Wednesday, July 21, 2010

the lies that bind us. {part 1}

yes, yes, i know.

from the title of this you should probably be snorting a little juice out of your nose thinking of the "part 1" portion of it. seeing as how i never ....actually....finished...this series...of stories. however, i will eventually finish it. girl scout's honor. pinkie swear. cross my heart and hope to die, stick a needle in my eye. and all of that.


i've been alluding to some deep-thoughts postings coming up and this is one i have been thinking of writing for almost 6 months now.

buckle up, friends!

my thoughts about this started rolling around my head in january, but then i put them aside. i couldn't figure out how to write them down coherently. i would talk about it with ben and he was always great about helping me to express myself. {i love the therapist in him.}

then in march, i had been reading a blog called "the extraordinary ordinary" for several months, and in a post she was able to express much of what i had explained to ben but wasn't able to put into words yet.

sometimes blogging can be a complete waste of time, a way to avoid all that i should be doing. i zone out and read about people i have never {and most likely will never} meet in real life. and then bam! it's two hours later and the abandoned laundry and treadmill are still staring at me, untouched.

but then there are times when blogging is exactly what i needed. and that day in march was just that. i connected with a stranger's words, and her thoughts resonated with my own.

i still don't know her personally, but heather shares her story on her blog. she is a mother and wife. she is a writer, and a great photographer. she is also a recovering alcoholic and has been brave enough to share her struggle with addiction to the blog world. she and i have different details in our stories {don't go alerting the masses that i'm an alcoholic because i've never tasted a drop of alcohol so far in my 29 years. just letting you know before your thoughts start getting wild.} but the running themes were the same.

there are times when i am afraid of getting too personal on my blog, of opening up to who-knows-who is going to read this. but when i read what heather wrote her bravery helped erase my own fears that sometimes opening up can be such a good thing. that someday, someone might stumble upon this post and get it. and it will help them, like she helped me.

aside from becoming vulnerable, my other concern about writing this was the religious/spiritual aspect that i thought might cloud or overshadow what was at the heart of this.

when we worked at the group home i started a
spiritual blog to keep myself sane during some difficult and dark times that year. there was a purpose in separating the group home side of my life and the spiritual side of my life, and i think at the time it was to give myself a sanctuary from the reality we were in. a separate place to go.

but with this posting, even though i am going to be connecting my religious and spiritual beliefs, i decided that i don't really want to separate it into that blog. not sure why, just don't.


here is my story.

where i can most accurately remembering it beginning...i was 9 months pregnant, two weeks away from giving birth to miss leah. i was extremely anxious about labor and who-knows-what that would entail. but i was actually more nervous about what was going to come after the labor. i was extremely fearful of the newborn baby that was about to enter my life. thoughts of my first newborn experience would come flooding back night after night, keeping me awake.

though i knew that caleb's issues stemmed from a fluke {"single umbilical artery"} that formed within the first few days of becoming pregnant with him, and that there was nothing i could have done to prevent this, and that it wasn't anxious thoughts kept asking questions to defeat these facts.

what if they were wrong? what if it is genetic? what if we have to go through the same two years that we went through the first time? what if that experience was just a prep-job for what's to come?

what if this time it's worse???

with caleb it wasn't just about the constant screaming, and the seizures, the gestational problems, the repeated trips to the hospitals, and the meetings with one specialist after another who is searching for the same answers to the same questions.

what i feared most, as i would lay down and stare at my big belly, was myself. my strength, my abilities and my faith.

these thoughts of self-doubt consumed me.

was i strong enough to do this again, if it is the situation i'm presented? have i gotten enough space from the trauma to have re-built my faith in God and in myself?

and in the middle of the night, when my inadequacies and doubt were so acute, i came to the conclusion that i was pretty darn sure that i wasn't strong enough.

{bad time to be doing this sort of self-evaluation check, yes? yes. maybe i should have thought through this one 9 months prior, yes? yes. timing has never been one of my strengths.}

in fact, the more nights that i lay awake focusing on my fear of my inadequacies, the more heightened they became. i got to the point that i convinced myself that i could not. do. this.


since i was already there...and didn't really have a choice in whether or not i was going to do it, i decided to accept my choice of becoming pregnant, and change my frame of mind.

i was able to change my way of thinking from i. can. not. do. this.


i. can. not. do. this. alone.

i practiced deep breathing, and focused all of my energies on the one person i knew that i could rely on. {i know who you probably think i'm going to say, but i'm not.}


ben, the rock i had leaned on during those horrible days and nights with caleb. the one who was able to handle all of caleb's seizures with a calm voice and understanding that what was happening was beyond our control. who knew exactly what i was feeling and had the same amount of unconditional love that i had for our child. i trusted him as much as i trusted myself.

ben would be there. ben would support me. ben would provide relief when i was at my breaking point. ben would pick up the slack, wipe my tears and talk me through this. ben. ben. ben.

and that is how i would eventually fall asleep on those sleepless nights, by affirming myself that "together we could do anything."

ben did not know most of this, he probably knew about 10%. he had no idea how much stock i was putting in him, and how it had turned from a desire to go through this with him into a need to do this with him. as far as i was concerned, there was no other option.

my dependent voice that was screeching that i could only succeed with ben's help, had quickly changed from being the waterboy on the sidelines to the captain of the football team. and the entire team was desperately clinging to the words offered by their fearless leader that victory over their inadequacies and shortcomings could be achieved.

and this voice told me that aside from the time ben would spend in class and doing homework, he would be there by my side. and i believed it.

however, the powers that be had other plans in store for us both.

to be continued.

{while i was pregnant i wrote a little about this anxiety here, but kept at bay from any readers just how extreme things were getting.}


Andrea said...

Well, I am glad you finally started this...and although I think I know who this story ends...I am excited for part two! As always, beautiful writing.

The Pyne's said...

oh always know just how to write your feelings, etc. I always love reading your blog, but have kow clue what part 2 is about!! Tell me, tell me!!! JK. um, hope to see you on saturday (for atleast a few minutes!!).