The day before Mason died, I was at work when I noticed that I had a strange sensation in my chest. A fluttering feeling as if someone were drumming their fingers on it and it made me short of breath, nauseous and just plain feel strange. Being a nurse, I started analyzing myself, no chest pain-good! Left arm felt fine, back and neck felt fine, better check the pulse= 126. Ok, not all that bad. I took a stethescope and listened and could hear what appeared to be 3 extra beats in the S2-3 and thought, "Well, if it keeps up I will stop by the ER on my way home and have them check it out." Now, if you are a nurse or any other kind of "medical professional" you probably would do the same thing I did by the end of the night which was to convince myself it was nothing and head on home! The next morning Mason was gone and I honestly didn't care if I was having heart trouble or not. I did end up going to the ER on the way to the church to get ready for his service but of course the palpitations had stopped by the time I got hooked up to the EKG machine and we chalked it up to anxiety.
If you read my blog about Bloomsday, you know the story behind my running (or MY version of running! LOL). I have been so excited about it! I have been making strides in the positive direction to get healthy again, mentally and physically. I quit smoking- HUGE!!! Started grief counseling-also huge!!
Well, getting to yesterday. These strange sensations in my chest have never really stopped but every time I would go in they would never start-typical! I still pretty much blamed it on anxiety, we have had some of that in our lives of late! Sometimes it would get worse than others and I would tell myself I really should head in but then it would stop-yesterday it didn't. I went in and they FINALLY caught it on the EKG! Whoot!! I am not a raving maniac who is falling apart from anxiety! However, I do have an issue that will have to be addressed. Not too serious, but who wants to admit they are not the "oh so strong" person they have convinced themselves they are?
I have days like that dealing with my grief as well. I am sailing along, I feel like I am really starting to make a difference for others, and then BLAM! I find his sock in the laundry basket. That tiny little sock that if he were still here would be much too small now. That strong exterior I have been working SO hard to create for myself and everyone around me starts to crumble. I have a drawer in my nightstand where I keep some of his things. The outfit he was wearing when he died, it still smells like him. I go in there to put the sock with it and can't help but pull it out and bury my face in it even though I tell myself not to because I know it's going to make me cry. It does. So much for that productive day I had in the works.
Life seems to be a series of building yourself up, only to be knocked back down a notch or two, then the hard part! Start again the next day- but how else do we grow? How else do we learn from our pain so we can help other people with theirs if we don't get reminded every so often JUST how much it hurts. I believe that all we can do is take the pain and let it just wash over us for a while. Don't hide from it or ignore it because it will not get any better if we don't acknowledge it and take the steps to help ourselves heal. Sometimes that means we have to take a few steps off the path we have so carefully been following to get to where we want to be. It doesn't mean that we aren't going to get back up tomorrow and start trudging on down it again, it just means we are taking a little detour. And that is OK!!! Just like a medical issue, go to the right people to get help with the problem and then pick up and keep on keeping on.
Thank you to all of my wonderful friends and family who have been there for me on my detours, and then helped me back onto my path again. You will never know how much I appreciate you all!!