Monday, December 19, 2011

On Being Wide Open

My doctor called this morning and said my hCG level rose only a little (from about 21,000 to 22,000) between Wednesday and Friday; it came nowhere close to doubling. He thinks miscarriage is imminent. He presented the options of "letting nature take its course" or undergoing a D&C. He offered another ultrasound, so I'm planning to return to his office on Wednesday.

I can say: even now, I have hope. Also, I'm glad to be sharing the whole mess: not because I want to make anyone sad (especially at Christmastime!), but because it brings me comfort to know so many people are hoping and praying...and even praising!...with me.

I remembered, this morning, sharing pregnancy news (of Clementine) with a friend, a nurse. She asked how far along I was. I told her I'd just found out, and she responded by asking: "Are you sure you want to tell people you're pregnant so soon? Things happen, sometimes, early in pregnancy: especially in the first trimester."

And I answered: "I'm sure. I want people praying for me. And if something goes wrong, I'll want them praying for me even more."

I think living wide open, for me, ties in with extroversion. My interaction with others gives me energy. In times like these, I need my people, and they know it. They show up.

I know it's not for everyone: the sharing, the transparency. And that's ok. I apologize if I've made anyone feel uncomfortable in my sharing and transparency. I really can't live, happily, any other way. And right now? Pure blessing...solid grace! the love of my people.

Yesterday morning in the choir room, I looked at Karen and said: "I don't know what's going to happen, today, but--if I respond to the altar call--please come up with me."

She beat me to the altar.

She said, later: "Whether you came up or not, I wanted to pray on your behalf." Others gathered around, too, and to find myself in the center of a pocket of kneeling people--to hear several voices praying aloud, simultaneously--took me home to East Tennessee in a way that nothing else may this Christmas season.

Yesterday afternoon, a dear friend sat across from me. She's gentle and quiet: not prone to wide open. But her eyes welled up, and she traveled into the belly of her own pain to say things I needed to hear.

Another friend didn't know what to say, so he said: "Hey, I'm sending someone over with a leaf blower." He'd already bought us a smoked turkey.

Rachel looked at me, today, and said: "I don't know if I can do this, but I'm going to try." She pulled me into her arms and started to pray. Somewhere in the middle of her words, there was a knock at the door. It was Izabel, bearing some sort of Brazilian dessert in a tin.

She looked into my tear-streaked face and said: "Oh. I think I am supposed to be here at just this time." She came in, joined hands with us, bowed, and prayed.

Rachel and Charleigh, yesterday.

My brother sent an e-mail: "If you aren't coming home for Christmas, could we come up there for a couple of days? I love you, and I want to be with you at Christmas!! [...] I just can't bear the thought of not having at least one day with you at Christmas."

Sharon--in her Sharonly way--showed up with salad and iced tea. Virginia Ann sent a plate of deviled eggs. The e-mails, messages, comments, and phone calls pour in, and I keep right on breathing because I am loved.

Thank you for praying. Please continue to pray. Ask God for either a miracle or blood.

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