When it became clear that we had something to worry about, rather than sailing smoothly to a healthy baby, the alarm bells wouldn’t stop their clanging and my inner monologue was a constant shriek of panic. The moments where I felt like I could relax were, unsurprisingly, few and far between. I couldn’t focus on anything but the noise in my head, the constant terror that something was going horribly awry and there was nothing I could do about it.
Now, just over five weeks from our initial diagnosis, the first red flag, and just over three weeks from a goodbye that we didn’t want to have to say…that alarm is down to a low hum, and the monologue is quieter, though still constant. Rather than the paralyzing dread that I felt for weeks on end, this is a quieter sadness, one that has crept in and made itself at home. It’s not going anywhere any time soon, but I appreciate that it’s a less intrusive tenant, one that doesn’t try to get in the way when I find comfort in friends and family, in the idea that happiness hasn’t disappeared, in hope for the future.