At least

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I have received a lot of really nice emails in the past week from people saying that they are so glad that I am feeling better.  The emails are really sweet and it warms my heart that people are following my moods so carefully and that they actually care.  But, here is the thing about this blog - on the one hand, I think it gives a view into how I am doing, so people don't have to worry so much (though if I don't post by 10 am each day, some people think I am dead).  On the other hand, even my nearest and dearest seem to think that if I write something dark, I am suicidal but if I write something lighter, I am much better.   The complexity of grief is difficult to explain but, I am not better.  I didn't get out of bed all day yesterday.  My brain was flashing images of a beautiful baby Maxie, wrapped in a towel, on his changing table, with a big smile....and all day I was thinking - I will never get to love this baby again.  It is sickening and the burden of knowing that this pain will be here for the rest of my life is so overwhelming, I become paralyzed.  Yes, I have found that swimming calms my mind and I do have two wonderful therapists that help me to "normalize" my loss...but I am still a mom, living in a house without her baby.  I am still a woman who wanted a child always, who had a baby at 36 years old, whose baby made her feel like life was finally complete, who loved her baby with her whole heart and soul, whose baby got dropped off at daycare one day and never came home.  I am angry and so jealous and my heart is so broken and while in some ways I have accepted that he is gone, there are others ways that this has become so much harder.  In addition to losing Max, there are added complexities that I understand most people in my situation go through: I have had to reevaluate friendships, I am not capable of doing the job that I worked so hard for, I have learned how alone I really am even though I have always been surrounded by people, I have had to question not only my faith but faith in general (I have never been particularly religious but always thought there was something bigger than me), I have had to figure out how to get from one minute to the next without losing my mind.  Yesterday, I came close to losing it.  Finally falling asleep last night was such a relief.  "I feel better" today and yet, I still don't know exactly how I will get myself out of this bed.  Here is a dose of truth - sometimes I purposely write a little lighter because I don't want you to know how dark it is in here.  Sometimes I try to focus on the positives because I feel like it is a first step in healing.  My grief therapist says it is important to "act as if".....  Act as if my whole world didn't crumble in on me I guess.  I am aching for my baby.  I want him more than I want anything.  I loved him so completely that having to live a life without him is mostly unbearable.  Death is so final.  And, I know it's inappropriate in some ways to say this but I think all of the time - If I had a disease, AT LEAST there is hope that I would be cured.  If I were living on the streets, AT LEAST there is hope that I would find a way off of them.  If I was a drug addict, AT LEAST there is hope that I could get into a 12 step program.  If I was divorced, AT LEAST there is hope that I would learn to love again.  If I was unemployed, AT LEAST there is hope that I would find a new job.  There is no hope for my situation to be corrected.  Friends and family think that the answer is that there will be more babies!  And, yes, that is something to look forward to for sure!  But, no new baby will be Max.  There is no AT LEAST here.  Knowing that the rest of my life will have no AT LEAST makes every day nearly impossible.  So, sorry to burst your bubble.  I think it is pretty safe to assume that I am not going to "get better" real soon.

6 comments:

Nichole said...

Hi Abby-it is Darryl's wife Nichole--I started reading your blog yesterday and when I read your post this morning I had to share with you. I am a month away from the first year mark and let me tell you I know about pretending to be normal so people wont worry. Your blog today makes me feel not so alone in this grief process and that we are our new normal. There are many days in a row where I don't get out of bed. I don't sleep and all I do is think about how my life wont ever be as full as it was before. I think that people mean well but just don't get it--the months and days may move past but in our minds it is always just happening. I did have a reading with Moriah with Lindsay and it was incredible. It has given me hope that there really is something past this life. I want to thank you for sharing your grief-I know it is inspirational to many people. I think of you almost everyday--I hope for the best for us both. I am trying like you are to invision a new future but the facts are the facts no matter how you look at them. I know we will survive this because there is no other way to get thru this awful mess of our lives. Most times I can't breathe, or sleep or even keep a straight train of thought. I used to be an awesome mom and wife and now I am searching for myself --looking for a place for the new me. I exist in grief and I feel your pain. Your writing makes it impossible for me not to feel close to you. One day we will rise from the ashes of our old life and embrace the new one-until then keep up the good fight because we are worth it. Nichole

Jenraitt said...

Hi Abby, it's Jenn, Tim macklin's wife. I sent you an email weeks ago and i either have an old address or I managed to really offend you. I really hope the first option is what happened and i didn't stick my foot in my mouth. I think of you often and just wanted to tell you. Xoxo

Bianca said...

I am so sorry there is no AT LEAST when it comes to missing Maxie with all of your being. How could there be, your sweet boy had your heart even before he was born. And you were totally done in once you met that adorable baby you made, I remember just how completely smitten you were right after he was born. The wholeness of your love and bond was always so apparent. It is so unfair that Max is not here with his family. It is so unfair that your normal has changed forever in the most painful way possible. It is so unfair that there is no AT LEAST or that anyone expects you to come up with an AT LEAST.

Zoie Dubinsky said...

Hi Abby,

I guess it is sort of sad in a way, that your writings are reduced by some people to being "happy" or "sad" or "dark". When I read your blog, I feel like I am with you for a moment in time, that is all. I don't even know how real that moment is for you, but that is how I read your blog. I am just grateful to have met you for a brief time in Israel a long time ago. I respect you so much for sharing and writing the way you do. That is all. Thanks for sharing, even if it sucks a lot of the time.

Ántonia Shimerda said...

I tried the "at least" a few times. AT LEAST he was premature by 4 weeks so I got those extra few weeks with him. AT LEAST he didn't suffer. AT LEAST I got to have him for a little while. In the end, nothing worked. They were just words and I didn't mean them. Katie and I have talked about "getting better." As it turns out, I don't want to. The pain and sadness is all I have left of my son that feels tangible. I carry it with me. Some days I can get through the day and it's not so bad. Some days it's terrible. But it's always there and that's even a little comforting in its own way. I feel like the pain is a part of him and I don't want to give it up.

I found that people were really relieved on my "good days." It means that they didn't have as many opportunities to feel uncomfortable and they could pretend like nothing happened. Except for the really good friends that understood that things were never really good for the most part, just tolerable, and they let my feelings run the gamut.

Ántonia Shimerda said...

And that was Rebecca under my fake account. I had to create a new one a few months ago to weed out the riff raff.

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