Sep 11, 2012

Naked Me

Scott told me I ought to go write in my journal so I can process my life right now. I answered him apropos nothing, "Elephant! What elephant? I don't see an elephant."

My visiting teacher came over on Saturday to drop off a book I lent out to someone else which she lent out to someone else and it finally ended up at my house since that is the book being used for the neighborhood book club this month. Lisa and I talked about everything regarding children, work, music, but not the elephant. Nobody knew about the elephant. Scott walked outside where we were talking and asked me, pointedly, if I'd told my visiting teacher that I might need help with carpool and other things this week.

Ummm. No. I kind of pushed it aside in my brain. My way of coping is best described as "punt and run." I don't like to plan. Planning means acknowledging an event. When we don't acknowledge something, it isn't real.

"Oh, I'll take care of carpool," I said. "Scott's just having a little surgery done on Thursday."

"What for?" Lisa asked.

"Cavernous hemangioma sitting on his brain. So how's Joe doing at college these days?"

No elephant. No elephant. No elephant.

Fine. I guess I could use a little help so I asked someone else to take my carpool days then forgot that I had it today and left the kids at school for nearly a half hour after it ended. I'm letting other things drive my attention. I'm obsessing over the number of hours I'm working and how I'm working for free. Okay, that one really did have to be addressed but with the elephant sitting in the room and I was still ignoring it, I couldn't blame it for anything. No, I had to take responsibility and draw my boundaries with my new colleagues. No more scheduling me to teach classes after noon. I won't be there to teach them. Be angry if you want or I can show you how much my half time contract pays as opposed to your full-time contract.

Because I have other obligations that I am going to meet. I purposely earn less because I'm supposed to work less. Because I am a mother to four children that need me. I am a wife to (tipping my hat at the elephant) a husband that is having brain surgery on Thursday and I will be home post-op to make sure I do the things for him so he doesn't try to do something he shouldn't.

Even though the angioma thingie (real word, by the way. Scientific, too) is sitting on Scott's brain, the elephant is occupying a lot of mine but even more because I'm choosing to ignore it. Then I'm irritated at well-meaning people who want to make sure I'm okay. With pity in their eyes, they just want me to open up and cry for them. By the time I'm finished placating them, that elephant is sitting on my left eye and giving me a whopping headache.

Of course I'm worried. I scared snotless. It's brain surgery. How do I REALLY feel? I'm scared. At the same time, I don't want to spend my energy trying to convince anybody that I'm okay. I am okay. I'm going to be okay. I don't want to talk about it all the time. I don't want to tell you I'm okay because I'm only okay by the minimum standards. I have to be okay for my children and my husband. We're both frightened but calm in the face of a terrifying elephant. We don't expect complications and we feel confident in the surgeon.

Eventually I will break down and cry but not until I know there is no audience. I'm sure I will find myself crying in front of the oven sometime this week because it chose this time to go out. Damn oven. On the bright side, I made some beautiful rolls on the closed grill on the baking stone. Who knew?

Wait. I'm feeling the tears coming. It's not the surgery. It's not the oven. It's that it's Tuesday night and my hair dryer is broken and I haven't bought a new one, yet. Damnit.

Diet Coke donations accepted.

6 comments:

Amy Morrow said...

awww, I'll be praying for you. Keep your chin up! (I've heard it helps keep away the double chin flab....)

mCat said...

Honey, if I could mainline the DC in you, I would! Toss some xanax in for good measure, and we'd all be like "what elephant?"

Hugs and prayers

CountessLaurie said...

I'm with mCat! Love n Hugs from the East.

Kim said...

Go ahead and cry, I think you're due that indulgence. Then blow your nose on your sleeve and buck up for the big day.

Here's hoping for a wonderfully easy procedure and a speedy recovery.

Joan said...

Nancy I just got home from vacation and wondered what they were talking aobut at Sunday School last week. I missed what was being said. I pray things will be fine. It is always (I have been through Wayne's surgeries several times) nerve wracking and stressful. My son in law had brain surgery a few years ago. You may need to talk to Amy about it. She can offer some advise. HUGS!!

Hillori said...

I have been praying for your family all week. When you ate ready to take a minute, please let us know.