Saturday, October 27, 2012

God only likes bubbly southern women who publish a lot

originally posted 10/27/12 and yes, I am posting old material. April is sucking the. life. out. of. me. More on that later.

My awesome amazing soul sister Rebecca sent that title in an email to me and I laughed so hard I cried.


She doesn't have a blog so I stole it from her.

When Steven King, my new counselor, asked me how I know when I'm depressed, I gave him a blank stare, figuring he's the one who went to school and I'm the reason he drives a BMW, so FIGURE IT OUT, DUDE!

Blank staring is what most of the people in my life receive from me when they interact with me, even on an amoebic level.

Scott asked me where the toilet paper was last night and I swear to you it plunged me into a crisis of faith. He watched me, shrugging and gulping, and decided to forego his need for anything resembling, well, Scott Toilet Paper:

He probably used a maple leaf.

As an aside, Scott is super frugal and drives my deceased grandfather's old car. It makes a humming noise resembling an atomic bomb moments before detonation and it will randomly just STOP in the middle of parking lots. He still begs, "Rachel, for the LOVE OF GOD, DON'T BUY THE CHEAP TOILET PAPER!"

I do anyway, just to meet budget.

When I am depressed I can't focus on anything for long and please don't ask me to choose which pen to use or how much milk at Aldi costs.

When I am depressed everything feels unstrung, or too tight, or hanging over. Myself doesn't fit me.

Yesterday was not a good day. I cried my guts out to 3 different friends and I'd like to tell you that it was a conference call, Three different calls, three different times of day. Two of them just wouldn't give up leaving messages on the answering machine. I love those friends. Those dumb friends who answered their phones innocently enough, on the way to the loo.

Depressed takes the shiny off of things. The things peer back at me, dull and embarrassed.

This is me, telling you what walking underwater feels like. Sliding on banana peels. Cutting open the day upon wakening because it must hold something more than nothing.

This is you, reading and nodding along, putting laundry away or tying a shoe and wondering why you feel like muddles this Saturday.

I am usually believing lies in one form or another when I am depressed. Here are the top three, each contending for door prizes:

You're a lazy, no-good mother.

Everyone sees your failures and you're sort of pathetic.

You really should try harder .

Quit letting everyone down.

This morning I faced an old demon. Last night my awesome aunt asked me if I had done it yet.

Every time I drive past that hospital my heart rate accelerates.

I have a dear friend who gave birth to tiny beautiful twin boys a few days ago in that hospital.

I had avoided her during her pregnancy for various reasons.

I didn't think she noticed.

I had forgotten to get the mail the day before yesterday, and yesterday morning the only piece of mail was this:

Crap. She noticed.

Crap. I cried.

I had two friends who had had emergency hysterectomies after childbirth both tell me I needed to go back to that hospital and visit my friend. I needed to.

I kept disagreeing to them, and in my head.

I really wanted to see my friend and those babies and I cried some more and decided that old memories at that hospital weren't going to keep me from visiting.

You know what?

I walked into that place like I owned it.

Even the vending machines were scared.

I walked and walked down those halls, and then

I hugged my friend and it felt like old jeans.

I looked at pictures of her baby boys and they are tiny and it looks like God styled their hair in utero, all spiked and 2009 and they look like their older brother with a softness to their features like their sisters.

I sat there in that room and the ceiling didn't fall in and nobody died.

I gave my friend some hats for her babies and I knew then what it was like to rejoice, fully, with her in her babies:

she'd force me to take down a picture of her two days post-c-section, which is why I didn't try

I realized in that moment that I will not let my own history rip from me the experience of sharing in my friend's joy fully and completely. Not this time. Satan doesn't get that.

I saved my tears for the car, and

it's muscle memory, you know...

remembering a fall day long ago...Patty Anderson's Sunday School class, all red carpet and second servings of Saltines.

"God loves you."

"You are a mess but it doesn't matter. Everyone is a mess. That is what makes Him Good. He holds the mess like a hot potato, only it doesn't burn his hands." (she didn't actually say this, but this is good so I wrote it)

The past is the past, and I stepped over something huge today. I stepped over a body in the road, a memory of what could-have-been mixed with what isn't.

Your body let everyone down

You're a failure

You couldn't ever get pregnancy right

Your daughter will always have problems because your body failed her

and then:

Stepping back into my house today, putting on those "my life" clothes

and that was muscle memory too. It was little children's needs barraging me, my husband showing our son how to read and he was all Sunday paper, messy hair, diapers on the table and shiny wedding ring.

It was

"I am expecting."

Only this time,

it's not a baby. Or a perfect pregnancy. Or perfect kids. Or a perfect house or no fights or no sad.

This time, it was




I will expect,




Inkling said...

I'm so sorry this was part of your story yesterday. I wish you could have been at lunch with me instead. I got to sit across from a social worker who happens to work with women like us in hospitals like the one you walked into, and we talked about how the women she helps shake and tremble and cry and how she can help them through that. And then I went walking with a friend who had a baby in the same place I had mine, and she asked me about where I'm at on my own journey. Out slipped the part where I get panic attacks just driving into the parking lot of that hospital, and suddenly she realized what she had asked me to do that day I had brought her son to meet his new baby sister. I wish you had been on that walk too. Because you get it.

But mostly I wish you had been at lunch. The social worker knows Jesus, and the fish tacos were amazing. It would have been fun having you there. xoxo

Kristy said...

AWESOME post, Rach. Love you...proud of excited for what lies ahead for you!

Laurie in Ca. said...

This is just amazing and beautiful Rachel, and such a breakthrough. I am proud of the courage you took to break down this wall with the Lords help. He knew the time and you obeyed. Blessings to you sweet girl. Depression is so crappy and life robbing. I have been all my life and I truly know the struggle it takes to do this. Love you girl and am so blessed by your honest heart. Thank you.

Love and Hugs, Laurie

Aimee said...

Tears every time I read this. I'm so proud of you. Thank you.

Cole said...

I'm so thankful, Rach...for all the reasons you already know but most of all...because you didn't let Satan steal that moment with such a great friend and a moment of healing!! So proud of you. :)

Jess said...

Okay. I'm confused? Did you deactivate your FB account? I was about to send you a message about how I think you are my long lost BFF.

Enough of the long, meaningful messages, I think we need to go to lunch, or dinner after bedtime, or whatever we can manage (if we CAN manage anything). I'm in the middle of an unraveling too and I think you are a friend who "gets it". Wait, I KNOW you are a friend who get is it!

I think you are brave, courageous and beautiful for facing your fears and conquering that place for the sake of your mental health, your family's health and the love of your friend. I like you. a lot. You are my kind of cool.

Thoughts for the day said...

YES feel hopeful... expecting new life and new hope... and new love.
You will be ok.
I am praying for you.
Your 'recovery' will heal and you will be better on the other side.

Andrea said...

I am so proud of you! Going back to the hospital is such a huge step. I also know how hard it is to do. The fog has definitely lifted for you for a while, but don't be discouraged if the fog comes down again. Hugs.