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Getting Back to the Grind

When I got pregnant the first time, we had just moved back to Colorado from California and I wasn't working. That was fine because I suddenly had what I felt like was a very important job—I was growing life inside of me and that was enough. Plus, I'm a librarian by day and while it's a fun profession, it is not particularly lucrative. So, we figured that even if I had gotten a job, it would not have been economically feasible considering the cost of childcare, at least for the first few years. So I ceased my job hunting and focused on taking care of myself.

I was cool with not working and so was my husband but when we lost the baby, I was drowning in grief with no daily routine to buoy me. I found myself completely adrift. At the time I was glad, I wasn't working but as my miscarriage went from weeks to months, I realized that going back to work might have been a good thing—something to take my mind off the sorrow. I started working again this week, just part-time (who wants to work full-time?) and I'm really glad that I did. My first few days were all training, which was tiring, but kept me really busy.

I am supported and loved, I am connected to others, and I am not alone. Even though I was anxious about getting back to work, I didn't need to be; one worry down, a million to go.

At first, it was awkward; I'm Facebook friends with a lot of people from work. When we moved away, I didn't think we were coming back, so I felt comfortable moving co-workers into the friend zone so to speak. But now they all know something deeply personal about my life. Although I have never been a secretive person, I was nervous about seeing them, wondering if it would be weird and uncomfortable. I was also worried if someone said something like "I'm sorry for your loss" that I might go to pieces. I still get a little sad from time to time. But, as usual, I didn't need to worry. I was welcomed back with open arms—in some cases literally, with warm hugs and delightful catch-ups. In a way, I'm glad they know, as some of them had connected with me personally about their own losses and struggles.

When I finally saw my brother after the miscarriage, I remember him saying, "You can't carry this on your own; I'm your brother, let me help you carry it." My yoga theme last week was about feeling connected to the world, to imagine it like a giant web of support, to know I am not alone, that I can lean back into the web and let it hold me up. At the time of the class, I used it as a visualization to imagine my mat supporting my back, but now I see it as more than that: I am supported and loved, I am connected to others, and I am not alone. Even though I was anxious about getting back to work, I didn't need to be; one worry down, a million to go.

RELATED: Anxiety - A Mom's Story

I stopped drinking alcohol this week entirely (I must admit there was a little wine with the baby making, but Dr. Google said it was fine) and I keep wondering if I'm pregnant. Part of me thinks, oh yes, definitely, and part of me thinks it's just my mind playing tricks on me. I keep Googling early pregnancy symptoms even though I already know what they are. I keep trying to decide if my boobs hurt. I think they do, but then I think they don't. Do I feel bloated? Who wouldn't after eating all the leftover Halloween candy? Am I moody? When am I not moody? Is that a cramp in my belly or just gas? I'm so tired, but I've been waking up at 6:00 a.m. every day and training at work for 8 hours (which I haven't done in 6 months) AND I'm drinking decaf espresso—why wouldn't I be tired? Am I peeing a lot? Yes, but I live in a high altitude and drink tons of water. Where are these pimples coming from? Probably Halloween candy is the culprit again; in fact, all of my symptoms could probably be attributed to eating copious amounts of sugar. So I'm glad to be back to work because it has been taking my mind off these things, for at least part of the day. At night, I'm so tired after I do my yoga sequence that I have been drifting off to sleep.

The holidays are just around the corner. This is our first Thanksgiving married and the first time I will be hosting Thanksgiving in my own home that I own. I would love to have good news to share with my family when they fly out. I can just imagine toasting with my MADD wine* and hoping for the best. But if I'm not pregnant, I would also love to have some drinks to celebrate and deal with hosting Thanksgiving. So whatever the results of next week's pregnancy test, it's kind of a win-win. In the meantime, I've got several shifts scheduled, so I will be working hard and staying busy. Let me know if you need any book Rebekahmendations.

*Alcohol-free wine produced by Mothers Against Drunk Driving. It tastes kind of like a funky grape juice but it's a good sub if you're a wino like me. My husband says it's nasty but I like the ritual and it's not loaded with sugar.

Image via Flickr/Ginny

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