The greatest gift is a portion of thyself.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
Upon returning from sunny paradise to the miserable cold of New York City, it dawned on me that it's already Christmas season. The lights and festive cheer are draped all over the city and it feels like a time warp. We sort of skipped Thanksgiving mentally by being away and now suddenly it's jingle bells all over the place. Suddenly time is closing in on our due date at lightening speed and I am dumbfounded by how fickle time is. Once my torturer, the clock let the minutes drip painfully slow - one drop at a time on my forehead, burrowing a hole in my scull. It was the same thing during every 2 week wait, every beta check, every scheduling of the next IVF. Now I can't seem to blink without chunks of time passing before I can even mentally digest them.
Unfair? Yes. Perspective is everything and your reality will always fall victim to it. What is naughty and what is nice? It all depends. The line is so slight sometimes between good and bad, joy and grief, loss and gain, clarity and confusion. They seem so vastly different in meaning, but then just one little event or emotion can trigger one to the other, making them seem so closely related.
So as I look upon all this holiday cheer around me, I can still acknowledge that 2009 brought the greatest loss of my life thus far- a definitive NO regarding a genetic child. But at the same time, I can see that once that big "NO" came crashing down on me, it forced me to move on to donor egg and surrogacy. I got the double deal special this holiday season - a new egg and a new uterus, totaling up to my new baby on the way. Santa is no longer peddling the IVF drugs to me. That carrot stick dangling in my face has finally been cut off it's rope and thrown in the toilet. I have tried for three years to be nice. I was never naughty, except maybe my outbursts of rage, but I tried, and I tried, and I tried to be good. I did everything I was told to do - vitamins, bed rest, yoga, protocols, no caffeine - never once slipped. I tried to wish upon every star for this damn infertility to go away. But it didn't. Until this year I didn't know when to give up on my own body. How could I have known that I should have been wishing for completely new parts - shiny new parts of my body that two incredible women would give to me?
It's overwhelming to truly think about the meaning of these gifts. 'Tis the season for giving is no laughing matter in this situation. Just like the depths of grief I have felt these years, the depths of my awe and wonder over how this baby came to be is almost too much. How am I actually going to feel watching our baby come out of A.'s body? My biggest fear is that I won't feel anything. Maybe I will be too stunned. Maybe I won't feel as much because we used donor egg? Will it be so separate and foreign and bloody that the meaning of it all won't resonate? Sometimes I think I won't even cry, like it's almost too much to express. Maybe I won't crumble to the floor singing Hallelujah. Or maybe, just maybe, I will finally feel parts of my heart growing back, just in time to give to this baby.