Fear and Hope

I’m currently almost 39 weeks pregnant. (I hit 39 weeks tomorrow if you go by the LMP, Monday if you go by the due date.)
These last few weeks are always hard. I am so grateful to be having another baby, let alone another little girl, but the difficulties multiply exponentially at the end. You’re uncomfortable, you’re frightened. You have no idea when the baby is going to come, unless you have scheduled an induction or C-section.
Every time I have a new baby, I am determined to do better than I did with the last one. I want to be as positive as I can be and enjoy this pregnancy as much as I can. But chronic anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder, aggravated by pregnancy hormones, make the stress and uncertainty much harder to take.
I still think my spirits are improved over last time. I experience bad days and my hormones swing back and forth like a pendulum, but I tend to land on positive almost as often as negative, I think. I even stay on positive for awhile. 
An important realization hit me yesterday after I emailed some mom friends about my fears. I feel so silly still being afraid of childbirth after conquering it twice, especially since I plan to avail myself of the epidural this time. However, I am far from alone. It really helps to know that.
Of course, I am well aware of my fear that Scarlett will develop cardiomyopathy like Lucy and die. Hell, there are many other diseases and mishaps that can cause a child to die, too. Most of the time, I remind myself how unlikely any of that is and resolve to cross that bridge if we come to it. The realization from yesterday lies in the fact that this fear is more closely tied to the loss of Lucy and the birth process than I knew before.
In the months after Lucy’s death, I felt extra-angry that I worked so hard to bring her into this world and she was just gone. My second pregnancy and postpartum were incredibly tough and painful physically. They were much harder than the first and third times. Why did I endure so much to bring her here if she was going to die at 15 months? It’s not right that we mothers work so hard to bring these babies here safely and they can be snatched from us so quickly.
I think the fear of going through all of this again just to have Scarlett snatched from me, too, is really hitting me now. Obviously, I am grateful for every moment with Lucy. She was worth every bit of pain. The joy she brought far outweighed all of it. But no one in their right mind wants that to happen again. There is a reason people can be so afraid to try again after loss. Surviving a loss can make you feel like you can conquer anything, but it can also make you feel terribly aware of the chances of it happening again. You know that absolutely no one is granted immunity, even through previous loss.

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