Over brunch today with a close friend I was sharing how huge it feels like pregnancy loss and infant death feels in my world. It seems impossible that any pregnancy can be carried to term, that any baby can be born crying, wriggling and hungry and that any infant can live past their first year. Because the reality of Sylvia’s death is so huge, so heavy and so intense every second of my life, it seems impossible that we are the minority and that pregnancies, infants and children, usually live. Though the miracle of life is not lost on me, more so it is magnified, it still seems simply impossible that any baby could live…that surely fetuses and infants are just dying left and right and the ones that live, those are the minority. My friend, who personally understands grief and the very non-linear path it takes, shook her head and stated that a world that doesn’t allow Carlos and I to parent a live child isn’t a world she wants to live in. I agreed, acknowledging for the millionth time since August 12th, that the reality of that situation isn’t a world I want to live in either.
I started doing acupuncture several weeks ago. Desperate for a alternative to Xanax, panic attacks and constantly having my tears just riiiight there. Several days before my third weekly appointment, I was about to text my acupuncturist to cancel, stating some reason about insurance, lack of time…whatever. The truth was that I didn’t know if it was helping and I am simply too much of a people pleaser to simply say, ‘Hey, I don’t want to waste my time or yours, I won’t be coming in anymore.’ But then I paused and thought about the last several weeks, my anxiety and my panic attacks. They really did seem less superficial. It really did feel like the world was a little more quiet. And though I will acknowledge that grief is neither linear or logical, it did seem like I felt a little bit more peaceful. So it is working? I think so? It certainly is relaxing and the conversations alone that I have with my accupuncturist are powerful. Also, I appreciate the connection I have made with someone, even briefly, that looks at me in a way that says, ‘I don’t know what you’re going through, but I am trying to understand so that I can be supportive.’
My acupuncturist has talked to me about a handful of concepts that are so simple that within my anxiety and the pressures and the ins and outs of my days, I had forgotten about the importance of the basics. She shared with me her personal emphasis she places on vitamin D and the value of escaping. Escaping in her terms is not a negative thing. It is not a way of not dealing with reality. It is not a way of running away. It is not dismissive or irresponsible. It is intentionally leaving to be able to return better. She stressed the importance of the sun and the beach and the waves and the mountains and the trees and the solitude and the peace that comes from escaping. There is something about quiet, she said, there is something about not being where you are. During this conversation I tried to minimize my excitement for the topic, to try to not sound like I was overly agreeing just to agree or mock, rather agreeing whole heartedly, passionately and on the verge of tears because I so knew how right she was.
Carlos and I are planners and controllers and cautious. We think things through and second guess and have itineraries. Within the week after my first appointment with her though, I did something I have never done, inspired by my appointments, and something that is so unlike myself or Carlos. We booked an improptu long weekend away in San Diego for Carlos’ birthday. We need sunshine and an escape and spontaneity and a big, fresh breath of ocean air. Thats a world I want to live in.