I’m not particularly sure when it happened. Growing up, I was exceptionally emotional. I’m not exaggerating. My tear ducts were very well exercised in my youth. It probably didn’t help that I was a chubby kid that was constantly made fun of. Ultimately, my lack of fitness and love for cookies, chocodiles, and Spaghetti-O’s resulted in me having to develop a wit that mimicked the thick skin of a rhino. Unfortunately, kids can be ruthlessly mean and we as young humans have to adapt in order to survive. But, I digress... Somewhere in the neighborhood of 10ish years ago though, I found that I didn’t really cry anymore. Not that I see anything wrong with expressing emotion when you get hit with the “feels,” I just assumed I did all of my crying early in life.
So, that brings us pregnancy #3. I need to preface this by alluding to a previous event. If you’ve read Kim’s last blog post, you’re aware of the gut punch that loss #2 ended up being. In hindsight, that was the last time I cracked. However, it was only for a moment. I distinctly remember that I was on the phone at 3AM. I called my father-in-law to tell him we lost another pregnancy. As soon as the words, we lost our baby left my mouth, I could hear my voice crumbling. I hung up, walked into a corner of the ER as my body melted to the ground. I quickly gathered myself, and knew that I had to get back in the hospital room and do everything in my power to be Kim’s rock. She was suffering all of the emotional pain that I was feeling while coping with the physical sensation of being torn in half (side note, the fact that she went to work that morning was so next level gangster). In my opinion, my duty as a husband was to suck it up and be supportive at all costs. Beyond that, I couldn’t tell you the last time that I cried until the day that changed it all.
For the 6 week appointment, Kim met with her OB to check on the progress of our baby. I was at a convention in Indianapolis and was eagerly awaiting a word in regard to the results. Just prior to the procedure starting, the doctor told her “there’s a great chance we’ll hear a heartbeat today.” Forgive my French, but what an as$h*le thing to say!!! I’ll give you one guess what happened... Yeah. They didn’t. I got a frantic phone call as soon as the exam was over, as you could imagine.... Every fear that we’d been so terrified of was coming to fruition. Again. Worst of all, I was thousands of miles away. Fast forward to our next appointment 1 week later. The mood in the room was somber, almost like a funeral. The doctor was all too aware of what had happened last time. She knew that we’d already lost two little ones at that point and hope was fading... The doubt and despair was heavy in the room like a dense fog. The process starts. We’re staring at a screen that looks like the pay channels in the 90’s you hadn’t purchased. Scrambled. Incoherent. Snowy. The silence and inability to decipher anything on the monitor that resembles a baby is abruptly shattered by the unmistakeable tha-thump tha-thump tha-thump sound of a healthy heartbeat... The world stood still. I’d assume that the doctor said something. I’ll never know. I just remember feeling my eyes filling with tears from tear ducts that I thought ran dry a decade ago. Our baby was alive! Our baby was well! And our baby, like SO many others, was toying with our emotions!! 😂 I’ll never forget that moment. If I were compiling a greatest hits album for memories in my life, this would be the first track. There’s never been a hug that was more true than when I held Kim in that moment.