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April 24, 2010

Comments

Michael Sippey

I love you guys.

Anil Dash

Obviously it's been painful working through all of this, even knowing we made the right choice. But I find months later the hardest thing is that I'm uncharacteristically bitter about the fact these things are hard to talk about. I live an open life, solve my problems by reaching out to my network, and pride myself on being able to talk about things other people struggle with sometimes.

But on this, I felt like we were in some unheard-of situation, facing decisions nobody (or nobody we knew) had ever reckoned with. And the only reason why is because people have been afraid to talk about it, to be out about it, and I'll be damned if I'm going to feel ashamed about a heartbreaking medical procedure that our family had to go through. Sad, of course, but not scared of it.

I didn't ever have to think about these things except in the abstract political sense, thanks to the privilege of being a male. Now, though, it makes me even more determined to preserve choice for every woman.

And I'm hopeful, too. :)

Dinah

Lots of love from me too. You two are inspiring and happiness making and exactly the kind of folks I like the idea of as parents. So very sorry you had to endure this terrible experience and so grateful to you for sharing it.

Deletia

Love. Sadness. Gratitude for sharing out here too.

snarkout

Thanks for sharing this painful story, Alaina. Love and luck to you both.

redfox

Thank you so much for writing this.

Matt Haughey

When we were first trying to have a baby, I remember the subject of a genetic counselor came up early on and I quickly figured out what that was, but it wasn't until we got really bad results through the first battery of tests that we had to consider making this very difficult decision. The final test was ok, and we didn't have to cross that bridge, but I remember my takeaway was that I'd been brainwashed by the last thirty years of rhetoric around abortion from pro-life advocates -- as if it was only important to keep available for people that didn't properly plan contraception ahead of time. I'd seen so many stories about how it was only for the poor and uneducated, etc.

I remember a day where we were on pins and needles waiting for a final result and discussing what we'd do and I remember getting really, really angry about the history of pro-life language and stories -- how no one ever discusses that it's important to have as an option for educated, stable couples that planned the event and would make terrific supportive parents but have to make the most difficult decision possible, and how it can be humane given the prognosis for a lot of major genetic defects.

I should also add that we planned a second child a couple years ago and it started off as a difficult pregnancy. When we went through the same tests, we got bad results again, but this time the final amnio was also bad and showed some extra chromosomes where you definitely didn't want any. We'd already discussed that we'd make the difficult decision in lieu of a painful and shortened life for a child, but the testing and re-testing took so long that we were suddenly nearing a 20 week gestation and after that, laws become problematic for those wanting to exercise their options in our state. It wasn't until a year later when Dr. Tiller was killed that I realized given another week or two delay and he would have been one of the only doctors in the country that could have helped.

I'm so sorry for the loss you two and while it's heart breaking, know that chromosomal problems are completely random and totally out of your control, just a random horrible thing that happens sometimes. It gets better with time.

Sealions

You & Anil are the best couple ever. Hugs to you both.

souris

Alaina, I divide sadness with you and Anil in hopes that you heal faster. You both will make such amazing parents someday. Thank you for sharing your story.

karen c.

I'm so sorry for your heartbreak, my heart is full of sorrow for you.

In between my two girls, I experienced a second pregnancy that ultimately turned out to be a fake. For almost a whole trimester I felt pregnant, gained weight and had all the same symptoms I'd had the first time. What was missing was a fertilized egg. When I finally miscarried, I had an overwhelming sense of loss and of having been tricked in some way by my own body.

We didn't know how to mourn the baby we didn't actually make but lost anyway. The doctors were completely unhelpful and we didn't have the strength to explain the thing we didn't really understand to our friends and family. We didn't intend for it to become a secret, we just couldn't bear to talk about it.

Reaching out to you with love.

Kokochi

Thank you, you two for sharing, and very sorry for the news. This post will surely help many others. Sending hugs your way.

dav

Wow, sorry to hear of this tough ordeal. You're strong, good people.

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