Monday, January 5, 2009

New Year, New Pain

The last few weeks have been a bit of a blur - with holidays, little bouts of the flu and other things to make me chicken out from dealing with The Issue. But here I am, still in the same boat. No need for New Year's Resolutions on this subject, since it's out of my control to begin with...

Kenton did gave another sperm sample last week, so we're waiting to hear back on the results. I don't even know why they had us wait so long after the first one. Meanwhile, he still acts like nothing's wrong - and apparently doesn't realize that in NOT dealing with this issue, he's actually hurting me even more. He keeps saying things like "when we have kids", as though it's just a matter of us decided on the time and place of conception. Each time, it cuts me like a knife because I keep thinking: what do you mean, WHEN? How about IF? And what IF we CAN'T???

Of course, life around me goes on unchanged. Oh, no, wait - that's not true: in my immediate environment, as well as in the world of celebrities, people are having second and third babies, twins, more babies...And I'm still sitting here thinking, wait a minute - what about ME??

In light of some personal things that I've become privy to in the last month or so, I know I shouldn't moan and gripe - I should just be happy to be alive and be happy to have a good, caring husband. And I can deal with not having a baby right this second - but I'm starting to have this horrible feeling of growing old and never being able to have a child. The other day, I got one of those glossy gossip magazines, and there was this picture of Jessica Alba with her baby girl. She's crouched and has a hand protectively around her daughter to make sure the baby doesn't fall down, and the baby is sort of glancing backwards so that it seems as though it's looking almost straight at the camera. I looked at that picture for what seemed like hours - the little ears and a hint of a smile playing on her lips. The maternal gesture of keeping the baby safe. It all seems so normal, so NOT extraordinary, almost banal - and yet I feel like a goldfish, forever going round and round in the same old way, looking out at the world but unable to participate in any of the wonderful things going on out there.

Even my hairdresser got pregnant, and up and quit her job in the advent of her first baby being born - and she pretty much got knocked up on her honeymoon. It's like Bump City out there. Meanwhile, I'm stuck in Misery Central, population growing.

Over the holidays, I fell into one tub of ice cream after the next, not unlike an alcoholic looking for salvation - or maybe just a dulling of the senses - in the bottom of every bottle. I feel like crawling into bed and pulling the covers over my head, but ironically, sleep continues to elude me. Instead, I lie awake at night, tossing and turning, hundreds of images in my mind, all competing for a chance to drive me insane. I haven't had a decent night's sleep in so long, I think I've forgotten what it felt like to wake up and NOT have my whole neck and back in knots.

So here I am: New Year, but no new me. No dreams of motherhood fulfilled. No pain of childlessness abated.

You know what really gets me? If I were a recovering alcoholic, no one would expect me to go bar hopping with my gal pals. If I was doing Weight Watchers, people would understand if I said no to chocolate cake. But no one understands that, when you're in this kind of predicament, the last thing you want is to keep having your face rubbed in other people's fecundity. I don't want to constantly be confronted with this notion that, without kids, I should still participate - gleefully! - in activities that revolve around family life. As much as I love Kenton, I'm starting to sense that I don't think I'll feel fulfilled if we can never have kids. And I know that I've written here and talked to friends about adoption - which I still think is an important choice, alternative, option; what have you. But I am suddenly - and painfully - aware of the fact that, as it turns out, adoption was a wonderful option - so long as I had a choice. As in, I would CHOOSE to adopt a child instead of having my own, or as well as having my own. As it is, of course, my choices are growing smaller by the week - outlook: not good.

For the first time in my life, I feel as though my resources are failing me. My family still has no idea about what's going on - I really just couldn't cope with the mixture of pity, dismissal and judgment that I fear would sound loudly from that corner if prompted for a response. So I still live with this deep, dark, hideously paralyzing "secret" of sorts.

But I guess I have to find an outlet somewhere, and that will be my challenge in the weeks to come. I have to DO something - with myself, with my thoughts, with my pain. So, I'm still here...

1 comment:

Brooke said...

I know that feeling of needing to DO something. Dont ask me what bc I just dont know. Its this feeling that comes along with the great lack of control. You think for so long that when you want to have a baby you will. That it will just happen. And watching the people around you who you are just certain didnt even "try" get pregnant it begins to make you angry and jaded. I understand. I am sorry that you are dealing with this. I am sorry that anyone has to cope with these feelings at all. I hope you are able to look back on this journey as a past experience some day.