He watches the mother of his child go through the joys and aches of pregnancy. He thinks, “All I can do is bring her Sprite and saltines. All I can do is rub her feet or back when she needs it. All I can I do is make those late night runs to the store for ice cream or watermelon or whatever she texts me 7 times after I leave. That’s all I can do.” Hopefully she appreciates it, because even though that’s all he can physically do, his intentions run so much deeper. He may joke about being the gopher or complain here or there, but he does it because it is how he can help bring that sweet child into the world.
His job at the hospital becomes intensified at moments interrupted with minutes of calm. In those “calm” minutes, though, his mind is racing because yet again he has no control over anything happening; however, he bears so much responsibility. She may say some things she possibly shouldn’t due to the state she’s physically in. She has a million things running through her mind about what she can’t control, but he might not be high up on that list. She knows he can handle himself. She knows that he’s got this; he’s done it her whole pregnancy.
He hears the words “There is no heartbeat” and sees the defeated and puzzled look on the doctor’s face. He loses it. He might scream; he might fall to floor weeping; he might remain as a statue for what feels like forever but is only a mere minute. As he is falling apart, he looks at her. His panic changes. He knows that he can’t control what just happened, but he can control how he takes care of her. So he does. His grief doesn’t have time to show up. He has things do, people to call, questions to answer, even if there isn’t an answer.
Through her tear-filled eyes, she’s watched him through it all. She knows he is in pain but doesn’t have time for it, not yet. “Will he ever know how much I appreciate him? Will he ever know that I’m not just sobbing for me? Will he ever know that his sadness matters as much as mine?”
I told my husband to go get breakfast as they began setting me up on monitors. He was reluctant at first, but he finally went. The second nurse had come in to help find his heartbeat when he returned to the room with his food. I don’t even know if he ate anything that morning. After the news, we had a moment together and then instantly he went into business mode. We cried off and on, but he took care of things so that I didn’t have to. His grief matters as much as mine. It did then and always will.
When I stop and think about not being able to do things with our Wyatt, I also know that my husband has one less fishing buddy, one less boy to hide things in his shop, one less little guy to throw on his shoulders.
He may show his sadness differently. It might not look as if it still bothers him; it does. Even his grief he can’t control, but he still takes care of everything that he can. With Love- Heather