I gave up trying to go back to sleep at 4:15a after tossing and turning upon waking up around 3a. I put on the coffee and now I sit in the recliner in the living room writing. It is too early to start my day as I usually begin getting ready for work between 5-530a. I generally am in work by 7a and once I am at work, I am like a hamster on a wheel. I am not sure why a hamster on a wheel is the analogy I thought of first. I am racing around in work though I do not race in circles. Well. Maybe, sometimes.
It is the dreams that wake me up and the anxiety that I feel upon waking up from those dreams that keep me up. I do not get the dreams as often as I did in the past but I still get them. Sometimes they are intense though they are not as intense as they were in the past. I can still hear the screaming and I can still see myself doing CPR. I can still smell the vomit and still feel the clammy skin as I did that CPR on that bedroom floor. Everything else is a blur. The hospital emergency room. The police. My family surrounding me. Finally, that horrific feeling of fear then loss. The tears. All those damn tears.
I stopped questioning God a long time ago. I guess I needed to feel pain in order to address the pain of others who I see on a daily basis whether in my personal or professional life. I have a few patients on my current caseload who have experienced horrific trauma and when I listen to the stories it can be extremely draining to the point I am emotionally spent by the time I get home from work. They call it vicarious trauma in the therapy world.
Then I get on with daily living. I watch my calories, work out at the gym or run or bike ride to release all that stress and feel better physically and emotionally. I do chores. I read. I play with my grandchildren. I continue to miss my granddaughter Ava and my son Joe. Sometimes, the enormity of the loss is so great, I stuff those emotions and get on with the day. I cannot allow myself to think of the loss for the loss can paralyze me if I allow it. I am not good to anyone or anything if I cannot function. And I have to function. I have to work. I have to be strong for my other sons and grandchildren. They feel the loss too and I cannot add to their loss. I won't add to their loss.