Thursday, March 4, 2010

March Forth

March 4th is significant for me for a couple of reasons.

The first reason is that it is the day that I received my gohonzon. As part of my buddhist practice I chant twice a day for anywhere from 10-30 minutes at a time. While not necessary, I chose to receive my gohonzon which is a scroll that is usually placed in an alter called a butsudan and it is what I look at when I chant. It is meant for focusing on and to represent our inherent buddhist nature so when we chant in front of it we remember that. I received gohonzon on March 4, 2007.

March 4th is also significant for me because it was the estimated due date of the baby I first became pregnant with in 2008. It's hard to believe that we were at the 'baby making business' for almost 2 years! That baby would have been turning 1 today. When I noticed the date on the calendar a few days ago I thought about that baby. Now that I know that the little wriggling potential human being that was in me for almost 10 weeks does indeed turn into a real live little person it made me sad all over again to think about the loss. I remember the day so vividly still. It was the day of the Dyke March festival. I was supposed to be working at the festival, having served on the board for the months leading up to the day. I was supposed to be having fun. Instead, I was at home, experiencing contraction like cramps and delivering far too early what should have been my baby. I cried so hard. I screamed during each cramp, more out of loss and anger than out of pain. Then it was over. As quickly as the pain started, it ended and I just felt empty. I didn't really know what to do. When I got pregnant again 2 months later and again lost that baby at 5 weeks this time, I truly became depressed for the first time in my life. I screamed and cried and slept for hours and hours without speaking to anyone for days at a time. I feel like I lost my innocence. I was naive to think that every pregnancy turns into a baby.

As I started to try and heal, I realized that no one talks about miscarriage but it is a very common, very "normal" event. It still bothers me that people don't talk about it (if they want to). My wish is that miscarriage becomes less of a taboo subject and that more women (and men) are allowed to grieve and heal more openly.

I will always remember my two short pregnancies and always have a place in my heart for the lives that weren't meant to be. And when I look at my 9 week old daughter laying in my arms today, I know she is a precious, precious gift.

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