Friday, July 31, 2009

What is WRONG with this picture??

I really need to understand something: what is it with people having not one, not two or even four kids but 14+? SERIOUSLY??? What the hell is wrong with this picture?? How is it that some people get pregnant more times than any one person should reasonable WANT to get pregnant (I'm not even going to get into what I think about the sheer lunacy and complete irresponsibility of having that many children) while there are some of us who'd move heaven and earth for just ONE baby, and can't even get that?

I want to know who's responsible for this complete injustice - and I want to file a complaint!! If there is a God (which, being agnostic, I'm neither denying nor endorsing), I would really like to know what kind of circus he's running here.

Recently, I learned of someone I vaguely know falling pregnant again. Nevermind that she's already got a slew of kids (where have I heard/thought/read that before? Oh yeah, on a DAILY BASIS!!!) running rampant in food-encrusted, baby sick infested clothes and wailing for a parent who's too self-absorbed to care (or, it would seem, consider having her knees sewn together since she's clearly never heard of contraceptives). Bitter, me? YOU'RE DAMN RIGHT I AM! If there is someone in charge of this whole fiasco that's arbitrarily making some of us fertile like bunnies while others are growing cobwebs in our wombs, then, to borrow a line from the movie Good Morning, Vietnam then his "ass is grass and I'm a lawn mower!" (sorry about the vulgar expression, I'm having a MOMENT).

I am SO sick and tired of all these protruding bellies - preferably hanging out of skinny coochie-hugging jeans shorts that look more like belts than pants - or kids who should be in college getting an education walking around with a bunch of kids who, of course, won't learn a damn thing because their parents are idiots.

I wonder why no one has thought about making medication for the reproductively challenged - you know, the kind that suddenly makes you think everything is going to be alright, that prevents your heart from bursting into flames or shattering into pieces every time you hear a baby laugh. You know how, apparently, when you've had a baby, some (not sure if this is true of all women) women end up lactating spontaneously when they hear a baby cry, even if it's not theirs? Yeah, sometimes I think that the tear ducts of those of us who don't have much hope to ever find out whether this could/would happen to us have a similar problem.

I find myself almost daily on this journey where I feel like a trapeze artist, or more like I'm walking on this tiny rope without a safety net to catch me: on one side lies acceptance, on the other is anger and frustration. And I keep balancing between the two because I can't seem to move forward for some reason: I can see the goal ahead of me (not sure if that would be babydom or just plain peace of mind, regardless of where the chips fall) but, no matter how much I push and wiggle and twist and turn, the result is the same. I'm stuck in this ridiculously teeter-tottering imbalance, treading water, not able to turn back or move forward.

Then there are the daily challenges of not running interference when being subjected to cases of Bad Parenting (e.g. a tiny tot trying to scale a bookcase at the local bookstore, with no parent in sight). There are times when I see things like that, and part of me wants to scoop up the kid, find the parent and say: "I'm sorry but you're time's up. You clearly don't want this kid and don't care about it, so I'm taking it home with me." Other times, I just want to yell at someone. Sometimes it's someone specific (see Bad Parenting comment), sometimes I just want to yell and scream at no one in particular, just because I'm so frustrated and so tired of waiting without knowing what's going on.

Which reminds me of something the good Doctor Doolittle (literally did little, if anything) did say to me at my gyno appointment a couple of months ago: that, despite the fact that until now we thought Kenton was the one with the problem, this wonderful lady said that despite his practically immobile sperm, it should still be possible for him to knock me up. Translation? Now it's supposed to be MY fault. Nevermind that this whole ludicrous PCOS stuff hasn't been brought up to me until that appointment (gee, I wonder why that is??). Nevermind that no one has bothered to suggest maybe running some tests to either confirm or disprove her highly hypothetical analysis (get your diplomanat Quack University, didya?). Yes, this has all been incredibly helpful - not only to the mind and heart in turmoil, but to the planning stages that require ACCURATE information in order to advance.

I am so tired of this whole debacle. I want a doctor who will run every single test in the good book of medicine, who will present me with every single scenario ranging from 1% to 99% chance of possibility, who will advise me on the best course of action and will do everything he/she can to turn this disaster around and give me, for crying out loud, just ONE baby. I mean, I wanted three, but I'll settle for one - seriously. Occasionally I get so desperate, there's a part of my brain that's thinking, maybe I should go put flyers at the local high schools & colleges saying that if anyone gets knocked up accidentally, I'll be happy to take their baby if they don't want it. How pathetic and ridiculous is that???

Well, there's that then. I feel like I'm on a rollercoaster, only it's going really slow: sometimes I'm up in the clouds where there's sunshine and I feel like I'm on top of the world (or, putting it in perspective, at least feel like I can deal with all this stuff), but then I end up going through a tunnel or a valley, round a corner, take a sharp turn, and it's back to Doomsville, population: 1.

You know something? The worst part of it all is the lack of answers, the uncertainty, that cloud of "what if" hanging over my head not entirely unlike the mythical Death figure in its long black robe. I know that probably sounds really morbid, and it's not an image I literally carry around with me (thank God for small favors, right?). I just want some answers. I just want to know what's going on. I want to know if I should just give up hoping. I want to know if there's a light at the end of the tunnel, if this is just a particularly trying period in my life that I'll be able to look back on and thinking, wow that was really hard there for a while.

I can't help but keep coming back to what I've written before: sometimes you just don't know how much you want something until you can't have it, or at least it seems that way. I never questioned for a moment that I would have a baby - no one in my extended family has infertility issues - so I really didn't give it much thought at all until a couple of years ago. If I'd known the way this would all turn out, I would've tried getting pregnant as soon as I had a ring on my finger...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Be Still My Breaking Heart

You know, there are days where you think you just might have rounded the corner on Heartbreakville when, out of nowhere, something smashes into you and you're once again left with the smithereens of your bleeding heart.

I was at the hospital a few weeks ago to meet a friend for lunch. Obviously hospitals aren't my first choice of venue for any get togethers, and in view of my predicament this dislike has only grown exponentially. But I hadn't been able to catch up with her in ages because both of our schedules were crazy, so I gave in.

Lunch was great, catching up even better (even though I'm still holding down my silence on The Issue) and I was in a wonderful mood. On my way out, I walked by a waiting area for a particular section of the hospital - I don't even remember what it was - and there was this little red-haired girl. She was maybe 2, I think, and had really short impish hair. And as I saw her, her eyes lit up and she instantly broke into a smile so big I thought it would swallow me whole.

It was at once the most wonderfully elating and tremendously heartbreaking experience I've had in a while. I smiled and waved at her, which made her break into this beautifully light-hearted and completely insouciant laughter. Oh and I wanted so much to go up to her and pick her up, hug her and tickle her, anything for her to keep smiling and laughing at me like that. But I walked away, of course, feeling like some kind of perv because I keep having to remind myself not to STARE at other people's babies/children.

It's hard with any baby, but there are so many that make me feel less frustrated. Sometimes there's the ones that are just whiny and crying, which most of the time makes me think, phew glad I don't have to deal with that. Then there are the ones that just have this really ugly, pouting, attitude adjustment problem displayed on their tiny bunched up faces - which just makes me want to turn away.

But then there are always those that smile or wave, that look at me for a split second and then beam at me like I'm the person they love most in the entire world - and it's those that make me want to scream, cry, run away and hide under the bed until I'm all covered with dust bunnies, or at least my heart is. Even now, sometime later, I can still see her face in my mind - and I replay my own imaginary home movie with my child, my baby, the one I'm starting to lose faith I'll ever be able to hold and smile at.

Because the truth is that I'm starting to feel really, truly hopeless. I kept thinking that it was just temporary because things weren't happening the way I'd always assumed they would. I thought maybe it just had something to do with my unwillingness to share this burden, this sadness, with my family and friends. But the truth is that for all the fake bravado I've tried to muster, I can't keep pretending that I'm not at the end of my rope. Part of me wants to die when I think about this, it makes me wonder why this happened to me and why I'm going through this all alone in some way. Why I can't reach out and ask for help - and why I can't find comfort in the success stories of others like me who've navigated this rough and bumpy terrain to find happiness one day. I feel like there's no light at the end of this tunnel anymore.

As I sit here writing this, I realize that it's the first time I've admitted defeat even to myself. I kept thinking, you know there's some kind of cosmic wisdom out there, someone watching over you, and whatever or whoever that is wouldn't let someone like you go through life completely childless. Part of me thinks, why do I have to go through all this when there's no end result? The periods every month with their aches and pains, aging, marriage...What's the point of it all in light of this complete denial of what, as a woman, should have been a given, a birthright?

I want to find hope or make peace with this, but I can't - I feel like there's this big open wound where my heart used to be and it just refuses to heal. Every now and again, it almost scabs over but then somehow it breaks open again, hurting worse than before.

I even got to the point where I thought, you know maybe I'm just not meant to have kids, and maybe that's not the end of the world. But that's not how I really feel, and I know now that I will never, ever be able to be completely happy or content without a child of my own. I mean, I'm not asking for much, you know: I always wanted girls, then after I got married I thought a boy first and then two girls, but now I don't even care.

I guess I'm just a typical example of not realizing how much you want something until someone tells you that you can't have it...