Friday, March 2, 2012

Being honest...

Okay, so those of you who know me well, know that I am a person who prides herself on being honest. Honest with herself and honest with those around her. I hate liars. I hate lying. But then there are those gray areas, where you can be honest with yourself about the way you feel, but there is just something keeping you from being honest with those around you because it makes them uncomfortable. It's not easy, and it does nothing for intimacy in any relationship, but we all have that one thing that goes unsaid. Not because we can't say it, not because we can't admit it,  but because saying it would make it a real thing and would probably make people think you're crazy.

We all have our things, and I am no exception. I usually voice what's on my mind, and it is not always well-received, but there are just some things that would make others too uncomfortable, so I don't. But that's not why I started this blog. I started this blog in order to give myself a forum, in order to keep myself in the practice of writing, and in order to be a good writer, I have to be authentic. So here it is:

I have been struggling for awhile with the idea of Sarah's mortality. It was just a nagging little evil idea that would infiltrate into my positive head space every once in awhile, the dreaded what if, the manifestation of the 10% chance that her wonderful team of doctors couldn't save her. A thought would come unbidden, and I would promptly push it out, and think of something positive to replace it.

Now that her chances of survival are more like 50%, the thoughts are coming more frequently and are harder to push out. What if this doesn't work? Then it doesn't help that birth and death seem to be surrounding me. About 70% of the nursing staff is currently pregnant. I am seriously afraid to drink the water around here. The baby showers around here are going to get tedious after the third one. Just sayin'. We have some new little additions to our family as well. So I am not only reminded about my pregnancy with Sarah and how blissful it was, and how blissful we were in that one perfect year, but also the fact that I may never feel that again. I am 32, which is not beyond child-bearing years by anyone's standards, but with everything going on, it would be unfair to all involved to bring another child into the world. And even later on, I just don't think it will be possible. What if Sarah's cancer comes back? What if she dies, how can I even look at another baby after that?

I push the thoughts out, pretend like they don't exist, but then they manifest themselves in other ways. Like spring cleaning. Every three months, I go through Sarah's drawers and cull out what no longer fits, what is too worn or dirty to wear anymore, and figure out what I want to keep and what I want to donate. The thing is, I find myself holding on to almost everything, I would be ready to let it go, and then something would stop me. And at first, I didn't know what. But like I said, I pride myself on being an honest woman. Especially when it comes to myself. So I sat down, and thought about it, and I came to the realization that I didn't want to let her things go because they were hers. What if this doesn't go the way we planned? What if she dies, and her things are all I have left to hold on to?

Now here comes the part where you all think I'm crazy, right? Or at the very least, I've made you uncomfortable, because what do you say to that, right? Let me just say in my own defense that I don't let the thoughts win. They come in, I consider them for a moment, then I shoo them right back out where they belong because I cannot afford to be negative now. But that's the thing. I'm not being pessimistic. If we're being honest here, I'm scared. I am so fucking scared of losing my baby that it is overwhelming sometimes. Because in addition to being honest, I am also a realist. I call a spade a damn shovel, (okay, sometimes I call it a spade, too). But the hard reality is that there is a 50% chance that she might not make it through this. It's not the half I focus on, but it's there, and I can't deny it.

Then tonight, I see a facebook post from a relative of mine who lost her baby two years ago. 9 months old. Literally, her baby. And she posted pictures of his gravestone, shining and clean from her careful preparations, surrounded by flowers, with his name in script and his picture on it. And I cried, not only for him and for her, but for myself and Sarah. What would I do if I ever had to go through that? She must miss her son so much. Then I think about if it were me, and I realize that is an understatement. If it were me, I would miss Sarah every minute of every day of every month of every year for the rest of my life and that pain would never go away. My heart would ache forever because it is unnatural for a parent to bury a child.

There's the thought. Aired, and expressed as honestly as I can do so, laid bare for all to see. And I do not write this to gain pity or respect. I write this because this blog is about Sarah's Journey, and if I am to portray that honestly, I have to portray all of it, in all it's ugliness, in all it's raw truthfulness. It may look to the careless observer like I am basically just a glorified babysitter here in this hospital room, standing watch while the doctors and nurses fight to save her life. But I am fighting, too. I am fighting to stay positive, while at the same time staying grounded. I am fighting to keep Sarah comfortable and happy and give her all that I possibly can, even if others may think she is spoiled, while at the same time teaching her morals and values that I think are important. Like honesty.

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