Saturday, October 20, 2007

Thank You Mama

Whoever said people don't need validation of our feelings is/was just plain lying.

I want to profoundly thank "Mama" who commented on my Flashbacks post. She said, "Thanks for making me feel normal today. You aren't supposed to "get over" it. You are supposed to learn to live with your "new normal" life, and in that life OB/GYN visits and seeing pregnant women are hard things for you. It seems like you are doing that."

Sometimes it takes a complete stranger to help me. So many of my friends and family, who love me dearly, just don't quite know what to say to me after all this time. They don't understand why preeclampsia was such a profound life changing experience.

I assume they feel sorry for me. Or maybe they don't want to bring up a bad subject? I assume they just don't understand. I assume mostly because few have truly acknowledged what happened to our family. (Thank you to those of you who have acknowledged it.) In typical cursory fashion, most say "Wow, but it's over now." Nope, not really. Or, "why do you keep talking about this?" Or, "Why can't you get over it?"

It will never really be over for me. My life was altered by my experiences. I am forever changed physically and emotionally by preeclampsia.

All that I can do now is accept and embrace my new normal: the Jen who survived severe preeclampsia twice, the Jen who was a NICU mom twice, the Jen who now worries about what might seem to be the most mundane of things when it comes to her kiddos.

Thank you "Mama" for your acknowledgement of my experience. Thank you!


childlife said...

Jen - I know just what you mean. I didn't have pre-eclampsia, but I know what you mean about people's reactions. I think people for the most part just want to know the happy ending. That everything is tidily wrapped up in a neat little box.

I'm not sure why this is. Perhaps it's because when you are living a different life, particularly one with medical issues, it's a reminder of the fleeting frailty of life - too uncomfortable to think about. I don't think our society knows how to grieve or how to be compassionate to people who are grieving. There is always this 'get over it' attitude. Some things you just don't ever 'get over.'

If you ever need a willing ear for a good vent session, come on over to my place - you'll fit right in!

Hugs from another mom who 'gets it'!

Mama said...

I'm speechless :)


Christie O. said...

this post moved me to tears. i can't even explain how hard it is to think to myself (and beat myself up--repeatedly) that I have not "gotten over it" already, and how I can't even talk about it with friends or family because I sound like a broken record. But that was a wonderful comment. And she's right.