Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Poking @ sleeping dogs

You'd think if I found something working great for me, I'd let sleeping dogs lie and get on with life. Ha! Think again.

I just had to go poke about testing the strength of my latest "accomplishment". No, I haven't broken down in tears wondering what on earth possessed me to write my previous post. I'm still there, but I'm in the process of understanding it better. (GREAT way of saying it's not everything I thought it was huh?)

Furrow said it so well: "I think I have moments of it, but I'm still working toward having it as a prolonged state of being." Can I change my mind from actually "being there" to be more like what she said? Its going to be difficult to be all smiling and feeling content Every. Single. Day.

Its not that I'm backtracking here, please don't misunderstand me. I now know that I experienced all the different emotions one has to go through over time when you're grieving. So let's do this properly:

  1. Shock: Check
  2. Denial : Check
  3. Anger : Check
  4. Depression : Check
  5. Testing: Check
  6. Acceptance : Check

(Always wanted to do that "CHECK"-thingy!)

The thing is this: Its a cycle. You won't experience just one episode of anger, then move on to the bargaining stage and think you won't ever again be VERY angry about this shitty hand you've been dealt. And it's so easy to deny the obvious because sometimes it's just too hard to face facts.

I don't think that going back to a certain stage in this array of emotions, for example Bargaining, means that you'll have to go through the Depression stage as well. It's up to how you choose to think and feel up to a certain extent. Sometimes its just too difficult to put up a brave face, smile to the world while you're trying not to acknowledge the signs of the black dog scratching on the back door to be let in again.

While I was reading up about these stages, I found an article about "The Positive Change Cycle". This paragraph, called "Completion", made me think: "Eventually, things reach a relatively steady platform of realistic and workable action. The person is probably happier than they were before the change started and, with their realistic vision, have the potential to reach giddier heights of happiness as they achieve more of their potential."

OK. I'm really sceptic about those "giddier heights" but at least when I get this "OooooHI'mSlippingFromThisHopefullSmilingSituation!" I know I'm not on my way to the looney bin.

Zee's comment made me realize I didn't mention a very important fact. "...it's also leaving yourself open to change, should your heart or your circumstances lead you elsewhere." That is SO much part of this whole issue; I can't believe I didn't think of writing it down. In my heart of hearts I really do hope that my circumstances would lead me elsewhere (read: to a family of my own, hubby and kids included even if they come ready-made!)

So yes, I do realize the acceptance I'm feeling at the moment will not be there as strong as it is forever. Maybe it won't even last till tomorrow. But at least I know its in my heart somewhere, and most importantly: in my head too. I can go there again in time, should I slip back and start testing the reality of Infertility in my life. After all, isn't that what hope is all about?


furrow said...

Walt Whitman: "Do I contradict myself? Very well then... I contradict myself. I am large ... I contain multitudes."

You know, this is funny. I was just thinking this morning about how often I contradict myself on my blog. Just as soon as I make some emphatic statement, I find myself feeling differently. That's the hazard of a public journal, I suppose. But like you said, these peaks and valleys are normal, and we shouldn't hold ourselves to some unrealistic and unhealthy notion of consistentcy. However, I think it's okay to shout something from the rooftops when you're feeling those "giddier heights of happiness," otherwise you miss out on the really good moments. I'm constantly working on that myself: living in the moment, not waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Zee said...

This is such a great post! Thank you for writing it. I'm realizing more and more that this journey is not a steady movement in one direction. (Which is really hard to accept when you're a control freak!) It's more like climbing a steep mountain via switchbacks: One day you're going in one direction facing the sun; the next you're going the opposite way and you're in darkness. It almost always feels like you're just going over and over the same ground, but when you look down you realize that you ARE actually getting closer to...well, to SOMEWHERE, even if you're not quite sure where it is.

And this is just beautiful: "Maybe it won't even last till tomorrow. But at least I know it's in my heart somewhere."

Schatzi said...

I'm with you. It is nice to have arrived, even temporarily at the stage of acceptance... to know it exists. But I think it is unrealistic to believe that we will remain there for extended periods of time at first.

I am hoping that as time goes by, and as we work on it, the calmness and peace will stick around for longer periods of time.

Pamela Jeanne said...

I'm really looking forward to meeting you one day soon. I swear there's a kindred spirit thing going on here...

Lori said...

You're tapping into what must be a universal experience in IF -- maybe grieving in general.

I noticed that my grief process went in a spiral rather than in a straight line. I would feel better and think, "Glad that's over!" And months later I'd be triggered again, back to one of the early stages of grief.

But each time the spiral got less intense and shorter of duration.

Haven't cycled through for a long time now, so maybe I HAVE reached that acceptance stage.

Wow. I'm really thinking in terms of circles lately. Thanks for your post, too.