Sunday, April 5, 2015
The Body Knows
The last few days have been "off" for me. I have felt cranky, crabby and emotional. My ability to cope with much of anything has been low. Yesterday when I was particularly challenged, one of my kids asked what was wrong. "I don't know," was my response. "I just don't feel well emotionally or physically." It was nothing I could really put my finger on--just a yucky, nasty "off" feeling both physically and emotionally.
I got up this morning feeling what might be commonly called, 'blue' and drug myself out the door to church almost in tears. I was feeling so bad that I actually pulled some "Peace and Calming" essential oil out on the way there and applied it. That helped a good bit but still did not fix whatever was ailing me, and I walked into church and sat down wondering what was wrong that I felt so awful. And why couldn't I feel happy?!
Yes, we have a lot on us, and I'm dealing with a lot of stress from multiple directions, but everyone was reasonably healthy, we had SUN shinning (normally a great thing for me) and life was supposed to be full of joy today of all days! So where was *my* joy?!
Soon after the service started, we swung into "Because He Lives". And in an instant, I was transported back to Easter Sunday 2003 when I sat weeping during the church service, having just come through an emergency D and C two days before. I was physically wiped out, and emotionally depleted, and in deep mourning for the loss of a baby we had much longed for. That song was sung during that service in 2003. Suddenly I was flooded with clarity.
My body KNEW what anniversary it was, even though my brain did not consciously until the song at church made every thing become clear. As soon as every thing clicked, my emotions were actually able to calm down and even out. There was no reason for me to question myself and/or beat myself up mentally for what I was feeling! There were REASONS--valid reasons--for my body and mind to be in mourning.
By the time the service ended, I walked out feeling much improved both in body and mind. I simply needed to give myself the chance to be gentle and kind to myself on my journey through another anniversary. In order to give myself grace, I needed to consciously aware what was triggering my body and emotions.
Some of the trainings we have attended on parenting children from hard places have covered this topic. I always believed it--and in fact--we have seen it happen with our children--they don't have to be consciously aware of hard anniversaries in order for it to impact them! But this experience has hopefully made me a more understanding Mom the next time one of my kiddos goes through this. As upsetting and stressful as it was for me to experience and try to process until I figured it out, I can only imagine how much more upsetting and stressful it could be for a child.
These days, most of the time I feel much comfort due to the precious blessings God sent into our life after that miscarriage (and others). All three of our youngest, Chad, Kristina and Katya have given me much joy and laughter and helped ease the ache of the loss of other babies before them. I'm very thankful for my youngers (plus my two adult kiddos, of course!)! But clearly, my body has not forgotten the baby I loved and carried, even when the busy days crowded it temporarily out of my brain. I'm actually glad about that, now that I figured it out.
After I took a nap, I walked out into the lovely spring sun and fresh air today and went to Jessie Jo's angel. I looked at the crocuses that are finishing up, and the daffodil buds that are poking out and soon ready to bloom. And I thought about that Easter Sunday when we celebrated my baby's brief life 12 years ago this month. My heart feels much more OK tonight. So does my body.
And best of all, as I was getting Katya's meds for bedtime ready, she walked up to me, with absolutely NO prompting, no asking--and HUGGED ME. A long, expressive hug with her face full of love and joy as she looked up at me. This is a huge first, and a much treasured moment! May there be many more to come.