Each morning I tell myself I’m okay, that I’ve averted crisis, that I’m going to live through this latest miscarriage and someday I’ll feel better again. But when night falls, I’m not sure if that’s true. I close my eyes and see lights spinning, I hear sirens slicing through the cool air and inevitable rainfall, and I remember being an eighteen year old kid who swallowed a bottle of Tylenol and called for help three days later from a phone booth in the dorms at Oberlin College in Ohio. Am I still that grieving young girl stranded and terrified in an unfamiliar town, so far from my sister’s fresh grave and anyone that gave a shit about her? It seems impossible most of the time.
“I was on the liver transplant list,” I remind myself, trying to remember living through the grave consequences of my first psychotic break.
I remember being twenty-three, a very skinny young woman with too much black eye makeup, folded up under the sink in the visitors’ restroom in 1-South at St. Peter’s Hospital in Olympia, WA while my therapist (the one I still see every week) made soothing small talk while perched on the edge of the toilet. I’m not sure how I got there, if I was even sober — I was in the partial hospitalization program, probably the sickest one there. Eventually, I came out on my own accord, blinking in the harsh fluorescent lights in the hospital corridor, returning to group as the other patients stared.
This is all supposed to be behind me now. My moods are for the most part controlled and I am back on planet earth. No one can promise me I won’t get sick again. But when I lost Molly, I was convinced I’d snap and I didn’t. It’s been almost three years, I’ve had three miscarriages, and here I am. Maybe I’m not as fragile as I see myself as being.
My online therapist contacted me again. “Sorry for the delay in response,” she wrote, “Have you tried journaling?”
The “delay” was 51 hours. And c’mon, I’ve been in therapy since I was a kid. “Journaling” is not a new and novel concept for me; plus, it’s 2018 and I write here instead (well, except for my infertility notebook where I carefully and obsessively tape my opks and positive hpts to monitor progression, and occasionally write down frustrations and draw pictures). She waited 51 hours to suggest that? Pffffff. At this point, she’s written 4 sentences to me. I cancelled my subscription to the service. My righteous indignation reassures me…I’m still in normal mode, not sick yet.
The future looks awfully bleak though. I wonder how I’ll survive. I’ve consciously decided to resume Femara, despite knowing it depresses my mood and there’s no guarantee that it will even work. I’ve deliberated, and I am choosing to suffer for awhile. I worry that my self-preservation instinct is malfunctioning. Remember how bad you get, I keep thinking to myself.
I don’t know the answers, the right thing to do. I’m in free fall and the stars are whizzing by. Despite constantly questioning the wisdom of my decisions, I’ve decided. And I don’t think wild horses could stop me.