Archive for February, 2011

Pandora’s Box

I’ve been forced to accept many, many things in the last few years.  But I guess the one thing I never really accepted was the fact that I wouldn’t have a second child – that my daughter would not have a sibling. We began the long dig through the process of adoption and got far enough to realize we could not afford it. Years from now maybe, hopefully.

I found myself becoming a baby-stocker, offering to watch friend’s small ones more often than seemed sane. A day at the beach this summer with little Molly and her year-old cheeks drove me back to my computer. Maybe there is a way…my levels have been really good for two years…I am stronger than this pain. I googled five thousand related articles in 24 hours. Set appointments with three doctors, including a therapist to measure my level of insanity, terrified. Pandora’s box had been opened and truth be told, I was already breathing easier.

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Private War

I’m not going to get into the hairy details of thyroid treatment. Let’s just say its a bitch and I am grateful to be on the other, well-balanced side of an unbearable year. I regained my hair, some assemblance of a metabolism and my filter, the one that keeps me from yelling obscenities at my boss. If you haven’t had the experience of losing one or all of these things, you haven’t really lived.

The past 5 years have taught me a serious respect for the private wars people are waging everyday.  No longer does the culture stipulate hot casserole and free childcare for sick friends. A quick phone call is more than most of us can cram into our own demanding days. And, if your particular battle is a long one, with wide valleys between the moments of hope, you begin to outlast even the most strident of supporters.

I am blessed with a spouse who jumps in and climbs every mountain with me.  He shares the weigh of this pain with endless endurance. A good friend says people are given the children they need, and in my case I am certain this is true. My daughter brings a compassion and sweetness to my life that I cannot imagine being without. In the midst of this physical pain, these are the things that have kept me reaching for tomorrow with a sense of peace and anticipation. Life owes me none of this and I am grateful everyday.

Throw another log on the fire.

I’m certain that some of this sounds pretty fun. I’m sure you enjoyed that precious  bottle of vicodin you got after your dental work. But there are nasty and sometimes unexpected side effects. Things a young mom does not find helpful.

An hour after my very first dose of neurontin, I had to tuck my daughter in for a very early nap because I could not stay upright long enough to keep her safe.  I have had patches that make it impossible to focus for more that 30 seconds on any given activity, what manager doesn’t love that? I require more sleep than any parent has a right to get. The scope of what people in chronic pain are suppose to live with, in order to have a relatively sane life, is ridiculous.

So when my hair started falling out and my legs cramped my body into submission at yoga, I thought nothing of it. When I woke up with my left eye bulging out of my face, I decided to google. Two days later I was diagnosed with  a severe case of Graves Disease and two weeks later my thyroid was rendered useless. I was told that I should not try to have another child, the levels of hormone in my body would not support good fetal development.

For me, having this daily pain feels like I am already doing my part, already above the line of general health. Its like a healthy person having a daily cold, or migraine. It seems that I should then get a pass on the flu, pink eye, thyroid disease. I was overwhelmed with this second log being throw on my fire. And truly mourning the loss of my future child – the one we had dreamed of and planned on, as certain as the rising of the sun.

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