Monday, December 21, 2009

The Solstice and Everything After

A year ago today, on the winter solstice, was the first time I felt sick. I remember it well—we were out doing some last minute Christmas shopping when the first waves of clawing nausea swept over me. And I thought, I can totally handle this. Morning sickness has nothing on me. This is doable.

On Christmas Eve, the nausea began rising to a nearly audible crescendo. I was chopping kale and making butternut squash risotto to take to Rob’s grandparents for Christmas Eve dinner. All of a sudden, I had to stop. I had almost never felt so terrible in my life. I couldn’t quite describe what it was—more than nausea somehow. Like the time I got sick on the crowded bus in Ireland and the time I threw up on the boat in Lake Nicaragua. Combined. Holding my breath and covering my face in the crook of my elbow, I dumped my half-prepared meals into Tupperware containers and put them in the freezer. I thought for sure that this was just temporary—your garden variety morning sickness. Little did I know! That was the last time I tried to cook anything for about 9 months. Just the thought of the kale and risotto made me so sick that I couldn’t even open the freezer. My mom finally got rid of them for me when she came to stay with us after the baby was born. I had to go to my room and shut the door and clench my fists through the nausea as she ran them down the garbage disposal. Even more than 4 months later, there are still so many things that make me sick.

That nausea was only the beginning. I feel like I’ve been to hell and back to have this baby and to sustain him thus far. All of it has taken it’s toll on me—it’s like I’ve been fighting tooth and nail for everything since this day last year. I guess I just wanted to take a minute to think back about it all, what a journey it has been and everything that has happened since then. I look at Will sometimes and think, really, what a miracle it is that he is here and that he made it through all of this. If I had more time, I think I’d write a book about it.

Thanks for reading.


amypfan said...

I remember how sick you were last Christmas (and, as a side note, on that bus trip through Ireland). You have been one tough cookie this year. Looking forward to seeing you feeling better this Christmas!

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