You ever have that feeling like you can’t take any more and if one more thing happens, you’ll surely explode into a million pieces like some insane cartoon character? You’re just certain that you’re Wile E. Coyote and any many now that blasted Road Runner’s gonna be causing yet another diabolical scheme to backfire. Or maybe just that karma will catch up with you. And you wonder what in the HECK you did to cause karma to be against you so such a vengeance.
Yeah, well, join the club. Dude, it oughtta help just to know you’re not alone. That someone else is there with you in that nightmare. Problem is no two nightmares are the same. And it’s worse when you share your fears with someone and they laugh at it. Or make fun of it. And if they get other people to do the same, people that are important to you. Well, then that’s just bullying, isn’t it? And then, you feel worse than you did before.
Easier to bottle it up and keep your mouth shut. Misery may love company, but sometimes, it’s just better if it’s alone and in the dark. So you find yourself tense and trying to go on with life and acting like it’s all okay.
And it’s not. And staying that tense for long will completely and utterly make you collapse and you’ll implode.
It feels that way sometimes. It’s not that you don’t believe things will get better or that God’s will is being carried out. You just need to survive until it passes. Need to find some way of not self-destructing.
When I was pregnant with my first child, my ex-husband and I did lamaze classes. I had to look up how to spell that because in all my life, I’ve never written it down. Strange, that. Anyway, we did the classes. While you’re taking them, it’s kinda silly, ya know? You listen to them talking about breathing and relaxing and you’re so busy trying to figure out how to get up and down out of the floor and making sure nothing shows while you do, the entire conversation is sort of in pieces and snippits. For me, I was thinking that it just couldn’t all be real. I’d wake up and it’ wouldn’t be happening. Pregnant was a miserable state of affairs for me. But I believed them when they said it would work.
Fast forward a few weeks and there we are, a week before we finish our last session. The next class was the tour of the hospital and our little graduation. But not for me. Nope. He couldn’t wait any longer. It was time.
Sooooo…to the hospital, dilated, halfway there, break my water, and the first contraction was like the worst possible nightmare experience I’ve ever had in my entire life. Oh, I’d had some sort of pain all morning, but it was NOTHING compared to that gut wrenching sensation that someone had stuck their hand THROUGH my stomach and started to squeeze and twist every organ they could possibly find. And I gasped and caught my breath and squeezed the bed rail, clenching my teeth so hard I don’t know why they didn’t shatter.
And my ex? You expect me to say he was right there, ready to help me relax and coach me into the perfect birthing experience, right? No drugs for me. I’m gonna do this all natural because we’re ready for this, right? Riiiiiight.
Wrong. He couldn’t read the monitor. Kept telling me I wasn’t having contractions when I was. After about the 5th one, with me screaming so loudly, it must have sounded like some sort of torture chamber, the nurse came in to see what was going on. I explained, in nice terms, that my husband was a useless idiot (what I was thinking, but I was in labor, remember) and was telling me I wasn’t having contractions when clearly, it couldn’t be anything else. So she stayed for a while.
Her first step was to get me to relax. She talked to me calmly and reminded me of what we were going to do with the next contraction. We were going to breathe. Just focus on breathing.
And she watched the monitor, pointing out to my husband how to tell when the contraction was starting. She and I did it together, this breathing thing. Focal point, breathe, we’ve got it. It was great. I was excited about the prospect of showing how good I was at this.
The nurse looked at my husband, made sure he was ready, and off she went. He looked confident, set to help me bring forth life.
And then the pain started and I told him it was coming. He looked at the monitor and told me I was wrong. No contraction, see? I screamed and told I couldn’t see, I could feel and I didn’t care what he was, I was having a contraction.
My body tensed. And it hurt like CRAP. The whole time, he’s telling me I’m wrong.
See, I should have known then that this relationship was doomed.
Nurse comes back, we do it again. Easy contraction. I’m proud of myself. She checks again to make sure he’s ready. She leaves.
And hell starts all over again.
So when the nurse comes around about an hour later and asks if I want something for that pain, it’s like, “How much can you give me and how fast can you get it here?” By the time, that child arrived, I’d had stadol, demerol, and gas because I was so out of it, I couldn’t push. Oh, it all still hurt. I just didn’t care. Was too busy watching the ceiling move. I lost two hours in recovery. I didn’t sleep, just completely zoned out. Dude, it was alllllll good. Bring it on, because I can handle it. I’m invincible.
So what’s all of this got to do with now? Well, you see, I’ve found that when things get stressful, we tend to tense. We stress and get so caught up in the nightmare, we forget to do something so simple, so easy, that it should be second nature.
My “soul” sister, the one who is the other part of me and should have been my twin, said it best when she shared this video with me. When I sent her a message one day at the end of my rope and feeling it all come down on me, she sent one word.
Simple, really. But so unbelievably complex. Let it flow through you and over you and slip out. Let it go. It won’t all go away, but if you relax, the passing won’t be quite so painful. And in the end, something beautiful might just come from it.