I'd love to be able to say that a little over a year after Jimmy's death and 5 months after Becca's death that I'm ok and back to normal, but I'm not and it isn't.
I'd love to be able to say that Katie just bounced right back and she's such a trooper and isn't she awesome?? But that's not the truth either.
The truth is that I've changed. Permanently. Losing a child will do that to you. Losing two children, even more so.
I've quit talking about it for the most part because: a) People are just plain sick and tired of hearing about it. (Don't lie...no one likes to hear the same whiny crap over and over.) and b) I want people to be happy, and to be happy with me and if I show how truly not ok I am, I'm afraid no one will like me anymore.
I have trouble coping with everyday stresses and disappointments that seem to come so easily for what I perceive to be the "normal folk." Something as common and simple as PMS can throw me into such a dark hole that it takes me a week to climb back out. Something as silly as a misunderstanding or some other mild annoyance becomes a huge mountain that snaps my patience and my temper.
I have days were everything seems to be close to what "normal" used to be, and I have days where I can tell I have a long ways to go.
The hard part is pretending that everything is ok when it's not. I want everything to be "ok" so badly that I'm willing to just pretend it is. Sort of a "fake it til you make it" thing, right? Well it's not working! The fact is, life goes on with or without you. The world does not stop just because you do. But trying to put on a facade that I'm all better or that everything is looking up and my grief, aside from a few tears here and there, is gone? Well, that's just an outright lie. I'm miserable. Absolutely. Miserable. Yes, I have good days, and thank God for those good days, but in general there is this underlying sense of sorrow, anger, and fear.
Before my babies died, there were a lot of things that I wasn't doing right. There were also a lot of things I was trying to work on to become a better person, and a lot of emotional baggage. Having my babies die on top of everything else has made this out to be an almost unbearable load some days.
Today is one of those days.
It is hard for me to admit that I am not alright. It is hard for me to admit when there is something in my life causing me stress or unhappiness, and even harder to make a decision and act on it to remove or alter that something. I have been a person who always resorts to trying to change myself when something is wrong, or blame myself, or try to fix myself. I can't tell you how many times I've tried to work through counseling or take prozac or cry myself to sleep and pray for an answer about what I need to change...when it was something as simple as needing to remove a certain unhealthy friendship from my life, or quit a dead-end job. I've always defaulted to "there is something wrong with ME" and "if I would only change this behavior or do this better then everything would be ok." Well, that's not always the case. Maybe I need to start taking a good hard look at my life, take some action, and stop beating myself up.
I've been through a LOT of grief for one person in one lifetime. That is not an excuse for bad behavior, nor is it a reason to give up and feel sorry for myself. But it is a reason to give myself permission to not be ok sometimes, and to try harder to eliminate unnecessary stresses and be more assertive about my feelings and my needs.
Trying to keep everyone happy at the expense of repressing how I'm really feeling is killing me inside. Finding a balance is going to be tough, as will be trying to make the right decisions about the future, but I'm going to try.
I'm sad, I'm lonely, I'm depressed (this is where the prozac maybe should come in), and I need direction and purpose. Just making it week to week from one superficial happiness to another is not working. I need something deeper, more meaningful, and more substantial.
God, that's your cue.....