I received a letter from a dear friend today. I appreciate her honesty and I appreciate her genuine concern. It almost made me feel like I have my very own Mama looking out for me.
Anyways, she brought up some good points. And she brought up some points I think other people may be concerned about.
This is what I wrote back:
"The internet is a very funny thing. Because people that know me in "real/ day to day" life know that what I put on facebook or my blog is only about 5% of how I feel.
I have a heartache that I carry, that no one can take away. I have frustrations and worries and dashed dreams. While I feel those heartaches nearly all of the time, there is not anyone that truly knows how I am feeling, because I keep those parts of myself very hidden. I have been able to, over the years, and especially now, been able to keep adult feelings separate from my children. What I feel as a woman and mother has nothing to do with my sweet children. I have felt great pride in being able to appear to my children that I am their same old mother. I play. I read stories. I giggle with them. We swim. We talk. We cuddle. I cook. I clean. I bathe them, love them, care for them. To them, I am the same old Mama they have always had.
I wish there was a way to convey to the outside world that I have been able to maintain a level of joy and happiness in my life, in despite of the immense heartache I feel. So many of us have so many hidden hurts and heartaches we carry with us, with out other people being to truly help us or lesson our burdens. I feel like I have done very well that way. I have been able to maintain a healthy relationship and life style for my husband and children. I have never thrown in the towel, stayed in bed all day, let the house go, ignored my children. I have always been very present in their lives, just as I did, before I had a child died and suffered miscarriages.
Honestly, much of my "coping" mechanisms are intertwined with jokes. I don't have an on-going prescription for Xanax. I have not tasted alcohol in 13 years. I don't drink. I don't do drugs. I don't smoke. Now, that being said. There WAS a time in my life that I did. It was a great (and harmful) tool I used to escape many heart aches I've carried as a child. There are some days that feeling numb appears to be better than what I feel now. Some days I would love to escape. But I don't. I know better than that.
I don't know what the future holds for me. I don't know if I will have have more children. That is a dream I will likely chase, under the careful supervision of my doctors, until I have reason to believe I should let it go. I've been told to wait a certain number of months before we try to conceive again, and we'll abide by my doctors wishes. Going forward we may chose to keep pregnancies or miscarriages private because there is a lot of concern attached. People don't understand what it's like to be in my shoes. People don't understand it's up to Andrew and I to decide what we can handle and what we cannot. It's a very private thing. It's between Andrew, myself, and the Lord. We'll move forward at a pace that is safe. That is healthy, and that is reasonable to my excellent doctor.
I have done my very best to do well by children - - dead babies, miscarriages, or not. While I may vent to the internet world, what I truly keep hidden from so many, I feel very good about who and what I am right now. I have put my family and children first, no matter how much heartache I lug around with me.
And yes, I deleted many people from my facebook account. I need a safe outlet that I can vent with out people questioning my mental health. I need a safe place to vent where someone won't become offended, or doubt in my abilities to continue to rise above the hurt I feel. Life goes on. Some days are good for me, many are sad, even more are both. I can feel many, many things at any given time, and still be what the world would consider to be "ok".
We'll get through. Better days are ahead. Many great things only come through much perseverance. The Lord is mindful of us, and I am trying to be mindful to the way He is directing me to move forward.
I love you, and thank you for caring enough to write.