Writing for Grief

What you do not know

What you do not know is that when I post my new recipe or weekend outing is that I am just filling the hours. That if I can fill my hours, I can stop obsessing on how I thought I would be spending my time and by posting, I can pretend I’m still normal.

What you do not know is that if you are a friend who has recently had a baby or someone who talks constantly of how being a mom is the hardest job in the world, I’ve hidden you from my newsfeed and only check in to make sure I haven’t missed something glaring, so it’s not obvious I’ve blocked your happiness or so that I can force myself to see what we are missing, even though it actually makes me feel like my heart is breaking when I do.

What you do not know is that I am terrified for my pregnant friends. I am so scared that something horrible will happen to them too. I am also so very jealous that they  move forward while we are stuck in this holding pattern of fear and sadness.

What you do not know is even though Nora’s cancer does not appear to be genetic, I am petrified that if we get pregnant again, the cancer will be there too.

What you don’t know is that I didn’t take on a new job so I could get my masters, I did it because I couldn’t stand to be alone with my thoughts on my hour commute each way.

What you don’t know is that I complained a lot about being pregnant and now I wish I could take it back. I know this didn’t happen because I complained about being sick or my bad skin, but I wish Nora heard more joy in my voice.

What you don’t know is that I wish we could flash forward a year so we can get pregnant and be parents again without the crippling fear that I worry will always be a part of me. I had so many plans on how I wasn’t going to be a helicopter parent or not trust science, but now I can see how alternative medicine feels like an answer. Any scrap of control would be welcomed.

What you don’t know is that while I am so humbled by the support of our friends and family, I remember every shitty comment we’ve received. I have said that ‘I understand and no, don’t worry, I knew what you meant’. But what I mean is ‘now I see how clueless and self absorbed you are’ and it makes me feel bad that I don’t or rather won’t forget

What you don’t know is when I planned Nora’s blood drive it was  similar to planning her funeral. Each prize collected or post promoting it just made me feel worse. There is no pride that it’s completed, just relief it is over

What you don’t know is when I tell you I’m ok, it really means I’m not ok, but I’m here.

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