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still avoiding people

500 Views 6 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Plady
I went out on a bike ride yest. and saw a woman I know who knew about my loss. I started riding the other direction to avoid her, b/c I haven't seen her since, and didn't want to talk about it with her. In the grocery, if I see someone I know, I panic and try to avoid them. There are good friends of mine whom I haven't even talked to since before October. I feel like I am becoming a hermit or something. I went out w/ co-workers the other night and had a few drinks, and we played silly games, but I didn't really have FUN. Some of them have kids, and they'd mention their kids, and there would be this uncomfortable vibe in the air b/c of what happened to me. I am wondering when I will be really ready to face the world again. Shortly after Quinn died, I felt like hiding, but then it got better. Now that it's been almost six months, I feel like hiding again. Most people probably think it's been long enough that it doesn't bother me as much anymore. It does. It is mainly aquaintances that I am afraid of seeing. People who may have known I was pg, but didn't know what had happened. Every once in a while I will see someone I barely know and they will ask me how the baby is
. I feel like curling up inside. I just don't feel like talking about it anymore!!! Not with people I hardly know, anyway. It is so private, yet I feel obligated to explain it to everyone. I don't want to have to explain my son's death to anyone ever again!!! Does anyone else know how I feel? Does that feeling go away eventually, or will I become one of those lonely old "cat women?"

P.S. My dh and I are starting a highly anticipated retail store in our little town. I know this will bring in lots of people I will have to face and talk about Quinn's passing. I am really afraid of breaking down at work.
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I know the feeling...I just started to stop avoiding people and the lady across the street who knew I was pregnant last year but apparently doesn't read the obituaries congratulated me on the baby and asked how old he was. She yelled it from across the street, so I just pointed to my 2 year old and said "he's 2 1/2 and he's fine" so that she wasn't embarassed in front of her friends (she's elderly) and so I didn't have to scream across the street that my child died 7 months ago. Now I'm back in hiding...
When I read your post I thought I could've wrote the first part. I also feel this panic, like I want to hide or run away as fast as I can when I see someone who knew I was pregnant but doesn't know what happened to Carrie. I was going into a convenience store a couple weeks ago when I realized I hadn't seen this neighbor (who is so sweet and nice) since August and I was freaking out. And it happens more than it should -- I find myself wondering how the heck I know all these people and why the heck don't they know yet? And each time I see someone, it brings all of my emotions back to the surface --sometimes I get away to cry, sometimes I can't get away fast enough or just don't care and start bawling right there. Dh says that eventually I won't have to keep telling people, that everyone will know but I don't know when that will be. I know you lost Quinn right around the same time we lost Carrie. Maybe since I am not re-playing the whole scene in my mind every 5 minutes like before (more like once or twice a day) it comes as more of a shock to have to talk about it and bring up all those emotions. I don't know. I don't have too many answers but I feel similar and I am so sorry you are going through this.
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dziejen- EXACTLY. That's exactly it. I am not completely consumed by it anymore- only for about 1/2 the day instead of all day long. I actually think about other things now, and then someone will ask and it's a shock. It just sends me right back to that dark place where I don't want to be anymore. Then the rest of the day is bad. I know people have said this before, but I wish in our culture we had black arm bands or something to indicate that we are grieving, just to forwarn people before they ask. I feel like every time I have to explain it I am re-living it.
2 months after coral died we had to go back to work in our seasonal business. that was one of the worst things i dreaded doing. i felt like a spectacle- i don't know if i WAS a spectacle, but i felt like i had a spotlight on me and i wore a sign that said 'our baby died'. i had to be smiley and hold it together and deal with questions like 'how did the birth go?!'. ! it didn't happen alot- luckily when you live in a small town, word gets around, but there are always a scattered few who are out of the loops of word-of-mouth community news. thinking about it now, i don't know how i got through that summer!! i HAD to do it, our business would have failed if i couldn't or didn't, but somehow i got through it. there were babies everywhere! breastfeeding, cooing, crying, crawling on the floor- it seemed like a cosmicly cruel joke. one of our employees was pregnant too. ugggh! i could not get away from it, so i had to just turn cold and deal with it like what had happened never did. 'oh! what a wonderful baby!!' 'no, i don't mind, you can breastfeed him here' 'oh! 2 months old, what a cutie!' - and i meant all of it, but inside it was like a blender in my brain and heart. i wished away the entire summer, and when the season was over, it was such a relief. i could go back to grieving, where i had left off. somethings that helped me was 1)i projected into the future when it wouldn't be so raw feeling 2)i avoided alot of small talk, and when i had to have small talk, i turned the conversation quickly and directly to the person's life a or anything besides me, dh, etc. 3)i took a lot of 'breathers' in the restroom at work! taking deep breaths and focusing on something that has nothing to do with quinn will help you get through difficult public moments. it was hard, though, brooke. on the up side, having to work and be busy was a great distraction to all the heavy duty sadness.

and, i continue to avoid people! it wont be like that always, and recently dh and i have been doing more social things. i am just so wrapped up in my own world now that i am no good as a friend to anyone and i am at the point in my grieving that i am pretty angry, so i am afraid it will come out in conversation. it is astounding to me what a different person i have become. it isn't bad necessarily, but it is really amazing how losing her has changed me. i am trying to just become whoever it is i am now- letting things go that i used to hold onto, used to care about, relationships have ended, but somehhow it is no big deal to me anymore. there is a different life for me now. it doesn't have to suck, it can be however i choose to make it. and right now it is about grieving and living my life without coral a year later.

blah blah blah, no matter how i try, i always end up talking about ME, but i just wanted to share with you my similiar experience, and how it is for me now. i think we have to allow ourselves the time to just grieve and adjust and take it all in and acclimate and realize who we are as each month goes by. i may be avoiding people a year from now, who knows! i have given myself permission so to say to just do whatever i need to get through this. losing a baby is the worst, it is such a tragedy, such a loss, it is so life changing, and there came a point where i had to stop 'timing' myself in the grieving process. practically noone understands how it feels to lose a baby, so i figured, well, why am i bothering to worry how THEY think i should be doing? THEY have no idea! it's like living on a different planet.
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Yeah that.
I avoid people with whom I'm going to need to make small talk. If friends or relatives know and are too uncomfortable to talk openly about Wendy or if they cringe and change the subject if I raise it I just avoid them. Maybe eventually I'll get back to them but right now I need to be around people who can admit there's an elephant in the room. I'm not desperately sad all the time anymore, but my patience for shallowness is at an all time low.
In two weeks I'm going back to my innkeeping gig. I'm not worried about the new guests who don't know anything but I am apprehensive about those who were here last summer and fall when I was pregnant.
But I guess if I lose it in front of someone they will either understand or they won't but either way the world will keep turning.
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