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Less Than

August 7, 2013

It’s been less than a year since the Little Red Spot.  It’s been a rough year, but a good one, I think.  I’ve had time to heal, time to grieve, and time to rail against what happened with a very nice professional who let me sit on her couch and knit while I cried.

I did start therapy in January.  I had a bit of a breakdown in December, due mostly to something that only gamers will truly understand, and which most “normal” people would be absolutely baffled by if I even tried to explain.  Suffice to say that “roleplay” edged a little too harshly into real life, and it made my outlet more of an irritant.  But because I love it and love the people in it, I kept going back.  Even towards the end, when it became impossible to look at the character who was the source of the irritant (not the player, mind you, who is amazing), I still kept going because the whole was beneficial.

Tangent.

Through therapy, I worked through a lot of my feelings about it.  I was angry a lot, with most of it stemming from things that I normally would have simply arched an eyebrow at and moved on from.  It has gradually become easier to watch pregnancy stories on television (oh god, so many pregnancy stories), though Moose and I skipped an episode or two that there was no way in hell I was subjecting myself to.  I no longer felt a deep resentment upon seeing other pregnant women or babies in the grocery store, and I have even managed to be around the babies of those close to me without too much difficulty.  I took small steps, dipped my toe in to test the waters, tried to gradually become accustomed to a world where this pain was just something else from my past.  Something which used to hurt, but now no longer hurt quite as much.  Like one of the many joints I have turned or wrenched or damaged over the years.  Just a pain that happened, which took time to recover from, but which was now nothing more than ambient noise.

Except for Mother’s Day.

I had managed to fix it firmly in my mind that Mother’s Day was about my mother.  How much I loved her and grown to appreciate her in my adulthood.  About my sisters’ and their children.  How much I cared for all of my nieces and nephews, both in blood and in spirit.  About my friends who were mothers.  How they loved their children, and the amazing things they shared every day.  It had nothing to do with me.  Nothing at all.

Until someone, someone who was very likely a loving and caring soul who just wanted to reach out to those of us who may be hurting, posted an image which read something along the lines of “Happy Mothers Day to those who are suffering infertility, the loss of a child, or a miscarriage.”

It was like a punch to the gut.  I couldn’t even look at Facebook any more.  From there on out, every message someone posted wishing their mother a happy day was just one more reminder of what I was not.  Of what I was supposed to be on that day, but couldn’t manage to carry through.  Of the red pain which I had managed to tuck away inside of me and oh how it hurt.

I can’t blame the person who posted the message for causing that pain.  I don’t even know who it was.  Honestly, I don’t want to know.  What I do know is that they couldn’t have known how much it would hurt me.  And that my reaction is not the only valid one.  I know that there may be women out there who found comfort in such messages, reminders that they had not been forgotten on that day when others were being praised for something they themselves were not.  It took me a lot of time to be okay with that message and my reaction to it.  To stop feeling Less Than.

That feeling became extremely pervasive over the past year.  I’ve always had a bad habit of starting things and then setting them aside, but this time around it manifested in an inability to stick to a single project for very long.  I started compartmentalizing.  Setting smaller goals.  One hour knitting, one hour writing, fifteen minutes cleaning, one t-shirt design, one necklace.  Just one thing at a time, so that I could look back on the thing I had finished, instead of all of the things I was leaving unfinished.  I still do it.  Simply staying with this post instead of flitting away to something else is terribly difficult.  But I need to finish this.  Because I need to write an epilogue to that part of my life before I can write about the part that is coming.

I know that life is not a story, that it doesn’t break down into neat little chapters with a beginning, middle, and end.  And I know that writing this will not really close the book on what happened less than a year ago.  I will always be a little broken, I will always be a little tangled, and I will always have that place in my heart that aches for what happened at unexpected times.  But while this may not be an ending, there is a new beginning in the works.  And that’s more than enough right now.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. August 7, 2013 7:43 pm

    Jenni,

    I don’t have any cool platitudes to feed you. I just want you to know that you are never less than. You will never be “less than” to me, and everyone else who loves you.

  2. Lee permalink
    August 15, 2013 1:02 am

    What She Said. You could never be “less than”, because you’re you.

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