometimes I just feel like an anesthetic has been pumped into my system. Sunday, I helped a mom with an infant get her cart cozy situated. I talked to her for 5-10 minutes, helping get the thing in the front of the cart, touching her son’s feet enough to get his legs in the foot holes. I was okay. She seemed grateful, as she explained that her husband had bought it and used it. She had no idea how exactly it fit in the cart. Anyway, I was okay. I didn’t wince at the sight of the baby or roll my eyes at his mom. I didn’t get wistful or well up with tears.
Four days later I’m crying so hard in my car that I think, honestly, that I may choke on my own tears because I can’t get enough air into my lungs.
It was a baby boy outfit. Size 9 months, khaki overall shorts with a striped / bug design onesie. I just kept walking around the store, clutching the outfit and the toy I found (that almost matched the design). I felt like I was in a daze. Had anyone tried to take the things out of my arms I probably would have collapsed on the floor. Can I really make it through a christening party on Sunday?
I am disappointed. I was excited about the prospect of being indifferent.
I hope those of you who have been lucky enough to move on, enjoy the day. I’m figuring out a way to get through it. Trying to be happy daughter (in law) and ignoring that once again there’s no celebration on this day.
I keep waiting to be completely numb. There are times I can feel it creep in. Like when your foot starts to fall asleep. However, I can’t seem to numb myself enough to not feel these painful days. It’s not the first time I’m moving back into frustration.
Sometimes I go for days without thinking about it, because things are so chaotic here. But all these trips to school leave me looking wistfully at the moms in the playground. All this time wandering around these small towns my husband’s teaching in and I run into pregnant people everywhere. Their strollers overrun my neighborhood. And I don’t feel prepared yet. For the summer events where everyone asks questions, the weddings and graduation parties, etc.
I never realized how hard this day can be for so many people. People who have lost their mom I’m sure have a hard time. I’m sorry for that. For women who lose a child, whenever that loss takes place. The world is not always a happy freakin’ Hallmark commercial and I wish that the people closest to me could really see it. They’re so wrapped in themselves that they won’t even see the tears waiting in the wings today. I just hope I can keep them at bay until I get home tonight.