The grieving process is exactly what it is called...a process. It is amazing to me that so many emotions can surge through me in such a short time. Add the physical issues with it all, and the hormones that are plummeting back to normal at a crazy rate, and it can get quite overwhelming.
The immense and all consuming grieving I went through for a few weeks, regarding our precious baby, was immediately swept away after our temple experience. I walked into the temple an emotional mess with a dark cloud hanging over me, and came out smiling and shedding tears of joy. I hold this experience very close to my heart and consider it sacred.
There is a process that is separate from all of that though. It shocked me that I was still feeling so sad and confused just a day after feeling such a peace about our child. But this process is separate from that. It is not nearly as hard, not even close, but it is still difficult.
Even though I have peace in one area, this ordeal has many areas that I have had to deal with. Being 4 months pregnant one day, and then not pregnant the next day, is a huge shock. The events that unfolded and caused such a traumatizing experience are plenty to deal with. The physical limitations I have had to adjust to can be so frustrating and hard. Being scared to take on the daily tasks that once were so normal and natural to me is difficult as well. And the other hundreds of challenges and emotions that have come from something like this, not to mention the hormones dropping, have proved to be almost more than my mind can handle.
Because of these things, and all of the other emotions that soar through me throughout the day, I have had a hard time trying to get back into our "new normal." I literally didn't sleep more than 4 hours a night for 2 1/2 weeks because I couldn't slow my brain or my emotions down. My eyes were big red balls with black rings under them. Naturally, anxiety has been a big problem as well. My mind, even if it is in my subconscious, is still trying to deal with it all. It is crazy.
The all-consuming grief has finally been lifted, and physically, I get better every day. So, now I am at that part in the "process" where I am ready to try to live a part of life again. I just haven't know how to do it.
A little over a week ago, a kind friend came to the door with chocolates and the Harry Potter Books. She told me that at this point, distraction will be the best medicine. I was very sceptical, what on earth could possibly get my mind off of this, but I was so grateful for her visit and her kind gifts. It really meant a lot to me. I have never read the books, but have been curious about them. They sat on the counter for a while as I decided whether or not to dive into them.
During a moment of desperation to do anything to stop the tears and the emotions surging through me, I cracked open the first book.
I just finished the fourth book last night. She was right, at this point in the process, distraction is the best medicine.
I am slowly healing physically, Ben is back to work, almost all of my friends are gone for the next month or so, and I have just been sitting around bored and not able to do much...letting my hormones, my mind, my emotions, and the events of the last month play over and over again in my mind. Not good.
It has been so healing to just sit down and float into another world. The books are easy to read, so my blood deprived brain can understand them and I don't get headaches. I read them at night until I can't keep my eyes open anymore. I can fall asleep easily now with my mind on something else, and I dream about flying wizards and magic spells, instead of hospital rooms and having my baby taken from me in all sorts of horrible ways.
I am finding that the more my mind is off of what has happened, and the more it is into something else, I have been better able to get back into life. I can start to feel parts of the old me coming back and merging with the new me.
I have decided that I will give myself a few moments of the day to let my emotions come out and to deal with it all, so I don't bottle it up and explode later. But then, I pull out the books and let myself let it all go. It has been wonderful. It kind of broke the trance I have been in, and I proved to myself that I can get past this weight on my shoulders and pull through.
Now that I know how well distraction can work, and I am ready for distraction, I have been trying to find things to do, that the kids can do as well.
It is hard with so many of my friends gone, my physical limitations, and no trips planned for another month or so, but we are finding things to do.
Mary started swimming lessons today, and although it was EXHAUSTING to get the kids out the door in time, and she bawled the whole time without even putting her toe in the water, it was a distraction and will be every morning for the next two weeks. She promised me that tomorrow she will get in the water....(with the bribe of new lipstick). A year ago, she fell in a pool on the 4th of July and had to be saved by the lifeguard. I was across the pool and was trying to get to her, but she was under for a long time. She hasn't forgotten the experience..no one has. If she even gets in the pool tomorrow, it will be huge! I am keeping my fingers crossed.
One of my favorite holidays is coming up as well. The 4th of July. Since the last two special days (my Birthday and Father's Day) were basically overlooked due to everything, we are planning a very low key camping trip this weekend as well as a trip to the park to watch the fireworks. We want a reason to celebrate and have some fun. If I can handle it all, that will be another great distraction.
Mary has two T-ball games this week, so that will help as well. They are a crack-up and I love watching them.
Other than that though, I just have to sit here and try to keep the kids happy while I sit on the couch.
Another tender mercy happened today. As I sat on the couch in complete boredom, with thoughts of the past month hovering over my head threatening to take over, and wondering what on earth I will do now that I finished the 4 Harry Potter books my friend gave me, there was a knock on the door. It was my friend again. She had the last three Harry Potter books as well as the first 5 movies!!! She may as well have brought me a million dollars. It was PERFECT timing. I was so relieved.
I am sitting here staring at my pile of fat Harry Potter Books and I can't wait to dive into them..after I get the kids lunch of course.
And so, the healing process continues. One day at a time. And each day, I am better than the one before.
Thank heavens for distractions, tender mercies from the Lord, Harry Potter, and good friends.