June 27, 2008

MY INNER DANTE HICKS

I havenít been writing about how Iím doing because 1) most of the time Iím doing fine and 2) I feel self-conscious about the hint I've gotten that I need to get over myself. But writing is my way of processing things, so today I could use that therapy.

When I was pregnant, I ordered more contact lenses. I hadnít been in to pick them up yet. So while I was on my way over there, I was rehearsing in my mind what Iíd say. I got a feel for the words before I got to the shop. But when I got up to the counter and the girl asked me why I wanted a refund, the words wouldnít come out. They were replaced by a lump in the back of my throat.

Just say it. You can do it. Just say, ďI ordered these while I was pregnant, but since I lost the pregnancy, my consolation prize is gonna be lasik surgery. Ha ha ha.Ē Just say it. Ha ha ha.

I think the girl sensed that something was wrong, because she said, ďIíll just check the box for Ďbought too many boxes.íĒ Yep, one box, thatís too many. Then I felt awkward for making the situation awkward and thought Iíd better explain before she thinks Iím a freak. But still the words wouldnít come.

Most of the time Iím fine, until I have to say the words out loud.

I went to a support group meeting on post the other night, a child loss group. I havenít been sleeping well since my mom left, and if it worked for Tyler Durden, I thought maybe it might work for me. The ladies in the group were really nice and made me feel entirely welcomed, but I think in some ways it made me feel worse. These are ladies who birthed severely premature babies, but babies nonetheless. They had faces and names and lived for a week on machines. They had funerals and were buried in gowns that people I knit with had made and donated. I just felt stupid mourning the little gummy bear that I lost.

I am Joeís heaping tablespoon of Perspective.

So most of the time, Iím fine. But every once in a while I get not fine, like when I do something that I wouldnít be doing if I were pregnant, like mowing the yardÖor drinking wine. And I try to resist those feelings inside of me. I try to suppress my inner Dante Hicks, try not to feel like Iím not even supposed to be here, try not to live in this alternate reality where Iím pregnant and happy and shouldnít be mowing. But itís hard, because thatís the parallel universe I want to be living in.

I donít want to be getting lasik, even though Iíve waited two years to do it.

Maybe I'll just start a fight club.

Posted by Sarah at June 27, 2008 11:01 AM | TrackBack
Comments

First, never ever apologize for your feelings or writing about them. Forget the nasties that troll around telling you how you should handle your feelings and your blog.

Second, a loss is a loss even though they were at different stages. Yours is no less significant.

Everything is relative to the lives we live and our circumstances. There are no rules that say you can't do 'x' unless 'y' happens.

Hang in there...there will come a point that it will be better. Take the steps you need to get there and don't let it get you down if it comes with a step or two back.

Sending prayers and good wishes your way.

Posted by: Susan at June 27, 2008 12:11 PM

First rule of Fight ClubÖ

Listen to Susan, sheís got a lot of wisdom.

Posted by: tim at June 27, 2008 12:22 PM

Never apologize for how you feel. Ever. It's just how it is. Losses are hard to process, sometimes you have good and bad days. Never measure yours against another's. Each pain in unique, just like the individuals we lost and who we're mourning for.

Posted by: Mare at June 27, 2008 02:08 PM

Sarah, what is with the comments on the orig post you linked to? Whack.

I wouldn't worry too much over people who tell you to get over yourself. Especially on your personal blog. Seems a bit forward to tell a person that. And nonsensical.

While it brings a smile, calling your baby a gummy bear does nothing to make your loss any less worthy of mourning.

I really like the way Susan worded it about taking the steps to get to a better place, but allowing yourself the occasional steps back without being too hard on yourself.

Definitely a great thing to strive for.

Good thoughts and loved the laugh over at spousebuzz. I remember thinking to myself how unwelcoming we are to our guests comparatively. Glad I wasn't the only one.

Posted by: wifeunit at June 27, 2008 03:42 PM

I feel you with the crying thing.

I lost a baby at 4 weeks just over a month ago. Hardly even a pregnancy really. If I had waited one more day to take the test I wouldn't even have been really sure that I was pregnant.

I cried, then thought I got over it. Went to the doctor for a totally unrelated matter. Walked in thinking about how I should tell him about it while I was there, totally fine, not upset at all. I went to tell him about it and burst into tears. I didn't even see them coming!

So, hang in there. And as for the apologies for writing about your feelings...you have been helping me. So don't let those negative comments stop you from writing what YOU want on YOUR blog. If they don't like it they don't have to come here.

Stephanie

Posted by: stephanie at June 27, 2008 04:56 PM

Sarah,
what you have to get over is feeling that ANYONE else has the right to tell you how to feel. (So here I am telling you how to feel) If writing your thoughts on your blog helps, do it! None of us are obligated to read this. Most of us do it because he have come to like and respect you and we wish you the best. Your little gummy bear had all your hopes and aspirations any mother gives her baby. And I for one thank God he didn't have to go through any intensive care before he died. Sounds cruel I know, but that is another thing I have never had to face and am glad for it and I'm glad you didn't have to face it either. BUT, that doesn't make your loss any less hard to take or any less wrenching for you.
Write all you want, we can handle it.

Posted by: Ruth H at June 27, 2008 04:56 PM

Something I was told when I was going through grief was this: Grief is ALWAYS 100%. You don't ever 75% grieve for someone.

I will also say if that group makes you feel worse, find another one. Might there be one for people who have been through miscarriages? Do you know anyone you could ask?

Posted by: Val at June 27, 2008 06:11 PM

Do not get over it...

a gummy bear it was not. It was a baby.

In your heart, and mind he or she was the FUTURE.

Your future with this baby....that is worth mourning over.

Posted by: awtm at June 27, 2008 11:53 PM

I agree: It doesn't matter when someone loses a baby--the result is the same. It doesn't matter if your baby was hooked up to machines or only visible on a sonogram. It was the potential, the future, of this new life that you were robbed of. You have every right to mourn or be sad about that being taken from you. Don't let anybody make you feel bad about that, including yourself.

Posted by: Ann M. at June 28, 2008 10:34 AM

Ditto to all of the good and kind words posted
here. Your blog,write about what's on our mind,
that's the Sarah we love.

Posted by: MaryIndiana at June 28, 2008 02:59 PM

Sarah- It's ok to be not fine. I think that sometimes we tell ourselves that we have to hold it all together... for your readers, for the store clerk, for yourself even... but in reality, why? I am person who is always trying to keep it together... and if I think about it, I don't really know why. Perhaps I am afraid of the repercussions of not doing so... which in my case, would mean that maybe others would think I was nuts, or pity me. I owe it to myself to just let go sometimes, and so do you : ) Also, even though my situation is totally different... I get you with the parallel universe... It is very difficult to live with one reality when you want so badly to have another.

Posted by: Hope at June 28, 2008 03:32 PM

I agree w/everyone else 100%. :) You feel however you need to & write about it with wild abandon. If someone doesn't like it, send 'em my way--I have a lot of pent up aggression right now that I'd like to work out.

Let me take this comment down the second path of your post by telling you -- giving this gift to yourself will change your life. Don't underestimate the joy found in seeing an alarm clock in the morning without your contacts or glasses.

I know pales in comparison to your heart's true desire, but I also know you deserve to do something this special for yourself. I had my eyes lasered while Hubs was deployed and it was an amazingly good decision. This will be good for you too.

Posted by: Guard Wife at June 28, 2008 05:16 PM

Thinking about you. I don't have any 'real' comments. But I wanted to leave one!

Posted by: Allison at June 29, 2008 01:18 PM