I wanted to do a “Week In Pictures” post. Then I wanted to do a post about my birthday and then I wanted to do a post about my beautiful Maddie and her 6th birthday
but my week has gotten away from me and frankly, I’ve been so busy I’ve hardly had time to breathe. Then when I sit down all I can think to write is negativity. And yesterday I found myself truly in the pits of despair and I thought, “What the HELL is wrong with me? Am I really feeling THAT horrible?”
And then it sort of hit me like a ton of bricks.
I sort of skate through life and don’t dwell on it most of the time, and then November rolls around. November, which should be a HAPPY month of celebration for me. November, when I celebrate not only another year of me being alive on this planet, but my beautiful daughter and the amazing energy and life she’s brought to our family. And then I’m reminded of her birth, and then it hits me.
Sometimes it pokes me just a little. Sometimes it knocks me in the gut. Sometimes it washes over me like a blackness. If I’m in an especially bad mood already, it can really take me to a dark place.
If you don’t know the story, start HERE.
I didn’t see any photos of myself in the hospital for about a year. Maybe more. Recently, I was looking for photos for a different blog post and found a few that had been taken that I didn’t remember until I saw them.
This is when I’d been moved from the Critical Care (some places it’s called the ICU) down to a regular room in the hospital. Notice how swollen I am. My kidneys hadn’t been functioning properly for several days, and with the IVs I’d been on, I was just FILLED with fluids. When I went home, I weighed about 12 lbs MORE than I weighed after I’d given birth. That was depressing. And gross.
Here’s me attempting to smile. I was happy to be out of there, but I was still hooked up to things, and if you look at my left arm that’s covered and elevated, I have a pic line in it, and I’m thinking maybe it had been iced or something. There’s clearly a reason it was being covered. I don’t remember exactly, and it’s probably just as well.
That night, Wayne brought Sean and Grace to see me. Sean was almost five and Gracie was two and a half. Gracie jumped up onto the bed and snuggled me the entire time. Sean stayed as far away from me as he possibly could. He had strep throat, and we couldn’t figure out if he was scared of me giving him germs or him giving me germs. Either way it was heartbreaking for both him and me.
The next day I went home, after being in for almost 6 days. Wayne was almost dancing. I finally had my first shower in more than a week (gross) and just wanted to get the hell out of there. He, I think, was just happy I was alive.
I was tired. Waking up every 3 to 4 hours to get my vitals taken is kind of a pain, but it at least worked with the pump and dump schedule.
The last picture I’ll share of these is this one of me at home with the girls. It was the first day, I think. I’m guessing, because I’m wearing the same outfit (although I was so swollen it might have been almost the only thing I could wear). This was a common picture then – me with the two girls. Every time I needed to take care of Maddie, Gracie needed me, too. She was at such a vulnerable age and she just needed Momma. The other thing to notice is again – how full of fluid I was. It took a LONG time for this to get out of my body. *shiver*
When I first saw these photos a few months ago, I lost it a bit. I felt those feelings of being in the hospital all over again. I’m okay now. I can look at these objectively. I can look at them and think, “Wow. Look at how far we’ve all come.”
But these past few November days, when I’ve felt so down, it hasn’t even been me dwelling on it. It’s been in the very back of my mind. Almost like I didn’t even realize it was there, knocking on my door. Like it was a faint rapping that I’d just shrug off, pretending it wasn’t there, moving on with life. At one point, though, I thought, “Hey, it’s November and I haven’t even thought about…” and that’s when I put 2 and 2 together and all the black feelings and all the sadness and negativity and lost feelings I’ve had made sense.
Some call it Post Traumatic Stress. I don’t know if that’s right or not, but I do know that it’s something that’s really happening to me and it happens almost every year at this time.
Sometimes I wonder if I hadn’t induced would I have prevented it? Would it have made it worse? What if Wayne listened to me and didn’t take me to the hospital?
Thankfully, he did. And thankfully, we got the doctor we did. And thankfully, it was in 2005 instead of 1955.
So if you see me around facebook or around the schoolyard, or in Target, or on the soccer field, and you think I seem bitchy or out of sorts, please don’t discount me right away and think I’m really bitchy. Understand that I might be dealing with feelings that I don’t always understand and that I will be feeling better soon – it might just take me a week or so to feel “normal” again.