Coping with Grief and Depression
Have you ever pictured a certain song playing as you walk down the street? No? I do on occasion and this time it is one of my tools for dealing with grief and depression. Some may have noticed a lack in blogging from me over the last couple of months and unfortunately it's the result of another miscarriage.
For those counting that makes five miscarriages over the last six years and no healthy, full term pregnancies. The difference between this last one and the other four is that I had actually made it to a point in pregnancy where I could see my baby and his or her heartbeat not only once but twice. This last one was by far the most traumatic and left the most questions.
To give you a brief history: I've only gotten pregnant once on my own, two times on Clomid, once after a fresh Invitro cycle and then this last time after a frozen transfer. Until this last time my RE thought that perhaps I just needed a little extra help creating the perfect home for a healthy pregnancy. We achieved that with this frozen transfer. I had the best embryos transferred, my hormone levels were perfect, I was being closely monitored, my Beta HCG tests came back above average, and the first two times I saw my little baby the heartbeat was very strong. So what happened? We don't know but my RE and I agree that there is definitely something wrong with my body that does not allow me to carry a pregnancy. I've had most of the tests that are available and all have come back "normal." That means there is a very good chance I will never be able to have my own kids, for unknown reasons. Try swallowing that pill.
One of the things I've learned about coping with grief and depression is that it is as varied as the circumstances around it. I've had five miscarriages and all five have been five very different experiences. The emotions are different. What I have needed has been different and how I have handled them has been different.
This time I have about a million and one questions and not a single one answered. While I don't feel like I've fallen victim of depression as I have in the past I feel like I am always one step away of being swallowed up in grief, even now.
The tears are ever present and I go to bed each night and wake up each morning wondering what the heck I'm supposed to do. How am I supposed to grieve this kind of a loss?
The answer: I don't know. It's hard to keep moving forward with no direction so I make it up as I go.
*Enter Theme Song*
One of my beliefs is that people live up to the bar we give them, including the bar we set for ourselves. The truth is that I don't feel very strong but the only choice I have it to keep going, somehow. Thus for the last few weeks I try picturing people singing the chorus of Gym Class Heroes song, "The Fighter," as I walk by. Cheesy? Perhaps but I want to be a fighter, it's what I need to be and maybe someday I will reach that status.
To help set this bar for myself and to give me something to do I thought I would make something with this theme in mind. I called up my friend who is dealing with grief and depression herself over her miscarriage and asked her if she wanted to make "Fighter" t-shirts. Again, cheezy? Perhaps but there are no rules when it comes to coping with a loss.
I ordered some glitter black heat transfer from Silhouette and grabbed my favorite v-neck t-shirt from Target. We decided to try and make them look more designer like and less like a high school sports shirt. We started by placing a damask on the front but to the side. Then we place the words, "There goes a Fighter," strategically on the back. I love how they turn out. To me they don't read, "This girl is drowning in grief," but "Hey that's a cool shirt, I bet that girl has a story."
Now as I walk past, people will be singing, even is it's just in my head:
Give me scar, give me pain
Then they'll say to me, say to me, say to me
There goes a fighter, there goes a fighter
Here comes a fighter
That's what they'll say to me, say to me
Say to me, this one's a fighter.
And someday I will feel like the fighter I want to be. Sometimes my life sounds and feels like one tragedy after another but I have to believe that there's more to it than than that.
My new mantra: When we choose to fight, we choose to live. (No matter what battle we face.)
What is your theme song? How do you cope with the hard times?