November 20, 2010

Panic....


            Just a few years ago, or what could seem like yesterday, I delivered a stillborn baby. I was a few weeks into my second trimester and was blissfully unaware that a problem was developing.   The culprit was my cervix, for some reason it did not remain closed, opened up prematurely and I went into labor. I was informed that because my water had broken and due to the prematurity of the infant there was absolutely nothing they could do. I would spend the next several hours in mental anguish, physical pain and locked in denial.

            After the delivery I refused to look at the tiny infant that I had carried for over 4 months.  I went home, took to my bed, and didn't get out for quite some time. This was the first time that I became familiar with anti depressant medication. I was amazed at how much better I felt on medication, it was as if a fog had been lifted. It was then that I decided to try again. 

            Now as I lay here stranded on bedrest with the looming threat of imminent pre-term labor of a 25-week infant, I cannot help but remember the pain I endured so many years ago.   What can I do to avoid having to endure that type of torment and grief? Can I somehow brace myself for the inevitable psychiatric mess that will surely follow having to suffer through such a loss? What do you do when you're knee deep in panic, terror and fear with little emotional support to carry you through day by day?  I want to hold on to all of those moods and emotions that make it so easy for me to sit on the sidelines while my life passes me by. I want to hide, run away, drift down shore and come back in 10 weeks when it's ok for me to show my face again. I want to ignore Panic, stuff it in a hole 20 feet deep and cover it with Hope.

            Hope... optimism, faith, expectation


Hope has been such a stranger to me for so many years that I honestly do not believe that I would recognize it if it slipped by to pay me a visit. I used to hope for so many things as a child, only to have those hopes and dreams ripped to shreds.  I hoped that one day my father would come home from prison and that I would have a family. I hoped that my mother would stop being an angry and depressed alcoholic so that we would someday have a warm and functional relationship. I hoped like so many other women that I would get married, have children and live happily ever after. I hoped that I would follow my passions in life and escape the deep depression of my teenage years. But most of all I hoped that I had suffered enough in life and that the universe, God or Karma owed me the gift of happiness.  I hoped that I wasn't being punished or singled out for some reason and that just around the corner I would find Peace. But all I found was Hope, battered, bruised and beaten beyond recognition. Each time that I suffered a loss, Hope took a fall. My dad never came home, my mom drank herself to death, my baby died, my daughter was taken away from me and my family was forever ripped apart. I was so busy fighting back at the world with Anger that I never really saw Hope slip away. 

I'd like to think that I am one of those people that just gets over it. So this happened, big deal, I'm still standing. I can handle anything that comes my way and I'll seldom cry about it. You wanna take me on, be my guest, I don't need you or anyone, I'll be just fine on my own.  It's a hard way to exist, not leaning on anyone for fear of showing vulnerability because you are always alone in your Pain, alone in your Fear and alone in your Panic.  Taking the get out of my life who needs you anyway attitude is just plain addictive behavior that I cannot seem to stop.

I believe its all about control for me. If I don't have Hope then my hope is never taken from me again. If I don't have dreams then reality is just expected. I can accept reality and its ever-changing appearance. I know that in reality the odds are good that I will lose yet another child. I know that losing another child will indeed push me to that familiar breaking point. The only solace I have is that I've been there before. I have sat in a dark pit raging with Fury, stirring up Anger and Bitterness. I have pierced Hope in the chest with daggers of Rebellion and Vengeance. I have been swallowed up by Shame and Fear and now Panic. I am ready to go there again, because in reality, I never really left.



            posted at my blog http://minnyfrank.wordpress.com

             

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