…was March 21st. I know this because I spent much of the day in a small town Wisconsin hospital with my mother waiting to have surgery. A surgery to officially end my third child’s existence as part of me. It wasn’t the best day, obviously. Our baby was 20 weeks gestation, but an ultrasound (& subsequent post-mortem) showed our baby to have stopped growing sometime around 16weeks, maybe 17. I had been to my OB-GYN between 16 & 20 weeks at some point (math is fuzzy now) & our baby was alive with a heartbeat at that time. But then, on Good Friday Eve-Maunday Thursday-I started bleeding & never stopped. I refused to look at the ultrasound screen the next day, on Good Friday. I knew what it showed before I even laid back on the table. I stared at the wall in that dark room & bit my tongue, trying with everything I had not to cry. The ultrasound tech never said a word, but held my hand. My mother sat in the waiting room during the scan. Brian was still down in Iowa at school. I was visiting my parents for Easter along with my children, Coralee who was in kindergarten & Merritt who was going to turn 3 soon. Such a strange day. It was sunny when I entered the clinic that morning & by the time my surgery was over & I was discharged, my mother & I walked out into an evening of gently falling snow. And it was beautiful. And I can still see it perfectly all these years later. Beautiful white flakes filling the air. Like the world wasn’t crashing down on me. Like I was supposed to stop & recognize there was still beauty out there.
I bought the baby alpaca green yarn that makes up the vest Harmon is wearing in the above photo when I was pregnant with my 2008 Good Friday baby-who, incidentally, had a due date of MY birthday, August 8th. I thought the due date was a sign this baby was meant to be! Harmon has worn this little vest I knit with yarn for his special sibling many times. I snapped these photos of him just before Christmas last year.
I remember buying this yarn. I was so happy. I loved the color. I loved how soft it was; Blue Sky Alpacas is dreamy for sure. I often thought about throwing the yarn out after that Good Friday. I think I may have thrown some of it away, but I kept a couple skeins wound & unknit for a long time. When I was pregnant with June I knit some of it up into this vest. I don’t think June wore the vest but once, if that…this is Harmon’s vest. I like to think it’s keeping our baby’s memory present. At least with me.
So three years after that horrid Good Friday I gave birth to a living baby, our June Belle. Yes, on the same day! March 21st surprised me again. That’s got to mean something…
Good Friday will forever be something of a conundrum to me. Holy Week is tricky, too. It’s both the worst of life & the best. Which is scary true on so many levels I get chills thinking about it. I feel like I have a special connection to Mary, Jesus’s mother. I really do. I also lost a child on Good Friday. But then I was gifted another three years later on the same date. So, I want to say, Good morning on this goodest of Fridays. It is a Good day. And thank you for indulging my thoughts here on this little blog. May your Friday be Good as well.
P.S. Thank you, Mom. xxo