Posts Tagged ‘loss’

What not to say.

November 2, 2012

So I’m lying on the couch, totally immobile. I’m waiting for you to come help, like you said, at 7:30. At 9:30 my wife calls you, her mother, to find out where you are. When you finally arrive to find me lying on the couch, trying to play with my kids without actually moving, you say,

See, this is why I was worried about you having a third child. You gesture at me, broken. This is why I worried. Because if you were like this and needed me to help, how would I take care of three? I’m getting old. It would be too much work for me. This is why I’m glad you aren’t having another one.

I lay there, holding steady, while another part of me is wounded and raw and curling up to protect myself against your totally selfish and unthinking words. Because who cares if your daughter and her wife are heartbroken, if it saves you a little bit of work?

I don’t say anything like, I know you don’t mean to be hurtful, but I’m still very upset about TMD not being pregnant. Devastated, actually. So your words do hurt me.

Instead I say,’I wouldn’t leave a baby with you anyway. Little babies need their mums. And babies are the easy part. It’s older kids that need you to move around.’

You raise your eyebrows when I say babies are easy. And I remember how hard you found mine, even when multiple adults were around. But I didn’t find them hard. Or a chore.

I laid on the couch, immobile, with two little lovely people cuddled into me. It was a perfect time, a time I cherish, a time I won’t be able to have again….not with my ever growing kids, not with the other child. I feel our family isn’t complete, I feel hurt, I feel like I want to say words to you that you will find so hurtful. But I keep my mouth shut and think about writing it here, writing it for my friends, writing it to capture this raw pain.

And I won’t say this to my children in the future. If their dreams are punctured, their souls tired, I will say, ‘I’m sorry. I love you and I’m sorry this has not worked. Can I do anything to help?’ I may think about me, about the impact their dreams have on my life, but the only words I will ever give to a grieving child will not be about me.


T minus 8 minutes.

April 20, 2009

Lots of good, good things to write about – not least of which, the shining sun. But right now I’m feeling a lot about work. I texted my boss this morning, only to log into my email and see she emailed me on Friday. I’m at the point where I’ve just sent The Email saying I probably am going to be off sick until I start my annual leave and then maternity leave….we’re going to be talking later this afternoon. I’m waiting for a phone call from some random doctor to extend my sick leave a couple of weeks – I’m hesitant to be signed off until the end of May as I think I may have already gulped up all my sick leave entitlement this year.

Practicalities aside, I miss work. I had three nightmares last night about work. There were no vampires, but lots of stress and worry. I know I can’t actually go back, and that makes things a bit better because it takes choice out of my hands. We had a very brief outing on Saturday (one of the good things I will write about later this afternoon), and it left me incapacitated yesterday. I even had difficulty walking. Good times.

But it’s saying goodbye to work which is painful. Not least of which because I’m not sure I’ll be going back at the end of maternity leave. I don’t know how I will react to being a stay at home mom; I don’t know if our finances will hold up. But even if I go back to part time work, I don’t know if it can reasonably be to this job. I am telling them I am coming back as that is the official plan right now, but the idea of not going back is gutting.

I worked for Day Job for four and a half years, most of which was spent wishing I didn’t work there. I’ve only been at Operation Fingerpaint since last June, and I can’t believe that after years of wanting the perfect job now that I’ve got it I’m not actually there. I feel a big sense of loss.

Don’t get me wrong. I am excited about the babies, about preparing for them, about meeting them. This is a whole new chapter in my life and will probably be the best (and hardest) thing we ever do. But I’ve got plenty of room in my heart to also mourn Operation Fingerpaint, and what it means. I do believe life – and my own decisions – will take me in good directions. But right now I feel a little sad.

Anyway. Hoping the doctor calls soon and it’s no problem to just get my sick note extended. Tomorrow I go to meet the specialist physiotherapist who will help me with my womanly pregnancy problems, and Thursday I’m going to see a midwife. Busy, busy.

If I drove and Operation Fingerpaint was near where we live, I would be trying to see if I could manage going back. But job aside (which involves minimal walking but probably enough to floor me), I don’t think I could actually handle the commute. You all know what this means – no more cozy chats with John, my crazy train friend. Oh, wait, I guess that’s a good thing.

…sun glinting off a river…leather couches.

March 25, 2009

In an altogether awkward, reflective mood today. Had a bad night last night, and a badish morning today. Every now and then these little bubbles of the unpleasant and unexpected pop up, and I wonder where they have come from and when they will go away again.

I also am thinking about my grandmother today. A few days ago my mother emailed me in response to my bump pictures and said, ‘I hope grandma can see you.’ I didn’t know what she was talking about – she was grandma, and hadn’t she just seen all the photos? TMD said, ‘She means YOUR grandma.’ A surge of something came over me – guilt for not remembering, loss for what I/she/TMD/the babies are missing, warmth at her memory.

This morning Chirp wrote to me about my grandmother, out of nowhere – with a quote of what she thinks my grandma would say about all these babies. It made me smile, and tear up a little.

The Polish Catholic part of me, the part of me who just started reading Eat, Pray, Love today (thank you, Tia!), thought for just a second – is this my grandmother trying to come through to me? Twice mentioned in one week after a too long absence? Then the pragmatic part of me briskly slapped me about the face and told me to gather myself in, to be real.

Today I am in the office for a little while in the morning, then lay down/eat lunch for an hour, then travel across the city to go to an afternoon training. It’s in a big, iconic building that every tourist will have seen – right along the river. I’m going to push myself out of the crowded public transport system and wind my way to the river, walking along the banks to go to the training. While it’s a slightly longer route and walking is not my friend these days, I long to see the sun bounce off the river, to see all the crowds, to walk along and marvel that I, plain old Existere from a countryish background in an ordinary backdrop, now live in this (mostly) extraordinary country.

Here’s hoping the sun cooperates.

After the training I’d like to find myself a little hole to curl up in with this book, sometimes reading and sometimes thinking about my very slipped Buddhist practice. My mother and I had a conversation last week where she told me to pray to God with¬† my worries, that everything was out of human control anyway. I said I thought most things were actually our choices, actions, etc.¬† We came to a somewhat happy compromise – an altogether interesting thing to happen when our spiritual views are (I think, anyway) far apart.

But whoever you pray to, whatever you believe or don’t believe, I suspect many things are actually one and the same. TMD’s strong atheism makes me nervous, people who are strongly religious make me nervous. I’m just here on my little island, wondering and curious and hopeful and pessimistic.

All things considered, though, I’m doing okay.