Original post date – August 8, 2011
Well, I decided I was done throwing my pity party – though I fully believe I was entitled to it. I’ve got my war face on and I’m ready to approach this with the strength and courage that is necessary. I haven’t shed a tear in 3 days and I am starting to enjoy being pregnant again instead of feeling like I’m a time bomb for disaster.
The right frame of mind can make any struggle bearable.
So for those who find themselves in a situation where they don’t know how to handle what has been given to them, here’s what helped me out.
Fake it ‘til you make it – talk to other people about your situation in a positive manner. Don’t let those “what ifs” seep into conversation. My baby is going to have some time in the NICU but it’s amazing what doctors can do today and we have an incredible team assembled. It will be rough, but he’ll be fine! My son will be trying my patience before I know it! You say it enough, you realize you truly believe it.
Zen your home – keeping my house clean, throwing out trash, listening to quiet music, keeping the TV off as much as possible, keeping the lights dim – all things that create a copable atmosphere where you are much less likely to be totally overwhelmed by something and journey back to “what if” land.
Make jokes – if you can joke about it, it’s going to be fine. Doc and I have made many a jokes about Rowan later in life – about how one day he might get married and swear to love someone with all of his donor’s heart for as long as his body doesn’t reject it – or about how we’ll tell him to stop doing everything so “halfheartedly”. Is it kinda inappropriate? You bet! Bet making jokes like that helps you really believe that you may get to a point in your life where those jokes are okay.
Plan for success – focus on what you need when everything goes right, and plan like it will. Don’t play the “what if” game and let it keep you from doing what you would normally. I will still have my shower at work that the dear ladies throw. We will still do maternity pictures, and I will still light up and beam with joy when people ask me how far along I am or tell me how beautiful I look. AND Doc will still roll his eyes when I get super excited at little boy clothes. I’m so excited to meet my son.
Appreciate those around you who are amazing right now, forgive those who aren’t – not everyone knows what to do in these situations. They don’t all understand that you don’t know what you need help with and they just need to take tasks from you and do them, or that they need to check up on you and let them know they care frequently because that support is invaluable. Be blessed to have friends and family that do leap in and understand that just because some don’t, doesn’t mean they wouldn’t…it just means they don’t know what to do, and when you get better at asking for help, they will be there!
Forgive yourself – you aren’t at your best right now. Don’t expect yourself to be. Forgive the laundry you forgot about or the one time you yelled at your child because you were overwhelmed. You are allowed to have moments of weakness.
We meet with the Pediatric Cardiologist Thursday – we will have a shopping list and game plan ready at the end of that meeting. I’m excited to be meeting another part of the team and I’m going into this meeting with a peace about our situation and a readiness to prepare.