Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter Sunday blues

Even when I was a kid, I remember feeling that Sunday was a melancholy sort of day. And even though dh & I are taking the day off work tomorrow, the Sunday blues hit me hard today.

It started when I was watching Bill Moyers Journal on PBS (which, sadly, is down to its last few weeks before going off the air for good) & watching a clip of Martin Luther King's final speech ("I have been to the mountaintop... and I have seen the Promised Land... I may not get there with you..."), which was delivered in Memphis 42 years ago today. For some reason, I found myself reaching for the Kleenex.

After that, we made some lunch & turned on the radio to listen to the Vinyl Cafe on CBC. Today's show was from a small town that I know well -- not a place where I have ever lived, but in the same part of the country. The local references made me homesick. The story in the featured reader's letter was poignant & the story of the day was more wistful than funny -- a story involving a grandfather's funeral. At the end of the story, I completely lost it & started sobbing.

Then we went to the cemetery, & I cried some more.

Maybe I have the Sunday blues today because it's Easter Sunday. I've written before about how I find certain holidays difficult -- perhaps one of the most difficult things about living childless/free after loss & infertility. Christmas isn't so bad, since we are usually at home with my family, but I find I have a harder time with Easter & Thanksgiving. Dh & I often find ourselves at loose ends on these days (my family is 1,000 miles away, FIL is often with stepMIL's family & BIL is with his wife's family). The contrasts between my memories of how we celebrated these holidays when I was growing up, the way I thought I would be celebrating them (carrying on family traditions, with my own children), the way most people seem to be celebrating them (with their families, posting photos & tales of big family dinners & Easter egg hunts with excited children dressed in new pastel-coloured finery) -- & the reality (just the two of us, spending a quiet day at home) is sometimes a little hard to digest.

Maybe because I've been super busy & stressed at work lately, with responsibility for a major project (that finally got submitted on Tuesday) & more changes afoot.

Maybe because the Little Girl Next Door, who is just six months younger than our Katie would have been, celebrated her 11th birthday this week -- had to tell us about it, of course, when we saw her outside a few days ago. She had a gaggle of her girlfriends over on Saturday to celebrate.

Maybe because we've been watching the adorable little blond guy from down the street todding around -- & realized that his mother is hugely pregnant, & there will soon be two of them to watch wistfully from our window.

Maybe because two houses on our street recently went up for sale -- & we realized that it will be 20 years next month since we moved into this house. "I NEVER thought we'd be here for 20 years," dh said. "Me either," I said. "I thought once we had a second child we'd move up to something bigger." We both gazed out at our big, kid-friendly, little-used backyard & hugged each other. Life is funny sometimes....

Maybe because, for the past 10 years or so, I've noticed an uptick in my stress & anxiety levels at this particular time of year. Last year, the problems I was having with what seemed to be food allergies/reactions peaked right around this time. I haven't had any such problems in quite some time (maybe because I haven't had a tomato in a year??), but I did notice some redness today after dinner (I'm suspecting some undercooked carrots & celery), which had me on edge all evening.

Maybe I've found this time of year stressful over the past decade, because March 22nd marked 12 years since I watched, open-mouthed, as two bright blue lines popped into view on the hpt in my hand -- turning my world upside down & changing my life forever.

I guess there are lots of reasons why I might be feeling a little blue this Easter Sunday.

Fortunately, dh talked me through it. And, as I said earlier, we both have tomorrow off & are going to the mall. (When the going gets tough... the tough go SHOPPING! lol)

Easter 2009

Easter 2008


  1. I find with the lesser holidays, its almost like I forget to steel myself, forget to warn myself that this will feel a bit sad.

    It's also a busy time of year for you at work.

    Sending hugs.

  2. You are taking the high road and you should be commended; you may fell blue or sad once in a while because you are only human. I commend you and your husband for staying together and forging ahead despite your childless state. Many a marriages have broken down because of this. I will console you with the phrase that "God knows best"; He know why things happen the way they do, many times beyond human comprehension. At times like this [holiday season] share your love with less privileged children; they need all the loving they can get. You would also get some good feeling from such deeds. I wish you "Enough" now and always.

  3. I know what you mean about Sundays feeling melancholy. I'm not sure why that is...

    All the family-ness of Easter kind of took me by surprise this year. I walked by a park by my house and was struck by how many families had invaded this normally quiet place.

    Anniversaries are tough.


  4. Beautiful post, Loribeth. And I agree with Mrs. Spit ... sometimes we forget to brace ourselves with those lesser celebrated holidays; so it sneaks up on us. *Especially* when we've been too busy with work to remember the holiday.

    Sending HUGS your way.

    Oh, and BTW ... little known fact, MLK Jr first delivered that speech in Detroit (a practice run in front of a live audience) before heading to Capitol Hill in DC.

    AND ... I plan on finding the time to meet with you when I'm in Toronto this summer!!

  5. Consolata, you're an asshat. Sorry, just had to say that, you don't have to post this.

  6. Loribeth,
    I don't know where you are on the 'religion' issue, but I have to say I find comments such as the one left by Consolata highly offensive. And to be honest, rude.
    Oh, and stupid.
    I could prattle on about the crackwhores who end up with sick and damaged babies as a fine example of "God knows best" or the millions who die from malnourishment and preventable disease in third world countries as other proof that "God knows best", but I think we all know how utterly ridiculous all of that is.

    You are entitled to your blue days. You've more than earned them. And you don't have to go tend to others to try and make yourself feel better. Sometimes it's perfectly ok to just feel like crap because you need to. (IMHO)

    I hope you get lots of fun stuff on your shopping trip today. And that the mood lightens as the days pass.

    Thinking of you and your sweet girl. I wish things were so different, for both of you.

  7. Consolata, your comment shows a whole lotta ignorance.


    Easter is one of those holidays that has blind-sided me with its child-centeredness. I think it was because when I was younger, Easter celebrations seemed to be private, family affairs. And now it seems to be one long succession of public egg hunts and cute photos in the paper. Even in my northern, chilly-spring hometown, there are lots of egg hunts, which is a new thing.

  8. I'm totally with you on the easter-blues. It hit me without notice (the bastard that grieve is). And wouldn't you know it... I got some nasty cold sores on my lip. I didn't connect it at first but I'm pretty sure the holiday-blues had some effect on that. So I just try to sit it out (the blues AND the cold sore that is).

    It always touches me deeply how you describe your marriage and I find it super-extra-awesome (now that's a word) that you two are going so strong. I'm sure that didn't come easy and I want to raise all the hats I have, to so many years together - despite all darkness and grieve.

    Oh, and you had me cracking up with the "the tough go shopping". Thanks for that! Sending a hug...

  9. The long, dark tea-time of the soul.

    That is what Douglass Adams called Sunday afternoon's in one of his books. In fact, it was Sunday afternoons that motivated an immortal god to give up immortality.

    You have more than enough reason to feel blue on Easter Sunday. I hope you are feeling better this week.

    Thanks for the congrats on my blog. I don't think I would ever visit a blog like mine if I were in your shoes. I also don't think I would be part of a pregnancy loss group - because most of those women will have or did have kids. You are a remarkable person.

  10. I was scrolling down reading the comments and when I read Consolata's, I thought, oh, boy. I'm going to assume she didn't mean to be condescending as a lot of devout people are comforted by the phrase that "God knows best" so they don't have examine why life is unfair.

    Anyway, I am so glad you have a wonderful and strong marriage. It's true,a lot of marriage don't survive what you have been through. That is something to celebrate I'm happy to know that you can comfort each other during those difficult holiday times. You have an awesome husband and you tell him I said so.

  11. Thanks, everyone. I don't necessarily find comfort in platitudes -- but (as A Woman My Age alluded) I think Consolata had good intentions in making her comment, which is why I published it.

    Mrs. Spit & Emily, you're right -- for some reason, Easter sort of snuck up on me this year.

    And yes -- my dh is a keeper. : ) (Most of the time, lol.)

  12. Hi Loribeth,
    I'm glad I found your blog. I came late to the "yearning for a baby stage". I'm 41 now, will be 42 soon and for the past two years or so the idea of facing the fact that I may never have children has consumed me. I keep feeling that come December I'll have to find ways to cope with an alternative vision of my future, and I'm full of anxiety. I'm new to your blog and so I hope that my journey will be less lonely if I can connect with you and the others who post comments here that might be going through the same thing. Yesterday, I walked by a young woman who was sitting at an outdoor cafe. She was pregnant and she must have felt her baby kicking because she was carressing her belly, and I can't get the image out of my mind, or the sadness I feel knowing that this is something I will likely never feel.