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I love you

·783 words·4 mins·
Gilles Chehade
Gilles Chehade
I’m not a cat.

Almost four years ago, your mom and I left home and rushed to the maternity hospital to give birth to your brother. As I closed the door to our home, I told your mom with a huge smile that the next time we’d open the door we’d no longer be only the two of us. This was the best day of our lives.

In December, we got the news that your mom was pregnant of you. We had been waiting you for so long, almost to the point of giving up. We couldn’t be happier but miscarriages taught us caution and we decided to wait the three months milestone before telling your brother, family and friends that you were expected. At every appointment, I held my breath until I could hear your heartbeats, your lovely heartbeats putting a smile on my face and tears in my eyes. I love you so much.

The third month’ appointment arrived mid-February, I was anxious as usual but everything was fine, your heartbeats sounded as lovely as the previous times and you jumped all over the place during the echography, already playing around and making us laugh. I was relieved and I began planning your arrival. We told your brother that he’d soon be sharing his toys, it was hard negociations but he eventually agreed and started asking questions about you, what games you’d be playing together and what cartoons you’d be allowed to watch together.

Two weeks ago, we received a phone call after your mom took a usual blood sample, further examinations were required to make sure everything was fine with you. Nothing too alarming, after all everything was fine on all other examinations, it was just to be safe. The same had happened with your brother, and it turned out to be fine. We were very stressed but also knew it didn’t necessarily mean bad news. We were just very stressed because we didn’t want anything bad to happen to you, love. We waited a week for the examination to happen, the results would come up after a few days.

Last week, we received a phone call from the lab. You had a genetic disease without a cure, an illness that would make your life painful. We had already discussed about this with your mom a long time ago, before she was even pregnant of your brother, we both knew what it meant because we both agreed: we didn’t want you to go through this, no matter how much we wanted you, no matter how much we loved you already. Your brother was with us when we received the phone call. I took care of him while your mom went away to cry, I waited until he was asleep to take my turn, we didn’t want him to understand yet, we didn’t want to break down in front of him.

During that sleepless night, I tried to convince myself that we could make it work, that as long as we loved you and took care of you everything would be fine, but as much as I tried, I could not pretend that this would be an act of love. It would not be love to knowingly force you into a life of suffering, deprivement and reliance just because we wanted you so much. It would be unfair to both your brother and you to let our desire of a child take precedence over the well-being of both of you. It would be unfair to let you develop further knowing that you had an illness, that you’d suffer from it and that your brother would have to take care of you when we’re too old or no longer around to do it ourselves. I’m sure your mom had the same train of thoughts that night. We decided to do what was in the best interest for the both of you, regardless of how painful it was to us, we knew it wasn’t to you at this point.

It’s been almost a week now. It’s been almost a week since we left home and drove to the maternity hospital. We didn’t want to go, we knew that this time we’d come back alone, just the two of us. A few hours later, on the 24/02/2023, your mom gave birth to you, my little girl, and then your heart stopped beating. Mine too.

Yesterday, we built the courage to tell your brother that you were no longer inside mom. We told him you had to return to the stars and that you’ll be watching over him from there, he’ll be watching you too.

You existed and mattered to us, we won’t forget you, I love you 💜

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