I coach myself every day.
I’ve made it a deliberate practice. I practice what I preach.
I had a miscarriage three weeks ago.
I was devastated.
At ten weeks pregnant, the physical process of miscarrying was, in and of itself, quite sad.
I did not think this would ever happen to me.
Did I mention I was devastated?
I thought there was something wrong with my body.
For the past two years, I have been experiencing some mild health issues.
Symptoms were similar to those who have Crone’s Disease. I won’t go into the details, but if you have Crones, I know you feel my frustration.
These symptoms were mild, and the condition remained undiagnosed by a doctor. I managed the symptoms through diet. Specifically, through intermittent fasting, moderating the amount of sugar, flour, and processed foods in my diet, and (rather unsuccessfully) reducing alcohol.
But when I became pregnant, my symptoms EXPLODED.
I was in pain for 2 and a half months. I spent hours in bed, just trying to breathe through the discomfort.
My toddler did not understand why I was so boring.
My teenager became consumed with trying to help me and reduce my pain.
I just laid there and thought about the baby growing in my belly, and how much joy that baby would bring to my life.
I was able to have some outpatient procedures to manage the pain, but not much could be done during pregnancy.
And then my symptoms got worst. My pain increased. My mobility decreased.
Out of desperation, I made a random appointment with a colorectal surgeon. She found the source of my problem, and why I had been in pain for the past two years.
But to correct the issue, I would have to undergo intense, moderately risky, internal surgery.
Since I was pregnant, surgery was not an option. This would be my life for the next seven months. I was prepared to handle it.
And then I miscarried.
I cried for a week, in bed and in pain, holding a belly that no longer held my baby.
My husband did not understand the depth of this pain.
My teenager could not help me.
My toddler got angry and began acting out.
This was not the result I wanted from this life circumstance.
I called my surgeon, and seven days later I found myself in the OR, falling to sleep under the watchful eye of my anesthesiologist.
I woke up without any pain. It was the FIRST time in two years that I woke up from a slumber without any pain (true, I was high on painkillers, but still, I rejoiced).
This was a glimpse of my future. This is what is possible.
The week following the surgery was excruciating.
My heart hurt.
My body hurt.
I just let it hurt.
I knew that the hurt was not forever.
I also knew that I needed to allow my body to hurt. I needed to allow my heart to hurt.
Before I learned how to coach myself, I would have floundered in the pain.
I would have resented it, fought it, wished it was gone. My thoughts about the pain would have led to feelings of pain…. ABOUT the circumstance of pain.
When you’re in pain, there’s nothing worse than being in pain over being in pain.
So I decided what I wanted the result of this situation to be.
The miscarriage, the surgery, and the experience of being sick.
I decided how I wanted this story to end.
I wanted this situation to result in bringing my husband and me closer together.
I wanted this situation to result in fully loving and appreciating the fact that I have two perfect children. My teenager had cared for me with an open heart and a giving spirit. This situation would result in an even deeper understanding of my love for her.
I wanted this situation to give me an opportunity to learn more about me. To find out more about how I respond psychologically to pain and hard circumstances. I wanted this situation to result in my own emotional and spiritual growth.
Once I had identified what I wanted the RESULT of this situation to be, I got to work producing the THOUGHTS that would guide me towards those results.
Our thoughts create our feelings.
Our feelings inform how we behave.
And our behavior produces the results we get in life.
By defining the the result I wanted, I could back up to the beginning, and deliberately DECIDE what thoughts I would have to produce this goal.
I thought: The physical pain is good because it is a reminder that my body is healing from surgery.
I thought: This miscarriage happened because my body was doing what it should be doing. An absurd amount of first trimester pregnancies result in miscarriages because of chromosomal abnormalities with the fetus. My body recognized this, identified a very natural solution, and carried through exactly as it should have.
I thought: I love my husband. I don’t need him to be more emotionally sensitive because that would be asking him to be someone that he is not. I love him exactly how he is, not for how I want him to be.
I thought: My community is here for me. I am not alone. People are praying. I am so appreciated and loved. Yes, I live in Chugiak, and it can be isolating at times, but this is not the reality of the situation. Just look at my community!
And with those thoughts, I relaxed. I relaxed into the physical pain. I relaxed into my heart and embraced the miscarriage as reality. I relaxed into my husband; into my role as a mother; and into my relationships with friends.
I felt at peace.
My behaviors reflected this feeling.
I slept more without any guilt about sleeping. I asked my husband for specific things (rather than assume he would just know what I need). I had many bed-side chats about life with my beloved teenager. And I cuddled and ate popcorn in bed with my toddler.
The results of coaching myself through this situation?
One week after the surgery, I’ve been cleared to exercise and resume all normal activities.
This morning I woke up without any pain.
My husband and I have recommitted to attending therapy sessions every week. We went this past Wednesday and talked about everything. I told him how I felt and he heard me. He validated me. Then he told me how he felt. I heard him and validated him. I woke up this morning feeling like my heart would explode with this feeling of love for him.
I have created these results by managing my mind, and choosing my thoughts.
I make it a deliberate practice to manage my thoughts every day.
The alternative is to allow my thoughts to manage me.
#Truthbomb We are human. If we do not manage our thoughts, they will always gravitate towards drama.
Anyone can learn how to coach themselves. Anyone can learn how to manage their thoughts. And once you learn how to do this, you will be able to solve any problem.
There is nothing that life will give you that you can’t handle. Because once you learn how to manage your thoughts, you manage your life.
And with that, anything is possible.