I have been blocking a shawl for the last hour. The shawl has sat unblocked since August, but I have derived enormous satisfaction out of pull edges, steaming and pinning, manipulating blocking wires. This I can control.
My neice is laying in a hospital bed in Billings, and my great-niece is coming tomorrow, on a wing and prayer, small for gestational age, 7 weeks early. I have raged and sworn and kicked the front door. I have made phone calls and asked questions. It may be that I am the only person who fires off staccato questions about bio-physical profile numbers and fluid levels and heart beat monitoring.
I am raging.
I have sworn and cursed and howled and in the end, there is nothing I can do. I would get on a plane to Billings, leaving my work cell phone ringing merrily away, but for what?
I stood on my front porch, my phone in hand and I looked up and I swore and I swear still, I cannot live in this world. I cannot understand this world. Just shy of three years ago I laid in a hospital bed, and I begged and I pleaded for mercy, for grace, for a miracle. I wept and I cried and I screamed in my innermost being, and my son died in my arms.
And that ought to be enough tragedy in a single family. My niece and I, between us, have 8 miscarriages, and that ought to be enough tragedy. We have waited and borne and endured long past where anyone would scream for this to end.
And tonight, I find myself begging again. For a child I have never met and has her hands around my heart, and my hands on top of her and I will not let her go.
Hear me now Lord, I may never hold a child of my own again, and I will make my peace with that. I will hold my head up high and I will proclaim your resurrection even still. But please, please Lord, I have walked this path and I have held it together and I have mostly made it through the other end.
Her name is Emma, and she is the child of her mother’s heart and her father’s dreams, and please Lord, don’t take her too. Her mother and I would do whatever you ask of us, and please, don’t ask this. Please, let my son be enough. Let her stay. My words are faint, shouted into the winter’s night, and we have nothing to offer but our entreaties. I can’t even fathom words past please Lord, nononononono. Please.