Monday, May 28, 2007

Hello Darkness, My Old Friend

So, i am up very late on the eve of my husband's surgery and i am a little anxious. Coping with said anxiety has involved the ingestion of mountains of glutenous food and chocolate along with watching hours and hours of movies while only breaking to speed read two romance novels a day. Yesterday i was trying to figure out a way to watch a movie and read a novel at the same time. I want to escape into movieland and i want my senses to be completely absorbed. I dont want to be me at this moment. I dont want to think about my life, or what my life might be like if anything happened to my husband. What would become of me? memememe. Suddenly, i am very concerned about facing the rest of my life without him.

And what a long lonely life that would be. I am happily estranged from my father and not very close to my mother. These tenuous ties have also strained the links between me and my siblings (thanks mom and dad!).

Nonetheless, i am surprised about the amount of anxiety i have over this surgery tomorrow. This is the surgery on the 4 cm lump found in my husband's thyroid, the cancerousness of which is to be determined once it's taken out. I did not have this much anxiety over the two surgeries he had last year over his nether regions. Maybe i was a little too drugged up for that or too excited with hope, the worst opiate of all.

So, here i am, past midnight, reading novels and now writing. Surgery is tomorrow at some point past 10am. He is to be discharged the day after, God willing.

I think, though, that my anxiety speaks to deep, unrevealed desires. I truly desire a different sort of life. I know this and have known this. I didnt realize how desperately it claws at me just beneath the surface.

And, this other sort of life has nothing to do with children. It's unbelieveable and shocking, but true. In fact, we have been remarkably well living childfree these past two months. I haven't blogged much of it lately because i frankly couldnt believe myself. I was waiting for the shoe to drop. The deluge to begin. The cycle to start over. But it hasnt. I am not only living child free, i am free of the hope of it. Can you imagine that? I simply don't care's even simpler than that because that statement implies rancor, but i'm not angry. In fact, i am happy to be childfree. I have discovered that there are so many things i want to do and explore and learn (now that i've finally given myself the complete permission to do so), that i wouldnt really have time for a child's needs right now. So if anything, i am relieved to be free of any parental duties.

This relief didnt just suddenly occur, but is more a result of finally overcoming a traumatic childhood. I have been suffering from post traumatic stress syndrome since i was a child, and before that, i was deeply depressed (FUN childhood). In therapy, i learned the skills i needed to cope with post traumatic stress but believed that i might forever be "coping" with it, given that much of it occurred before memory set in.

Recently, i have come to completely understand the source of my childhood traumas and, instead of feeling angry, i feel relieved. I always knew something was up and that my emotions related to something, and i finally learned that i was right. I was right in my sadness, right in my heartbreak, right in my depression, and right in my anger--though i was never quite sure what i was right about. I had thought it had much to do with being childless. In fact, it has nothing to do with that. And that knowledge has set me free--free of the fantasy that my own children would fix my broken childhood. But all the pieces are finally in place now and i am finally unbroken. It is possible become whole again, after all.

It is interesting to me that throughout all these years of wanting, desperately wanting and hoping for a baby, i never could really bring myself to pray for it with any ferverence (except in this last bizarre year of IVF, where prayer was the only antidote to my hormonal insanities). I believe that on some deep level, i always understood that an actual baby was not what i truly wanted.

What i wanted was my own babyhood back, and righted. What i wanted was to feel whole--to feel contentment in the moment, to know happiness. I finally have the peace that i have been waiting for all my life.

Now, i worry that it will be shattered tomorrow. And i suppose that worry is natural under the circumstances. It's probably the lingering effects of post traumatic stress talking.

Old habits, baby. If you dont kill them, you will die a slow death of million little anxieties!


At 3:16 AM, Blogger niobe said...

I'm impressed that you've been able to understand and overcome your difficult childhood. Those kind of deep seated traumas are, I think, the most difficult to deal with, because, over time, they become almost a part of yourself and it's difficult (at least it is for me) to distinguish your self from your reaction to the terrible things that happened to you.

Prayers for your husband.

At 11:52 AM, Blogger Lut C. said...

I know that gripping fear, though it wasn't an operation that triggered it. I hope the surgery goes well.

You sound relieved, and I think that's great.

At 6:42 PM, Blogger Donna said...

I could have written this post (well, most of it anyway). After many years of therapy I finally nixed my want of fixing my childhood, but I can't get rid of that urge to understand it -- how other people could be so cruel and the regret at how I responded (or neglected to do so). I hope by now your anxiety has been washed away by tears of relief.

At 11:29 AM, Blogger Kellie said...

I am sending good thoughts to you and your husband, that you got only wonderful news from his surgery.

At 8:42 PM, Blogger Ces said...

as i was reading your entry, I can see myself in you. When I was young, I was telling myself, if one day I will have a child, they will not suffer the way I did. It is just the thought of fixing my life by having a happy family of my own but you are right, it can't be fixed by that, happiness should begin in ourselves. I wish I am now in your position of acceptance, right now I am still having trouble thinking that I might not have a child. I do comment very seldom on blogs but I read a lot of it. Your post has been inspirational to me.

I am praying for your husband about his surgery. Hopefully, all will be well.

At 8:49 PM, Anonymous shazz said...

I hope your hubby is doing well.

At 6:04 AM, Blogger Kris said...

Please post with an update on your husband. Thinking and praying all went well.


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