We would be expecting at the same time, but I never got to see her pregnant with James and Jake. I only know the before & after Beth. From reading her posts, of course, I knew the “during” Beth in a certain way, I guess. The excitement and the life- lives - which filled her body. And then before I could truly cherish in this time with her, her belly and arms were empty. I never saw in person what carried her eyes from full of fun and mischief to the eyes where tears and hurt and immense loss had now made their home.
The night we finally arranged a girl’s night out, when Beth probably wasn’t quite ready yet, my soul attached itself to her in a way I can not explain. But the girls that were there know what I experienced. They felt it, too. Our very beings united and have yet to separate. I’ve never seen Beth more beautiful and radiant. There, sitting next to me full of heartbreak and grief. Me, with a baby kicking inside when she should have two kicking inside her, too. From then on I’d do anything for Beth. I ate a cheeseburger for her that night.
I previously had thoughts of hiding my belly. Doing everything I could to help her forget that I was pregnant like she should be. How can I be a good friend in this time when I might just be a hurtful reminder? But, if you know Beth, you know she is honest and raw and with her, there is never an elephant in the room. It is the very thing she is against. And if one happens to show up, she is the first to acknowledge it and call his fat butt out and make everyone laugh about it.
I was just with Beth the other night and saw a whole new light and dark within her eyes. She’s not just the after Beth anymore. I’m really not sure who she’s becoming right now, to be honest, but the deepness that is her heart and core is none like I’ve ever seen before. I’ve almost felt guilty that I’ve learned more from her during these past several months than I’ve been able to give back. It is never my desire to be the taker. But she draws you to her and reveals a spirit- a crystal clear window to look in and see her broken heart, observe it, poke it with a stick, and tell you how much it sucks.
And because there are no elephants allowed, I never feel like I have to caress her hair, feed her bible verses, and say it’s all going to be ok. Because to her it’s not ok. Yes, everything will eventually seem better… someday. Someday she might even be pregnant again and head down a whole new road and life expanding her family in the way she dreams. And I trust those dreams will come true. I also believe that James & Jake will always be a part of those dreams, too. No matter how long or short their time was with us, they will continue to sparkle behind Beth’s eyes- sometimes with laughter and many times with tears. They are breathed within her words on these pages. I feel their presence. And I know that James & Jake, whether we speak it out loud or not, will forever connect our magical sisterhood without end.
(Sarah's not pictured because she was taking the photo!- July 2008)
Originally posted July 5, 2008 at I Should Be Folding Laundry.
Today we are walking together as Team James & Jake.
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