As many do, I had a nickname for my baby which was the same as a small animal, an animal which is kind of a pop icon as well. Once when coming out of a store in a city in which I had never been, I saw the most random person walking by with a box of these animals in the form of a food item. The person was not the type I would ever imagine walking around in public with a giant box of these things, but who was I to question? Surely this meant something.
Another time I found myself sitting next to someone for an extended period of time whose biggest joy in life were her two small children. She talked endlessly about them and I sat there, sharing in her happiness. I was more engaged than I've ever been in a discussion about babies, genuinely happy for her but also happy for myself. I said nothing to her of my own baby, but was content enough to hear about hers and for once, felt like I belonged.
Other, small and random occurrences happened which led me to feel confident. True, I had lost Baby B, whose appearance and subsequent disappearance was a shock, but I had always banked on the viability of the stronger baby. I steeled my nerves with thoughts like, "Surely God would not sit me next to this person for 5 hours and subject me to her pregnancy and baby stories if I was not meant to have a baby too" or "There is not enough cruelty in the world that would allow me to feel such joy and then have it ripped away, I am allowed to feel happy."
Perhaps I should have paid attention to the "other" signs.
- I carried with me everywhere a small stuffed animal, the same animal which I nicknamed my baby. At night it rested on my nighstand. During the week leading up to the bad news I found it listing to one side. I tried to make it stand up straight but it never would. It kept falling over like a Weeb.le Wobb.le.
- I found myself needing maternity pants so I did some shopping. Nothing looked right on me. It all looked "off" but I bought it anyway, knowing that cramming myself into my old pants made me feel nauseated. I took the tags off in my state of over-confidence.
- My dreams: two days before the final ultrasound I had two different dreams in one night. In both I was watching brightly colored Koi swim around in a glass fishbowl. Two Koi. Both eventually stopped swimming and floated around listlessly.
I should have known.