I keep trying to pinpoint a reason for feeling this way at this moment in time. I thought I was doing so well with ending our efforts for a biological child and now I'm falling apart. In my mind, I've gone through all the possible reasons that I'm having such a hard time tonight: it's been a week since our BFN; our social worker just told us we probably can't take our required adoption classes until the fall; DH and I are starting to spend weekends in NH again and I was so sure that the next summer I was up there I would be pregnant; I got a letter from my health insurer reminding me yet again that they only approved me for one IVF cycle (obviously the RE's office hasn't billed them yet).
But I think I'm just wasting my time trying to find a reason. Grief is grief. It doesn't follow a straight line and it often shows up unexpectedly. There is no logic to it. My only personal experience with grief is the loss of my grandparents. My grandmother died when I was 4 years old and my grandfather died when I was 16. That was 34 and 22 years ago, respectively, and I still miss them, sometimes at the most surprising times. I missed them at my wedding of course, but I also miss them when I see an elderly couple holding hands in the mall. I remember the intensity of the emotions I felt when I first lost each of my grandparents. Now when I miss them, it feels more like a dull ache than a sharp pain but it's still feels like something. That's another thing I've learned about grief: it doesn't end, but it does get less intense with time.
I know losing a flesh and blood person isn't the same as what DH and I are experiencing. But we are losing the biological children we will never get to have together, our might-have-been children. I used to wonder if my Irish ancestry and DH's red highlights would bring us a redhead-- now I'll never know. I wondered if our biological child would be an early bird like DH or a night owl like me--I'll never know. I wondered if our biological child would have his long classic nose or my button one--I'll never know. Would our child blush easily like me? Have DH's smile, including the dimples? Inherit a thick head of hair from both of us? I'll never know. Never.
I plan to let myself mourn my might-have-been children tonight. I worry that this implies that I'll love my meant-to-be children less, but I don't believe that. I think that I need to let go of what might have been in order to fully embrace what's meant to be. This grief I feel is part of that letting go. I know that I'll be a mom through adoption, and I will love my children with all my heart. My life will hold joy again in the future. But that doesn't mean it isn't hard to let go or that it doesn't hurt like hell right now.