Ms. Carriage

I  woke up and just knew.
Just a few nights before,
with my beloved at my side,
both looking up into the sky,
I said from deep inside,
“if it is so, then show up in a shooting star.”
It did.
Just then.
Right there.
I swear.
The words had barely left me.
I wished for you,
upon a star.
I touched my womb,
smiling at the synchronicity.
Was that real?
Did I really see?
He and I made love that night.
I felt my breasts remembering.
Yes, it’s true my dear child,
I had wished for you.

Full, voluptuous and tender to the slightest touch.
My body changed instantly,
spontaneously,
but not too much.
I was still a bit unsure,
hesitant to believe,
fearful to accept that I had truly conceived.
But with the passing weeks to come,
my body continued to confirm,
announcing it to every cell,
“I’m pregnant!” indeed.
With child, I had become.

I wanted to shout to the world!
But I withheld,
and kept it within.
Only to myself.
My own little secret.
My protection of an “us”,
a “we”
a “you & me.”

When I woke next,
it was with a pain.
I knew something was different,
but I showed no sign of complaint.
I shrugged it off in silence.
Simple passing symptoms—
sluggish & tired,
feeling lazy with no desire.
Peeing constant, painful & relentless.
My body focused it’s attention on you,
away from me,
and I was left as a by-standing eyewitness.

Along the road,
pain became extreme.
Driving, winding,
beauty, blinding.
Tears in my eyes,
I had to scream.
“Dear god, please, stop here!”
My father pulled the car over,
hearing the angst in my voice.
I jumped from the car,
and into a nearby field,
where I had no other choice.
I squatted low to the ground,
and ducked my head down.

Convulsions.
Cramping.
Contractions.
Expanding.

OOOOOOOOOOOW!!!

Sweat began to bead upon my brow,
pushing, sighing, relieving
sobbing, crying, grieving.
The sweat dripped
as I gripped my knees,
bleeding beneath the trees.

Praying—sorrow,
I looked down,
grieving your grave.
Crying—grateful,
I looked around,
celebrating the release.
My body’s freedom from you.

Bawling, wailing.
Tear stained face.
Sweat stained clothes.
Drenched from head to toe.
In a pool of immeasurable pleasure and woe.

“What is wrong?!”
My mother was now at my side.
“I’m pregnant,”
I said, for the very first time.
“I know,” she whispered,
caressing my face.
“Just between us,
and it’s going to be okay.”
Suddenly, I was beginning to calm.
Her soft words soothed like balm.
My sobs began to retreat,
and a retreat was where I needed to be.

Ready to leave,
she gathered me up.
As we walked,
my body that was once full,
now felt empty and dull.

I left the beginnings of you back there,
and behind,
there in a field, in southern Germany,
for no one to find.
But I will always know…

The remaining of you spilled out of me for 17 days thereafter.
Intense pain willed through me like I never knew until after.

What to do?
I did not know.
For no one was around,
to help care or guide.
I had flown home
and was left by my own side.

Dipped my feet in wild water.
Sat beneath a tree.
Cold, wet stones on my body.
Good friends who cherished me.
Summer sounds and sweet serenity.
Laughter, celebrations,
and wedding festivities.

What to do?
This time a reply.
My body answered,
from deep down inside.

Be still.

I slept.
I ate.
I rested.
All day.
I waked.
I read.
In bed.
I felt dead.
And I bled.

I bled you into…
a river,
a lake,
a creek,
windy woods,
and storm flooded streets.
A bath every night,
that swept you off into sewage pipes.

Walled away in a cocoon of my own spinning.
I’d drift off to sleep into an oblivion.
One month of my life,
passed into two,
I spent most of the time casting aside visions of you.

One evening,
I laid in a bath,
I let myself feel your absence.
What showed up, was your presence.
You came to me there—
red dress,
sandy spiraled hair,
all a mess.
Beautiful loose tendrils.
Green glass glowing eyes.
Lashes like mine.
You were the most beautiful sight.
So I held you close & squeezed you tight.
I felt your heart beat upon mine.
I kissed your face.
Your little fingers interlaced.
You giggled and cooed.
Your eyes told me you were okay.
“I love you and goodbye,” I uttered.
My eyes closed.
The last of my tears arose.
Dripped down my face &
traced lines along my nose.

My mind became captivated with you, once again.
The silence of you filled my days,
and as time heals the wounds,
distance between us remained.
Five months until my body felt like itself again.

Pap smeared.
Tickled, tamed tears.
Gasped & giggled.
A-gaped open gown.
“Please breath,” the doctor said.
Poking, prodding.
Open contraption causing throbbing.
“I can see you were pregnant,”
she stated, ever so formally,
and matter-of-factly.
Her words sank in.

A heavy ball,
from deep down inside,
hit me with emotion,
then subsided.
Only for a moment.
Then vanished into the vastness of atonement.

It was always true.
The affirmation of  me,
was the conception of you.

Yet…

No. One. Ever. Knew.
What I missed,
and what I carried.
What might exist,
and what I left buried.

Congratulations,
I know my body.
I know myself.
I am who I am.
Perfectly, imperfectly, me.
A womb-in,
unto herself.
I am called,
Ms. Carriage.

— Journal entry May 2012, on my miscarriage in Summer 2011

If you made it this far, Ms. Carriage is a poetic memoir straight from my Vulnerability Vault of my all-too-personal journal entries deemed “too scared to share,” after having read it to someone who wasn’t ready to hear.

Today, I find the courage to blow the dust off, along with my fear, and share what was one of the most intense, intimate and loneliest experiences of my life.

2 thoughts on “Ms. Carriage

  1. Emily says:

    Thank you so much Allyson for sharing your poem. I have never fully understood the physical and mental process of a miscarriage. I don’t write many poems, but when something traumatic happens to me I am compelled to write them. Writing about my body’s pain with ink and paper helps my mind cope. Now the poems are locked away in my mothers attic. Sharing them scares me and few people have gotten to read them. I admire you for your strength and courage.
    Love Goldie

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s