The Thing With Feathers







Hope is the thing with feathers  
That perches in the soul,  
And sings the tune without the words,  
And never stops at all.
-Emily Dickinson

I remember when my doctors told me that having another baby wasn’t a good idea. Doctors are generally blunt folks. I mean, they have to be. My lady doctor was perhaps the most blunt, but then again, she saw me through the entire ordeal of having Jane and the fall out afterwards (for those of you who don’t know, I had severe migraine related vertigo, postpartum depression and was eventually prescribed antidepressants).

She looked me right in the eye and slapped me with the truth.

“You have to work full time and can’t take time off. You have a child. You’re alone a lot. Your migraines make you so dizzy you can’t stand. You’re managing depression with a Class D Pharmaceutical which would cause major birth defects to a fetus. You have one healthy child, enjoy and be happy.”

And she was right about all of those things.

But that moment broke my heart into a thousand shards.

I could feel it when it went, like the moment when an old rotten floorboard gives way under the weight of someone’s foot. My worn out heart cracked right down the middle and tiny fissures spread like wildfire. I was splintered and fragmented.  It wasn’t just because I had to say goodbye to a second baby. It was because my life was rigid. Loneliness was crushing me. My body was falling apart.

I couldn’t remember what hope felt like.

When I went back to my doctor this year she gave me a smile and said, “Stress was literally killing you before. Whatever changes you’ve made, I’m glad you made them.”

This weekend was one of the best weekends I’ve had in a long time. We watched movies under a quilt. We cooked. We played with Jane’s princesses. We went to the movies where she was so happy she told everyone seated behind us, “I love all ya’ll people.”

I was overwhelmed with thankfulness. I’m fully present for my daughter. I’m not depressed and no longer have to take medication for it. My migraines are minimal, better than they’ve ever been. It’s been back breaking to get to this point, but now that I’m here, I believe it’s a miracle. I feel healthy. I feel sane. I feel whole again. I feel hope.

And all those cracks in my heart have been patched.

And the patches are strong.



  1. erniebufflo says:

    I have been in that place, too. I really really hope I won’t feel that little bit of sadness every time I hold a friend’s new baby that I’ll likely never have a new baby of my own. I have baby feeeeeever lately, and since I’ve been told one would very likely send me into heart failure, that’s apparently off the table because doctors apparently care about keeping me alive. It’s just super duper sucky to have that decision taken out of your hands. I am glad to hear you’re in a good place.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Barbara says:

    I think you are an awesome woman and mom and Jane is darling!! Thank you for being so honest in and with your journey….it had been an honor and privilege to wish you well from afar. You go girlfriend~!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Michele says:

    This is a totally gutsy, honest post. You have my utmost admiration for opening up to your readers. It’s lovely to read how enjoyable and hopeful you life is now!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. CrysHouse says:

    I still enjoy reading, and perhaps my favorite of your offerings has been When the Cheese Falls Off Your Cracker. Will you finish that series at some point?


  5. Bridget says:

    Love the mirror. Just because God has a plan doesn’t mean you have to like it, some of his plans, for lack of a more polite word, suck.


  6. stgilbert says:

    You fantastically courageous woman! I am so thrilled that you are doing so well!

    I, too, had to say goodbye to my second baby shortly after my daughter was born I mourned that baby for quite a while but, as it turns out, my daughter is the absolute most precious gift I have ever been given.


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