Sunday, November 04, 2007

Steady on my feet

If you've read my blog so far, it's not that hard to conclude that things kind of spiraled down for me while I was in the hospital. I pretended to everyone that I was just fine with all that had happened. It's hard to explain but somehow I ended up being the one comforting those around me. I felt guilty if I complained or showed sadness. I made it my responsibility to make others feel good; friends, family - even the hospital staff. No one was safe from my brand of perky charm.

I planned my breakdowns for when I would be alone, which is difficult in a hospital but if you get the routine down, simple. I figured out that the forty-five minutes between staff changes was the perfect opportunity to cry until the snot ran down so fast from my nose I couldn't keep up.

Anger has always been an acceptable emotion in my family. As fast as we boil, we are able to calm down. My mother should win an award for her vocal, yet in effect, silent treatment. Depression, however, is tolerated only for a short period. It's not a productive emotion, therefore, unacceptable. It was suggested at one point that I "pick a date" and "get over it by then." The comment was meant as positive goal setting and not a criticism, at least that's what I tell myself. I don't believe I'm depressed in the clinical sense but I have moments of doubt about my health and life.

Whenever I meet a new medical person who will be treating me, I need to give a synopsis of my medical history. It has become so routine that I spout my list of injuries/infections/ailments without taking a breath. More often than not, the response I receive is, " are a very strong person...incredible will...strong emotional backbone..." Uh huh. The thing is, I don't think so. I survive because I have to - no such luxury as falling down in a hissy fit, wailing about the unfairness of it all. I get it. What happened to me is horrible. Or, in terms I prefer, this sucks something awful. Some people are able to skate through life with nary a worry. I'm not one of those people. I've been told more than once that, "you're never given more than you can handle." Phht, let me tell you something, I've been given a load of crap. I might need a mental bulldozer to drive through it all but I handle it.

At least my sense of humor is returning. I'm able to laugh at the absurdity of my situation once again. I was out with my girlfriends last week. We were headed to lunch and I was yabbering away while being pushed - or thought I was being pushed. It wasn't until I heard one of them laughing and asking where I was going that I realized I was talking to no one and rolling down a slight embankment, straight towards an oncoming car.

I'm stronger. I don't feel like the earth is constantly shifting beneath me anymore. While the uncertainty of my situation is still present, it isn't my primary focus. I'm not drifting anymore. I found solid ground.


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