Tuesday, September 12, 2006

I'd like to give the world a hug

We live in a heavily international place. (Tangent alert: I couldn't decide what noun to use instead of "place." "Community" implies interaction between people, which I don't often see. "Town" is misleading, since towns are small, while "city" is misleading, since cities are much larger than the area I'd like to describe. "Region" sounds larger than a city, and therefore is wrong, ditto for "area"... I think I may have hit upon something. People are disconnected from each other because we don't know where the f*** we live. Moving on.) Anyway, there are refugees from all over the world, along with academics from many of the same places. We like this on several levels: WonderGirl and Rocco are exposed to kids from all over on a constant basis, and our local grocery store carries seven different kinds of eggplant. Everyone wins.

The best part, though? Hearing a 21-month-old at the playground, standing in the familiar Superman pose at the top of the ladder, prouding proclaiming himself to be "Super JoJo!" in French. We can avoid having to pay for extracurricular language instruction for the kids - Super JoJo is going to save them if they fall on the slide and hopefully conjugate a few verbs at the same time.


Shit. I had just typed that post when a fellow grad student came into my office to talk. She just lost a baby at 15 weeks. No idea why -- pathology was normal, chromosomes normal, no obvious sign of infection. She's from another country, has no family here other than her husband, but like so many women who go through this, talking to her family on the phone only made it worse anyway. It sucks, but there truly is a line between people who know how this feels, and people who don't. I'm glad she felt like she could talk to me, and I hope she's serious when she said that it helped. This is a tangible benefit of being at least a bit open about my own history.

But argh, my heart is racing now. It's been a year and four months since I lost Celeste, and conversations like this just bring it all back. She should have been turning 2 in a few weeks.

Here's the irony: when I was pregnant with Rocco, I mentioned to this same student that I'd had two miscarriages. She was dismissive, to say the least, and clearly had the attitude that if you were healthy and took care of yourself, your baby would be born without any problem. It's a little unsettling to see her now dealing with those same attitudes. I have a bit of "I wasn't really wishing this on her" guilt.

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