Our little twins. You never stood a chance to survive. You were conceived shortly after your Dad and I got engaged. We were so thrilled to find out we were pregnant. You would have been 3.5 years old last month. You were all the children we’d ever need, our first and last born. I don’t know why but I am so sure you were a boy and a girl. Maximilien and Lilia. Max and Lilly. Our lives would be so different now. We wouldn’t have had that big wedding that I had to give myself something special when I felt so robbed of joy. The worst day of my life remains the day we found out we lost you. The doctors were working to stop the hemorrhaging and I was staying so strong, but I caught your father’s anguished desolate face and I broke down and cried while the nurse held my arms tight. I will never be able to repair that broken part of me. We didn’t find out until later there were two of you, as we had suspected.
Our second chance. I was 100% sure you were going to be my baby in my arms. I was so confident. Your Dad brought home a card for me which I still have, and a dozen tiny purple rosebuds for you, our little rosebud. I was certain you were a girl. Faustine. I loved that name then. You would be 15 months old right now. I was so confident I’d meet you that when the first beta came back abysmally low, I didn’t waver. I reassured your Dad all would be well. When I got the news one morning your second beta didn’t even double, I crumpled in the bed in my bathrobe. Your Dad wanted to hang on to hope but I wailed at him that there was none.
The third time. I will never forget you. I thought you might be a girl. I was worried from the beginning. Your Dad refused to give in to fear. He was your champion. Things kept looking maybe okay, until the end when they didn’t. After you died, I sobbed in bed for days and screamed at my stomach for you to leave me. I wanted to stop suffering. You did leave and before I drove you to the doctor’s office, I pulled you out of the little plastic specimen cup, held you in my hands, and apologized for wronging you. For not loving you the way you deserved to be loved, for doubting you, for not growing you properly, for wanting you out after you died. I feel regret and guilt and sorrow to this day. I love you so much. We found out that you were our little daughter. We think about you all the time and we miss what you might have been. You’d be 14 months old now.
Round four. You would have been 8 months old. You were like a shooting star in the sky, that’s how fast we knew you and lost you. I feel silly even counting you as one of ours, but of course you are. Of course you are. You were a fleeting flicker but you deserve to be remembered by us as one of our own.
To the little baby girl inside me now. This time, it was my turn to hope. I talked your father into trying to make you, one last time. He was ready to move on to donor eggs and couldn’t get his hopes up for one last try. Seven months later and you are about 3 pound of wiggly energy. We don’t know you but we’re excited to meet you. At first I thought you were a chill little baby, snuggling in deep during ultrasounds and refusing to move. Now we’ve seen you smile and also cover your face with your arms while seemingly stomping your mini feet because you hate when I turn over. You’re always moving now, so much that it’s hard to catch your face. You do low punches when you wake up, and high kicks when I drink tea. I love you so intensely. You terrify me. You are a mystery, a world of unknown, a very real person after years of nearly abstract ideas of babies. I worry you won’t like me. I worry that you will be alone with no siblings. Your Dad is so completely dedicated to us that you will never have to worry about a thing. I will always want you, I will always take care of you, and you are the greatest gift we’ve ever been given.