I've been getting a lot of, "How are you doing?" questions and check ins lately. Which has been wonderful, thank you for caring about me. I genuinely mean that, and I know people's prayers for us continue. So forgive me in advance for this entirely self focused post about my physical state of being. At some point I will try to blog about my emotional state and how I'm doing with grief, but for now, I'm sticking with a more shallow approach :)
Today is a weird sort of milestone day. Today is the 6 week mark from when Drake was born. Typically after a C-Section, this is when doctors give you the official clearance to return to normal activity. When I was in the hospital, there was a lot of talk about 6 weeks. One day I think I had 4 different OB/GYN residents rotate through my room and give me the 6 week talk. At UCLA they were very conservative about this time frame for basically any type of physical activity and sort of made me feel like I would be forced to be a sack of potatoes for the next 6 weeks. Thankfully, my regular OB/GYN here in Santa Barbara was much less stringent on these standards. Now, I'm not at all saying that the doctors at UCLA were wrong, or that these guidelines are not important. Trust me, my philosophy has been to do WHATEVER the doctors tell me to do, because the last thing I want is to end up back in the hospital or interfere with the long term healing of my body. I'm just grateful to have a primary physician who was diligent about seeing me to make sure I was recovering properly, and understanding that I would like to be active as soon as possible. She gradually cleared me for various types of activity so by the time today (the 6week benchmark) has arrived, I'm already officially clear to be "normal". Except for no sit ups for another 6 weeks (sorry abs, you will have to wait) and no heavy lifting. Most of all, just to be sensible and listen to my body.
Anyway, so today feels kind of weird. Not necessarily in a sad way, just in a "it has my attention" kind of way. I think maybe because it is very surreal that I'm now in a place where I'm allowed to return to a normal physical state, but really, I should still be pregnant right now. Now not only am I not pregnant, but I have no baby, and I am still left with a body that has to recover. Hmmm, recovering from having a baby, but having NO baby. Ok see, it is weird, and it is not fun.
So when people ask how I'm doing physically, how am I physically healing, I usually say "I'm doing well!". How am I feeling about how I am healing and the fact that I have to be physically healing??...... that is another story. I probably haven't been as honest as I've felt when people have casually asked that "How are you doing, physically?" question. I think I feel guilty complaining, because I dropped 90% of my pregnancy weight within 2 weeks, the doctors say I'm healing very well from the surgery, I didn't need the full dose of pain meds, and when all is said is done, I know I'm really lucky to be doing so well. I know I need to be gentle with myself and give myself grace and have a healthy perspective on all this. I know I should NOT expect to fit into my skinniest jeans or be able to go run 4miles. That being said, I know I should feel extremely lucky I can fit into most of my jeans and that I can go run, at all, period. However, I still don't feel like me, and It's frustrating!!! If you know me, you know I am not a patient person when it comes to not being able to be active. I am also not very good at being sick- I have a tendency to be sick for a long time when I get sick, because I'm not good at "being" sick and letting myself recover. My stress also has a tendency to manifest itself physically, because I'm not one to relax and "go with the flow of my body" (this is why I HATE yoga and I love running.) I was remarkably patient when I had to be on hospital bed rest, but that was for a cause bigger than me. Now I am in a selfish place where I just want to feel like me again. I still get exhausted very easily from too much activity, but if I don't have activity I get depressed and I want to be out doing things. I still require an insane amount of sleep, so I sleep a lot, and then I get frustrated I have done nothing with my day. Also, in the midst of getting my strength back, I ended up getting a flu bug or something so that set me back too. I have all this time off work, think of how productive I could be! That is where my mind goes. The end result of that train of thought usually ends with me taking a nap or laying out in the yard reading.
Really, I am doing ok, and I am grateful for that. The fact that I am complaining, well that is just me being honest with how I'm really doing.