On Monday March 11th, I returned to school. I had spent the last two weeks lying in bed with my broken heart. I told myself I was ready and it was time to return to normal. I thought I was ready. The day before my surgery I withdrew from one of my classes. I made this choice not only because I had missed a lot of class due to my morning sickness and snow days, but the midterm exam was also the day of my surgery. I now only had two classes. I was supposed to return to work this same day, but my mom convinced me to take more time off. It was honestly a smart idea.
That morning I was able to sleep in. I had my internship meeting at noon. I purposely left early because I was not motivated to step back into the outside world. I plugged in my headphones, played Carrie Underwood’s song Cry Pretty, and left my apartment. At the bus stop I felt those tears I had been releasing for weeks, well up in my eyes again. I was hoping I wouldn’t cry this quickly. Getting off the bus and walking through campus, I felt like everyone was staring at me. They probably weren’t, but I was hypersensitive to everything in this moment. I rushed through the crowd of students trying to get to my internship. I felt like everyone was still going in slow motion.
Not paying attention to where I was going, I slid on some ice and fell flat on my butt. Ouch. That was humiliating. I went into the nearest building and found a bathroom. I cried. My pants were soaked. My butt hurt and I did not want to be here. I messaged my internship coordinator and told her I would be late. She was completely understanding. Why was this so hard? I so badly just wanted to return to my bed, pull the covers over my head and not come out. I think the thing that helped me to keep going that day was that I was already so far behind. I needed to return to my normal, and take this step so I could heal.
Eventually I made it to my internship. A majority of the peer educators were in the presentation room listening to a presentation on empathy and sympathy… how ironic. I went to the office and put my stuff down. My friend Jeanie came in and rushed over to give me a hug. When she hugged me I lost it. I sobbed loudly, and probably displayed the ugliest cry face. I was in pain physically and emotionally. Jeanie was a really good friend. She came to my side when I needed her. I think she knew this day would be hard on me. I didn’t realize it till later, but my internship was the last place I was before my 11 week ultrasound…. it was the last place I was before my world changed.
After I had calmed down, I joined the other interns and peer educators in the presentation room. To be honest I didn’t really pay attention. It was hard to concentrate. After the meeting I talked with my coordinator. She was so helpful in listening about my situation, as well as figuring out my internship stuff. After my meeting, Charles picked me up and took me home. I was exhausted even though I had only been out for a few hours. Crying takes a lot out of you. When I got home I got into bed, pulled the covers over my head, snuggled my quilt and went to sleep. It was hard… but I consider that day a small victory.
” You can pretty lie and say it’s okay, you can pretty smile and just walk away, pretty much fake your way through anything, but you can’t cry pretty.” – Carrie Underwood