6-19. I love those numbers. When the clock reads “6:19” I dutifully point it out. It is my birthday, representing a part of who I am and what I love. I love June. I love the beginning of summer. I love my traditional, once-a-year, birthday peach pie. I love my Baby G. He and I may not share a physical home, playtimes, bath times, long walks, or baby giggles, but we do share a birthday.
One year ago today, we learned his heart had stopped. A wretched decision had to be made (for the third time): what route do we want to take with another failed pregnancy? I chose to induce the miscarriage. I chose to get it over with faster than the four week wait I endured with Baby Number Two. I chose to ignore my birthday. The following day, we had the appointment to get the pills. The following day, I went home to wait on the couch until the cramps and contractions were nearly unbearable. The following day, Baby G. came into our lives, leaving us with a hollow potential of a love unfulfilled.
When I returned to the doctor for a follow-up she said, “I wouldn’t have let you do that on your birthday if I had known!” Within her kind words, she failed to realize the alternative was worse. There was no celebration either way. Having it behind us was the best birthday I could have hoped for given what the universe dealt us.
A year later, 6-19 will never be the happy-go-lucky day I naively enjoyed for 31 years. Yet, I still relish the joy that fills me when I see my numbers in everyday life. The idea of a warm slice of peach pie still makes my mouth water. The anticipation of the warm summer ahead still excites my senses. And now, together, Baby G. and I will celebrate our lives, mine of 33 years, his of eight weeks. While it dredges up the very memories I spent all year forgetting, it also reminds me of the love we had for another being. My day is no longer my day, but has changed for the better when shared with an angel.