Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Day Two



I wish I had news to tell. We are getting close. Friday will be day zero - blast off - but I have this feeling that this January baby might end up being a February baby. A. is having some more contractions but no alarm bells yet. She usually delivers right on her due date or later. So I am settling in to watch the second season of Mad Men because this could still be a while.

TOP TEN WAYS TO PRACTICE THE ART OF BEING INFERTILE:

10. Arm Yourself with Information, But Accept the Unanswerable.
9. Find Other Infertiles.
8. Tune out the noise.
7. It's okay to be angry.
6. Keep Trying.
5. Fulfill Another Dream.
4. Limbo is your middle name.
3. Remember Love.
2. Protect Yourself.
If the public likes to portray fertility treatments and third party parenting as the wild wild west of baby-making, well then I say, be ready for a showdown. I tend to be pretty hardcore about this because I feel it should be our number one priority to protect ourselves - not only from the obvious assholes, not only from the well-meaning unintentional boobs, but also from the POTENTIAL pain that people could inflict. I am a strong believer in pre-emptive strikes. This is not to say you must be afraid all the time, it means you must know yourself.

I knew that certain social engagements were not going to be good for me and I stayed clear of them. I knew certain people were going to have kids before me and I mentally prepared myself for that pain. I knew certain people were not capably of handling tragic situations so I avoided them. Frankly, I put my needs before everyone else because in the end, it's not going to kill people if I don't go to their baby shower, or I don't hang out with them during the 9 months of their pregnancy, or I don't listen to their parenting talk. They will survive. On the other hand, if I forced myself to do these things out of guilt or obligation, I would be intensifying my pain 100 fold. Why do it? My sanity is more important to me. Cancel the dinners. Make nice excuses. I have even honestly explained to pregnant friends that I need space because I value our friendship too much. In my most extreme protective state, my logic is that for the people who I love but who could potentially hurt me, the last thing I want is to hate them. If they were to say or do something to hurt me that hate could become very real. My defense is that I am protecting myself but I am also protecting them.

Don't feel guilty. Everyone has their own level of tolerance. I understand the logic that we shouldn't hold grudges or be jealous or not support our pregnant friends. I agree with this theoretically. In practice, we are all human, so know your limits.

3 comments:

Expectant Duck said...

I so so so agree with you! AND I read time and time again other infertile women (who HAVE CHILDREN) ridiculing those in the trenches saying they should just "suck it up" and go to the shower, be happy for other people ya da yada yada and it makes me just want to do a virtual strangle. No one knows what they have been through, and surrogacy makes it even harder (I think) and more complicated, so protection of self is so very very important.

lastchanceivf said...

Thank you for this. As always, your words are very wise. I found that hosting multiple baby showers through my infertility was one of the worst things I could ever do, and I didn't know how to say no or how to protect myself. I had these unrealistic expectations of how I should have been able to cope, but I realize now how damaging it was.

I'm in the midst of preparing for another potential landmine and I'm trying to figure out how to dodge, dodge, dodge. I can't afford to lose any more limbs.

a bumpy ride said...

I thought your words "art to being infertile" in the about section were really inciteful. It's made me think. Deligthed that you got what you wanted in the end, it makes those of us still trying, very hopeful - a bumopy ride