I thought I had moved passed this.
I thought I was done with being angry.
I thought I had left anger behind.
That was the problem. That was why it caught me so off guard. I had stopped letting it go daily.
Chronic illness and pain truly is a cycle. We forget that sometimes. We are constantly grieving in some form or another.
The more I reflected on it , I realized that it was more aimed at me not having more children. This is hard for me. I don’t really want another child. However I wanted that decision to be mine and not my illness. I didn’t want to have a doctor tell me it would not be a good idea to get pregnant again. I would love to see my daughter holding a little brother or sister. However my energy is spent long before the end of the day just with her. A second child would not be fair to either of them.
I was angry that yet again my chronic illness and pain was dictating more things to me.
This really caught me off guard because I had thought I was okay with not getting pregnant again. I did not realize there were little niblets left that I still maybe wanted more.
When I stopped and thought about it , of course there were nibblets left. Almost eight years has flown by and every day she gets a little older. In alot of ways the earlier years are so much easier. They can’t ask a million questions in five minutes when they can’t talk yet. I miss that silky soft feel her skin had. I miss breastfeeding. I miss all the wonderful parts and even some of the not so wonderful parts.
Anger and chronic pain really do go hand in hand. Alot of time I use any anger I have about my circumstances to get me through the day. There are some creative and useful outlets for that anger.And I am not talking about throwing the frying pan at people. I write, I take the dogs for a walk which is healthy for both of us and sometimes I let it fuel my cleaning sprees.
Anger for me is a seductive partner. It gets along well with my sarcasm and I tend to be angry before I realize I am angry. Does that make sense? Its like I will say something and someone is like wow why are you so angry? What? I am not angry! Oh wait maybe I am. I am also good at denying that I am angry until I am ready to deal with it. On some level I enjoy being angry and grumpy.
When I realized I was back at being angry with my chronic illness and pain, I was frustrated. Here I am again. I haven’t made any progress I tell myself. But the truth is I have made progress, I am not at the same place. When I was first diagnosed I was not interested at all with having another kid. I was so overwhelmed with working and being a mom and keeping everything going that it didn’t occur to me. What we don’t realize is that its a process we go through over and over again. Even knowing that it still frustrates me when it happens.
Its okay to go through the process at each thing that comes up. What bothered me when I was first diagnosed is not what bothers me now. I just have to keep reminding myself its a process that we keep going through. It doesn’t mean we haven’t made any progress. We are just at a different spot of the cycle. This is where keeping a pain diary can be helpful. A tool to look back and see where you are with where you are now.
For me just acknowledging that I am going through the process again is enough for me to leave some of it behind already. Just like a weight falling off my shoulders.
I know one thing that has happened for the better, is I am better at self analysis. I don’t shy away from it as much anymore. Now its more of a necessity than it was. Writing gives me a chance to explore how I am feeling. I can write it out and get it out and sometimes I can move on.
So once I realized what I was angry about and looked at it realistically, I decided to write about it. Will this mean I won’t be angry about it anymore? No. However I have given myself permission to be angry about it, to mourn it again. To make progress. To acknowledge that sometimes when you are making progress that progress requires you take a step or two back everyonce in a while. It means you are gentle with yourself and tell yourself its okay to not be okay all the time.