Monday, May 7, 2012

Real But Not True

"They say it's never too late
To stop being afraid
And there is no one else here
So why should I wait?
And in the blink of an eye the past begins to fade

So have you ever been caught in a sea of despair?
And your moment of truth
Is the day that you say 'I'm not scared'

Put your hands in the air
If you hear me out there
I've been looking for you day and night
Shine a light in the dark
Let me see where you are
'Cause I'm not gonna leave you behind

If I told you that you're not alone
And I show you this is where you belong
Put your hands in the air
One more time..." --
"Unity" by Shinedown

I feel like I've been selling our baby short. Every time someone congratulates me on our pregnancy, I have to somehow negate it with, "Yeah, but, this is my third pregnancy in a year, so we'll see..." I realize I'm saying this for me, not them, but it has been bothering me: I feel like I've been selling our baby short. Again, we encounter the brain's weak attempt to protect me from something that isn't happening. Thank you, brain.

I heard Tsoknyi Rinpoche speak recently (you can listen to his inspiring, funny talk here), and am currently reading his book "Open Heart, Open Mind." One of the most powerful concepts he presents is "real but not true." That is, something can be very real for you, but not actually factually correct. In my case, my fear of losing this pregnancy is very real, and not to be minimized. At the same time, for today, it is not true that I am losing the baby I am carrying. I am very tempted to write "real but not true" on an index card and keep it in my purse. My very real feelings and stories about pregnancy loss are based on my history, my brain's attempt to make sense of it, and my physical body's -- and subtle body's, i.e. energetic field, emotions, etc. -- interpretations of these experiences. For today, which is all any of us has, it is not true that I'm losing this pregnancy. Therefore, it's not fair for me to sell our little one short by qualifying news of our pregnancy with reports of my miscarriages.

I was driving home yesterday from a half-day mindfulness retreat for my Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction class I'm enrolled in. I normally don't listen to the radio when re-entering the real world after a retreat, but I was so exhausted, I feared falling asleep if I drove home in silence. So, I put on Shinedown's amazing new album, "Amaryllis." Their song "Unity," quoted above, is powerful even if you are not moody and pregnant, and I highly recommend a listen.  However, since I am especially sensitive and emotional right now, it really hit me. Tears started streaming down my face, to the point I considered pulling over. Particularly, the idea that "I'm not gonna leave you behind," and the idea that this baby is NOT alone, and that if God wills it, she or he belongs with David and me -- all concepts related clearly in "Unity." I want to set the intention of encouraging him or her, not prematurely giving up became of my fears based on the past. Grow little one, grow and thrive!

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