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Thoughts of DOOOOOOM

I feel like I’m surrounded by death. I found a dead chipmunk in my yard a few days ago, so perfect and sweet, but dead. On my walk to school yesterday, I discovered that two massive old oak trees had been cut down in a yard along my route–trees that I loved for the glorious shade they provided during the more scorching days of summer, and their astonishingly beautiful canopies filled with birds and squirrels. Tomorrow’s the two-year anniversary of my father’s death, and I got two e-mails today notifying me that someone I know has died. And I keep thinking, when my baby dies during or shortly after birth, these will seem like omens.

I have a feeling that frequent and extremely vivid thoughts of stillbirth and neonatal death are common at this time. And it’s not like we don’t all know tons of people to whom these things have actually happened. So in addition to revisiting these stories and imaging them happening to me, I consider practical questions like whether I will commit suicide or continue living for my husband. Or if maybe we’ll just kill ourselves together? Decisions, decisions.

I know that there is no reason to think Bun Bun won’t be okay. All signs (including the four or five elbows poking out of my belly right now) point to a healthy fetus, and a c-section is a pretty safe mode of delivery. I also know that there’s no point in becoming hysterically paranoid about the safety of my child, or I’ll pretty much never be able to stop. Maybe this is just one of those manifestations of the anxiety that comes when you are about to step through a door into a new world. But…it’s also hard to believe that something so wonderful as a real live Bun Bun in my arms could actually happen. So feel free to offer me some reassurance.

23 Comments Post a comment
  1. I am de-lurking, never having posted here before. I had a ton of infertility blogs on my RSS feed while we were trying for my second baby, but we are done now (#2 was born in January). I kept all of three IF blogs on my RSS, and you're one of them! I so want to see you have a cute little Bun Bun, and am sending all kinds of good thoughts your way. It was scary, pushing out a baby (even the second one, I had anxieties about that one too!) but you just don't think about it while you're in the middle of it. And all of those doctor-types know what they are doing, too.Marie

    April 20, 2011
  2. cgd #

    I hate it when my head goes to these dark and gloomy places for no good reason, although I am glad to hear that BunBun is doing well. You are in the home stretch (for real!!!) hang in thereI will be thinking of you tomorrow on this sad anniversary

    April 20, 2011
  3. No, not doom, not doom. Omens don't exist, for one thing – that is just our minds attaching meaning to things where there is none. And if that doesn't convince you: guess what, I am seeing a pair of magpies right now which mean JOY, so that cancels out your omens. I know this – I am Irish, and we are mystical, so there you go. Truly, bunny, the odds are massively in your favour. Nothing bad has happened yet, right? Grief and anxiety are affecting your thinking, which it's only natural (if most painful). Be well, you three. You will be. All will be well.

    April 20, 2011
  4. Those dark places are hard not to escape to once in a while. You've been trained for it by IF! BunBun is doing swimmingly and I'm sure all will continue going well. It must. Because I demand it.

    April 20, 2011
  5. Living Bun Bun on the way! For sure! Because everyone knows that four- to five-elbowed creatures are heartier than their two-elbowed counterparts. It is rough when there seems to be a lot of death around us all at once, though, isn't it? Keep going full steam ahead, Bunny; this one's a liver. Er…a live-er. You get what I mean. And coming so soon!

    April 20, 2011
  6. Hang in there – I'm sure these last few are hard to get through without being super nervous, especially after everything you've gone through. But that little one is going to come out blazing – you just wait and see!!!

    April 20, 2011
  7. I know how you feel having just been there, hang in there, do your kick counts and everything will be OK! Also stay away from the Internet and blogs on loss.

    April 20, 2011
  8. AL #

    I feel you on the holy-crap-this-is-way-too-good-to-be-true-and-won't-actually-happen-to-me front. Having a real live baby is way too much of a miracle to actually believe it's really happening. I haven't let my mind wander to actual causes of demise and I refuse to read any blogs on infant loss or late term loss…Bun bun is going to arrive safe and sound in about two weeks…I can't wait 🙂

    April 20, 2011
  9. JB #

    I know from my fertile friends that having scary "dead baby" thoughts in the last few weeks is common and makes one prone to hyperanalyze every movement, any minute change in movement, every twinge, etc. Infertility just amplifies this shittiness. Now knowing that doesn't make the fear any less shitty, so let me say this: chances are better-than-excellent (or, as we like to say in the academic world of goodness superlatives, "outstanding") that Bun Bun is absolutely fine and just waiting patiently to be born in a couple of weeks. So, stay away from Evil Dr. Google who knows NOTHING, SO NOTHING TO SEE HERE, and enjoy the last couple of weeks with Mr. Bunny doing bunny-type things as a couple. Because soon, you will parents. PARENTS!Also, good omens: Cinco de Mayo! The day before my birthday!

    April 20, 2011
  10. I was just reading the other day that the freakolattamus, a brain structure newly detected by neuroscientists, gets particularly activated at this point in a woman's pregnancy (they are in fact not yet sure if men have this brain structure). It releases a hormone that launches a massive response from the adrenal glands, and stress increases. In about 93.64% of pregnant women who participated in an MRI study, thoughts of delivering a stillborn or thoughts of their baby finding a neonatal demise were reported. As you can see, your feelings are entirely normal. Bun bun will be fine. I just know it. I can see him/her wiggling away, breathing, crying, and doing all kinds of infant things very soon. Like, starting May 5th.

    April 21, 2011
  11. I think murder-suicide is the way to go, but you'll have to decide who performs which role.Bun Bun will be fine, but I totally understand why you are scared. I would be/will be too. And I'm sure if/when I get to that stage, I'll look back at this post and think, "See, Bunny felt the same way and everything turned out okay for her." And then I'll feel better.

    April 21, 2011
  12. i think it's perfectly natural to have these crazy thoughts towards the end of pregnancy. i'm having some too, and it's just making the days go by slower and sloooooower … bun bun is going to be here, kicking and screaming before you know it!! enjoy these last days of (hopefully) restful sleep :o) xoxo.

    April 21, 2011
  13. I went thru the same EXACT same crescendo of impending doom feelings while on bedrest and it totally and completely sucks. I didn't even believe we could get so long during the ride to the hospital while I was in labor!! It wasn't until hubs assured me that both babies had passed their Apgar tests and were 100% healthy that I finally BELIEVED this was going to end in fairy tale fashion. The doctors and nurses were all right all along: there really were two perfect healthy babies coming. The same is true of BunBun. Promise promise promise. xoxoxox

    April 21, 2011
  14. I recently read an interesting quote by Erica Lyon: "When we give birth for the first time, there is a death. Immediate and sudden." Not a physical death, obviously, but a death of identity, or at the very least, a switching of one identity for another. I'm too far away from this reality to fully understand it, but when I read those words they made sense to me. You're not going to be exactly the same person afterwards that you were before. (I'd also like to point out that the "Death" card in a tarot deck doesn't necessarily mean death at all, but change.)Anyway, all that philosophy mumbo-jumbo aside, it sounds like you've had a tough week of news and anniversaries. Not ideal when childbirth is imminent. I do also think, though, that feelings of doom at this point have got to be natural…you are getting ever nearer the reality of that change. But the reality will be: a beautiful, living and healthy Bun Bun. And a healthy (if exhausted) Bunny Mama.

    April 21, 2011
  15. There are a lot of big "what-ifs" as you get closer to the big day, and if it were me, knowing the exact date ahead of time would have amplified everything. But you have to believe that BunBun is going to be perfect. Healthy and screaming and worth every moment of worry. I'm getting so excited for you!

    April 22, 2011
  16. I counter your chipmunk with my 8wk belly. I honor your trees with the daffodils poking up through the snow a few days ago. I recognize the loss of your father and your friend with you. I promise they are not omens.

    April 22, 2011
  17. Bunny, its not gloomy of you to have these thoughts. I think it just shows your big heart and your love for bun bun. Plus having the anniversary of your fathers passing coming up has to help you reflect on how precious life really is. I hope you were able to remember your dad in a special way, you know he'd be so proud of you.xxx

    April 22, 2011
  18. I STILL don't believe how lucky I am and my babies are 8 weeks old! However, when you have the real thing right in front of you, screaming, pooping, barfing, smiling, cooing, laughing…it gets a bit easier to accept that it's really happening :)I know exactly how you're feeling, but little Bun Bun is just fine and soon enough you'll have him/her in your arms to prove it!

    April 23, 2011
  19. Reassurance coming your way… in the form of your comments on my blog 🙂 I think its completely normal that we're both feeling this way so close to the big day. I wake up every single morning now thinking … another day – I can do this without totally freaking out. It's hard as hell and, by the sounds of it, a totally normal way to be feeling right now. But I feel really hopeful that we'll both be blogging in a few weeks time about our perfect children and how amazed we are at the wonder and priviledge of being parents. We're almost there bunny… less than 2 weeks for you to go. You can do this!

    April 23, 2011
  20. I can't imagine how nerve wracking it must be, but you are so nearly there. It will be fine and you'll have a beautiful baby.Sorry to hear that you lost a friend recently.

    April 24, 2011
  21. N #

    Hang in there. I felt the same way. It sucks. Your little bunbun will be here soon. Actually, when I had my first I had this feeling within a day that I needed another baby, so that if anything happened to my first, I wouldn't kill myself. Kind of a weird thought to have. My husband, was like WTF, you just got home from the hospital, enjoy your baby. Lots of crazy love and hormones. BTW- I have learned that crying tears of joy after a c-section = bad painful idea. But so does barfing, sneezing, laughing, and coughing. Sneezing definitely the worst.

    April 25, 2011
  22. Oh Bunny, I am sure this is completely normal for the stage that you are at. You will be fine. Bun Bun will arrive safe and sound. In fact, due to the schedule notice you posted, I imagine Mr Bunny will dutifully post a notice by 8am. All will be well. I live in the future, so I know.

    April 25, 2011
  23. Hey Doom girl how's it going? Have you had a surprise baby in the past week? Dontcha know it's ruuuude to go all quiet on your blog just before your baby is due – this stalker wants news!I had horrific nightmares about deadbabies in the couple of weeks leading up to tLG's arrival – he's a thriving (and annoyingly cute) 7-almost-8-year-old now. You guys'll be fine! If not, then my vote's for murder-suicide.N's so kind not mentioning the post-c-section-poo – that's definitely an awesome experience.

    April 27, 2011

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