Friday, February 26, 2016

In Between Dreams

Today is a sad day. This whole month has been a sad month. Today is exactly one year since my D&C. Blah. Stupid, stupid day. Bad, bad memories.

But I'm not going to write about how sad I am (very), I'm not going to write about how much I dislike February (a lot), I am going to write about happy things. My last few posts have been heavy enough.

Happy things:

Gabe and Carter each got to put a tooth under their pillow last Friday night. They woke up bright and early, busted in to our room to show us their money, and Gabe shouted, "I got a George Washington!!!"

Marc brought home brisket for me last night. And loaded fries. Every single bite was delicious.

Today at preschool I asked each kid what they were thinking (for a project) and most of them cracked me up with their randomness. Harper said, "I love you and Cora (her bff) and I love everyone in the whole wide world." She can be sweet! Sometimes.

Last night I watched an episode of "The People's Couch" and it had me laughing the whole time. I am not sure if it really was funny or I just really needed to laugh.

Yesterday I listened to Jack Johnson's "In Between Dreams" album. By far his best work.  I could use a quote from each song to express how I'm feeling. It's one of my favorite albums of all time.

I've been on a group text with my biffles Lisa and Alicia the past couple of days and my gosh those bitches are hilarious. Everyone should have a Lisa and Alicia in their lives.

At volleyball the other night my teammate/friend Kristen gave me a present. It was a "thinking of you" present and it was a gorgeous bracelet. Harper likes that it's sparkly. Kristen is really good at restoring my faith in humanity.

Christy brought in Starbucks today, Jordan washed spatulas for me, and Susan, well Susan is one of the funniest people I know. That lady can always make me laugh out loud. I absolutely love my co-workers. I kind of feel lucky to be around them each day.

Today is Friday. Which means I can sleep in tomorrow. Which is basically my favorite hobby of all time.

I asked on Facebook today for people to post pictures of someone/thing that makes them happy. Every now and again you have to appreciate the things around you that make you smile. And in turn you can make others smile. That's exactly what my friends did, so thank you, thank you, from the bottom of my heart!

Now keep those happy things coming!

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Life, the Saucy Little Minx

Life is hilarious, right? It's the only way to describe it so you don't explode with feelings. 

You see, Gabe had to be put under to get some dental work done. This had to be done at a hospital. It happened to be done at the hospital where my D&C was performed. Where it was performed almost exactly one year to the date. His procedure actually happened exactly one year to the date of my first scheduled D&C which was cancelled and rescheduled. A big, messy ordeal. 

So when I walked up to the nurses' station at 5:45 am my heart sank in to my stomach. A year's worth of pain sat in my throat in the form of choked back tears. 

Then after surgery prep and meeting with doctors and nurses we had to walk Gabe back. And that's where everything looked eerily familiar. The sadness I felt, the fear I was gripping on to, the nerves wrestling inside me where doubled. I held my only son's hand, who was about to be put under, and didn't want to let go. I didn't want to lose him. A year before I didn't want to lose my baby, but that was already a done deal. 

So we left Gabe with the trusty doctors and we waited in the waiting room. The one next to the maternity ward. The one where a family was waiting for Miles to be born. They got the text while we were sitting and waiting. He was cute. With long finger nails. They were busting at the seams to meet him. 

I was busting at the seams to not cry. 

But life, she's a minx. Naughty and devious. She always keeps you on your toes. 

Gabe came through and everything went fine. But I held on to him tight the rest of the day and in to the night. The thought of losing him never escaped my thoughts. 

But I woke up today and felt a lot better. Gabe looked like himself. I could breathe again. The weight was off. I didn't realize just how much the procedure was weighing me down until it was over. 

Team P went to see "Seussical" today at a local middle school. A co-worker/friend's daughter was in the show and she's been talking about it so I thought we should check it out. It was AMAZING! For a middle school show it was very well done. The set was awesome, the costumes, and the singing. Whoa!! I was blown away. All of us loved it. 

But of course in true Emily fashion I had to bite my lip so I didn't cry. At the end the egg Horton has been sitting on finally hatches. It's an elephant with wings. He's nervous about raising something with wings because he only knows the Earth. Gertrude tells him, "...you teach him Earth, and I will teach him sky." And I almost completely lost it at a middle school play. Because isn't that life? Isn't that parenthood? You help each other out, you teach each other things, you support each other. It's such a beautiful sentiment that I'm crying all over again. 

So so much has happened in the past year, the last six months, the last few weeks.  It would probably take a novel to talk about all the pain that's been present around us. But all I can do is hope for a brighter tomorrow, a new beginning, and for someone to teach me the sky. 

And tonight I plan on watching the movie "Parenthood" so I can feel all my feelings. I've learned fighting them is useless. I do believe my feelings and the minx, Life, are in cahoots. They're testing me to see how many tears one human can produce. Well I have news for them, one human can produce A LOT! It'll look like the scene from "Alice in Wonderland" where she ends up floating in her own tears! Ain't no shame in my game!

How do you plan to spend your Saturday night?? Will it involve feeling feelings?!

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

We All Shine On

You know what's funny about grief and pain? You never know when it will hit you. Or how long it will last. Or just how strong it will be. Sometimes you handle grief and pain graciously. Other times you are a model of what NOT to do.

And it's amazing when you come out on the other side how light and free you feel. How the world looks different to you. People look different. Sometimes it's a positive change in outlook, sometimes not so much. People you thought would be there, weren't, and people you didn't know even cared show up in unexpected ways.

February 3 was a hard date for me. And for weeks before I could feel the pressure on my chest. It was weighing me down. It was hurting. And I didn't know what to do. I would breathe through it, talk myself out of pain, list out all the things that were good in my life.

It worked for awhile.

But the weekend before the anniversary of a very sad day, the elephant was placed squarely on my chest and wouldn't get off. I was an exposed nerve walking around, on the verge of tears with every passing moment.  I couldn't look at pregnant women, didn't want to see baby clothes, didn't want the memories to come flooding back.

So I distracted myself. Hung out with my family, walked around the mall, spent too much money on clothes trying to fill a void, trying to make my family smile so that it would rub off on me.

Then Sunday came. Team Patrouch went to Golden Corral. The kids thought it was the best place they had ever been. Each bird was excited about all the food options, all the dessert options, the whole atmosphere made them drunk with excitement. It left me gasping for air and fighting back tears. I watched as my husband ushered kids around, filling their requests, and I was overwhelmed with love for him. Watching him be a dad is my favorite past time and I was crushed I wasn't able to give him one more bird to be a dad to.

Soul crushing.

But I sucked back the tears, took deep breaths, and gorged on carbs.

I made it through another day. But THE day was still looming. It was so close.

On Monday I had a very mild panic attack. My breath was all wrong and my hands were shaking. Felt dizzy. I talked myself through it. I lamazed my way through it. Thank God no one was around for that fun episode.

Each day leading up to the third I had to tell myself to get out of bed. Tell myself it was good to work, good to play volleyball, good to take care of the children I do have.

I kept telling myself I was being dramatic. Just get over it. It was a year ago, let it go.

But I couldn't. I couldn't talk my way out of this grief. I had to feel it. I had to try it on and wear it for awhile.  It's like a wave in the ocean: do you jump it, go under it, or blast right through it? I tried them all. Nothing was working.

And then, and then I found solace. A sorority sister texted me, out of the blue, and got me to open up. It was magical. There it was, the light in the darkness I needed. Sweet Ashley was my light. An unexpected person that cared. She even asked for my baby's name. Not many people do that when you miscarry. Especially when it happens so early. But Ashely made him or her (I swear it was a he) real. She gave me permission to grieve a real life human being. I'll forever be grateful.

And a very special person, who has always been there for me, texted me almost daily to check in on me. My brother Michael has always been my protector. And in this time of need he stepped up to the plate. I love that guy. A lot. And he has been dealing with A LOT the past few months, so the fact he still cared enough to check on me is huge. Another light.

But what I've noticed since February 3 has passed is that I feel a lot better. I let go of some of the guilt of the miscarriage, some of the weight, and I feel better. I don't think I'll ever get over it or deal with it properly, but I know I can handle it now. And honestly, I don't want to be a person that gets over the death of a baby. It should hurt. It should be tough. I didn't always let myself feel that way. But I finally did and it helped.

My husband was also amazingly supportive during my rough moments. He kept telling me it was ok to feel my feelings. I didn't have to fight them. The flowers, cupcake, and mini pie helped a lot too! And he's never once blamed me for losing our baby. He's never made me feel guilty. Just love. I've only felt love from that guy. He's an amazing human being. I'm glad to call him mine.

Anyhoo, it's a new dawn, it's a new day, and I'm feeling good. And to all the lights in the world, thanks. Keep on shining!