Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Saying Goodbye to Andra

I'm a little emotional today. It probably has a lot to do with low sleep and the two week hormone drop. But, regardless of the reason, I'm feeling sad.

Our son was born 13 days ago. His arrival came as a complete surprise because we had been told we were having a girl. For the last 16 weeks of my pregnancy, I had been having conversations with Andra Faith. I pulled out our little girl clothes and put them in the dresser, remembering the other two girls wearing most of them. I thought about three girls going through teenage years, wondered who would make alliances with whom, dreamed about what kind of woman she would grow into. We had a birth blessing and prayed for her by name. I bonded with the little "girl" growing inside of me. Except, she wasn't a girl, he was a boy.

Today I packed away the pink baby clothes and I feel sad. It is a weird feeling to grieve over the loss of a child that never really existed except in my imagination. The whole time I thought I was talking to Andra, I was really talking to Alexander. He heard my voice, felt my touch, kicked my ribs and had the hiccups at 10 p.m. every night. He is a real, healthy and cute little boy. He will play with trucks, fight with his sisters and, I hope, grow into a man who loves Jesus. I've always hoped for both daughters and sons. I'm so glad and grateful for my boy. And I miss the girl I imagined.

So today I am sad for Andra. I know I could talk myself out of it but I'm not going to. I want to embrace Alexander for the God-image person that he is, see him and know him as he grows. To do that, I have to release who he isn't. He isn't a daughter, he isn't the third sister, he isn't Andra Faith. Releasing her will open the door for me to embrace him as his own person with his own future. My son, Alexander Eugene.


Skerrib said...

You're a good and wise mom to let yourself walk thru the process, and be honest, and not rush it and all that. What a wonderful gift to all your kids that you want to love them for exactly who they are.

Karen Reyburn said...

Thanks, Sylvia. I hadn't thought about it in that way. Love your honesty and reality.