Yesterday was a really bad day for me. I went to the bathroom and just cried while I was at work. After reapplying my makeup, I went back to my desk to try to act normal for the remainder of the day. I felt anything but “normal.” I felt crushed, devastated, like I was left to pick up the shattered pieces of my life … alone.
What in the world could possibly have me feeling this way?
My precious niece is pregnant, and we have been overjoyed. I have attended her doctor visits with her, and last Thursday we went for what was supposed to be a gender reveal ultrasound. At 14 weeks and four days, they said we’d know the sex of the baby. We went with great anticipation only to learn that not only could we not determine the sex of the baby just yet, something was suspicious and seemed wrong. So wrong that the doctor ordered blood work and a 2D ultrasound with a specialist.
We rushed back into the doctor’s office the very next morning, which is a 30 minute drive for her and a two hour drive for me. I prayed silently just about the entire way there.
At the doctor’s office, they seated us in the doctor’s office … as in chairs in front of his official desk, with the nurse closing the door behind her on the way out, as we waited nervously for his arrival. My niece looked at me with eyes wide and this extreme look on her face as she said, “This can’t be good.” The feeling of dread filled my body.
The doctor arrived with news that they suspected something was wrong with the baby due to the size of the brain on the ultrasound. There were other things he felt were suspicious enough to warrant further investigation. He speculated that it could be Down Syndrome or something else, but he wanted to do the testing to be certain.
My niece gasped when he said those words. And she crumbled as I held her.
I sat there feeling like a truck just rammed into me.
Quickly we tried to regain our composure and ask questions, but there are no definitive answers at this point. So we wait … we wait for the call on the results of the blood work, and we wait on the call for the ultrasound to be scheduled. Since it is Thanksgiving week, no one is in a hurry to do anything, except for us.
But yesterday all of this weight came crashing down … I was virtually in tears all day any way, but something happened right after lunch to cause a waterfall of tears at work. I hate it when that happens, and there is no faucet to turn off. It just keeps running and running until you feel like the well will run dry, yet there’s more tears.
It made me think of Carrie Underwood’s song, Cry Pretty. There is absolutely NO way in this world that you can look remotely pretty when you’re crying, and yesterday I looked like a train wreck during and after.
I allowed myself to feel this for a while … and I’m not going to lie. It was the better part of the day that I felt this way. But as it neared the time for me to get my youngest daughter from school, I tried to push all of that aside so it did not alarm her when she slid into the vehicle. She took one look at me, though, and knew something was wrong.
I made a decision not to stay in that frame of mind, though. For her … and for me. Instead, we went home, fed the horses, goats, and other animals we have on our farm, and headed to do something to lift our spirits.
We went to visit my father-in-law, but we decided not to call ahead. This is rude, I know, but I wanted to surprise him and hoped that it would be a welcomed surprise.
I pulled into his driveway, slipped out of the vehicle and walked under his carport unnoticed. I could see him in there at the bar in the kitchen, so this was perfect to capture his reaction when he saw who was ringing his doorbell. I think it was a nice surprise, indeed, and we were welcomed with a warm hug, albeit with a shocked look on his face.
My daughter enjoys riding on the golf cart, so my husband got it out and down the road the three of us went. My father-in-law decided he’d rather watch television, so he declined the offer for us to all go. He told us to go have fun.
That was not in the equation earlier in the day. After crumbling to pieces and bawling my eyes out holding on to the sink in the bathroom at work … fun is the very last thing I thought would be happening that evening. Yet, I made a decision to do something instead of wallowing in how I felt. It would have been sooooo incredibly easy to just stay right there in that moment and allow those feelings to linger all … day … long. But I couldn’t let it take over like that.
We rode the golf cart, and then when night fell, we went to this neat little seafood restaurant on the side of the road. It’s a place I have passed so many times on my journey to another town, and I hadn’t given that “dive” a second glance … until yesterday. My father-in-law raved about this restaurant, so I knew it couldn’t be that bad. I decided to give it a try. It didn’t appear more than just a “greasy spoon” from the outside, with the exterior needing some work. However, once you walked inside, you were greeted with a friendly smile, and you couldn’t help but notice all of the décor which made you feel just like you were standing on a beach some where looking out. The food did not disappoint either, and we left full and feeling better about things.
We’re still waiting on the blood work and the ultrasound. Nothing has changed there. I still had a very bad day at work, which “sucked” if you want to know the truth. But I did not unpack and live there.
Even my husband mentioned how I taught him a valuable lesson last night. I sat there wondering how that was possible. I didn’t lecture. I didn’t give a speech. I didn’t even try to sound convincing at all in my conversation. Instead, I felt more defeated than anything so I was more quiet than usual. Yet, he learned something from me?
He said I surprised him with how I picked myself up and decided to do something to improve my mood. I didn’t wallow in it. Instead, I decided to get my mind off of the bad things that were threatening to steal my joy or HAD stolen it that day. I spent time with my family trying to laugh and have a good time with them. I allowed them to embrace me and speak softly to me. He said I not only left an impression on him, but he felt sure my daughter saw it, too.
And that, my friend, is the message I’d like for you to take with you as well.
Life isn’t always going to be “perfect” no matter how much we plaster our picture perfect lives on Facebook, Instagram, or other social media. Things happen in life that shake us to our core. Yes, we are to allow ourselves to feel because we are human beings, not robots. We aren’t programmed to be uncaring and emotionless. It is okay to have a good cry! Some times we need that to reset things once we let these feelings out. Then get up, wash your face, look at yourself in the mirror and declare that you will rise up! You will continue to be a warrior! You have it in you, just like I do. Believe that things will get better. They HAVE to.
If you have love in your life, family and friends by your side, you are blessed. The situation might suck. And if anyone has been through situations in life that really just blow … it’s me. I thought about writing all of it out here, but I don’t want to “re-live” all of that. Instead, I want to just focus on now and what we can take away from this situation.
Get out there and find something to enjoy in the day. Find a bright spot. If you can’t find one, MAKE one with your family. Try to force a smile and drag yourself out of your chair or your bed and DO something … pet an animal … turn on music … go for a walk … OR go for a ride on your father-in-law’s golf cart.
Pretty soon you will realize that situation or those situations don’t define every single thing in your life. It’s bad what is happening at the moment, but the moment will pass. It may feel like a kidney stone up to the point and when it’s actually passing … but this, too, shall pass.