Today is your due date. Of course being the crazy birth junkie your mama is, I call it a guess date. Had you not been born at 17 weeks and you made it to full term you would most likely have chosen your own birthday anyway.
But time is important to your mama, and milestones are important to we silly humans. I’ve always thought it a nice gesture God gives us time when it is meaningless to Him… But I digress.
Today is for warm. 77 degrees, bright blue skies, and windy. The sun is out and your big brother Captain and your big sister Mamitas have played in the backyard all day. Your little sibling, our sweet little rainbow blessing, tucked safely in my womb, is making his or her presence known by making me moan away with nausea, headaches, and an aversion to any food that isn’t a cheeto. I’ve parented from a horizontal position all day. Papa just came home. He’s worked hard all day and just came home early to help me with your energetic siblings…
He came over to kiss and hold me and we cried a few seconds before your big brother and sister jumped on papa’s back and started talking about the cat and how many deals did papa make today and did papa bring home food. And then we watched a hummingbird drink nectar from our lemon blossoms while Captain hid behind us and asked if it was a bee, and I was reminded that grieving when children are around is done in spurts, in between kissing owies, making meals, answering questions, wiping bottoms, and nursing thirsty toddlers.
Today would have been so different if it was your birthday. There still would have been pain, tears, emotional upheaval… But there would have been much joy. We would laugh and I would be experiencing your first latch and smelling your sweet little head. I would have been gushing over tiny size 0 diapers and holding your long newborn fingers and sharing your name with the world for the first time.
Of course we know God works all things for good and for His glory. 10,000 people have read your story. People don’t refer to you as my miscarriage, they call you Ezra. Because you were a person and so very real. Your memory is loved and cherished not just by papa and me, but by our friends and family, and even strangers I’ve never met have emailed me and shared their love for you. I wouldn’t have had the same compassion I do now on families who have lost their babies. I wouldn’t have been diagnosed and treated for early stages of endometriosis, which ultimately led to becoming pregnant again… And though this child never could and never will take your place, and though this child will never fill the empty place you’ve left in my heart, I am thankful to not be at your due date with an empty womb, though my arms and heart still feel very empty without you.
It’s been 23 weeks to the day since I held you last. You were beautiful but your skin was so cold I could hardly stand it, I wanted you to be warm and breathing and living and thriving, but it was not meant to be. I wear a chain of green yarn from the blanket I made you around my wrist and it hasn’t come off since you were born. I have two necklaces from my dear friends Ashley and Jessica with your name on them and I wear them and Captain calls them “Wezza necklace” and touches the pendants gently and asks if I’m sad and I miss Wezza. I have a quilt made just to your size from my friend Melody. It sits with my pictures of you and your foot prints. And then of course I have your ashes. It’s all I have left of you physically, and every time I look at that little royal blue bag that holds the box your remains are held in, I can’t believe that you didn’t make it.
Ezra, my sweet boy, you’ve touched my life in such big ways, and while I don’t know why you couldn’t live I know that I miss you. And more than that, I know that I love you. You will always be numbered among my living children because I grew you in my body and I loved you so intensely I can’t go an hour without thinking about you. My beautiful, sleeping baby… Mama loves you.