Thursday, May 16, 2013

Love, Loss and Living On

I've experienced different types of loss over the past 15 years.  It's shaped me.  Sometimes it moves me, sometimes I move it.  I feared I was going to become a bitter “life is loss” old lady with 15 cats and a hump back.  I was close to that place, I felt it, I held it, I took comfort along the edges of it.  But early this year I made a life changing decision.  I was tired of talk therapy and medications.  It was time to try something new - EMDR treatments (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing).  After only 4 sessions, my seven years of oppressive grief had lifted.  I am able to think about and write about my loss without re-experiencing it.  If you have suffered from any type of trauma (mine was a combination of many “small t” traumas), strongly recommend you look into this treatment.  It has literally changed my perspective on life, and in doing so has changed my ability to live. 

Writing has become my passion again, a passion that was lost a long time ago.  I remember life before my kids as shiny and fairy tale-ish.  I am a fairy tale nut, and so I have reflected on the last 15 years as such.


My tale begins 15 years ago, in a land not so far away... (in fact I still live in the same town I was born)...

Part 1 - in which everything is wonderful.

Once upon a time there was a strong, confident, sexy young woman who worked at the local rape crisis centre.  She organized large, successful fundraising events, managed an office of seven busy women, and provided peer counselling to other young women.  She married her high school sweetheart, they bought a house, and were trying to have a baby. 

All was good. 

Part 2 - in which all hope seems lost. 

It turns out her Prince was a Queen, and married his own Prince Charming.  They remained good friends, and she stayed a part of his larger family (for after 10 years, one cannot casually cut people out of one's life).

But, the confident young woman was broken, lost her way and her faith in Fate - perhaps everything didn't happen for a reason...

She spent months rebuilding herself, learning what SHE wanted, what HER priorities were.  She surrounded herself with other strong, confident women and eventually the pieces came back together.  She felt good, strong and healthy. 

Love at first sight seemed a fanciful myth, one that she could not imagine would happen to her - but it did.  She met another Prince (who definitely liked princesses), with the help of a newly established internet dating site. 

The girl did not want to marry again, but all was good and all were happy, and the kingdom rejoiced. 

Until the Prince’s mother and the girls grandmother both fell gravely ill. 

During this difficult time the girl became pregnant - and this was good, for it gave each family hope and
all looked a little brighter.  The girl was glowing and happy and proud to be able to bring this hope to the families. 

But then, with no warning or sign, after five months of being a part of the girl, the baby died.  A part of the girl died as did the hope the girl had carried.  She was broken again.  The glue holding her together
deteriorated.  How does one fix a vase that has already been mended? 

She lived in grayness the Prince took good care of her and three months later, when his mother died, her fog lifted enough so that she could take care of him, for that is what one does.

The week of the funeral came, and with it the bittersweet joy of another pregnancy.  They married before Prince Damian was born, and drank to his mother, for she had greatly wanted the grandchild, and to see her son married.

All was well once more.

Two years passed and the girl attended two more funerals, lost another baby, and a second prince was born, Prince Dexter.  A month after the second prince was born, the girl’s father became very ill.  She returned to work, only to lose her job after two months. 

Loss seemed to follow the girl. Loss of love, of child, of family.  Loss of job, of friendships and of self. 

Part 3 - in which a light starts to form from within the darkness.

Seven years passed from her first miscarriage before she found a way out of the darkness.  For seven years there has been a ghost living with her, growing older each year.  A ghost of (perhaps) a little princess who would have been a big sister to Prince Damian.  The hole inside the girl will never be filled.  But, with help it has been patched and holds still. 

The girl started to write again, to find herself again.  Her father battles his illness with bravery and dignity, and her mother is a strength unto herself. 

The girl’s life is nothing like she had imagined it would be.  Her boys are funny, caring and healthy, they challenge and press her but also give her great joy and comfort.  

Her Prince, now her King, is by her side still making her laugh and taking care of her. 

And life (after her kids) is good.  As it should be, and as it will be. 

I originally published this post at as a guest blogger.

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