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Stuff I Wish You'd Quit Saying

Stuff I Wish You’d Quit Saying: Stop Saying I am OVER Reacting

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Stuff I Wish You’d Quit Saying: Stop Saying I am OVER Reacting

I had a hysterectomy in 2002. Immediately after being released from the hospital, having just had our fourth baby Sophie, I was readmitted. At the time, I was pretty sure that four children were enough for us. I was also confident that I was in desperate need of the procedure.

Because I had endometriosis, I had a traditional, not vaginal hysterectomy. My mom would bring Sophie to me so I could breastfeed the newborn, but the rest of the time I would pump milk and then the nurses would refrigerate it for me.  On day two of my extended hospital stay, I was shocked to learn that breast milk is considered hazardous waste and is treated as such.

Too tired and in too much pain to feed my baby girl, I called for a nurse to bring me a bottle for her. When the nurse entered the room with Sophie’s nourishment, and I saw the red bag, crudely tied rubber band and skull and crossbones on the container of breast milk… I lost my ever loving mind.

I started wailing crying. Like, I was so hysterical they called my OBGYN for a sedative, later they sent a psychiatrist to my room for an evaluation. He asked me stuff like, “Have you ever envisioned yourself putting your baby in the oven?”

And I hadn’t until he mentioned it, and then I had to be sedated for fear I might do it by accident, or do it and say it was an accident. Which made me wonder, how do you cook a baby? I have a degree in Home Economics, should I know this?  And then I had nightmares my kids were visiting me in prison… and they sedated me again.

I was a wreck. I was terrified of being released.  I didn’t trust myself or my thoughts or my chemical waste breast milk. I had full blown panic attacks that resulted in vomiting, more psych analysis, and more sedatives.

In the course of my hysterics, one nurse said, “You are overreacting, stop it.”

But I couldn’t stop.

I was out of my mind. Hormones? Maybe. Adverse drug reaction? Perhaps.

But fourteen years later I’d like to say something to the nurse I do not know: You are not the boss of reacting.  How can someone OVER react? Where is the measuring device by which we deem the passion of response?

Furthermore, I believe it may have been hormones, but it was also grief. And no one should tell anyone how to grieve.  No one.  I was blessed with four children, but I waited my entire life for those children. The fact was, in those moments I knew that a different kind of clock had begun to tick. The new clock marked off time where there was only the growth of my children and with each click, they would need me less and less.

I would never feel a new life in me.

I would never experience the wonder of birth, which honestly I hated, but still.

I was officially working myself out of a job I had wanted since the first time I picked up a baby doll.  Granted, our numbers continued to increase, blessed by foster care and adoption, but I didn’t know that then.

And for me, the reaction was copiously justified. It was my response to the trauma my body and mind were experiencing. I stand by my belief if you require a prescription to make it through the day, that in no way impacts your faith. You cannot convince me it does. Jesus doesn’t change because we can’t cope. He is still magnificent.  By His death, that is all the Father sees, our magnificence.

Grief is personal.

Reactions are our own.

Individual children of the Maker of the Universe, as diverse as we are, can you even fathom how outstanding He is? He fashioned me to laugh, cry, sleep, mourn, dance, and worship.  He alone knows the appropriate capacity of my soul.

If you don’t like it, well… get over it.

You must read: Three Things Every Christian Must Stop Saying!

You might also like: When Jesus Isn’t Enough   and Anticipating Grief

 

 

 

 

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18 Comments

  1. Deidre says:

    Oh my word, I soon thank you. (Why do we feel we need to have ourselves validated by another party?) I dunno, but I needed it, so thank you!☺

    1. jami_amerine says:

      ❤️

  2. Deidre says:

    Oooo, just saw your new pic at the bottom. Hadn’t seen this one in the black top – so beautiful – inside and out .

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Thank you! ❤️❤️❤️❤️

  3. Regina Sullivan says:

    Perfect response! Our feelings are not right or wrong…..

  4. Norma Lasiter says:

    I also had a hysterectomy 6 years ago. I had already had my tube tied so it was no surprise that I couldn’t have more babies. After the surgery they found that I had cervical cancer and had to have chemo and radiation. In my mind that was the exact end of my reason for being, my woman hood, my ability to have any more babies. I was told to get over it. It’s been 6 years and I’m still in mourning.

    1. jami_amerine says:

      I am so sorry. ❤️

  5. You’ve wrote my heart, except I’m the empty nester with the hysterectomy in 94 & only one baby left in her 20’s for 1 more year & the other two in the early 30’s. I’ve been the super Christian trying to make it without meds, stiff upper lift, never let them see you sweat,because I was made to feel I lacked enough faith. Still youthful in my early 50’s with a 6th grandbaby on the way in 4 weeks… Truly Jami you’re a gift, a date with destiny with every opened email for we daughters crying out to ABBA FATHER and I’m just so thankful for you, thankful for your obedience to GOD….Thank you, thank you, thank you from my whole heart ❤️ thank you!

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Thank you Rene. ❤️

      1. Oh by the way; you’re so brilliant, you’re so anointed, you’re so talented, you’re so brave, you’re so bold, you’re so appreciated, and you’re sooooo BEAUTIFUL

        1. jami_amerine says:
  6. This. Yes!
    After 4 kids in 5 years I had my tubes tied at 23 years old. I could not cope with any more babies or pregnancies on bed rest. However, I cried rivers of tears the second I woke up because I knew I was done, would never feel that beautiful flutter of life in my tummy ever again and it was so painful and depressing!
    So yea… the nurses were like “isn’t this what you wanted?”
    Can you imagine my silly head nod through blubbering sniffles?
    Good post, Jami!

    1. jami_amerine says:

      ❤️

  7. Glenna McKelvie says:

    I so understand– Through having children and yet, my emergency hysterectomy at 33 left me numb and wounded. I couldn’t bear to walk down the diaper or baby food aisle at the grocery store. Just a quiet sadness. My surgeon told me I was
    stupid! Really! How could he know?

  8. My first baby came into this world with fear and dangerous warnings that she may not make it. She made it, but continued to turn blue as we pounded that red alarm button in my room in panic and terror. I had SO many visitors (including my students) come to visit throughout the following day- a long blur of activity that really threw me- but I felt compelled to please them all, while completely neglecting my baby and my own needs.

    My beloved friend (resident at the hospital at the time) came in to check on me and my baby- she started to pull off her diaper and it was LOADED with poop and pee. It had been HOURS and I hadn’t even thought of changing her diaper! I had a complete meltdown. I sobbed and utterly believed I was and would forever be the WORST MOM IN THE WORLD. I was horrified, disgusted, and ashamed of myself- Over reaction? It would appear so, but all the meds and no sleep and the intense hormonal spikes along with my own crippling anxiety made for a perfect storm. It was all so very justified.

    I think back to how God sent one of my comforting beloved friends through the door at that specific time to console me- and I thank God for having a husband who declared that after she left, I was to have NO VISITORS for the remainder of my stay.

    I loved this message. And I love you.

    1. jami_amerine says:

      I love you too. You’re wonderful. ❤️❤️

  9. I saw a lady with a tattoo of a 50s style dressed woman putting a baby, laying in a roasting pan, in the oven. She had that on her arm. I am still traumatized by it. I can only imagine how traumatizing it would be for a medial professional to ask you such a question.

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Whaaaaa?!?!?!

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