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To Birth or Not to Birth,
THAAT is the question. . . ..

by Sandy Colby

19 Jul 1998

Those of us that have had this wretched 'thing' called SIDS happen in our lives, have been here _at LEAST_ once or twice.

"Oh my God!! What have we done?" Pregnancy is 'supposed to' be HaPpY! hApPy! Why then, do I feel so bloody guilty? Why am I so stinking afraid of it? Why am I so-oo-oo apprehensive about HAVING another child?
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? W H Y ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

The thought processes of contemplating a birth are 'supposed' to be HaPpY! hApPy! Why then, am I so hesitant about pursuing another pregnancy? Why do I _not_ look forward to another child?
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? W H Y ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

I am able to understand these thoughts really well!! No, neither of you are CrAzY!! Just 'normal' for a person that has had a child die.

After Renae died, I had a LOT of people encouraging me to 'sort through' Renae's things. I told them I wasn't doing anything with anything. ["Buh Bye, now!! Buh Bye!"] They thought it was okay for the first month or so. . . .BUT after their self perceived allotted amount of time I could or rather 'should' grieve was over, they were more persistent about my going through things and taking care of them.

How could I move on? Was I 'supposed' to 'move on' so quickly? How I could I? How could I even consider having another child since she died?

Those questions went through my mind in 1988 when our son, Isaac Matthew was born. They were somewhat 'alleviated' when we had a son. My thinking at the time was, "I kill little girls, not boys." even though _I_ didn't 'kill' Renae. She died because of SIDS. Not me. I was a _good_ Momma. During this pregnancy well meaning people, trying to assure me of something good, said, "We just know that you'll have another girl to replace the one you lost." Replace? Lost?

Our children that died aren't replaceable like a lightbulb that burned out. They were individuals with individual personalities. We didn't 'lose' them like the car keys or that missing left shoe hidden obstinately under the bed.

There's where the paradox of having or not having another child comes from. We don't want to forget these precious little angels that were once so alive and so wonderful in our lives. We feel as though that might happen if we 'move on' and have another child. As though we were untrue, unfaithful to them and their memory. But, that's just not true!!

Working through pregnancy is rather precarious. Will _this_ one go through to full term? [I've had 2 miscarriages-12/5/93, 5/24/97] Will it live pa-a-a-ast our angel's 'anniversary' date? Will we go in one day, just to find the child dead?

I don't have any easy answers. I just know that I've done this high wire thing two times and onto the third time, since we just had another child 5/19/98--a little girl, Melissa Hope Colby.

Our oldest son, Stephan, was asked to give her her middle name. He chose "HOPE" because that is HIS desire, he HOPES to see this sister grow up to be a pain in his butt.

I'm apprehensive a lot. I don't say a lot about it. I get REALLY fidgety around 10 am in the morning when Melissa's not up and at 'em. I found Renae at 10 am, on a Thursday. I'll still be a "Nervous Norvus" until she's at least 97. I love Melissa--I wasn't a HaPpY cAmPeR! through the pregnancy. I had so-oo many mixed feelings about it, and to be honest, my heart is still holding itself away "just in case" something 'happens' to her. I am loving and caring and all the things a Momma 'ought' to be, just kinda stingy with one tiny little spot of my heart.

I'm not telling anyone that I "know" everything or anything at all. I'm just one old beggar, trying to help other folks on this journey where I've traveled for the past 12 years. All I can say is, "Hang in there! Some spots in the road are rough and bumpy, blaring sun that scorches the soul. Other places are smooth, where there is shade and cool water to revive the weariness of the road. Here's a hand to hold, arms to give a hug, and two ears to listen to your story just _one_ more time."

{{{{{{{{{{{{{{ H U G S }}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}

I'm sorry that we have the same common denominator that brings us here, at this point in time. I'm glad that there's a 'forum' for us to meet and talk about good and rotten things that unite us.

I wish you comfort to your wounded hearts today!


Snail Mail:

Sandy Colby

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