If I wake up tired, I can sleep in (unless it's a work day). And I'm grateful for that, as morning sickness is always worse if I'm tired. But while I enjoy getting to sleep when I need it, it's bittersweet. I'd rather be up at strange hours and sleep deprived because Ariella was crying.
I have a pretty enjoyable job and feel blessed that the perfect job for me came up without me even looking. But going to work is bittersweet. I'd rather be stuck at home with a sick baby, going to mother's groups, or just spending time with our baby girl.
Immediately after birth I fit into most of my pre-pregnancy clothes. Within a few weeks of birth, I was able to fit into all of them. It was nice to wear some of my favourite clothes again. But it was bittersweet. I would have rathered be stuck in maternity clothes a bit longer and only be able to wear feeding-friendly clothes.
I can go out with friends or to our Bible study group and not worry about missing out because of the need to stay home or come home early to put a baby to bed. But while I thoroughly enjoy those times, they are bittersweet because I'd much rather miss out due to a sleeping baby.
HRH William and Catherine had their baby boy. The world rejoices, but for me it's bittersweet. So happy and relieved that little George arrived safely, but it's so hard to see the photos and videos of the happy family outside the hospital. The look on his parents' faces, the look of pure joy and amazement, I never had that. My look was not pure joy, it tinged with sadness.
I've met some pretty incredible women who have also lost children, and have become closer to some of my existing friends as a result of Ariella's death. But every now and then, when I think about those friendships, it feels bittersweet. I'm so thankful for each of those ladies, but how I wish our friendships could have developed in different circumstances.
The people at our church have been so wonderful since Ariella was born. They've provided so much support, but also given us space when we needed it. But going to church on Sunday is bittersweet. There are babies there. Some who were born very close to Ariella. It's hard.
Speaking of church, our church ran a Kids Club in the holidays. I don't know if I could have been there if Ariella was still here with us. I might have been able to, but it might have been too tricky. It was so much fun to help out, and I loved being there. But it was bittersweet.
People say that Marcus and I should "make the most of this year" before the next baby comes along: go out for dinner, see a movie, make spontaneous decisions. And they are right, those things should be much harder next year. But doing them now is bittersweet. Those are the things we did last year, anticipating that they would be hard to do them this year. I feel as though we have a second chance to do things that we didn't get around to last year. But I don't want that chance. It's bittersweet.
This year, life in general is bittersweet.
PS - I've added a new page to my blog, called Songs for Baby Loss. It's my list of songs I have found helpful this year, and other bereaved parents might find it helpful too.