If you’ve seen my blog from Sunday (Suddenly life wasn’t a bed of roses) you’ll know that life is a bit tough for us at the moment following a miscarriage at the beginning of the month.
What you don’t realise when you are pregnant is how much time you spend thinking about the pregnancy, both during waking hours and also, for me at least, whilst you sleep. Chats with family and friends ultimately came back to the pregnancy. Weekend plans could no longer involve boozy nights or very long walks and so alternatives had to be sought. In fact, even when I wasn’t talking about the pregnancy (because it was too early to announce) I was thinking about the secret that I was carrying whilst I was getting my haircut/doing the weekly shop/volunteering. Couple this with the physical symptoms (headaches/nausea/bloat/tiredness) and you can see that this pregnancy malarkey was pretty all consuming.
So, what is to be done when you are no longer pregnant but do not have the longed for baby to care for and consume your days?
In the first few days there was the physical pain, along with the total rawness of the situation, to occupy my mind. There were oodles of tears, waking up at 3am to howl at the night and relive the moment when the scan revealed that there was no baby. For a few days my husband stayed off work to look after me and then it was the weekend so I had company, someone who knew what I was going through and who I could talk to, and cry with, at anytime, day or night. After this first weekend, hubby went back to work but I was still feeling a bit ‘poorly’ and so I rested and looked after myself.
Now, a couple more weeks have passed and by all intends and purposes I am back to ‘normal’ physically. (Don’t get me wrong, I’m absolutely shattered half the time, but I’m a woman in my forties and, from talking with my friends, I think this is pretty normal!). I no longer cry all day, in fact, I no longer cry everyday now, just when something ‘sets me off’. Instead, I find that I am left with this huge feeling of emptiness, sadness and “what the heck now-ness”? It seems that when I lost the baby, I also lost the ability to be the person that I was before. I no longer feel like I have a purpose or a role, or that I can glean enjoyment from the life that I previously loved. I have not replaced all the thoughts of the pregnancy with negative thoughts about the miscarriage, instead I just feel a bit sad, lonely and frustrated, like a schoolgirl at the end of a very long and very wet summer holiday.
When I mentioned a tiny amount of what I was feeling to my husband last night, he asked if there was anything that would help “distract” me. I didn’t give it much thought when he asked it as I know that what he wants me to say is “yes, I’d like to go out for a 10 mile run everyday!” and I’m just not motivated for that at the moment, a daily dog walk is a good start for me just now. However, when I woke up this morning I decided to Google ‘Free Online History Courses’, history has always been a real love of mine and I wish I’d done more of it at school/college and uni. I quickly found a website called Open Learn which provides free learning from the Open University and has 100’s of interesting topics, including many which are history based.
I have decided to start with a 12 hour course called ‘The Origins of the Wars of the Three Kingdoms’:
From Catholic rebellion to Civil War, what happened during the latter years of the reign of Charles I that caused people to take up arms against their fellow citizens? This free course, The origins of the wars of the three kingdoms, looks at the background of the wars between England, Scotland and Ireland and how the king’s actions led to the rift between royalists and parliamentarians.
I am hoping that an hour or two a day will help revive me, by challenging my brain with a topic that I love (I could get out my Accountancy books but that really would drive me over the edge) and giving my days a bit of focus. I’m not naïve enough to think that this will be the wonder cure, but hopefully it will help distract me a little.
Wish me luck!