In the last month or so, I've found myself staring into space a lot: at the ceiling when I'm lying in bed at night or first thing in the morning; at the wall when I'm somewhere in a room, a building; into just plain oblivion most other times of the day. I feel like I'm just trying to survive every single day.
A few weeks ago, I had quite possibly the worst day yet. I had to go to the hospital to have some blood tests done in what I imagine will potentially be a long battery of tests to determine whether or not I'm reproductively challenged - which, of course, will affect not only the course of action for the doctors as far as Kenton is concerned, but also our decisions based on that. We've talked about it a little, and I've already told him that I'm drawing the line where surgery is concerned - if that's the only hope for having biological children, then I guess we'll have to pursue other avenues. I'm not putting his or my life on the line on some small fraction of "maybe, someday".
So I spent about 6 hours in the hospital. Surrounded by mothers, women with heavily pregnant bellies, nursing infants and baby cries. It was literally like someone had scripted my worst nightmare and cast me in the starring role: Alexa, Infertile! Thankfully, I had brought a book so I was barely able to keep it together. Yet every time I heard a baby crying, something inside of me felt like needles and pins - like all I could think about was MY baby crying, the baby that's not even conceived and may never come to be, the baby that I would take care of and love and never neglect. Not that, in this instance, I'm saying that the cries came from neglect of course - it just hurt me, physically as much as emotionally.
To boot, when I later when to do some shopping, a woman said to me: "Oh, you smell good! Is that baby powder?" I think I probably looked at her like I'd missed a vital dosage of my anti-mental medication. Of course I tried to get a grip, give her a thinly veiled smile and told her that it was probably my shampoo.
Baby powder. Those little, insignificant, basic things that are of absolutely no importance to mother other than a product regularly purchased along with toilet paper and butter. To me, these things are taken on near-iconic status:
"BABY POWDER - now only for those who CAN have babies!"
I'm having these movie-type moments where I imagine these blasts or blips in some spoof-type, retro voice-over - and I'm sitting here, little pile of misery, advertised as Coming Soon To A Theater Near You. I imagine this black and white scene with beautifully coiffed, perfectly silhouetted middle upper class 1950s housewives with their 2.1 children whispering behind upheld hands, eyes wide open, aghast at The Woman Scorned By Nature.
And, still, Kenton is not getting the picture. I feel like I'm sitting on hot coals - and he keeps throwing these things into everyday conversation like "what are you going to do when we have kids" - like that's just assumed, like there's no hindrances, like there's a bun in the oven as we speak. INFURIATING!! I know that he has a different way of dealing with this, but I am so damn mad at him. I mean, I keep trying to EXPLAIN (read: beat into his male brain) that I have a limited amount of time left IN THE BEST OF CIRCUMSTANCES, which clearly isn't even the case with us. And I told him, I cannot, cannot, CANNOT go through life without a child, not completely. He keeps throwing adoption in there like that's supposed to make it all better - like that's not just one of those things we might not even be able to afford.
So then, the other day, I'm talking to this 21-YEAR OLD GIRL who tells me that they're having issues because she's been trying to get pregnant - without success - for two years. Part of me wanted to throttle her because I felt like saying: WTF YOU HAVE NO CLUE!! And there was that evil, disgusting, horrible part of me that thought: good, serves you right. I can't even begin to describe the shame and horror I feel when these kinds of mean, selfish and pathetic feelings overcome me - but I keep thinking that, whenever I'm confronted with something like that, there's this little voice that's telling me, seeeeeee, you're not the only one, it's not your fault, it's not you're fault. Because, somehow, I still feel that it's all my fault. It's my fault.
I go through these phases of wanting to do a lot of stuff just so I can block out the pain and these feelings of...what is it? Being incomplete, a failure, dysfunctional, BROKEN. I feel broken. I feel like something got ripped out, trampled on, and then put in a totally dislocated place so that I can never be the same again. God and, for such a long time, I didn't even really think about any of this - even until a couple of years ago it wasn't this bad. Now all I can think about is that little wiggly thing that's not in my arms, those tiny hands not clasping my fingers, that tiny little face not smiling up at me. I AM BROKEN. I feel shattered. I feel not whole. I feel like part of me is dying a little bit every day - and Kenton doesn't get it. HE DOESN'T GET IT. I just don't know what to do, don't know what to say, don't know how to deal with this.
And then there was that consultation with a doctor who, quite obviously, couldn't have cared less about my concerns or my issues. My regular doctor was out of town, which I hadn't known - because, trust me, there's no way I would've seen this guy if I'd known what I was in for. He didn't bother to read my file, didn't even really look at the blood test results, but only told me that the starting point for an infertility workup is a hysterosalpingogram:
Aside from the fact that I'm not really that crazy about letting someone loose with a bunch of tools in my reproductive organs, there also seems to be no information whatsoever about whether or not this is PAINFUL. There's all this clinical blabla which, when it's all said and done, tells me precious little other than that it's the first step to determine whether, in addition to Kenton's problems, I might be throwing my own in the balance. Thanks, that's really helpful. NOT! I feel violated just thinking about it.
So that's where it's at. I'm sorry I've been silent so long - your comments continue to give me hope and something to hold onto in these trying times. Thank you for not giving up on me.