The Holiday Break

It has been a long while since I last felt like writing. I’ve been emotional, overwhelmed, and just needing some space from processing. One thing I’ve learned of myself over the years is that if I don’t write, I don’t process. At least not the kind of processing that does me any good. I am feeling stuck and shut up in my own head.  And stuck is not a place I want to remain with all these overwhelming feelings. So I know they must escape somehow and writing is how I know how to unloose them.

Those who know me well know I have faced many sorts of challenges, but never a challenge such as this. To know, so medically certainly, so finally, that I will not have a child is a pain so nearly more than I can bare. Wading through the gunk of all of this word – infertile – is more effort every day than I ever imagined. So for the holidays I let myself have a break from it all.  It wasn’t any less difficult, really. I just excused myself from the work of it all. I excused myself from “getting over it” and just tried to enjoy the holidays.

I love the winter holidays. Thanksgiving, Christmas, the New Year’s hoopla. From November to January, for as long as I can remember,  I’ve loved reflecting on my personal thankfulness, celebrating  My Savior’s birth, and being hopeful about the adventure and promise the New Year brings. So I tried to set aside my grief and enjoy it this year too. I couldn’t. Holidays have always been, for me, about family tradition. This year the only thing resounding in my head at any holiday gathering was the fact that I won’t have children. I won’t get to create the family holiday traditions I’ve always dreamed of beginning and keeping with my children. That was the 2013 holiday chorus in my head. Not a very holly jolly song.

It’s a hell of a way to begin a new year, with this chorus echoing loudly. I hate to say it, but I’m glad the holidays are over. So now what? Now. I cry all the time. What? (I’m a girl)  I’m crying now as I write this. I cry silently when I am grocery shopping or even with friends. I cry out and scream things to God when I’m alone.

Giving myself a break was a nice idea in theory. I don’t think it was effective at all. So 2014 for me means hitting the pavement running with the business of “getting over it” – I’ll need to work to understand and process all that I can. Then work to leave what is not meant to be grasped for the abyss of grief.  And if I’m lucky enough to wade through this muck without getting stuck, maybe I’ll find a way to redefine my heart from this one that longs for motherhood into one that longs for something else. 

One thought on “The Holiday Break

  1. I'm so sorry, Katie. My best friend in the world has just followed the exact same path, from infertility, to treatments, to “it's not going to happen,” to a husband who does not want kids that are not his own. And she's a children's librarian by trade. It is a tough path to navigate. She is going somewhat better and so will you… one step at a time, one prayer at a time. I have faith in you. You're the strongest chickie I know. You have my prayers. Christine

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