Monday, August 6, 2018

Shoe on the other foot

Moon is sick. About 2 weeks ago she found herself in the ER due to chronic headaches and vertigo. Due to some pushing, the doctors caught what could have resulted in her having a stroke and prescribed blood-thinners for treatment, but the vertigo has returned.

And she and Lucas aren't communicating much.

Across the way, I learned on Saturday our neighbor's doctor is recommending she have her remaining ovary removed. She's only 22 years old.

A big part of me wants to dive right in, crossing all the boundaries and pushing that we are here to help. In some ways I have already by sending texts to Moon and putting this young woman into contact with friends who can connect her with a second opinion.

Yet, I'm also well aware that with any traumatic event the decision on how to proceed need to be made by those facing them directly. That even though everyone surrounding them, including me, has an opinion, it is not for any of us to decide the best course of action and finding someone who actually can help will take a lot more digging and advocating. Jumping in and trying to fix things is actually the farthest thing either of them needs as they navigate this.

It's odd to be on the other side watching all of this unfold. So many who aren't familiar with the situation have their own thoughts and opinions about courses of action and listening to them makes me wonder what those outside looking in were saying about Grey and me while we were in the thick of infertility. But more importantly is this feeling of fear about overstepping or alienating. This isn't my journey and their decisions need to be their own.

So I'm doing something that makes me uncomfortable and stepping back. The information and knowledge of support is out there and I'm allowing them to do with it what they want. Because though there were moments I hurt terribly and felt like I wanted to be saved from the pain, what ultimately brought me healing was feeling like I wasn't alone. Even though things were scary and the path forward was often unclear.

Having the shoe on the other foot is fucking hard.


  1. Yes to your last sentence. And it becomes easier to understand why people make all those unhelpful suggestions and comments, because it makes them feel better. Yet as you said, if you can be there, so they know they're not alone, well, that is huge.

  2. It can be so hard to watch someone you care about enter into an abyss of sorts. Because it reminds us of the times we were in it. So dark, but can we make it less lonely?

  3. How awful and scary for Moon -- and how difficult for you to have that shoe on, and know what it feels like to receive unsolicited advice or to feel like everyone seems to know what decisions you should make around you without actually asking you, and try to figure out how to help Moon through this without overstepping. So difficult. I think letting them know they are not alone and you are there for whatever they need is a great way to go, as uncomfortable as it may be. So hard!

  4. Uf. That sounds so hard. I'm sorry to hear about Moon and your neighbor. Stepping back is one of the toughest things to do. Letting them know they're not alone and that you're there if they want to talk is a good way to go - even though it feels so uncomfortable and difficult.


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