Struggling with who I am now.

27 Jul

For me, one of the most frustrating parts of losing four babies and making it as far as I did with them, is the weight I’ve put on and then weeks later had to lose once they were gone. This last time has been the worst.  Not only have my boobs morphed permanently into something I’d rather not see, I’ve got this pudge all around that’s haunting me.  I know it’s partly my fault.  After each loss I tend to be not very nice to my body for a few weeks (or months), eating anything I want in defiance of another baby gone.  Following the previous three losses, I didn’t care so much how I looked because at that point, it was still worth it because the next time?  It was going to work.  What were a few pounds?  But this time, the hope I still had before isn’t there to mask what I see in the mirror.

I don’t feel good about myself, and I know a large part of it is the extreme disappointment I feel in my body.  I know I need to forgive myself, but it’s not easy when your entire life you assume that when the time comes to try for a baby, your body will do what it’s supposed to do.  It was easier to forgive myself after 1 or 2 – even 3 – but I’m having a much harder time this time around.  Now reality is hitting and it’s been really difficult for me to come to peace with that.  I know my family and friends want to see the old Courtney back, the one that laughs and smiles and jokes; but the truth is, after this last year and a half, I don’t know who this new Courtney is.  I know the old one is still in there, but she’s changed with each loss.  I’m not the same person I was two years ago, and it’s really challenging to figure out who I am now.  After 29 years of believing one thing, a few months is an awfully short time to switch gears.  I think so many people who haven’t gone through this don’t realize the transition that’s having to be made internally.  It’s monumental.

The worst part is my therapist has been gone at a workshop since right before I lost the baby.  The last time I saw her I was 8 weeks and 3 days pregnant, breaking down in fear that I was going to lose that one, too.  I miss my time with her.  She’s helped me tremendously throughout all of this, and I can see the difference in my mind without her.  She doesn’t come back for another month!  She did give me contact information for a colleague of hers that I could go see while she’s gone, but I don’t want to talk to someone new.  It takes me a while to feel comfortable with a therapist, I’d just be getting used to her by the time mine came back.  Plus, it’s nice to save the extra $180 a month I’m not spending on therapy.

I want to go back to the Courtney that liked who she was and felt comfortable in her skin.  I’m proud of making it through these past two years, but my pride stops there.  The way I feel about my body is effecting so much – my work, my marriage, my daily actions.  I don’t know how to get back to a place where I honor myself.  That’s what it’s all about, honoring what it has gone through for your dreams, appreciating what it’s done despite the losses.  I’m still breathing….perhaps I need to start there.

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17 Responses to “Struggling with who I am now.”

  1. Marie July 27, 2011 at 10:11 am #

    Hi Sweets.

    Your therapy is way too expensive! (Not the point, but it shocked me anyway.)

    For what it’s worth, I like this Courtney, who is empathetic, and caring, and emotionally diverse, and beautiful. Maybe what you’re referring to as “old Courtney” is one of the many wonderful sides of “new Courtney.”

    But it is a horrible feeling when your body is betraying you. Just do what you can do, control what you can control, and remember to give yourself the gift of forgiveness ❤

    • bodegabliss July 27, 2011 at 10:49 am #

      That’s actually less than she usually charges. There was no way I could afford $125 a session, so I told her I could pay $90. Which is still ridiculous.

      Thank you for what you said. I’m trying to feel all of that but it hasn’t been easy. I have my days, and today is just not one of them. Actually, the last few weeks haven’t been.

  2. Mo July 27, 2011 at 10:14 am #

    All I can say is – reading this is like you’ve written down everything that I feel. I wish I knew how to make it better for both of us. Breathing is a good place to start. Love you!

    • bodegabliss July 27, 2011 at 10:50 am #

      I hate that you’re feeling like this, too. I wish I could make it better for both of us as well.

  3. eggsinarow July 27, 2011 at 11:12 am #

    Maybe its just the LA in me, but I think $90 is a bargain! LOL. While I hate that we are all in this together, I’m glad that we aren’t alone, you know? Let’s honor our bodies…and our spirits.

  4. Tracy July 27, 2011 at 11:59 am #

    This could have been written for me too. Boobs and a paunch (is that the right spelling? err…). Constant reminders. It sucks. You do and will move on from it and accept the new you with a small smile soon. I hate to be cliche but time will heal and bandage you up.

  5. Esperanza July 27, 2011 at 12:18 pm #

    I can’t even imagine what I’d feel towards my body if it revealed it couldn’t carry a child in the way I’d assumed it would. I was so angry when it trapped my first pregnancy in the wrong place, I’ve never felt that kind of anger towards myself (or anybody else) before or since.

    I think you said it yourself in your post, you can’t transition from a belief you’ve held your whole life to another belief in just a few short weeks or even months. It’s going to take a long time to get to a new place with your body, one that feels good to you. Being patient with yourself can be hard but I think that is what you have to do.

    Is there any way you can do yoga or even just create a walking program for yourself? Maybe reconnecting with your body in a positive way would help. I’m not sure, it’s just an idea. I’ve been reconnecting with myself at yoga (which did cost me a small fortune so I understand if you can’t find the money for it) and it has been wonderful. I was truly shocked at how foreign I felt for the first few weeks but now I’m more familiar with this new vessel and it’s getting stronger and more sure of itself. I actually had a moment during one class where I thought, your body is never going to be the same but that doesn’t mean you can’t know it just as well as the body you remember. Since then I’ve felt much more comfortable in my skin.

    Have you ever done Yin Yoga? I have a box set you could use. It’s a CD and some cards and a book. It’s more like stretching and meditating at the same time. I LOVE IT. It’s a great way to practice being present while aligning the energies in your various meridians. Afterwards I always feel clear headed and at peace. Next time I see you I’ll give you the box, if you’re interested. It’s very calming and a wonderful way to get it touch with your body again. And it’s free!

    Love you friend. My heart hurts that you have to go through all this.

    • bodegabliss July 27, 2011 at 12:58 pm #

      I have been starting to do yoga, but I can’t afford to go to regular classes. I set up a nice yoga/meditation space in our new bedroom, now I just have to utilize it. Yin Yoga sounds amazing, and perfect! You’re so good to me!

  6. cablearms July 27, 2011 at 12:51 pm #

    have you been reading my mind?
    i’ve started calling body parts pejorative names: damn rusty uterus, my baby-less-but-you-can’t-tell-by-looking-at-it stomach… for someone who never wanted kids in all of my 20s, i can’t get past the current me whose body fails everytime it is ‘called’ on to do what it is biologically supposed to do. and isn’t that just so bloody ironic? i try to get my head out of my ass, but it’s so much easier to be depressed… but i digress –
    i am sending you virtual hugs as we both try to remember that we are more than our miscarriages, albeit difficult to acknowledge in dark times.

    • bodegabliss July 27, 2011 at 1:01 pm #

      I was the same. It wasn’t until I turned 27 and met my current husband did I start to want kids. I almost wish I could get back to not wanting kids (it was so much easier), but I have a feeling that’s gone for good.

      I’m sending you hugs back. Hopefully someday soon we can both forgive our bodies. They were only doing the best they could do, after-all (jerks! I mean…).

  7. embracingtherain July 27, 2011 at 3:50 pm #

    Hi, I stumbled across your blog through The Port of Indecision. I am so sorry for your losses. Recurrent pregnancy loss is so hard. It has definitely changed me. I agree that breathing is a good place to start. Sending lots of hugs your way.

  8. Port of Indecision July 27, 2011 at 5:24 pm #

    Yeah. Yes. Yup. Uh huh. Like I told you before, I reached this exact point after miscarriage #4 – all of it, the self-loathing, the “punishing’ my body, all of it. It’s hard to bounce back from. HARD. I went into fuck-it-all mode last June and never emerged completely.

  9. starfishkittydreams July 29, 2011 at 12:14 am #

    You read my mind. I totally feel like I’ve gone way off track from the normal me ever since RPL took over. It’s impossible to understand this feeling without actually going through it, which is why it’s so hard to describe this to others (and so isolating).

    When our bodies let us down it’s so hard to stay on track with diet and exercise. I find myself being really relaxed on the exercise and a bit more indulgent on the treats (and wine).

    How unsettling to have your last therapy session left on a cliff hanger like that. I get anxious going weeks without my therapist as well.

    As far as therapist fees, that actually sounds about right for this area. Mine charges $100 per session as her regular rate. I love her, but I also love the support groups I’ve found which are free (via Stanford and Resolve). It looks like Resolve has one in your area that you might be able to take advantage of as well.

  10. Kristen July 29, 2011 at 11:46 am #

    I can identify with so much of what you’ve written. I have it in my head that I’m going to be in limbo/not myself until A) I have a baby, or B) we’ve exhausted all reasonable options and I have to make peace with living without a child. I wish I could figure out a way to be comfortable while in the middle of al this…
    Hugs to you, and you sound like you are on the right track. Transitions are always so difficult…you’re doing great just breathing…

  11. ShaneWozEre August 1, 2011 at 2:53 pm #

    There’s that scene in Swingers when Vince Vaughn and Patrick Van Horn try to explain how great Favreau is to him. It goes a little something like this:-

    – You’re so money
    – You’re so fucking money.
    – You’re so fucking money and you don’t even know it.
    – You don’t even know it, man.
    – You know what you’re like, you’re like a bear.
    – Like a fucking bear.
    – You’re like a bear, and you’ve got these big fucking claws. And she’s like a rabbit. And you’ve got these big fucking claws.
    – Huge fucking claws
    – And you’re like, how, how do I kill this rabbit. How, with these big fucking claws that I have, do I kill this tiny little rabbit?!
    – You’re so fucking money, man.

    Obviously I don’t know who you are. I live at the far side do the world, I’ve never met you; sure, I’ve only read one fucking blog post (well, 2, I read the one about the boobs) but yet at the same time I know you quite well, understand you a good bit (call it a useless gift I have.)

    And you’re money. You’re so fucking money and you don’t even know it. And all I want to do is take you out of your head and sit you right back around and show you yourself from where I’m standing and say “There, look at that, look at how fucking money you are.” and then place you right back inside.

    But I can’t do that so all I can do is this. All I can do is sit here and carefully listen, show that I’m carefully listenning, safe in the knowledge that you’re a bear, you’re this big fucking bear and you’ll learn how to use those claws and kill that rabbit.

    • bodegabliss August 1, 2011 at 3:00 pm #

      This might be my favorite comment ever. No, ShaneWozEre, you’re so fucking money for leaving this comment.

      I think I’m going to say that to myself in the mirror every morning: “Courtney, you’re a big fucking bear and you’ve got big fucking claws and you’re going to kill that rabbit!”

      Awesome.

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