Thursday, June 12, 2008

Back to the future

This place has become awkward for me and I've been trying to pinpoint why. Yes, there is the standard, "If Alex had lived, Myles wouldn't be here," issue to deal with. But I expected that. I didn't expect these other complicated thoughts to create such a block that seem to make it impossible to write at all. I've given it a lot of thought and I have come up with three reasons I'm having difficulty here in this space...

1. I am suffering from some strange sort of survivor's guilt. It feels foreign to be happy and it feels even more foreign to express that I'm happy. But next to the happiness is the fear...sitting quietly in the wings waiting to take center stage. I keep waiting...for those familiar grief feelings to drop on me like a lead balloon...squashing me into oblivion.

I'm also ever-aware of what it's like to NOT be happy and how my happiness might unintentionally cause someone reading this blog additional pain. I haven't been entirely truthful here. I DO write for me, but I also DO censor myself quite a bit to save myself any additional drama that might be created by my being completely honest. Now is no different. I COULD wax poetic about life now...about the healing that Myles has brought to my life...but it seems redundant and unnecessarily hurtful to some of my dearest blogosphere friends.

2. It seems somehow wrong to use this place to talk about if I'm treading on holy ground and/or disrespecting the memories of Alex and Travis by using this place to talk about the little brother they never got to meet. This also ties in to #3.

3. "I hate to say it, but if Alex had lived, I'm not sure how we would have managed (financially)." This simple truth makes me feel sick. I do not want to ever find a silver lining. I do not ever want to feel even the tiniest bit of relief that my child died. But I do and I am not emotionally equipped to process this, let alone the feeling of happiness I feel when I look at Myles.

It's like a ball of yarn that gets tangled. I know it's all one piece and all I have to do is unravel it in order to be able to use it to create something beautiful...but I just can't unwork the knots.

So I'm not sure where this leaves me as far as this blog goes. I'm not sure if the emotional baggage in this place will allow me room to say what I want to say. But I am also not sure I want to let a little bit of complicated emotional untangling to run me off of a place I've felt so at home for so long. This place was home before the bad stuff and I'd like it to remain home now that I'm through the bad stuff (knock on wood). But I worry that it's like my colleague and I were talking about earlier...once you wear that cute little black dress to a funeral, it ceases being the little black dress and becomes your funeral dress...there is no going back.

So if I'm quiet for a while, just know that I'm working it out in my head. I will let you, dear internets, know where I land.


DD said...

I had an email exchange recently with another blogger who went through IF and then became a mother. She said something to me that has been rolling around in my head ever since, just because it was both so unexpected and profound:

She misses infertility

Obviously, there's more to it than that, but it shows that "surviving" can lead to a lot of emotional turmoil for many.

Kathy McC said...

I have thoughts sometimes about how my life would be different if I hadn't lost Adrien or Alex. Aaron would have a sister and not a brother. If either of them had lived, they would be profoundly disabled, which I could not have handled well. And would that have been fair to them to live that sort of life? And Kameron would not exist. When I think of those last two things, I am relieved...and that is such a weird emotion to have when referring to the death of a child. But I think it's natural to think about what would have been. I think it goes along with feeling guilty for bitching about our living kids.

And I can't ever forget how losing two babies has changed me for the better. And opened the door to a whole new world of wonderful, caring people in this blogosphere.

Bittersweet is the word that usually comes to mind when I think about that part of my life and where it has left me now.

Whatever you decide to do, please keep in touch.

MB said...

I was in Babies R Us the other day and landed in the "Mother's Room" to change and nurse Nat. There was another mom in there with a double stroller and one baby who was about Nat's age and one baby who was very, very small and when I looked closely, had Down's. As I talked to the woman, I was thinking adoption, grandma and grandpa...anything. I finally asked her how old the girls were and she said 6 months..twins. My immediate thought was "Thank God we lost ours because I could not have managed watching one child grow up normally and one child struggle." And then, I felt immediately guilty for feeling grateful that one of our children had died. As I look at it now, I know my gut was right. For us. But still, the guilt and the sadness are there.

I'll be looking for you...


niobe said...

Somehow, it's easier to write about being sad then being happy.

Aurelia said...

I understand this post ---- completely. #3 is something I relate to a lot right now. Actually all of them, for that matter.

Kendra's mom said...

Ditto, ditto and ditto. Which is why I don't update my blog often. I don't think we can ever untangle the wool completely, we just have to knit the knotted sections into our lives in some sort of a pattern.

Tricia said...

I struggle with this and left a group that was dear to me because I just didn't seem to belong once I had living children, who were helping to heal me.

Then I found I did have tons still more to deal with. These conflicting feelings of cause/effect...ties that are unavoidable, which is what prompted my creation of a blog.

I guess I tell myself that I'm not shouting I'm happy. I'm shouting there is hope for happiness but with it comes complications even when you do get a screaming baby at the end of a pregnancy.

Julian's Mom said...

Same here, that's why I don't blog anymore. I'm sad that it means I don't stay in touch as much as I'd like with folks like you who were so much a part of my life when I felt was sadness, anger, and despair. Thinking of you...

msfitzita said...

I know it doesn't matter what I think, but I'm giving my opinion anyway. Because I'm bossy like that.

I think we all censor to a certain extent - it's normal when you begin to discover that you have a "readership" and that you actually care a great deal about them and the things they're going through.

But at the end of the day, this space is YOURS and you have every right to say whatever you want in it.

And I, for one, hope you keep talking. I would miss you terribly if you went away. Seriously, I really would. You were one of the first people I found in this little world after Thomas died, and I truly care about where you are, what you're doing.

You matter a lot to me.

And, as I keep telling people, it's all about me.

So stay. Please?

Everyone Has a Story... said...

I hope you wont be gone long. I enjoy your updates, happy or sad. Your writing is wonderful and has helped many others!
Thanks for being a voice.

I will be checking in for an update!

Hang in there! You are doing a wonderful job!

Stranger Friend..Kim

kate said...

I hope you stay, in one form or another. I have been struggling with this myself on & off these last few months. You know, though, i find it helps *me* a lot to have a blog, even if all i do is post flower pictures & write down cute things the kids do. It's still interesting for me to go back & read what i was writing months/years ago. Even if it interests no one else, and there are no profundities heh heh.

Julia said...

I am terribly late to this. Just catching up on the last couple of week's worth of my reader. Wanted to say that of course we define the parameters of who we are on our blogs. But at the same time it is fairly obvious that none of us are our loss(es). There were likely times when our losses defined us. And because you were writing when you lost the boys, you were right here in the immediacy of it, in the very definition. But we also know there are other things about you. We also know that Myles must bring joy, must heal some parts of the pain. It's only natural. Would any of us expect it to not be so? Would any of us want it to not be so? Of course not. So I think there is no harm in honest recording, knots, and beautiful designs, and all.