A long Holy Saturday

Last night, I was cold and couldn’t sleep, so I snuggled up against my husband, who is always warm. When I’m pregnant, I like to press my belly against him so that we can all be warm all together, me and him and the baby.  “Here you go, little guy.  This is your daddy.  You will like him.”  Then, last night, I remembered that there is no baby.

There is no wild anguish here. I’m just tired, and bewildered.  I was so busy for those seven weeks, I sometimes forgot I was even pregnant, even though we wanted, tried for a baby. I hadn’t gotten around to even looking up what the little one was up to, week to week.  But I worked deliberately to make him real, when I remembered he was real:  I asked God to bless him.  I thanked God for him. I talked to him, and gave him a little happy pat when I remembered he was there.

Here is the thing that really hurts. I never saw the baby. I don’t know where he went.  I lost track of his body as I bled, and now he is gone.  Those are the worst nightmares:  the wave comes, the darkness falls, the crowd sweeps by, and your child is gone.  Where did he go?  Why didn’t I hold on tighter?  My husband would have gone and dug up the frozen ground to bury the body, but there is nothing to bury.  He has been washed away, and I don’t even know when.  Maybe he died weeks ago, when he was too little to be seen.  Maybe I was happily patting someone who was already gone.

It wouldn’t change anything if I could have buried him. But I wish I could have done it.

I’m trying to hear the voice of the angel — the one who stands waiting outside the tomb to explain the situation, so that when you go to take care of the body and find it gone, you will know that there haven’t been wild animals or grave robbers or some trickery or indignity.  You haven’t lost the body; the body has life.  He is not here, but he is not gone.  Don’t worry!  This is a good thing.  You cannot have his body, but you have not lost him.

I’m in a long Holy Saturday.  A bewildering time.  God promised joy, He promised resurrection, but in the mean time, what are we supposed to do?  It is hard when the ones we love hide from us.  They don’t need our care.

I want the baby to have eternal life.  And I want him back.

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