Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Raw Nerve

I am a raw nerve this week.  I know my strength, and feel it come from my faith.  Yet this is one of those times when Jesus must be carrying me, because I can't hold myself up alone.

I'm pretty sure that I have PTSD.  After my responses to a few triggers this past week I can no longer deny it.  First was the massacre of those beautiful children & adults in Newtown.  Tears have flowed repeatedly for those children, their families and their community.  Then last night I heard that a friend was admitted to the same hospital & same floor I was on when pregnant with Ethan.  In my heart I believe that this good friend & her beautiful baby will be OK, will be healthy in the end.  I really believe that.  Yet my initial response to hearing that there were some concerns triggered my own anxiety.

I immediately tracked down a mutual friend until she reassured me that our friend & baby were OK.  So I calmed down.  Until I realized that they were in the same hospital, with the same staff, etc.  Somehow I had assumed they were elsewhere.  I am reassured that they are there as it they are getting the best of the best for care.  No doubt about that.  But as soon as I knew where they were I freaked out.  Not for them, but for me.  Somehow I was right back there.  In that room on my left side.  Back in that NICU, where my hope lived and Ethan lived...and where he died.   I started to relive it all.  Much of it was the blessings, the immense love and superior care we received from everyone there.  But much of it was the trauma.  I have found myself replaying experiences.  Found myself reminded that others, thank God, get their happy endings.  Get to leave that hospital with healthy babies after scares.  Found myself reminded that I will never get my happy ending with Ethan, at least not in this lifetime.

So last night I was having a bit of a panic attack & serious wave of grief.  I prayed hard.  Prayers for my friend, her baby & her husband.  Prayers for the care team watching over them, that God guides them to a healthy outcome.  Prayers that Ethan come to me in my time of need.  That Jesus carry me, wrap his arms around me.

This morning I awoke feeling a bit better, but still very much on edge.  A friend stopped by as she had something to give to me.  Steph and I met through a couple of different avenues.  Primarily, we share a mutual friend, Dot, who is now in Heaven.  Steph sat on my couch and started to talk.  A few times Steph had been driving and noticed a rainbow.  She took that as a sign to pray for me, which she generously did.  That night she would see on Facebook that I had been struggling that day, hence the signal for her to pray for me.  Steph had a few crafts supplies out the other day, as she makes her own cards.  She has a butterfly punch that she had used only a few times.  That day she left her home to pick up her son from school.  Along the drive they pulled over & witnessed a beautiful double rainbow.  When they returned home Steph found these beautiful butterfly cut-outs all over her table.

The remarkable thing is she had not cut most of them out herself, just a few.  The table was not how she had left it.  Nobody had been home during her brief trip to pick up her son.  She felt that our friend Dot had left them there for me, to know that Ethan is OK.

I know that Ethan is OK, better than OK.  I know that I will be OK eventually, I am on that road right now.  I'm just not there this week.  Not yet.

So thank you Steph.  Thank you Dot.  Thank you Ethan.  Thank you Jesus.  Thank you for carrying me today.


  1. I am so glad you got an Ethan sign!! The PTSD is very hard to live with. Prayers for a bearable Christmas