I have been struggling in a world of sorrows and fears as of late. I think you may have noticed.

Perhaps I could use the language of gardening to explain my fears and my sorrows. I have always pictured very pregnant women as a rose on my front rose bush. This particular bush came with the house. I hack it back now and then, but it always blooms again in the spring. I throw water at it occasionally, I might fertilize it once a year, but I look at it this time of year, and I see it loaded with buds.

And suddenly one morning, I will leave the house, and it will be covered with blooms. Huge blooms with multiple petals, in a vibrant shade of pink, with fragrance pouring off. Blooms that are the size of my fist, large and vibrant and full of beauty and promise. And I get these blooms from neglect, this bush seems to thrive on my lack of care for it, thrive on being taken for granted. It requires no special care or tending. It blooms beautifully, as it is meant to do, with no interference from me.

When I look at the pictures of me pregnant, even those right before my delivery, I am nowhere near this place of splendour. I am nowhere near filled to life, almost to the bursting. I am small and compact, not even into my last trimester. A shade plant, creeping along quietly in the corner. "Maybe in August," you think, "Maybe then it will do something spectacular. Something to make up for its paltry presence."

It is not reasonable to expect a birth at home next time, even an 8 pound baby, a healthy, happy pregnancy. It is reasonable that I will birth a baby in a high risk hospital. I will pray for it to be a little bigger than 750 grams. It will be whisked off to NICU. It will stay there for several months. There will be one step forward, and two steps back. When other mothers are working on breast feeding, I will be working on hoping my baby keeps breathing, doesn't have a heart defect. I will be praying life into my child.

I have had to bury every seed I planted: expecting a dream pregnancy, of a happy 9 months, of feeling baby kick and move, of knowing wonder, of being excited at doctor's appointments, of blooming in late pregnancy, of being radiant of birthing at home, surrounded by those who love me, and love our child.

My new garden is not the same. I must plant and tend different seeds. Seeds that make me small, and filled with fear and concern. Seeds that allow me to live each day, one day at a time. Seeds that will allow me to be restricted, confined, frightened. These seeds do not seek out the sunshine, they do not bloom, they will help me lie very still, and pray that the shadow of pre-e does not find me.

I am a project person, in a process life. I look at life, at pregnancy as a project. Something that I can plan for, mitigate risk in, organize, schedule, budget. But life, it is not like this. A rose does not have a project plan, my shady garden plant does not have a risk register. I must stop being a project person, and move into a day to day life. A life where every day spent in the womb means an extra 3% chance of survival. A life filled with prayer and patience. A life in which I do not have the master answers.

I am looking for the seeds that will allow me to survive. To pray that the baby does too. And perhaps, that would be enough.