We leave very early tomorrow for Costa Rica, and I couldn’t be more excited. This trip feels like an ending, a beginning, and a grand adventure all rolled into one.
We originally booked this trip for this past January. Neither of us has ever traveled out of the country save for 1 day in Mexico on a cruise several years ago. Our passports are empty. We both loved the idea of checking out the rainforest, and Costa Rica is shockingly close to us, closer than Seattle even. We booked it so far in advance that Amy wasn’t even a twinkle in our eyes, the idea that I might be pregnant at that point never even occurred to us. But, as it turned out, I was about 14 weeks pregnant then, and our doctors disagreed about whether or not it was safe to go. With my high-risk pregnancy, we decided to err on the side of caution and canceled the trip.
Three months later, I was no longer pregnant, our daughter was gone, and the idea of leaving the country for a short while sounded mighty appealing. So we booked it again. And it felt like a closure of sorts – we canceled this trip for Amy’s and my safety, and it turned out we were anything but. Now, here we are, about to take the trip after all.
Which also makes it feel like a beginning. The beginning of life, after. The beginning of living in this moment, rather than always trying to rush ahead to later. The beginning of planning for the worst but expecting the best. And possibly the beginning of another pregnancy, too – who knows? And because it’s just 3 days after her due date, this trip feels like a demarcation, before, after, something big that’s happening that isn’t, you know, “my baby died.”
I was reading an interview with Elizabeth McCracken about her stillbirth memoir, and the interviewer asked how she was doing now. She said, “I think I was worried that Edward and I would always seem like ruined tragic people–that we always WOULD be ruined tragic people. But we aren’t. What happened to us was awful, but not unspeakable, because we and our friends speak of it.”
I can’t really find the right words to explain how this relates to the rest of this post, but to me, it doesn’t. This trip feels a little like reclaiming the non-tragic in our lives.