Anger is one of the emotions I have struggled to control throughout my life. It comes and goes with me, but when it takes hold it can be hard to rid myself of just like a bad cold. Every once and great while, that anger can progress closer to rage. I felt that today. By the time I was home, I just wanted to smash things. I wanted to scream and I wanted to be angry. I didn’t but that that’s all my mind thought about. Leah already mentioned her perspective of the conference we had today. Mine was slightly different.
I don’t always want answers. In fact I sometimes avoid things that can hurt me more. In the case of our daughter, I wanted to believe that although the decision to deliver her was difficult it was the right one and served as Ava’s best chance of survival. Leah isn’t like me. She wants to know everything, sometimes even before things happen. I understand it, I’m just not like her and there is certainly nothing wrong with either one of us. I believe Leah always suspected what we heard from Dr. P today. She did the research and I chose to stay away from it. The first time Leah brought this up we were up north shortly after Ava’s burial hoping to just get away from everything. She started to talk to me about things she had researched online about Ava’s situation. I was not necessarily angry, I just didn’t want to hear or address the fact that Ava’s chances were much higher had she just been left alone. I understood Leah’s desire to know everything that happened, I just wasn’t ready to face reality. Unfortunately for me, that made me even less prepared for today.
First the doctor said her heart was likely the cause of Ava’s death. That was “relief” number one. At least it wasn’t her premature birth. On top of that, he didn’t believe that Ava’s premature birth had really caught up to her yet. The issues she faced were a result of her heart. Okay, now I just have to be reassured that delivering her was in her best interests. No such luck. With very little uncertainty in his voice, he was fairly confident that Ava would have delivered at term, still with a heart block, but otherwise fine had she just been left alone. Shit. That’s all I could say to myself. I know this may not make sense, but part of my coping with the entire situation was Ava’s chances were bad regardless of what happened but her best shot was delivery. I constantly fought against the idea that she could have made it had it not been for her delivery. That made my fall ten times harder when I heard Dr. P talk.
I know it may seem messed up, what I am saying. I was desperate to believe that Ava’s delivery was saving her life. I wanted to disprove any idea that she was better off any other way. I wanted so so badly to believe this. I just couldn’t help it. That’s what set the anger off in my mind, slowly but surely. First I was pissed at the doctor who delivered Ava. Why didn’t she just listen to Leah in the first place? Why did she have to deliver? Why did she have to insist that Ava would die if she didn’t have that c-section? I wanted to blame her. Along with the information I wasn’t prepared to hear, Dr. P also said that without any prior knowledge of the heart block it would have been impossible for anyone to know what was really happening. The doctor that delivered Ava made the right choice given her available knowledge, it just ended up being the choice that cost Ava her life. That was an EXTREMELY hard fact for me to accept. I still don’t accept it right now. Once I decided I didn’t feel like being angry with the doctor that delivered Ava I moved on to God. I cursed Him today. I just didn’t get it. What could possibly be the excuse to justify taking Ava’s life? Come on God, give me the reason. It’s gotta be a good one. Were you teaching me a lesson? Was I too bad a person in life? Was it Leah? Were we both unfit to be parents? What’s the lesson? Where’s the reason? Come on!
These thoughts just churned in my mind over and over again from the point we left that conference all the way home and it just grew and grew and grew. After deciding a completely raging outburst where I would try to knock the house down was out of the question, I tried exercising to calm myself down. 40 straight minutes of hard cardio to the point of exhaustion and I still couldn’t calm down. I sat down on the couch across from Leah. She talked to me and I cursed and complained some more. I didn’t know what to do. Eventually, through no action of my own, my feelings “subsided” after we decided to leave and run some errands. One thing was certain though. I couldn’t believe that I was facing the reality of just how crappy this whole set of circumstances was. I play the lottery. Too much by Leah’s standards. I can’t believe that this was the lottery I was meant to win. The lottery Ava was meant to win.
We eventually stopped at Ava’s grave on the way home from errands. We sat down. I prayed. I told God I was still angry with Him, but I was sorry for saying what I did and that I would still talk to Him. I asked Him to get a message to Ava for me, as I do every time we see her. We sat for a while, and then a little message of Ava’s or maybe God’s was sent our way. When we sat down in the cemetery, I heard some crashing in the woods. I thought to myself, maybe there were animals. I ignored it but then out of the blue, a doe pops out of the woods with two fawns at her side. We were only maybe 50 yards from her. Never in my life has this happened. When I saw them, I alerted Leah and the very second that Leah moved, the doe saw us and started making these noises and stomping her feet. I think she was trying to let us know not to mess with her children. That’s the kind of mom I know Leah is. I believe it was a sign.