My Armor

Each time I step into the waiting room, I suit up.

Pull a smile out of the air.

Take a deep breath. Or five.

Shake away the previous stress taken in from the previous client.

Focus my brain.

Wrap my mind around this person, their history, our shared history.

They stand upon seeing me, and I meet their eyes.

I drop my other labels. Wife. Daughter. Friend. Bitter Infertile.

I am only therapist. Social worker. Clinician. Whatever you want to call it.

The armor really isn’t any different from yours. Whatever we do in life we have different suits of armor, to protect our hearts. But sometimes we are caught unexpectedly.

I remember a week after our miscarriage I was sitting with a mother in a home. All suited up. So I thought. We were reviewing the treatment plan for her daughter, and she turned around to me and asked if I had children. I nodded “no” quickly and re-directed her to talking about her family. A few minutes later she gruffly stated, “how do you expect me to take advice on my kid from someone who has NO KIDS?” And the air in my body left me. Almost completely. I finished the session in a hurried and flustered manner. Tears streamed down my face the moment I closed the door to her house. And I sobbed in my car a mile down the road from her house, because I couldn’t even drive home.

I guess the point of my story is, we are strong – we try to protect ourselves the best we can. But we are human and we can be unknowingly hurt. So I urge you, everyone, to be kind. Remember the golden rule – if you don’t have anything nice to say… don’t say it. Just move on. Because you will never know the impact of your words or actions. Because after someone is hurt, they will remember forever, but most likely be too ashamed (or sad? or whatever) to say something to you.

I never said anything to that mother. It wouldn’t have been professional. And it probably wouldn’t have even made her more aware of her actions. And it would have made me feel even weaker to admit my feelings (even though I know logically I wasn’t being weak – logic often has little place in the world of feelings).

So, just be careful. With your words. With your actions. Even with your blog comments. They really matter.


                                                                                  Source: via Candy on Pinterest


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9 Responses to My Armor

  1. Stasha says:

    Sometimes that armor has cracks that no one can see. . .

    The words that are spoken hit you so unexpectedly that you almost don’t know how to react. . .

    Sometimes people don’t filter themselves when they should.

    Am so sorry that this lady caught you off guard with her words.

    Stasha recently posted..My RockMy Profile

  2. story says:

    Huge hugs sweetie. I so admire what you do. I think you need to have this armor to be able to do what you do as well as you do, but I can only imagine how hard it must be ot maintain.
    story recently posted..Time outMy Profile

  3. Michelle says:

    So sorry for your loss! I hope there will be much more moments of kindness for you than unexpected pain.

  4. Becky says:

    We can’t wear the armour all the time. Nor should we. And your words are so true – we never know what someone else is going through. Choosing our words wisely, is, well, wise advice.
    Becky recently posted..Free Range KidsMy Profile

  5. Trish says:

    I don’t care what anyone says, words hurt. Physical pain can, for the most part, can be forgotten. But the pain of hurtful words? That sticks. That kind of pain lingers and eats away at you. No one is perfect and we’re all going to say things we regret later. I’ve done it and realized later how much I hurt someone. Just from speaking before I really thought about what I was saying. So you’re right, kindness goes a long way. So does slowing down and speaking intentionally instead of just blurting out anything that comes to mind.
    Trish recently posted..This will not become a baby blogMy Profile

  6. Dot says:

    Once you’ve been injured by someone’s insensitive words you won’t forget. At least you shouldn’t. I hate when my armor slips and I resort to terse semi-angry replies. I rarely take mine off since the stuff I deal with at home prevent it. Gotta keep that smile on my face all the time. :/
    Dot recently posted..Conflicted and angryMy Profile

  7. Shell says:

    I love that quote at the end- it’s so true. We never know what is going on with someone else.
    Shell recently posted..Four Years Ago: A Birth StoryMy Profile

  8. Jenny says:

    You are so very right- we often don’t realize the impact our words have on those around us. As someone who has suffered multiple miscarriages my heart goes out to you. Thank you for taking the time to stop by my blog and make my SITS day so special. xx
    Jenny recently posted..Oh Happy DayMy Profile

  9. I think you’re right, everyone has armor that they break out for one reason or another. Mine is usually humor. Recently I suffered an ectopic pregnancy that just about near broke me and for the life of me I just couldn’t suit up. Some wounds are just too deep to cover. I’m so very sorry for the loss of your sweet babe.

    Stopping by from SITS
    Melissa @ Completely Eclipsed recently posted..Unplugging to Plug In: What’s Really ImportantMy Profile

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