Recognizing that I was having a tough time with my hormones, my self image and my overall mental health was the first step to getting back into the light. Recognizing that my anger towards the forces that kept my little girl in the hospital for four months was real and tangible was a big thing. I had anger at myself; thinking that Luna Bell’s health was a direct result and punishment of all of my actions was a big one. Had all the mistakes I had made come back to haunt me? Did Kevin subconsciously blame me for it and that’s why he was pulling away from me? And the questions, comments and accusations from people who really didn’t matter to me, but had Kevin’s ear, rang in my ears. “Oh, is Luna sick because you were older when you got pregnant?” “Glad I was young when I had my baby so I didn’t have to go through anything like that.” “Oh yeah, my friend’s baby was in the NICU too…for like 3 days, but same kind of thing.” “Oh yeah, you’re Kevin’s baby mama. Didn’t think he would ever have kids. Way to lock that down! I mean he’d be a real asshole to leave now right?” “So it’s potentially a genetic thing? Your side?” If I could express exactly how things like this felt, it would be something along the lines of having your insides put through a meat grinder. And the thought that maybe Kevin thought these things too was more than I could take.
Somehow, through everything, Kevin and I started to find our way back to each other. It was a slow process, many conversations, fights and sleepless nights. But we were making it work. The love was always there, but our lives had changed drastically and we had to figure out how our relationship had to change as well. The dynamics of a relationship where it’s just two people in love and excited about everything they want to do in the future to the dynamics of two people still totally in love and excited for the future, but now there is a brand new human in the mix. We can’t just leave her to go on a date night and we can’t leave her behind while we go to work or on a vacation. It’s now always going to be a question of what’s good for Luna Bell. And that is amazing and wonderful, but can be a real speed bump in a relationship. I wish I had a magic spell to cast on all new parents and us to make this whole process easier, but I don’t. It takes work. And compromise and understanding and respect of the others feeling and needs. I think a year later we are still trying to figure that out, but the thing is we are trying. Trying to have respect, understanding and some insight into what the other person needs and let that guide us and our decisions. I miss the days of it just being me and Kevin sometimes, but I wouldn’t give up the amazing and rewarding experience of being a mother for anything.
And to you who are quick to criticize and question parents who have kids with health issues or especially had a rough time in the beginning; the kindest suggestion I have for you is to mind your own business, keep your thoughts to yourselves, and try to have a little respect for those parents in so much pain and agony. My slightly less kind suggestion would be to drop dead. Trust me, you don’t what to hear my harshest suggestion.
So here we were. It was summer, our little girl was trying so hard to learn all of the things that she couldn’t while in the hospital and just get stronger and healthier every day. The struggle was unimaginable, and sometimes discouraging; but she was home. That was the thing we had hoped for, for so long, and it was time to actually enjoy it. We were all trying to heal and adjust and find our way from the darkness and into the light.