There are only so many times you can remind your husband you are sad. Eventually he is ready to move on. He is ready to stop being sad. This is normal. The baby was much more real to me. Constant sickness and fatigue served as a daily reminder. Those moments hugging the toilet seat, vomiting yellow bile in between blow drying your hair and rushing your son out the door to school - they are the moments that won't let you forget.
When those moments stopped I knew the baby was dead. I started running again. I wanted to prove that I was strong enough and I wanted to run away from some unknown darkness that sat on my shoulder. The nurse promised me I was wrong. "Most pregnant women stop feeling sick in the middle trimester." I doubted. The only baby I had ever brought into this world took every inch from me. While I was pregnant with my son I vomited. I vomited every day, at work, behind the grocery store and at our favorite chicken place. I gave birth and then I vomited again.
My back ached and fatigue saturated my brain. Dark thoughts clung to the edges of my conscience. My feet pounded the treadmill and I made secret plans. I convinced the new nurse I needed a sonogram. I exaggerated each symptom like a Southern drawl and when I held the prescription for the sonogram in my hand I felt triumphant.
The sonogram center stood on the corner across the street from our favorite breakfast spot. The walls were whitewashed and patches of grey concrete shown through the incomplete paint job. Two young men with greasy hair sat behind the counter and I tried out bits of broken Nepalese with unmerited confidence. The men laughed and passed me back to the exam room smiling at my familiarity. I was not their usual customer and thus a unsual surprise.
Winter comes first to the buildings in Nepal. While the sun warms the outside air the concrete buildings grow cold in the shortened days. I lay down on the plastic bed in the dark cubbie hole room. The doctor came in wearing a striped dress shirt with a stiff collar. He started the exam rubbing the wand across my abdomen. I saw the flat shadow on the screen. Only five weeks prior this shadow jumped and ebbed with life. Now, it was motionless - a dead thing trapped inside the deep places of my womb.
He rubbed the the wand back and forth clicking on the screen and transcribing measurements. The silent minutes grew and I watched his shoulders tighten as he prolonged the examine not wanted to tell me the truth. Finally he said, "I am sorry. There is no fetal heartbeat. There is no fetal movement." He nodded with the characteristic Nepali sideways tilt and left.
The drive home was a sea of honking traffic and construction induced bottlenecks. Quiet tears rolled down my face. I was alone in Nepal, trapped in the chaos and the baby was dead.