7 1/2 months is such an important time for me. That is how long Emily has lived, and now how long she has been gone.
I just now realized that it is also the time we have been TTC in earnest. Last month we began to TTC and I had an emotional setback. It is amazing to realize what can trigger these moments, and last month it was when we began to TTC. I spiraled downward with anger toward my mother. I was upset that she was not a bigger advocate for her own health, as she is for everyone else, and now she was gone. As a nurse she was very knowledgable and compassionate and demanded the best for everyone. Everyone except herself. I was upset that she denied having a stillborn son even when we asked her point blank. I understand that it was a different time, and that was her way of coping, but frankly I didn’t care. I was her child and I wanted her to share her experience with me. If she had it could have made a difference and helped me with Emily when she wasn’t there. I was mad that she was dead and I couldn’t talk to her about all of this.
The 6-7 month mark I began screaming in my sleep again, that had subsided some until then. I also had my first full fledged panic attack. It was overwhelming and scary and took some time before I realized what it was. I remembered my social work experience and training and did the “old school” trick of putting a rubber band on my wrist and snapping it. It is best to do that in the very beginning of feeling a panic attack, but I didn’t realize that was what I was feeling and thought better now than never and did it approximately 3 minutes into the attack. I took deep breaths sitting on the floor with my head between my knees and stayed like that until it subsided. I then drank a lot of water and began calling my support network and talking through it. I didn’t have a trigger, which you usually do for a panic attack, so I determined it was the culmination of all of my feelings and emotions until my mind and body could not take it anymore and sent me the signal that I needed more support. Repression is never helpful and very harmful both physically and mentally. I recommend anyone to reach out and develop a support network if you feel like this, there are many out there. I have my sisters and my awesome friends from my SHARE group.
I’m at a better place now. I have comfort that she always loved us and wanted the best for us at all times to the best of her ability. I am sad that she had to deny her son, our only brother, instead of sharing him with us. I’m sad that times were worse for women in those situations back then, and that she was never able to grieve her only son properly. I can’t wait to see her and hug her and tell her it is ok and give her a big hug, with Emily who I know she is caring for so well. I can’t wait to see my brother that I was never able to know or hear about.
I have to have hope. It is all I have, and I desperately need to cling to something positive. Emily’s 6 month angelversary was difficult for me. I did a balloon release, and so did a dear friend of mine that I met on-line. Her son was stillborn on the same day as Emily and I just know that they are great friends. The picture above is the balloon release she did for our babies and so many others. I chose that picture as a reminder that we are not alone, and there are so many others.
I’m thankful to be back at work and to be very busy, to have focus and a purpose. I love all of my students as my own and can’t wait to know who will be in my classes this year. I can’t wait to make a difference in each and every life of every child that I have this year. Children are such a blessing and treasure and I’m excited to know my new ones, and “old” ones that I have had the privilege of teaching for multiple years, or teaching the siblings of other students I have had in the past. I love the uniqueness of every child.
Running, yoga, and attending my monthly SHARE meetings have been beneficial for me. The on-line groups I am a member of and connecting with other BLM (baby loss mothers) have had a positive impact on the grieving process and my life. I have met some of the most amazing people I have ever known in my entire life during this process.
I am trying to remind myself of my blessings, run when I get upset, and don’t miss a yoga class to help me stay centered. I am choosing to see the positive in anything that happens around me and most of all HOPE.
Love and blessings to all! XOXOXO
p.s we tried with “gusto” this month so we’ll see!:-)