I have been existing like an ostrich, with my head hidden in the sand, hoping to get past these days without event. In effect, in the last few weeks, I have managed to focus my attention and my emotions on the future, and pin my entire energy on being positive and hopeful. I was making an effort not to dwell on things that have gone wrong in the past, and to a large extent I was successful.
Today changed it all. Friday the thirteenth, indeed.
I have a cousin who I am very close to. Closer in many ways than I am to my own sister. We’ve grown up together, and shared every single detail of our lives with each other. Close enough that when I had my miscarriage in Nov 2007, and I wanted to get away for a few days, DH and I flew to the UK and stayed with her and her family. I couldn’t think of any place other than her place where I could feel some comfort in my darkest moments. Close enough that when her daughter was born in July 2004, they asked me to choose the baby’s name, and gave the baby the name I suggested.
Needless to say, my infertility is not hidden from her, and even more needless to say, she is fertile.
June 2008 – I got pregnant after IVF#4. Of course I informed her, and she was ecstatic! Flash forward a few weeks, my pregnancy turned out to be an ectopic pregnancy. I was shattered and totally broken. Of course I informed her, and surprisingly she didn’t call. She emailed me a couple of times, but it was unusual for her to not call me. She called a few weeks later, and cried on the phone. I asked her if she was crying because she was pregnant (I had a “feeling” about her). And she said yes.
She said her due date was exactly the same as what my due date was to be (2/24/09), and she didn’t know how to call me when I lost even that pregnancy. We both cried on the phone, and I told her that I understood that her life need not stop because mine was screwed up. I told her she need not feel any guilt at all. Of course I was happy for her, but after that phone call, I could never make myself call her again.
I may come across as uncaring, uninvolved and selfish, but the reality is – it’s self preservation. I’ve spent way too many years trying to be the bigger person, and to act in a way that is normal, and that is expected and accepted by the fertile society. I can’t do it any more. I owe it to myself – to my body, my heart and my emotions to keep myself from exposure to certain situations.
So I never called her. She didn’t call me either. I don’t know if it was because she didn’t know what to say, or because she felt guilty for being pregnant, or if she didn’t want to jinx anything for me if I was trying again.
In November, she pinged me online and asked me how I was doing. I told her all about CCRM and Dr Schoolcraft and that he had found my uterus to be T shaped and that I’d gone through surgery to fix it.
My cousin wouldn’t buy it!! She kept asking me how come no other doctor had seen my uterus shape to be a problem. She kept saying I shouldn’t do the surgery because it did not sound right (and yes, my cousin is a doctor, so she does understand what I’m talking about). I was a little agitated at that conversation. What did she think were my options? Question Dr Schoolcraft’s judgment, and refuse to have the surgery done, when I knew that Dr Schoolcraft is amongst the best in this field? How would my chances at ever having my own baby improve if I didn’t do the surgery? And it was beside the point that I had already had the surgery!!
December 30 – my cousin sent me an email saying “I am not contacting you because I don’t want to jinx it if you’re pregnant. I know you went to Denver, and perhaps you’re expecting but are waiting for enough time to go by for it to be safe for you to announce.”
Something about her assumption about me made me mad! I didn’t even want to make the effort to explain to her what was going on with me, that I was yet to go to Denver for my IVF. Perhaps I felt jealous too, that she seemingly had a smooth sailing, and I was forever in waiting mode, praying fervently and keeping my fingers crossed that my next chance should work!!
She called yesterday. I didn’t bother to answer the phone. This morning my mom told me that my cousin had had a baby boy a few days ago. The baby boy who was due on my baby’s due date. He came a couple of weeks early.
Yes, I spoke with my cousin. I congratulated her. I heard about her labor and how quickly my nephew was here. I heard about how he is sleeping through the day, but cries a lot when he's awake. I heard how he has a head full of hair. I heard how much the baby looks like his sister. I was brave through the conversation. I updated her on my life. I hung up the phone, went and sat in DH’s lap and broke down.
Why must it be so hard? Why why why? Why must we have to deal with SO MANY raw emotions? All at once? I find myself going and lurking on the pregnancy boards. Women who got pregnant when I got pregnant are putting up their newborns’ pictures. I managed pretty well to be forward thinking and not think about dates and what could have been. But it’s hard. It’s bloody hard!!
Sometimes I wonder if I’ve really totally lost it……. This current me is SO far removed from who I used to be. I wonder if I’ll ever find me again….
A Life in Three Parts
6 days ago