Friday, January 15, 2010

Personal blog

I posted this on my private family blog 7-25-09. I thought a few of you might like to see how far I have come;)

I have found a lot of relief from writing about my thoughts as I morn for the inevitable lose of my mother. It is the one way I find I can come to terms with everything. I decided to share some of my thoughts today.

Fight For Your Life
by: Brenbren

I feel like punching a wall right now. I crave the distraction the pain in my hand would give me, relief from this awful HELL that is my reality. The pain is welling up inside of me. I am ballooning with emotions, confusion, grief, anger, intense anger, and a sense of loss. I feel like I have just been consigned to a life of zero choices. I get no say in all of this. My opinion holds no weight in the deciding factor. Does it matter that I am only 25, that I have children yet to be born, to still have baptisms, graduations, marriages, and mission farewells to attend? NO. I feel like she is giving up, like it’s not worth trying anymore. In a morbid sense I understand what that might feel like, but it’s her duty as a mother, as a grandmother to fight. It’s her duty to do everything, EVERYTHING that she can to stay longer. She shouldn’t have the only say in this. This isn’t just her fight; it’s our fight too. We’re heavily invested in this nightmarish reality. Does our wants, our needs, hold no value? It is her choice. Why would she want to live a life of constant sickness? It’s no life; it’s less than a life. Where can I turn for peace?
My mother won't be doing more treatment. CT Scans show no significant change in her cancer. Only 1, ONE, lump out of twenty-FREAKING-five lumps changed and even then it was so minuet it’s no even worth mentioning. 3 treatments of life altering chemo and NOTHING!!!!! 3 treatments of waste of time, and no more. 3 treatments, 3 weeks, 20 days, 480 hours, 28,800 minutes, 1,728,000 seconds of the constant poison dripping into her veins. It all led to nothing, NOTHING!!!!!!! There is nothing left. There is no second chance. She is too sick to want to continue for NOTHING. She lost all her hair, lost too much weight, vomited and then dry heaved, blood drawn, surgeries, Hickman line, too weak to even speak, let alone go to the ER, to weak to lift her head off the pillow. Her hair fell out by the handful. I cut the rest off because she asked me too. It was less hair than my son’s 1st hair cut. She was bald. I had to stop, put the scissors down because my tears blurred my vision. I didn’t want to hurt her already tender and fragile head. It was too painful to cut of the last of her hair. This helpless creature before me was ½ of the mother she use to be. She was wonder woman. She could do anything, make everything better, she could sew her way out of….. well, a really hard place to sew your way out of. Her fingers dance across the piano. I knitted a hat to cover her head. The 1st one was too small. It fit my nephew’s head; he’s only 17 months. The second fit. She says it keeps her head warm. She is cold all the time. We made a blanket together once, to snuggle and feel close to each other. She says it’s not warm enough. Her frail body can’t keep heat in. You want to know what if feels like to see your mother slipping away before your eyes? It feels like reality stopped. My whole body is on fire, my mind is in total chaos, my heart feels like it is ripped apart, shredded, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts. I want her to fight. I want her to keep going. How do you ask someone to keep wasting his or her life on something that isn’t working? “Hey mom, please keep making yourself SO sick that it takes you 3 weeks to recover and by the time you finally feel like getting dressed, start the treatment all over again.” I feel like a hypocrite. I want my mom to fight, but I want her to suffer!?????! Does that seem right? No, I don’t want her to suffer. I just want her here with me. I want her to be at my side when I give birth to my 3rd baby. I want her to be there when I finally graduate with my bachelors, I want her to be at my children’s blessings, baptisms, graduations, weddings, and mission farewells. I want to spend summer nights swinging on the back porch, listening to the crickets’ chirp and the sprinklers constant rhythm. The people I want next to me are my mom and my sisters. We will giggle about the cute things our kids did that day, the funny things sisters say to each other, and reminisce about our childhood. That is was I imagine eternity to be, a reminder of the good moments I was allowed to spend with the most amazing woman I know. I feel truly grateful to be her daughter, to have her help, her love, and her support. Without her, there will be a hole. No person can fill her shoes. She is my mother to which I owe my very life too.

June 13, 2009
Last night I felt agitated and angry. I went to the Diamond Back’s game. It was boring. I don’t enjoy watching baseball, but the atmosphere was great. I didn’t want to go. I wanted to silently suffer in my pit of despair. I did not want to face people. I did not want to admit I needed help. I did not want to admit that I could not find my way through the abyss. That would mean I am weak and incapable.
I woke up today feeling better, but gradually the reality of the chaos in our home wore on me. Everywhere you look there is junk pilling up. Our cupboards are unorganized, our counters are covered, even our ugly couch is covered in laundry waiting to be folded. It is too overwhelming to know where to even begin. I feel immobilized by the magnitude of the project. We are living in a 2-bedroom apartment. Our 1 year old sleeps in our bathroom in a pack-n-play. There is junk shoved into every inch of space. It is suffocating me. There is no peace, there is just stuff. The only ‘Zen’ I have is found within the sweet protecting walls of oblivion. The place I can go to when my eyes are closed and reality slips away. It is a place where sleep gently enfolds my mind into dreams of a new life, a life devoid of clutter. It is the place where my constant rhythmic breathing gently rocks my troubles away. This ‘dream’ life is where no matter where you look, you don’t see the stark reality of a life in total chaos. I can’t take total chaos any more. The war zone inside of my mind and heart is spilling out into reality. There are times I can’t control the rage within, times when I want to lash out at anything around me. Oh, what I would give to punch a wall, throw a lamp, or chop up my couch. I could use it to heat my home. It’s a really ugly couch that my husband insists we keep. He says we don’t need a new one. I hate it, I resent him for making me keep it. He acts like I should enjoy it. Our son put gum on it and it won’t come out. I flipped the cushions to hide it, but then he put gum on that side too. I hate that couch. Every time I see it I want to take a saw to it. I can’t stand to look at it. It is just a reminder of all that I wish were different in my life. It’s just a waste of space, precious, precious space. With only 1144 square feet, ever inch is worth fighting for. I think I am going to throw it out while he is gone. When he comes home, I will just tell him it was stolen! He won’t be mad, at least not long.

After I had my daughter, I had severe postpartum depression. I began having suicidal thoughts. My doctor told me I could start running again (even though I was 2 weeks postpartum) He said it was better to be alive and running, then dead. So, I started running and I lost weight fairly quickly. I had my last 10 lbs to go when turmoil struck my life. My mom was diagnosed with terminal cancer. I went and saw her here and there. While dealing with this stress, I turned to food to ease my pain. I gained ALL of the weight back. I stopped running too because I had gotten out of the habit of exercising.
I got some counseling for dealing with the inevitable lose of my mother. I struggled and floundered around with this for a few months. In total desperation, I could see no way out. I had sunk as far as I could go. I have depression, my mom is dieing, my husband is gone all of the time for residency, I feel like a single mom, I am overwhelmed beyond belief.
The weight became too much to bear. My already depressed state of mind was on over load after finding out the chemo treatments were no longer helping. The doctors have decided to forgo further treatments.
I prayed so hard one night; I laid all of it out. I cried harder then I ever have and I didn't feel the peace I was seeking. I feel asleep discouraged and filled with despair. I wondered why does God want me to wade through this? Where is the peace I so desperately need? Where do I Turn for Peace? Where is my balm of Gilead?
The next morning I felt a little better, but not what I had hoped. I opened my email and low and behold there is this invite from Hillary about FG8. I thought what the heck, I will give it a try.
I have still been pretending ALL of the original things were included in this challenge. I began studying my scriptures on a regular basis because until recently it was sporadic. (No judging here people, sometimes scripture study takes a back burner we all have our ups and downs.) There was no noticeable change in the peace I have been craving. I still felt burdened beyond belief, but it was not too heavy all the time now. I didn't feel crippled by my sorrow.
I started exercising again and started feeling better. I even noticed my food choices were affecting my mood too. I felt better about myself, which goes a long way in being a better mother and wife. We were having regular family home evening with the kids and Dave and I started doing scripture study together.
A few weeks into the program, I was doing some personal scripture studying and a feeling that I have never had before, overwhelmed me. Basically, I just knew that I was more beautiful then many people because I was righteous and my father in heaven allowed me to see that. I really feel like I received that blessing because I was having regular study. I still have weight to loose, but I am not worried about it anymore. I don't obsess about it. Basically, FG8 helped me through some of the process of mourning my lose, but it also helped me find balance in my life. It helped give me the extra push to make scripture study more regular in my life. I developed a closer relationship with my father in heaven and began to find peace.
I was not at all perfect in it, but as I sit at my computer typing this, tears stream down my cheeks because I have re-read this and seen the Lord's hand in my life. Though I didn't find immediate relief from my sorrow and grief, I have seen a 'process' of changes that have led me to a more balanced and comfortable state of mind. I am not sure whether you realized the impact a simple program had on my life. It wasn't about being healthy (although that did help) It was more of the process I needed to go through to allow my Heavenly Father into my life to help me find the direction to peace.
I am not done with this nightmare, but I have hope and assurance that my mom will watch over me in the life here after and she will see everything I want her to be apart of, just in spirit instead of body;)
Prayers are answered, just not always they way we think. Mine came in the form of an invite to FG8.

I caught the last 15 minutes of Dr. Phil the other day and he was talking about addictions. It was addictions to things like shopping, eating, and work.
Dr. Phil asked everyone the same question, "What are you running from?"
It turned out, it was lack of confidence. The addict was trying to hid from the pain of repulsion they felt about themselves.
I began thinking about myself and how I don't deal with stresses in my life. I run from them. I either ignore them or eat. I am repulsed by my physical appearance because my body has changed so dramatically after giving birth to 2 children. I don't understand how my spouse could be attracted to it, especially when I KNOW what I really look like. I stay home most of the time because I don't want people to see me like this, but that makes me feel worse. I feel like people don't like me and I don't have friends. I feel like I am not a likable person. Which, as you can see, is a cycle of never ending unworthiness.
I wondered, "How does one build self confidence? How do I stop worrying about my flaws?"
I really had no idea how to fix it. So, I asked my very wise and understanding husband. I was hoping for some amazing solution that would be a quick fix and I would suddenly morph into this happy person who loved herself and felt comfortable in the skin I am in. YEAH RIGHT!?!?!
He told me I had to control my thoughts. That if a bad and degrading thought entered my head, I had to make a plan of how to IMMEDIATELY get it out. I decided to sing really loudly (in my head, so no one else hears it) a song I made up. It's all about me!

Oh, you're so beautiful, you have pretty blue eyes and a great smile. It's so white and straight. You have the firmest butt anyone has ever felt (which seriously, I do, it is a gift really). You have a giving heart and a friendly personality. Go girl you ROCK!!!!

This is day one of my new mind make over. I have sung that song a million times already and it's only 9:30 AM . Seriously, I am seeing a problem here. I never noticed how often I put myself down. It is usually just a small, "I wish my stomach was flatter." type of thought, but it still hurts. I am going to start counting how many times I sing it. That way I can see how I sang it less and less as time went on.

1 comment:

Princess of Everything (and then some) said...

The negative is easy. The positive you have to work at. Look at society and how it bombards us with the negative.

I love your song! Sing it loud girl!!!

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