It all feels trite … trying to explain how broken my heart is, how deep the wounds go, how much the aching, throbbing, longing occupies the corners of my mind. Nothing seems right to do. After my sister died, I remember throwing myself into school and work. I remember trying to escape. But that feels impossible now. To escape, to throw myself into anything else, is to admit that all our plans are over.
I know this from my work in grief and from being a griever – the world always keeps moving. Time only stands still for the one grieving and even then the stillness is fictitious.
I’ve only left my house for a few hours at a time. I’ve laughed and conversed and been pleasant. I’m not drowning, I’m not allowing the self-pity to become defining, and I’m denying depression at every step. BUT … I only have a few hours at a time, before I want to crawl under the blankets. Only a few hours where I can pretend that every second that I am not pregnant, every second that I am not carrying my twins, doesn’t feel thoroughly empty.
I cried the hardest I had yet this weekend. The house was quiet and my husband was gone and it just hit me. I allowed the bellows to escape my lungs loudly and my eyes to swell shut and the salt to cover my face. I have no understanding of why this happened. I have no way of integrating the fact that we spent so many months fighting infertility; that I wept in uncertainty if I would ever be the mother I longed to be. Then the greatest blessing of all – two sweet babies. And oddly, I always wanted twins, even before I knew about our infertility, when the possibility was remote that we could ever have them. I felt truly blessed. Every second I held them I was grateful for their lives. We were acutely aware of what it took to have them … and we repeated our thanks as often as we could.
So, how do I go back to “real life” now? How do I finish my classes? How do I meet with therapy clients? How do I continue doing all the things I planned to stop doing in order to be their full time mom? How do I accept that the only Mom I can be for them is in my heart? These questions are all rhetorical, though I don’t know the answer either. No one does. Despite all the well-meaning and caring, there is no one who can answer this for me. Somehow I will do it – I will move forward, if only because time doesn’t now allow another option.
Hi, I'm Tiffany. I believe in the power of stories to connect us to each other. I write about life after loss and all the love, longing, and learning that comes from it. Grief is big, love is bigger. My newest stories are about motherhood (after both infertility and loss). In my experience, love doesn't get bigger than motherhood.
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