7th wedding anniversary!
My mom visited last weekend. We had a great time with her - a BBQ with friends on Friday night, shopping on Saturday, dinner with dear friends on Saturday night, pedis on Sunday, and a fancy dinner out on Sunday night to celebrate my 7th wedding anniversary with Ryan.
It's been a bit of a whirlwind.
But in a quiet moment, Mom and I had a few nice talks. One thing she said to me was this: "Kate, you seem so much happier than you did a year ago. It is so nice to see."
I've been thinking about that a lot. A little over a year ago (February 21, to be exact), after a procedure with my "lady doctor", I learned that for sure I will never have babies. Never. Ever. Game over. The end.
As I wrote before, having that hope taken away from me was soul crushing. I had been having a hard time before that, but this put me over the edge. I've been working on dealing with it ever since. What do I hope for now? What is my focus? I wanted this for me, but also for Ryan, Nathan, and Abby. What do I give them now? What do I do with the rest of my life? Who will take care of me when I'm old? Who will remember me? Who will want my things?
That's a lot to think about, and I couldn't stop.
Well, a year has passed, and yes, I have thought a lot, and re-focused, and tried to relax, and seen a therapist, and looked at what I want to do with my life, and learned to stop worrying so much about things that I can't control.
Like I said before, 2014 was a very trying year for me. But it's over now and I've learned a lot. I *am* a lot happier now.
I chose a motto for 2015: Hope. I spend some time each day focusing on that. My office at work has a gorgeous view of the mountains and I stand for a few minutes each day at the window, enjoy the beauty, and think about hope. For a while I didn't know what to hope for. It was all focused on myself. I was hoping for a while just to make it through each day (and that is not a joke). When I looked to the future, all I saw was loss, darkness, and death. But my vision has gradually broadened and lightened.
There is a lot to hope for, friends of the blog. A lot.
I have a clearer vision of the future now. I'm carving out what I want to happen and it's pretty exciting. For so long, my vision of the future included babies. I held onto that hope for almost 20 years. In many ways, I have held myself back because it was always my plan to have babies. I always felt on the verge of achieving that hope and so I held myself back because I didn't want to start things that I wouldn't finish. But now that I know with a certainty that babies aren't in my future, I can hope for other things and for other people. It is a relief to release an unfulfilled hope and fill the void with other hopes. At first it felt empty and confusing and weird. But now all these new hopes are sprouting up and growing and it's amazing.
I feel more like my old self. I'm laughing again. My panic attacks are gone. I'm enjoying the little things, like a great cup of coffee, or a beautiful song, or tulips waving merrily in the sun, or my dogs jumping on my lap and licking my face, or our Sunday Skype sessions with the kids.
This is a super self-absorbed blog, I know, but I wanted to share these thoughts with those of you who struggle with depression, anxiety, and even infertility.
It is my hope that when you read this, you won't feel so alone.
I want you to know that it will get better. Hope is very powerful. It will change your life.
Love and hugs to you all.