My family and I are, like any family, not without struggle. But we are in a very different position than we were one year ago.
There have been dozens of moments in the past few months and days that have made me cry joyful tears. I finished a 5K run on our campus. We went on a hike and I was able to not just keep up with my husband but carry my son on my back in his carrier for the flat half of our trek. The holidays have also given me a chance to begin teaching my son about the importance of giving time. He’s come along to donation drives for the Toys for Tots collection committee I serve on at the university. He makes a very cute elf. My research class is nearly complete. (Our last meeting is Wednesday.) And I’m realizing more every day that I am struggling more with the work/life balance of motherhood than how my pelvis feels today. How lucky I am.
I’ve spent a lot of time in the last few days thinking about the other moms I have met through this blog — and those I haven’t met who may be in horrible pain with no answers. I hope that each of you have been able to spend meaningful time with your families this week and that you are feeling alright. Please give yourself the time you need to rest. Ask for help when you need it and find something to celebrate. Even the smallest thing could brighten your day. Know that you are in my thoughts and you are not alone.
I have so much to be thankful for. I am grateful every day at the amazing success of my surgery in August 2012 and for the skill of my surgeon, John Sojka. I’m grateful that I had a good teacher in my physical therapist. Amy explained what I needed to do to rebuild my muscle strength and made sure I had a toolbox full of exercises to take care of myself. I’m grateful I met Mimi, the yoga teacher I work with twice each week. In her special way, she reminds me to listen to my body. I’m grateful to my therapist, Sheila, who is helping me put my emotions back in order and become happy with the me that is now.
Most of all, I’m grateful to my amazing family and friends for being there every step of the way. Thank you for holding me together, for helping me rebuild my confidence, for the surprises in the mail, for the reminders that motherhood/parenthood would be full of challenges even without a serious injury, for crying with me when the judgement of others was too much to carry. And thank you for the reminders of how far I’ve come. My mother-in-law reminded me the other day that people I meet tomorrow won’t know what happened to me if I don’t tell them.
I want everyone to know because the more people who know about diastasis symphysis pubis, the more research can be done, support offered to moms and families and choices, decisions and hope for those families. I’ve hesitated to share some of these photos because I know so many of you are still hurting everyday. I hope they make you smile and bring you hope. I believe entirely that everyone deserves an outcome like mine. It’s taken a lot of work on my part, and help and hope. But I am proof it is possible.