Thursday, January 20, 2011

Badges Of Courage

Let me begin by saying this: I have stretch marks. I do. Lots and lots and lots of them. And nearly all of them are in a place that is noticeable and, thus, quite inconvenient. And they're permanent. With me for good. I could lose tons of weight, and they'd still be there, reminding me in their silent voice, "We're still here".

Now let me share something else: I like them. I do. Each and ever single one of them. In the annals of history, perhaps no one has ever embraced her stretchmarks quite as I do. I celebrate them in the way some celebrate a personal accomplishment, because you see, these lovely marks are my personal accomplishment.

My accomplishment was 3 fold, really.
Firstly, I achieved pregnancy; which was something my doctors weren't sure I could do. Poly Cystic Ovarian Disease has a funny way of being easy to spot yet tricky to work with. Medicines either "work", meaning you ovulate and thus have a chance of getting pregnant. Or they "don't work" and you scrap yet another cycle while gearing up for next month. Because "Next Month" this will all work. Because if you don't think this way, quickly moving on from one gut punch to brace yourself for a possible follow-up, you'll lose your nerve altogether.

Secondly, we survived pregnancy. I mean that literally. We survived it. Me and my little passengers. Gestation was never "typical" for me. Even before we discovered that we had a Thing 1 and Thing 2 in there, I was on the High Risk list due to blood pressure issues. Which only got worse. And worse. And worse. Blood pressure, gestational diabetes, toxemia. None of these make for a cozy cocoon really. But by God's grace, our precious cargo grew, and despite being born early, still thrived.

Thirdly, we made it through the gauntlet that is Twinfancy. The nights that blurred into days that blurred into nights and back to days again. Eyes burning. Mind so fogged over with fatigue you can barely put 2 coherent words together. At one low point, we were making a venture out for errands. Two tired parents and a pair of crying twinfants. Dan was navigating the narrow hallway that led to the garage, one baby carrier looped on his right arm, the other being held by his left hand. Making his way to the open door, unable to see the path before him. Bringing up the rear with the Baby Paraphernalia, I saw that he was headed right for a pair of shoes left in front of the door. I saw, in my mind, his tripping over the shoes and my babies sailing through the open doorway and into the garage. I had to stop him. Had to alert him in some way. But my brain wouldn't work. No words came. Nothing. Quick! Quick! I chided myself. Every second he inched closer to the danger of those shoes. Those stupid shoes! Who put them there? Don't think about that now! Warn him!! Tell him!!!
Then: "Dan! Fa-nah-nah-nah!" (Yes, read that again.) That's what my brain was able to send to my mouth.
It worked though. He stopped just short of the shoes, looking at me with curiosity.

Fast forward 6 years, yada-yada-yada, and here we are today.
Each stretch mark is a moment of triumph for me. A blessing. An answered prayer.
I wouldn't erase them for anything. And I am blessed to have a husband who feels exactly the same about them.
My Badges Of Courage which I wear with pride.

No comments:

Post a Comment