When These Mountains Were the Seashore

Mrs. Spit's son Gabriel was born fifteen weeks too soon, in December 2007, as a result of severe pre-eclampsia. Catapulted into the swirling world of grief while trying to grow her family, Mrs. Spit lost four pregnancies after Gabriel. Earlier in the year, she made the decision to live child free. She blogs daily at Mrs. Spit . . . Still Spouting Off, writing with equal fierceness and love about her life as a wife, a friend, a knitting-gardener, boss and occasionally, as the mother to a dead child. Mrs. Spit is the kind of compassionate warrior that is not afraid to write about politics and religion and all the thoughts in between. And so here, she just fits perfectly. Please join us in welcoming her as a regular contributor and fellow Medusa. - Angie


My name is Mrs. Spit. It hasn't always been this, but to some - in a small corner of a particular universe - I am Mrs. Spit. I have many names: I am wife, I am friend, I am project manager, I am boss, I am employee, and oh, yes, I am sometimes mother.

Like all people, I didn't start out with these names. Like all people, these names started out as a title. A name is after all, a personal thing. I took on a new title in March, a title that I am trying to make a name. I am now perpetually childless. I am now "child free". After three years, a perinatal death as a result of pre-eclampsia, four miscarriages and more medical specialists than you can imagine, Mr. Spit and I decided to stop trying to have children. We decided to be done - forevermore.

So, here I am, trying to find my way in a new world once again. Here I am with a new title that I am trying to make into a name. This wasn't, I should tell you, where I planned to start this post. I planned to start with the title, which is the title of a song by a musician called Hawksley Workman. As inspiration or at least incentive, I planned to play that song when I started to write this blog. Instead, because I got a new keyboard for my iPad, I wound up starting ahead of myself.

Instead of being in my favourite coffee shop in Jasper, AB, in the middle of the Rocky Mountains, listening to one apple device while typing on another; I am in a hotel room typing away. I should tell you I'm like that. I think that I will go one way and then all of a sudden I find myself on another path entirely, not quite certain how I wound up there but knowing I'm heading in the right direction.

For point of reference this is exactly how it came to be that I conceived my son. I went to go and see my gynecologist to get an IUD and I came out of his office convinced I should conceive instead. I went to go and see the fertility specialist in February of 2011,  attempting pregnancy number six and I walked out of her office knowing that we were done having children, we were done getting pregnant. Indeed, we were just done.

The reason I thought I would begin with Hawkley's song is not just because it is the sort of song that is so achingly beautiful that you wonder at the ugliness of the world around you, but because it talks about what I am doing, turning from one thing into another. Metamorphosis.

That's what I will be writing about. I don't have all the answers. I probably don't have any of the answers. I am only starting to ask the questions. A good question, I would posit, is at least as important as anything else. You can't ever get to any sort of good answer without it.

So, I am asking questions. It would be easy enough, I suppose to just decide to invest in some sort of permanent birth control, empty the basement of baby things carefully stored and paint the nursery so that it becomes completely my office. I could do this. I am doing this. But I'm not sure it's wise to act without asking questions. I’m not sure reaching decisions without asking questions takes you anywhere.

In my scheduled posts at Glow in the Woods, I will be asking those questions. I’ll be asking about how you find meaning without children. I’ll be asking questions about how to live the rest of my life - deliberate questions about what is next.  

I know for some of you, this idea of living without children in the newness of your loss is impossible. It is a bridge too far and a cut too deep. I have been there. I can remember the days when I could not consider life without a living child. It has taken me three and a half years to reach this point. Where you are now is where you should be.

Some of you will never need to be on this path. Some of you might find yourself with me. Some of you might not be sure. Where you are now, is where you should be. Hawksley was right, mountains were once sea shores, and the desert was once the ocean floor.