I’m back! I think. I’m alive! Sort of.
After a too long hiatus of sorts, I’m back on the blog. My life was thrown into chaos between health, family, and work that I had no time to devote to it. I’m trying to find the words to even describe everything I haven’t been able express in the time I haven’t been blogging. But I will say this, it’s pent up. I realized it after taking a long overdue (I’m talking years) visit to my massage therapist. I went to see him to address some neck pain I was experiencing and he was stunned at how tight my neck and shoulder muscles were. It took him 45 minutes to even loosen the muscles before even wanted to touch my neck. “All the thoughts that are unexpressed and all the words unspoken, that’s where they go,” I mused half to him, half to myself.
So here I sit at my keyboard trying to get some of it out.
It’s been over two years since I realized that pursuing pregnancy in my 40’s was unwise. A decision that was backed up by my body presenting me with an autoimmune-based arthritis over a year later. But even now the emptiness I feel because of not being able to be a “mom,” still brings me to my knees unexpectedly. I thought I’d be stronger. I thought I’d find a surrogate that could fill the baby-shaped hole in my heart. Something that could lighten the weight of my empty arms. But it’s still there.
I feel alone in this. While my husband understands, there is a part of him that cannot possibly understand because he has children.
Recently, friends of ours who have battled infertility for years found something that worked and are expecting a child early next year. I’m thrilled for them, but also feeling left behind. They’ve crossed over.
Another friend, a former sister-in-arms, is now on baby number three and is now doing everything she swore she wouldn’t when she was struggling.
And to add to that, another younger couple in our small group of intimates just announced their pregnancy.
Smash, Bang, Boom… all sorts of unresolved grief has now just made it’s presence known in a BIG way. Everyone is crossing over and I feel isolated and alone.
I’m struggling with this. Wondering why God said, “N0.” Especially when I witness everyone else seemingly getting their, “Yes.”
For the past two years I have been fighting against it. Trying to turn the lemons into lemonade. Trying to find a source of fulfillment. Trying to give back. Trying to re-channel my grief… and failing. Throwing energy into church. Throwing way too much energy into work. Trying to financially hold my family together. Encouraging Hubs to get this parenting act together. Some of this is done out of necessity, some out of hope, and some out of sheer desperation. But I’m coming to a breaking point. I’m tired. And I’m angry. I want to disappear.
It occurs to me that I don’t even have a sense of me any more. Where did I go? Did I miss something? Was I too concerned that my grief was so prolonged that I tried to bypass acceptance completely? Or is my grief, anger and pain about this a security blanket?
All I know is this: something is missing in my heart. I watch friends who are moms interacting with their children and my arms ache to hold the children I’ve lost. I see my pregnant friends in celebration, doing all the things I dreamed of doing when I first found out I was pregnant, and I yearn to have that experience. I see my MIL gush with pride over my two-year-old nephew and I feel so disconnected from that side of the family, because I couldn’t give her a grandchild. I see my Skid acting so distant from me, and wonder if I had been able to give him a brother or a sister if it would have made us feel more connected to each other.
I’m left wondering if this ever goes away. Wondering that if in my mad scramble not to become the woman who holds onto to her grief too long, I’ve in reality prolonged this. All I know is that I cannot stand it anymore. I’m tired of falling apart every time someone announces a pregnancy. (Yeah, I’m looking at you Kate Middleton.)
I need to step away from trying to find fulfillment in helping others and start helping myself. It’s like the drill you hear before take off. I need to put my air mask on first before I can assist others.
It’s time to stop running and face this grief head on.