Well, I made it through the day at church, but not without some serious tears. I worked all day yesterday on my corsage ministry---and it is therapeutic for me to make them. I took a three-hour break because my nephews came down to visit, and I needed some cuddle time, but I had to make up for it by staying up until the wee hours of the morning to finish enough corsages for church. I'm going to say that I'm sure lack of sleep probably led to the lack of self-control I had in church. I played the organ today, so I was able to dab tears while playing. I just sniffled during the song service, but when our pastor announced that his text was from Proverbs 31, I knew I had to leave. I made it to the restroom before bursting into tears, and kept my meltdown to under 10 minutes. I just couldn't go back in the sanctuary until it was time to play for the invitation song.
Herein lies my problem with Mother's Day: I want to honor my mother, my grandmother, all of my friends who are mothers, and do that in a respectful way. However, since losing my baby, this day is one of the worst for me to endure. I was a "mom" long enough to get excited about it, to begin planning for it, to get that "glow", but in an instant it all came crashing down. I hate dealing with all of the "stuff" that comes with this day for me, and don't want to ruin it for other women. But I can't help but cry when I see all of these reminders of everything that I'm not. I don't want to do away with Mother's Day---I think being a mother is a high calling and any woman who tackles that calling should be honored--but I'm gonna have to find a way to not be such a basket case.
Infertility robs you of so much. It makes you feel like less of a woman. It takes away your confidence in yourself. It turns you into an object of pity. It makes others think you're incapable of knowing what a baby or child is. It leads to battles with depression. Having a miscarriage added to that also adds guilt. The one place that is supposed to be the safest for your child has instead been the deadliest. It makes you two separate people trapped in one body--the positive, encouraging friend and at the same time the intensely sad, un-confident loser-like loner. Infertility and miscarriage label you. They isolate you. They leave you adrift in a vast ocean. Even surrounded by family and friends, you still know that you can't truly unburden yourself to them. Is it selfish? Maybe. But most of that is just not wanting any other living person to have to go through your torment. Why would I want someone else to suffer?
I take it all to God---and keep taking it, and keep taking it. Grief seems to be infinitely-faceted. Every time I feel that I'm making progress, something else hits that knocks me back down. If my body could show what my soul feels, I'd be a walking bruise.
So, this is what we do, those of us for whom this is life. We fall down, we get back up. We keep falling down, and we keep getting up. When we have friends that let us lean on them, we lean instead of fall. Then we put one foot in front of the other and begin the next day. Some days are easier than others. Some days we can almost run freely. Some days we can only walk two steps the whole day. And some days we stop and sit and cry, and we lean into the ONLY arms that know our suffering even more than we know it ourselves.