When Mrs. Moore, the woman that C.S. Lewis had lived with for several decades, finally passed away, he wrote to a friend, "I'm only just now realizing how bad it has been..." (
I can't, for the life of me, find the letter right now. I'm 90% certain he wrote it to Arthur Greeves, but most of my bookmarks have fallen out.)
Only after Mrs. Moore was no longer a part of his life, did he realize he'd been subjected to years upon years of verbal and emotional abuse.
I can't help but reflect on how liberated he must have felt, as I emerge from a cocoon of sadness and sickness myself. Since last August, I've been struck with hyperemesis, a fancy way of saying, "She pukes all the time while she's pregnant." To add insult to injury, I developed a gallbladder problem, which had me nauseous and vomiting AGAIN, as soon as the hyperemesis wore off.
In addition to that, my youngest daughter (who just turned two) is an Insomniac Wonder Baby, and I've not had consistent sleep since she was born. I've been exhausted, nauseous, vomiting, weak, short-tempered, frustrated, and barely coherent for all of recent memory.
Until last week.
Not only did IWB sleep at least six hours at a time, but I must have either passed the gallstones or gotten my diet in a better place---because I wasn't nauseous, wasn't vomiting, and I was rested.
All day yesteray I PLAYED. I played with the toddler, and I played guitar. I felt like a new woman. I smiled. I cheered. I cleaned my house.
Then, the Insomniac Wonder Baby got a cold, and coughed all night last night. She's still too young for most cough medicines, so....welcome to my first night in a week with no sleep.
I feel like a train hit me.
All I want to do is read old novels and mindlessly surf the internet. I'm so exhausted and sore and brain-dead that I can hardly function.
For the last several years, I've wondered, "Why haven't I been getting more done? Why haven't I accomplished more in my life? Why haven't I been more successful? Why haven't I finished such-and-such project? Why am I so dead?"
Well, I've been pregnant seven times in the last nine years. I've lost three pregnancies (one was twins). I've nursed. I've bottle-fed. I've worked third-shift. I've gone so long without sleep, because I had an undiagnosed sleep disorder. I've had food allergies, I've had moves, I've had infants, toddlers, school-aged children....and I've had hyperemesis. I've been nauseous, vomiting, sleep-deprived, over-worked, uprooted....
...and I'm JUST NOW REALIZING how bad it has been.
After this past week, I'm more and more confident that it will get better. No more babies. No more ridiculous expectations. Small, gentle goals. Rest.
The Insomniac Wonder Baby is napping right now, so I think I'll join her....zzzzzzzzz............