I had a spa gift certificate to use, so I scheduled a day of pampering for today. Sounds like exactly what I needed, right?
Not so much.
I realized shortly before I left that this would be my longest foray into public since Jillian died. I knew I’d be gone for about four hours, and I’m pretty sure I haven’t made it for four hours without crying, so I started to get nervous about how long I’d be at the spa. I meant to take an Ativan before I left, but I forgot about it until I was halfway there. I’m thinking now that it would have been better to come home to get it and be a few minutes late, but on the other hand, who knows how much it would have helped.
This was my first time at this spa, so I had to fill out the information form when I got there. I was fine at first, even when I answered the question about whether or not I’m pregnant. Then I saw the part of the question asking how many months. I’m not really sure why that one set me off and not the other, but it didn’t go over very well. I did everything I could not to burst into tears.
The next question asked whether I’ve had any recent surgeries. My stomach dropped. I almost left the box unchecked, but I started worrying about something bad happening because I didn’t tell them I’d had a c-section, so I answered it. My anxiety about someone reading that and congratulating me grew until the esthetician came to get me. When we walked into the private room, she asked me how I was. I said I was okay as cheerfully as I could, which wasn’t cheerfully at all. She told me that I didn’t sound very convincing. I lost it.
I blurted out, “I said on the form that I had a c-section and I’m scared you’re going to congratulate me my baby died when she was four days old.”
The lack of punctuation in that sentence was intentional. If I thought anyone could read it if I typed without spaces, I would have typed it that way, because it all came out as one word. A look of horror crossed her face, and I certainly can’t fault her for that. Aside from our support group, this was the first time I’d told anyone in person. I’d like to avoid having to do that again. I felt terrible for burdening her with having this information, but I was so worried that she would catch me off-guard that I had to strike first.
She was incredibly sympathetic and offered to let the other people working on me know what was going on so I wouldn’t have to say it again or deal with someone accidentally saying the wrong thing. She said she was glad I told her, partially because she would know what was wrong and that it wasn’t something she was doing, and partially because she thinks of herself as a part-time therapist. I think she was about as good as a full-time therapist. As much as I don’t want to have share that story face-to-face again, I’m glad she was the first person I told. She handled better than I could have and probably has no idea how much she comforted me.
As comforting as she was, I wanted to come home so badly in the middle of my appointment that I started crying again at one point. It was just too much time out of my literal comfort zone. I almost left in between services, but my need for a pedicure kept me there.
I don’t think I’ll be making any appointments for anything any time soon. I thought I’d be okay, but I really wasn’t. I have a hair appointment on Saturday that I’ve thought about canceling, but I’m trying to resist doing that. I emailed the stylist today to let her know what happened because I’m pretty sure she’d be caught off guard if I walked in there, suddenly not pregnant, with the news that Jillian is gone. I know I’ll cry as soon as I see her, and will probably cry throughout the appointment, but I feel like if I don’t get the first time over with, I’ll never go.