Isn’t learning and growing fun? The asshole who quipped “whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” can bite me, because I’m sitting on the fence between annihilated and stronger and I keep wavering back and forth. This week, I wavered towards stronger. I also found a new hateful love of cliches. Apologies for that…
I’m realizing, at least on an intellectual level, that much of my almost unbearable loneliness is based in my mourning, my pain, my loss of innocence, my lack of emotional control. It’s me – and because I suddenly have this loneliness, I had thought that I was suddenly alone when really, not much in the rest of the world changed. I can’t stop my emotions from overflowing when faced with pregnancy loss conversation and I’m now seeing that I’m cheating myself, and people around me, by answering “fine” whenever anyone asks me how I am. It just seemed easier than placing part of this burden, the massive weight of this chaos within, on their shoulders too. I wonder if I poured my heart out, would they listen? If I cried, would they hold me? If I screamed, would they scream with me? My MIL reminded me that I have to give others a chance to shine, even if it means that some will falter.
I had stopped giving people a chance early on after losing the Tectonic Baby because I did pour my heart out to SF (silent friend) whom I thought would be able to help me. Looking back, I’m not sure what I was looking for – I wanted her to whisk in with her magic sensibilities and make this darkness disapate, or maybe just validate that what I was feeling were ok things to feel. I was reaching out of this despair, and I didn’t hold back at all, drowning her. When this gush was met with silence, it was devastating and confirmed for me that some people will be afraid of what I’m immersed in, what I represent. It also reminded me that this chaos is intensely overwhelming to anyone outside of my head. As I obsessed over this lack of response, I let some of that healing that had occurred in the weeks prior fall between my fingers as the waves of grief returned. I retreated back into myself, believing again that this one person’s reaction meant that others’ would also fail me.
In a large circle of friends who are trying to or have succeeded in getting pregnant, it’s uncomfortable for these happy pregnant ladies to talk about their joy, pregnancy aggravations, dreams, hopes in my presence. When they giggle about their ripening bellies, I’m thrown that my own hope and craving for motherhood has been replaced with terror and panic. I’m terrified that our next pregnancy will also have to be removed in a cold sterile environment, under bright lights, dying amidst the chitchat of paper masked surgeons. I’m terrified that these women who are so early in their pregancies will be jinxed by my very presence and something horrible will happen to their babies too. While they laugh about the pregnancy-virus spreading among the group, internally I’m screaming about the possibility of their impending doom. Irrational? Extremely, and this week I’m starting to realize these panicked thoughts are based on anxiety and not hard facts. Again, purely intellectual thoughts which my emotions aren’t really jiving with, but it should mean that my emotions will follow some day, won’t they?
I’m learning and possibly even growing. Keeping the bitterness at bay to stay true to myself and trying to survive have become my main objectives. Maybe those will give way to those less primal as time passes and hope returns. When someone does shine and shares a piece of this heavy load, I now notice the difference in the weight immediately and caress it in my memories. When The Songbird arrived unexpectantly with love and tenderness when I needed her most, the darkness faded a bit. When my friend Y came to hold me while I lost control and fell into a heap on the floor, I felt her take some of my darkness as she whispered fiercely and held me. When the SF apologized for not responding to my grief, feeling that she was a horrible friend, I felt her tears and regret take some of my darkness. When I met with a group who are also suffering from losses and I couldn’t stop crying long enough to even introduce myself, I felt their support and shared tears take some of my darkness. When I arrived home to find thoughtful gifts, Chad & Michelle’s caring thoughts enveloped me and I wept happy tears, with some of my darkness replaced with love. When total strangers and far off friends out here on the internets send thoughts, prayers, and encouragement, the sun begins to shine a bit brighter.
Staying alone and holding tight to my darkness will push me to annihilation. I have to pledge to allow others to shine. I need to lean towards the “strong” side of the fence, and let others lead me over onto the sunlight bathed grass.
I’m lopsided and grateful. Thank you for your outstretched hand.