Two steps forward and one step back is still moving forward and not staying stuck.
I continue to be so thankful that I decided to move forward, no matter how slowly and painfully, while I was still in the depths of depression, devastation, and despondency. When I went back to school to take the prerequisite courses that were required for my graduate school application, I cried every time I sat down to do my homework. Every. Single. Time. My husband was starting to get frustrated with me, but there was nothing I could do but feel my feelings. I was supposed to be raising my children, not going back to school with people that were almost twenty years younger than me. But I kept going. Every day, every week, every month, every year. I kept going.
And then last weekend happened. My husband and I took a trip out of state to where we are moving and looked at apartments. And we found one! It was surreal. It felt like a dream. I am still not fully healed (and I don't know if I ever will be and I'm not that concerned about it), but I am far from being in the deep, dark pit I was in just three years ago. I kept turning to my husband and saying, "Can you imagine if I had waited? If I was only now starting my prereqs? If I still had school to apply to and classes to get through? If we still planned to live where we clearly don't belong for another three years?" We both shuddered at the thought.
Yes, I am very thankful. Which is good because, apparently, I'm still fielding stinging comments from my family. I came back from an exhausting, yet successful trip and got sideswiped yesterday by two different comments.
First, I was talking to one of my sisters on the phone and telling her we found an apartment. What did she choose to tell me? Was it "That's great! I'm so happy for you." Of course not. She chooses to tell me about a friend of hers that moved to where we are going, hated it, and moved back because "that was not where she wanted to raise her children." Are you effing kidding me?? What did that story contribute to the conversation? Why did she feel the need, consciously or subconsciously, to undermine my excitement? Why can she not seem to remember I wanted kids extremely badly but couldn't have them and gathered every shred of energy I could find to crawl out of my depression? What does she not understand? She is obsessed with her own child. What does she not get? She is a hater. She loves me very, very much, but she is an absolute hater even if she doesn't realize it. I was so caught off guard that all I said was, "Well, I don't have to worry about where to raise my kids." And she still didn't get it. My comment went right by her as she kept rattling on.
Then there was my mother. (I honestly just let out a big sigh right now after typing that sentence.) Last year she got upset because I didn't call her on Mother's Day. It wasn't intentional. I was on vacation, having a good time, and didn't even know it was Mother's Day. I don't know why a woman in her late 60s with grown children needs that kind of validation, but this year I decided to give her a heads up. I told her not to count on me for anything on the 13th. There was a pause and I was hoping that was going to be it, that she wouldn't feel the need to comment. No such luck. She asked, "Is that because it's Mother's Day?" I said yes, that I was going to spend the day with just my husband. Pause. Pause. Then she says, "Well I hope one day you can get past that. I have a friend who doesn't have kids and she lost her mother and every year on Mother's Day she hosts a lunch for the important women in her life."
Uh... What. Good for her? That's great? Why the hell are you telling me this?
Wait. You hope I "can get past this"???
Again, I am thankful I am further in my recovery than I was three years ago. I am thankful that I am moving on (literally). I didn't respond. I didn't say anything. Part of me was caught off guard, part of me was annoyed, part of me was sad, and part of me was pissed.
It really is too bad that some of the people that love me the most are so hurtful. Honestly, it sucks. But there's nothing I can do about it. I seem to say that a lot these days...
So I went on about my day, thinking about our new apartment, where to put the furniture and how to decorate. I get mad that I still haven't figured out how to let comments like those go, but I'm glad I had something exciting to think about as well. My husband and I have worked our butts off these last several years and now what we have worked so hard for is just around the corner. With both my recovery from infertility and my new life plan, I am one step closer and for that I am incredibly grateful.