Monday, November 28, 2011

When Size Matters

Four more days. Four. And then I move on professionally.

Wow.

To say that it's a mixed bag of emotions is an understatement. I've worked for the same non-profit for going on fourteen years. During that time, I've always given it 150% of everything I have including my blood, sweat and tears. This won't change as I return to disaster relief and Emergency Services management. Mr. Thompson is going on fifteen years with the same organization so it became a family affair as we met and married. It's more than just a job to us - helping people is who we are and what we do.

Despite the ulcers. (He had one when we met).

Which is what led me to see my general practitioner last Wednesday for the first time in almost five years. Holy Cow, I didn't realize that little detail until this trusty old (dare I say "grandfatherly") family doctor was reviewing my medical chart out loud. He gave me the original diagnoses of infertility and referred me to my OB/GYN in early 2007...so there was a lot to catch up on. The infant loss that eventually resulted...the 3 1/2 years of continued infertility that followed still...and everything in between.

He asked a lot of questions, made a lot of notes, eventually got up to feel my angry belly...and said, "it's no wonder you have an ulcer" and then proceeded to lecture me on stress management. He poked holes into my "just put your big girl panties on and deal with it" self management theory.

Seems that theory isn't working too well for me now days.

And I must say, this return to basic medical concepts brought some much needed perspective (not to mention cholesterol and blood sugar tests no thanks to my trusty comfort foods). I've seen some of the best OB/GYN, High Risk Pregnancy Specialist and Reproductive Endocrinologists in the last five years. I've had A LOT of very expensive procedures and treatments. But this old-school doctor (who still uses a wooden tongue depressor and flashlight thingy to look down your throat) reminded me that sometimes you just need to take a break to pause and reevaluate the size of your "big girl panties".

Seems mine got all stretched out and became bigger than I ever wanted...with the extra baggage that quietly crept on over the years (like all extra weight does).

I bought into his advice even more today as I was explaining to my boss during our transition meeting what the last three weeks have been like. At first, I had a hard time letting go and the pressure stayed. But gradually, I learned to relax little-by-little as I'd force myself to pause and release.  I very literally had to keep reminding myself at every point that these headaches aren't mine to carry any more....which has "Wallah!" made the headaches magically go away (novel concept - eh?!)!  My shoulders have learned to relax again, my mind has learned to not take it on and let it all go, and my spirit is very literally breaking free.

Amazing as it sounds, I've physically felt a serious change happening to me (which feels oh so good!). This has been such a good exercise for me in how to re-balance your life.  Not five minutes after I left that meeting, a staff member from another department saw me walking across our warehouse with a smile on my face and put his arms in the air for a touchdown and shouted really loud "Yay - [Mrs. Thompson] is back!". Funny, I honestly hadn't realized that I'd been gone.

No wonder I've been infertile.

My "big girl panties" got stretched out without me even realizing it.  Time for a new (dare I say, more sexy) pair.

Four. More. Days.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Grinch Who Stole Thanksgiving

When I met Mr. Thompson...he had an ulcer.  A bad ulcer.  We lovingly called it "Trevor"...and he (Trevor) frequently got in the way of our courtship with "his" aggravating behavior.  Trevor was definitely a third-wheel in our budding relationship.

Fast forward to today.  I have an ulcer.  A bad ulcer.  An ulcer that Mr. Thompson and I, not-so lovingly, call the name of someone who is causing me a lot of grief right now.  A lot of grief.  Without conscience or integrity.  Without ethics, maturity or a moral compass to navigate them into doing what's right.  My ulcer (we'll call "it" for now) back-bites, smiles at my face while stabbing me in the back, doesn't assume the best and continually tries to undermine and turn people against me.  "It" is hard to manage, because frankly, who can manage someone without ethics? 

I can't. 

Which is why I was laying in bed at 4:00am this morning with tears running down my face.  "It" hurts my stomach so darn much... and is really getting in my way with it's aggravating behavior.

Hopefully the doctor will fix me up really nice today.  Along with the shoulder that I jacked up two months ago when I fell down the stairs. (note to self: when you tear something...it doesn't just go away).

If I feel brave...I'll ask the Doctor if he can also fix the fact that I'm spending Thanksgiving with two newly pregnant women who just announced that they have "lapped" me again. I love these women dearly...

"It" just doesn't like being lapped.

"It" sucks. 

The Grinch.