Archive for December, 2006

Melancholy Room

December 8, 2006

Snow can wait, I forgot my mittens. But I’m fine in this melancholy room. We can make it home with one headlight.

(Mad props if you can identify all three sources of song lyrics quoted above) 🙂 I just looked up out the window and it’s really snowing. The low gray clouds do match my mood.

I think I just don’t work hard enough. In general. But also with procreation. I haven’t been monitoring basal temperature or peeing on OPK sticks this fall, but I still suspect that I’m probably ovulating within the next couple days (assuming I ovulate, that is). Nevertheless, I’m passing up a ride to DC on Saturday in favor of leaving Monday instead. Unless Terry decides at the last minute to drive up Friday night, that pretty much puts us past the window of opportunity. Am I prioritizing poorly? Do my decisions reveal what’s really most important to me – that is, me? Is this the fundamentally ontological reason I haven’t been able to conceive – that I’m just basically too self-centered (and lazy)?

Or do I just think too much?

Thing is, now that I’ve made inquiries into the medical world here, there’s nothing to do until January but take good care of my body, and wait.

So much waiting involved.

So is blogging about my infertility instead of working on my term papers further evidence of my self-centered laziness?

I’m fine, in this melancholy room.

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Christmas

December 5, 2006

I was just in a super-crappy mood today; not sure if it was the cold, the ridiculously malfunctioning heating system in our apartment (and big old fight that ensued regarding how to deal with this problem), or the doctor’s visit this morning that reminded me that, yeah, it’s probably not “just going to happen, naturally.” All I got was a referral to the gyn who works with Cornell, who will re-evaluated if I need further tests (or do-overs) and may refer me to an RE, particularly if I insist on it. Hard to figure out what exactly insurance is going to pay for… or not.

At least I’m not feeling quite as Scroogish as I did last year… although the Advent season is certainly not putting me in a yippy and prancy mood.

Yuletide 2005 was probably one of the most seriously low points of my life… it marked 12 months of trying unsuccessfully (as far as we know) to conceive, putting us officially in the “infertile” category. It was also a year since I had last seen my brother-in-law, Aaron Kane, alive. Christmas 2004 I was literally surrounded by my nearest and dearest – my parents came up from Peru, my sister and her husband and baby daughter drove up from Florida, and my in-laws live in our town, so it was one big Happy. I had just gone off the Pill and was optimistically browsing exercise video catalogs for pregnancy workouts, planning a maternity wardrobe… Fast forward one year: my sister is a widow, my parents are in Peru, and I’m infertile.

So there I sat in church on Christmas Eve, a complete puddle of tears, surrounded by people singing about the wondrous birth…it seemed like everywhere I looked were babies and pregnant women. Dang, they really come out of the woodwork when you least need it, right?

I know that the happy-smiley look of the congregation is just so much cover for an awful lot of pain; anywhere there’s a collection of human beings there will be trauma, drama, and dysfunction just beneath the surface. It would be unfair of me to think that I was the only one feeling pain in the congregation that day. But it really felt like it. These public fora can be particularly difficult as we all conceal our pain from each other, each isolating ourselves in our little pockets of misery.

This year we’re going to Peru, and my sister has a new beau, so hopefully I’ll be too distracted to think about how badly I had wanted, last year, to announce a pregnancy at Christmastime.

Desire

December 2, 2006

Funny how desire sharpens awareness. The last time I was in graduate school, from 1999-2001, I recall noticing children and infants around campus, oh, say… never. Five years later, same campus, different story. They’re freaking everywhere. Even at department gatherings, there’s always someone there with a baby in tow. At one potluck, a professor said loudly to the gathered grad students, “so when are you all going to start having babies?”

Funny how I thought that leaving a small city in the South for a huge campus in the North would somehow remove me from the presence of procreating couples, from discussions of diaper duty and attachment angst. And it’s not that I so much resented having those conversations happening around me all the time; it’s more complicated than that. Yeah, it got old sometimes hearing about sleep deprivation and tight budgets and potty training without being able to participate (well, at least now that I’m a grad student I can talk about the first two items on that list), but I also enjoyed it. My friends’ lives are interesting to me. At the same time, there’s a subtle social pressure that goes along with it all. And I was hoping to get away from that.

Sometimes I feel as if the reason I haven’t been able to conceive is that I don’t want it badly enough. But that logic doesn’t stand up to any kind of scrutiny: if desire had anything to do with it, rape victims would never get pregnant, and committed couples who wanted kids always would. There seems to be no logic to it at all – not to infertility, and not to desire.