And then there are things that seem too sad to be.
It's not my story. I'll just share a little because it seems to be occupying a lot of the space that I have inside me, these last few days.
The last thing she told us was that she was going off to eat a curry, to see whether she could get her labor jump-started. She was laughing. Just the day before, we had talked about doing portraits of her and her baby when he was born. A couple of days before that, her husband pushed my stroller kindly through the deep sand, the part that I always have trouble getting through. We walked along in the early evening, and she held Solo's hand while he began to fuss. She wanted her baby more than anything in the world.
I was afraid, when Renee came into the house the morning after I had been away for a day and told me something bad had happened. I was afraid that something had happened to the baby.
Nothing in my mind told me that a woman could still die in childbirth. That she could have her baby just fine, but then bleed to death afterward. In so many ways it seems that it was preventable. I have so many questions, so much anger. I am hurting for her husband, for her tiny son, for her mother. It's impossible.
It is so heavy. Maybe if we were there? I think. We would have carried her away to the hospital. We wouldn't have waited for the ambulance. We would have flown with wings, we would have stopped the rush, we would have saved her.
I should have known something was going to happen. The thoughts lead me into trails out and down and down and down.
But who were we? Only new friends, in the neighborhood, sharing an experience, walking to the beach, planning to get together soon.
It was preventable. I am angry. It is not my story. I saw her son today, tiny and perfect with no breasts to turn his rooting mouth towards. Solo looked like a giant, when I got home. I looked in the mirror and there I was. The mother of my children. Still here, despite terrorists in Mumbai, despite the train ticket that I still have, the one we didn't use, which would have taken us there just one day before the attacks started. Still here, and not quite deserving.
I am so sorry.