It's the Circle of Life
And it moves us all
Through despair and hope
Through faith and love
Till we find our peace
On the path unwinding
In the Circle
The Circle of Life
-The Lion King
If my social work training serves me correctly, it is recommended that after going through a major life change, one should wait a year before making any other significant changes. Dan and I certainly didn't follow this suggestion the year we moved to Austin and have seemed to do pretty well. Within one year we moved, got engaged, started new jobs, got married and bought a home.
I write because we aren't following it now! We have been blessed with a baby who will be joining our family on or around August 24, 2010. Exactly 11 months after the worst day of our lives. Amazing. We are 10 weeks along and all are doing great. I am weepy at times but that is to be expected. (In a way in my mind, I am 50% past, grieving and 50% future, baby. Weird. No wonder I can be a slobbering mess sometimes.) I try to figure out if it is hormones/pregnancy/grief? Who knows? It is probably a bit of both.
Of course, Dan and I are ecstatic. It happened quickly and without difficulty. Our family can grow again. Kate will have a sibling. We get to experience the miracle of life again. We get to parent a new child. I get to shop for baby clothes and beg for foot rubs from Dan. Having a baby is the only way I can get three months "off" from work (ha!).
However, this pregnancy comes with a different bag of tricks. At first I thought, "I am cheating on Jack." I asked my friend who quickly stopped me and said "Jack would want this." She is right and I haven't given it a second thought. He would want this and I would like to think that he probably had something to do with this quick development! Will we expect this child to look like Jack, act like Jack or even worse, want this child to BE Jack? I think knowing is half the battle and even being aware of the possibility of these thoughts/expectations/feelings will stop us and remind us to honor this child for the unique person they will be.
What has struck me most throughout this was my Mom saying "That you and Dan are willing to risk this love again is such a testament to you, you both, and the love you have for Jack." Yes, it certainly feels like a risk...we aren't naive enough to think that lightening can't strike twice. The odds are in our favor but how many people experience what we did? Thank goodness not many children lose their child within minutes/hours from an unknown cause? Our odds were pretty good for that too and look what happened...We still don't know what took over Jack's sweet body that fateful night. Does it cross my mind when I put Kate to bed or when I wake her in the morning that it could happen to her? Without a doubt. Do we have to worry about our genes and the genetic makeup of both Kate and this baby? Who knows? Luckily, we have competent medical professionals who are working on that piece.
The Circle of Life continues in the Turpin house and for that we are grateful. For now, we will celebrate life and all that it encompasses. The good, the bad, the ugly, the blissful moments, the breaking moments and all that comes in between.