I Was Born To Do This...

"I am not afraid, I was born to do this..." - St. Joan Of Arc

I am not really ashamed of my reaction when I found out I was expecting twins, but I can't say that I'm totally fond of the memory. I joke about it a lot, but it makes me sad just the same. Just to review, I did not say "oh yay." If the word "yay" started with the letter F, and ended with an uck sound that would be more accurate. Oh, and I didn't say it just once. I said it millions of times over a 7 month period. At our eight week viability ultrasound (you "get" to have this type of treatment when you've been through the level of loss that we've been through. Even though SIDS, a miscarriage, and Trisomy 18 are unrelated, we were offered any and all tests available. It was not an honor, but was a welcomed privilege) we were quite surprised, as we were not expecting this type of news. I was frankly scared and not quite sure I was going to be able to do it. I don't know what I thought not doing it would look like, but I was sure I'd find out. (This is why parents of multiples have a hard time hearing, "I don't know how you do it," because we aren't quite sure what the alternative would be.)

I do sometimes wish, though, that I could go back and erase that reaction. Have a heart to heart with my 25 month ago self, and say, "it's going to be okay, you were BORN TO DO THIS." Now, I know that I was born to do this. My life just fits me, just like a really nice pair of pajama jeans. However, I don't like the fact that I'm really going to have put lipstick on the pig when I tell my kids about getting the news that they were coming.  It reminds me of how I think back on the days before Brady died (or rather, the days of Brady's life). Never knowing that I was going to lose her, I wish I'd loved life with her differently while she was here.  You know what though, through all of this uncertainty, fear, challenge, pain, and grief, I keep finding myself, and liking myself a whole lot more.

The truth is this: Life is the most amazing, miraculous, ridiculously joy filled thing, and simultaneously so painful and hard sometimes.  Many times, those moments of ridiculous joy can come in rapid succession with the painful hard moments or sometimes they even exist in the exact same place. It's all part of the mystery, but whether you are in the midst of the joy, or the depths of your pain, remember this: Do not be afraid, you were born to do just this, and you will do it, and come out on the other side more YOU than you have ever been. (Even if you don't know it yet.)


  1. At least you didn't say "Is that the yolk sac?" like I did while my husband was hyperventilating in the chair next to me. I did however after 7 or so months of non-stop sickeness and misery aske them to stop being a-holes so mom could work (once) I feel bad about that. Because they are awesome, and not a-holes. Mom guilt. It starts early.

  2. OK. Crying. Might make myself several post-it notes that say "You were born to do this." Could use that reminder right now.

  3. After our loss, I thought the subsequent pregnancy was the most stress I could have. Then we got our diagnosis with this baby (the baby I wasn't planning and used similar expletives for when I found out I was expecting him) and now I know my pregnancy after my loss could have been much worse.

    Oh, how we would all do things differently if we knew what was coming. But then, it wouldn't be right. If you'd known Brady's loss was coming, would you have been able to love life with her? Or would you have spent every waking moment holding her, terrified of what was coming?

    This is a reminder to me to try to enjoy every moment I can. At the same time, not to live in fear.

  4. That is a beautiful post. I've not suffered the losses you have, but I can relate to the born to do this sentiment. I didn't know it, but I think all the decisions in my life have ultimately led me to be a mom.

    And hey, I'm giving you The Versatile Blogger Award. Something else you were born to do perhaps (blog)? Check out the details at:


  5. Wow Colleen! Just found your blog (and I voted!) love hearing you on Get Real and the Gyno Show -- I will never be blessed with being a Mom, having had fibroids and then a hysterectomy at 35...I am still processing all of that, but 'I was born to do this' truly does apply to everyone and all aspects of our lives...thank you for the reminder to just get out there and BE PRESENT in our lives!


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