Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Things That Make You Go .... WHAT?!

Today I found out that my sister-in-law is pregnant. And it's not my DH's younger sister; it's his older sister, Kathy, who at 45 is ten years older than I am. She's also the mom of Ryan, who was killed a year ago in an accident, and his twin sister, Cori, who is about to turn 18 and take college classes. Kathy's nine weeks along with twins.

I would have been a lot less surprised to find out that my niece was pregnant, to be honest with you. Not that she's slutty, far from it, but she's That Age, and she has a Boyfriend, and you know... things that I don't want to think about my niece doing are probably happening all the time that would result in a baby. My SIL, on the other hand, had previously had her tubes tied, I believe, a few years after the twins were born. She never mentioned to anyone that she was thinking about this, including my niece, who only found out a couple of weeks ago herself. It is a SHOCK.

I want to make clear that I'm not making a *value judgement* on this. Our family as a whole has been through a lot, of course them in particular, so however they make it through the day is good with me.

On the one hand, I'm thrilled. New babies for me to love and care for (that aren't mine!) are always wonderful news. Also, I know that my brother-in-law had always wanted more children, so that's good as well. Maybe this will help them move on from what happened, or it's a sign that they already have.

On the other hand, I'm terrified. At her age, the risks are so huge, and I don't know what will happen to them emotionally if she miscarries. Then, too, there are the obvious risks of Downs, etc, which while all challenged kids are blessings, they are also heartache, and I don't know how they could stand any more of that. Also, by the time the kids are 20, they will be 65. What's the chance of something happening to one of them in the way of serious health concerns before these kids are adults (and by that I mean in their 20s and functioning as a part of society, not just over 18)? My niece will be living at the house while she attends a local college, at least for the first few years; how on earth will she be a college kid, have a job, AND listen to babies up at all hours of the night?

Then I think, no, none of those things matter. If this is what will make their lives OK again, in even the smallest way, then it's a good thing and all those things will be worth it. I know that this is also the impetus they need to clean out Ryan's room, which is the same as it was the morning he died (I know this because I go in there to talk to him whenever I'm there, since that's where his ashes are), and make it into something other than a frozen memory of sadness.

That in itself makes me feel weird, since it will be removing his things to make way for other people. I know that this is necessary and healthy, and his things aren't him, but the idea of that room being for other people, who will never even have known him, is really, really weird. I think that's the whole 'time moving on' thing bothering me again. Of course that room can't stand still forever.

Anyway, dear readers, thanks for letting me spill my guts to you. I am elated, terrified, and terribly sad, because none of this would be happening had Ryan not died. I know they're not the type of people who would try to replace him; they're trying to replace the sadness with hope and joy. I don't know if that will work, since no matter what they do, he's not coming back, so that hole will still be there. Anyway, please keep them in your thoughts, prayers, meditations, candle burning, bubble blowing, or whatever it is that you do, at least for three more weeks until the first trimester is over.


Kristin.... said...

Oh wow. I will keep them in my thoughts.

Kelsey said...

I will keep them in my thoughts and prayers.

Swistle said...

Indeed: "WHAT?!"

Anonymous said...

You're right. That kind of hole can never be filled.
I wish them all of the love and luck that their hearts can hold.