Plans….

When my husband and I got married, we had a map of what the next 50 years would look like. We’d have 2, maybe 3, beautiful curly headed children. We’d make sure they were spoiled, but not too much. We’d travel the United States, making sure that they visited every national park before graduating high school. Fun, adventurous. We’d always be healthy and have money. What we didn’t expect was infertility, bills, and cancer.

Now, some people think that a child coming from divorced parents is doomed. I grew up with 2 sets of loving parents. At first thought, they haven’t gone through any struggles, their lives have been easy. Then I really thought about it. These 2 couples have been through lay offs, broken backs, a string of dead end jobs, court battles, health issues, and I’m sure many other things. And then my in-laws, they have been through a war that was meant to tear them apart. They moved thousands of miles to make a better life for their family. The one thing that I see though is that their love is constant. So, no, I didn’t have a shining example of what marriage was supposed to look like I grew up with TWO shining examples of what marriage looks like and my in-laws make three. Is it always a fairy tale? No. Are there moments when you go to bed mad? Yes. But the love never wavers, only grows.

So, when all this cancer crap came down, I gave my husband an out. He’s young, healthy, handsome. He deserves to be with someone that can give him that family. What I learned though is that he didn’t marry the “plan”. He married ME! So, here’s to the next 50 years. Hopefully it will include 1, maybe 2, beautiful adopted children. Maybe it will include travel, fun and adventure. One thing is for sure though, it WILL be full of love. I can’t ask for any more than that.

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It’s a journey…

Obviously, my emotions are very raw right now. I’m frustrated by some of the physical numbness/pain I’m feeling. I’m frustrated by my physical limitations, mostly not being able to swim. I’m annoyed being stuck at home. I’m saddened by the loss that I’ve experienced. So, I cry sometimes, hard, my feelings are very easily hurt, but I think I’ll be okay. I’m going to venture out today to hang out with some friends from school. That is sure to lift my spirit. My BFF is going to come hang out with me this evening, so that’ll be fantastic. I’m sure I’ll fit a nap in there somewhere maybe. Things will get better, life will pick back up, it’s just taking a minute. I’m going to have to work for it, but I will be okay. Until my appointment on July 9th, I’m going to enjoy visits from family, time off with my hubby, and feel the emotions as they come. No matter what news we get on the 9th we will deal with it but until then, no sense in worrying.

The stages of grief…

Denial, numbness, and shock: I feel like I just got out of this stage. I kept telling myself it wasn’t real, wasn’t that bad. The phone is going to ring and the Dr. Is going to say that there was a mistake. Problem solved, onto the baby making.

Bargaining: I laid in bed so many nights going over every aspect of my life. What could I have done to prevent this? Could I have been a better person? There’s nothing that I could have done. I couldn’t have caught this any sooner. It sucks, it’s not fair….but why do I feel guilty for this? Why do I feel like this is all my fault.

Depression: I’m here. The surgery made it all real. My life will never be the same. I can’t go back. I will never carry a child, go through labor, have announcement photos, breast feed, feel my baby kick inside, play him or her lullabies in my belly. My life has been ruined, you can tell me all you want that it hasn’t, but it has. The life I had planned will never happen.

Anger: I’m here too. I’m afraid that I’m going to hurt a lot of feelings with this emotion. I apologize now. It is not my intention, but my filter is somewhat broke. I’m angry at people for reasons beyond their control. I’m not angry with them, I’m sad for me. I feel guilty for feeling sorry for myself, but I do.

Acceptance: In time, I hope that I will be here. I just wish I knew when and I wish that I knew it was going to be sooner than later. I may need counseling, I may need medication, that’s okay. I’ll get it, I’ll be okay.

I’ll make it through. I have people. I have faith. I just wish I could fast forward to okay and happy.

He’s my pack mule.

My husband is my constant. He’s the one person that chooses to love me with zero judgement and full support. He’s the one person that I lose my shit in front of. I cry, I scream, I flip out because all of this sucks! I tell him my honest to Gods truth. And you know what he does!? He hugs me, smiles, laughs and tells me that we are going to be just fine, no matter what happens, he’ll be there. I worry about him. He carries the weight of all of his emotions and mine. He does it without complaint every single day. He’s scared too. He’s miserable too. You’d never know it though.

I’m a realist and a libra. I’m always balancing that scale. I know that everything might be okay. I also know that everything might not be okay. I also know all the possibilities in between. It’s a little bit of a curse. I live in a “What if?” bubble. This is nothing new to me though. I always have. 9 year old me was all “What if….aliens, Bigfoot, spontaneous combustion, ghosts?” 31 year old me is all “What if….cancer, burglaries, lymphedema, car accidents, aliens?” Lol Here’s the difference between me and an actual crazy person, I know when I’m being rational and irrational. Currently though, I need the Xanax to get me out of the irrational train of thought.

So, here’s the deal. Let’s give credit where credit is due. My husband, as frustrating as he can be, is an amazing man. He’s loving, forgiving, caring, understanding and constant. I am so blessed to have my family here, who we certainly couldn’t do this without. My mother, a flippin’ saint. Lord knows her and I share a brain. She’s the glue that holds EVERYTHING together. She always has been and that’s no small burden to carry. So, with these two people and everyone else, we will all make it through. There will be bumps though.

So, yes, most of the time I appear strong. It’s not necessarily because I am. It’s because each one of these people chose to help me carry this burden. People have often said “God won’t give you more than you can handle.” To that, I disagree, he will give you more than you can handle. He has given me way more than I can handle, but he’s given me people to help me handle it. I’m not carrying this load on my own, because I couldn’t.

Well….

No one tells you how you’re going to feel. They tell you how they, their aunt, their mom, their friend felt. So you listen and you read. You find that you’ll feel anywhere between great and terrible. Sooooo, when people ask how I’m feeling, I simply answer that I’m “hanging in there.” Because….well…that’s what I’m doing.

I’m still blessed though. Blessed to have so many friends that care and have delivered delicious meals and desserts. Blessed to be so close to my mom to have her here to help Vedran care for me. He’s been as wonderful as he can be, but he has to work and sleep. We’d really be screwed without her.

Today, for instance, I was ready to shower and take my catheter out. I’d felt quite sweaty most the morning and afternoon, but chalked it up to the temperature in the house. I got in the shower and didn’t quite feel right. I took my catheter out and mom got some acetone to clean the goo off. I told her that I felt like I was going to puke or pass out. I smelled that acetone and that was it. I was out. Next thing I knew Vedran was up and mom was wiping me with a cold rag. Talk about feeling like a twerp. I apologized. So I took a nap and eventually showered and feel tons better. I’m hoping that was rock bottom and I’m back on the upswing. I’ve walked down the driveway and back.

So, here’s to better days!

Tomorrow is the big day….

Well, tomorrow is the big day.  I’m trying to stay very positive and have been so lucky to have been surrounded by positivity and positive people the last few days.  I feel as though my physical recovery will be quick and easy.  I am absolutely overwhelmed by the outpouring of love by so many.  I have already received cards, gifts, and flowers from near and far.  I know that more well wishes, prayers, and tokens are still to come.  I will never have the words to express my gratitude.  I cried this morning telling Vedran how truly loved and blessed we are.  It absolutely boggles my mind.  I’ve never really thought of myself as special, but I must be.

Now, on to the scary part.  Emotionally, how am I going to feel after this?  With this surgery, my dream of carrying a child is dead.  I know that I will one day be a mother, but until that baby is placed in my arms, I’m not sure that I will be able to think about anything else.  What about the 3 1/2 week wait to hear the pathology report and know what comes next?  I’m a teacher for goodness sakes, I have to have a plan.  I’m hoping that recovering physically, a MUCH anticipated visit from my in-laws, and a teaching seminar will all keep me very busy and my mind occupied.  I’m not good at this waiting game.  Remember, I am of the generation of instant gratification.  I want to know, and I want to know NOW!

I am blessed to have an amazing husband that is beyond supportive, family that is oh so special, and friends that are irreplaceable both old and new.  I will make it through this journey.  I just hope that I come out of this the same or better than I’ve ever been.  I worry that this will change me, define me.  I will try not to let it, but some days are hard. 

Right now though, I’m hungry!  What do I want? Cheese.  Weird, I know.  Hopefully I’ll be able to eat something tomorrow evening post surgery.  I’m not holding my breath though. 

A how to guide….

Have a colonoscopy, hysterectomy or other surgery coming up that requires complete cleansing of the colon? I am going to give you step by step instruction on how to get that nasty drink down.
Step 1: Gather all of the shot glasses that you have in the house.
Step 2: Divide nasty drink evenly among shot glasses.
Step 3: Find your favorite mix cd from college.
Step 4: Take a shot every minute until it’s all gone.

Seriously, this stuff is GROSS! I also know that had there been a shot that tasted like this in college, I probably would have enjoyed it. So, now that I feel like I’m 22….I wait. Oh, the difference 10 years makes.