the world was on fire the day the blood came

i remember thinking how glad i was i’d scrubbed toilet white as the red streaked down

it was so red. and there was so much. and my stomach hurt and the sky flamed with sun as we sped into the light and i wondered if God was punishing me for not wanting the baby more, for focusing more on dreams to get a book published and speak at a conference and suddenly none of that mattered when i thought our child was dripping red across the heavens

we sat in the waiting room and waited and trent stared at the index in a magazine until i knew he wasn’t reading and i stared at the knitted bonnets and blankets in the window of the gift shop and my body felt so empty

then i lay on the wrinkled paper and the doctor came and i told him about the heavy bleeding and cramping and we discussed surgeries at 10 weeks and maybe it would come out natural and then,

he found the doppler and slid it across my womb and the sound of my heart in my ears and then, “what’s that?” and the doctor’s eyes locked mine and we both cried for the strong gallop of tiny heartbeat hooves

and i remembered my prayer, that i would be grateful for this child, that i would be filled with love for this unborn soldier and here it was, pulsing through me, a love that swallowed up everything else that made me “me”

in that moment i was only mama, and that’s all that mattered, for the life that fought within

a gratitude grips me as blood stops and i stay on couch-rest, doctor’s orders, and await the ultrasound next week, as i heal and hope for a love swelling large

(so grateful for you, blog readers, and will be starting imperfect prose again this coming thursday, one week from today… )