I thought I was fixed. I had the therapy, took the medication, started my blog. I work pretty hard for charity, and volunteering.
It was #borntoosoon where the trouble started this time. I think the United Nations, World Health Organisation and March of Dimes were shortsighted in releasing the Born Too Soon report the week before Joseph's birthday. I tweeted, I blogged, I shared, I worked hard, but all those images, all those "what ifs", in what is an emotionally charged time of the year for me was quite tough to handle.
What is hard for me at the moment is I feel very much alone. Everyone has moved on, especially my husband. I feel the need to talk about Joseph and his start, but no one is interested. It's old news. And who can blame them? He's fine.
So if he's fine why do I check if he's breathing before I go to bed? Why am I not sleeping, checking him during the night? Why am I considering pursuing a referral to a paediatrician for "one final check".
Because I still have post traumatic stress disorder. I still am disordered in the way that I am processing and dealing with what happened.
For me, it's not birth trauma. Joseph's birth, the moments when he went from living inside me with my dodgy placenta to breaking free and into neonatal care were calm, beautiful moments. It's those ten weeks that he was in hospital that stay with me. Everyday I can't help but think of what I was doing this time three years ago.
I wonder whether my Pollyanna persona did me more harm than good, repressing the scarier emotions. I didn't feel I had much choice. The loneliness was crippling, I felt I had to stay strong and just deal with it. My husband was back at work, I had no family to help me, it was scary. And it still hurts. I have irrational feelings of abandonment and I still feel bitter about that to this day, angry that my husband couldn't be with me, that there was no one to support me. Days and days of bus travel, of dealing with bad news, doctors, conflict, it was the hardest time of my life.
It was Simon from 100 Marathons 100 weeks who brought me back to reality in a radio interview this week. He is a returned serviceman who has PTSD from service in several countries, he's an inspiration (he's not keen on being called that), but he was saying how it's never really over. You can have all the treatment in the world, but it will be there.
I can intellectualise as much as I like, that all is ok now, that its in the past. But what happened to us as a family, and to me personally, was a big thing, it is a big thing. And its ok to still feel at times the fear, the anxiety and to think through the what ifs.
I just need to keep perspective.