A Letter to the Little Warrior who Remains

My fingers jab at the keyboard with no real reason other than to soothe. To be here, to type, to bring some normalcy into a day that is everything but.

“Of the five that made it to day 5, 1 passed the genetic screening.”

It’s a little girl, my warrior, the one who is ready to be ours.

But right now I’m grieving the loss of our other 4. Those who died before they met their momma and daddy. I wish I could’ve given them a home for at least a few weeks, so they knew they were loved and hoped for, so they knew I would endure the most gut-wrenching of life’s experiences to give them whatever chance they had.

So we could have been there when you left us, instead of in a sterile room with scientists.

Instead, I’m staring at a computer screen with flooded eyes and a wrecked heart, trying to put into words what is — inevitably — one of those redefining moments in life: what I thought I knew before now is wrong and the truth makes everything else seem so insignificant.

Because I lost 4 of you today.

And I lost a whole lot of me, too.

Will this ruin my marriage, the one everyone thought dreams were made of? Can we cope with the damage this will have done to us?

Can I endure another egg retrieval to be sure your sister has a sibling, even though the last one ended with a blood transfusion and weeks of pain management?

Will your sister who is safe — a snowflake — make it through the thaw and attach to my uterus when the time comes?

How can all of the testing, all of the time and energy and blood draws and injections and bloating and pain and tears and frustrations lead to more?

If your sister makes it, will I be able to look at her without thinking of you all? Will she get the love she deserves from a mom who knows how to be present? Or will she be a constant reminder of the rest of you, my angel babies?

I wrestle with those questions by writing about them, letting them exist in the world for others to read and judge and do what they need with. I grieve you, my darlings, but I won’t let your existence go unremembered.

You were the first to make me a momma. You were the first to give me a sliver of what I hope someday to hold in my arms, the eyes and soul of a child staring up at me…like I’m home.