I have shared before that I love listening to podcasts. What I have not shared is that this is how I fall asleep every single night. And nap. This is how I fall asleep.
One electronic device plays the sound of heavy rain as a noise machine, while a podcast plays on my phone on my night table, set on a “sleep timer”. And I don’t fall asleep because these audio episodes are boring. I find them to be incredibly soothing (even the ones about horrible, tragic murders and court cases gone wrong) and I listen to the same episodes many times, over and over again.
One of my favorite podcasts to listen to is Strangers, by Lea Thau. Her “Love Hurts” series, in which she chronicles her own love & dating life, history and quest for the right mate, is my favorite ever and I have listened to all of the installments many times, as I seem to hear it differently with each new time that I immerse myself in the world of her distinctive voice and admirable candor .
Today, I was listening to “Love Hurts– The Follow Up” from December of 2014, and I heard Lea say something that I have never before heard anyone else articulate in words, but that I also feel so deeply.
Without giving anything away, I will say that she had some devastating events occur in her life during the time that she was pregnant with her son.
As Lea said, “…it was the darkest time in my life. The darkness was only punctured by the birth of my son and sometimes, when I look at him now, I feel waves of guilt that I was in such a rotten place when I was pregnant with him. God, he deserved better than that. But I had gone from all of my dreams coming true to all of them just falling apart at the exact same time and it was just a lot to deal with. A perfect shitstorm.”
I feel that guilt so often when I think of my pregnancy with my son. I think of the superficial things, like going to pick out his layette at Bloomingdales with my mom and crying because I hated every single piece of clothing that they had for a baby boy. I think of the nights that I tossed and tried to turn in my bed, anxious and depressed, wondering how I could love the baby inside of me and, even more than that, wondering what I would do if I didn’t.
I feel comfortable admitting this now, as I just wrote all about my adoration for my son
and, honestly, because I stand by my mission of saying the things that other people do not want to say;
I want you, my readers, my tribe, to know that you are not alone.
There is no happy bow to put around the end of this story, and it don’t think that it needs one.
It is simply just a little post about how I choose to fall asleep at night,
the complexities and connections that exist between humans,
“Strangers” and sons.