Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Why is the measure of love loss?

(the title is a blatant plagarism from one of my favorite authors, Jeanette Winterson in case you were wondering)
I was in the lobby of my building yesterday at lunch and heard a little child cry out - "mama!" and I nearly crumpled into a heap on the floor. I wonder if I will ever have someone call me that? I wonder sometimes if I will ever hear my child's voice calling for me.

Given the amount of blood over the last two days, the R.E.'s nurse said that I can skip coming in for the beta tomorrow if I want. I know it may seem crazy, but I'm not going to go. I don't see the point in wasting the money to have a lab technician tell me something that my body is making quite painfully evident (both physically and emotionally). And if the result was positive - I think it would just upset me more to know that it worked, if only briefly. Last night I sat on the couch numbly watching Law & Order reruns and trying not to spill the giant Culver's root beer float on Michael's Ramones t-shirt that I stole out of his drawer. Michael was holding my hand, and he looked at me and just said "I don't know what to say to make it better. I don't know how to make the pain stop for you, but I wish I could. I just hope you know that I love you. No matter what, I will always love you."

Right now, I'm ready to move on to the next step. At first, I was furious that the R.E.'s office told me that I would be wasting my time to come in for a day 3 scan, as given the overstimulation that I'd be nearly guaranteed to be out for this cycle. But, in a way, I think that this little break may do me some good. It will give me the time to enjoy the holiday season without having to rush back and forth to doctor's appointments and being forced to be jovial while bloated with overstimmed ovaries.

So, instead of my usual bitter and grouchy self, I'd like to take a few minutes to be "moony" as Michael calls me when I'm acting this way - and tell you what I'm thankful for this year. Too often I get wrapped up in the sadness and despair of infertility and forget the abundance that I have to be thankful for.

I'm thankful for our two cats, Alex and Ashton - the 20 pound plus monsters that manage to wake me at three in the morning at least once a week while batting a catnip filled mouse under the highboy in the bedroom. I'm thankful for the love and support of my parents and the love of my siblings. I'm thankful for my new job, for living in a city that feels like "home." I'm thankful for the beauty of autumn. Aside from the reproductive challenges, and the occasional seizure, I'm thankful for generally being in good health. I'm thankful for my mother's sobriety, my father's mellowing, and my stepmother becoming a bigger part of my life. I'm thankful that I've recently been reconnecting with people that I've lost touch with, and for finally being comfortable in my own skin.

I'm thankful that I've found an outlet here to talk, to grow and to heal. I'm thankful for the outpouring of support I've been blessed with from each of you. I'm thankful for finding out that I'm not alone, and I'm even thankful for finding out that medical help is available, even if it's not helping me a lot right now. I'm thankful for being given the opportunity to get to know some of you - on different coasts, different countries, different continents.

I'm thankful for flowers, for hope, for the fact that I have a plant in my office that I have actually managed to not kill, for the simple joys of a good cup of coffee and a nice glass of red wine. I'm thankful for the sunrise and the heaviness of the down comforter, the feel of the smooth hardwood floors beneath my bare feet.

And most importantly, I'm thankful for having Michael in my life. He's the best friend I've ever had, and I can't imagine spending my life with anyone else. He is my home, and my family. Even if we are never given the opportunity to be parents, my life will be complete standing by his side. We've been through some incredibly difficult times in our short marriage, and I'm thankful that we've been strong enough to stand by each other through it all and make it work. When Michael and I were first getting to know each other and before we were even officially dating, one of the first gifts he gave me was a copy of Shel Silverstein's book The Giving Tree. Now, setting aside interpretations about how the book is arguably misogynistic and depressing, it represents to me what each of us have strived to do in our marriage. We have each attempted to give as much as we can of ourselves in order to provide the other with happiness and security. It seems in some ways that our marriage has been about one loss after another. But instead of letting it ensnare and consume us, we've fought back. Together. And I'm thankful he hasn't given up on me.

And, I'm thankful I haven't given up on myself.

I could go on and on forever, about the big and small things that I have to be thankful for, but I should probably work some today.

So, instead - tell me this year, what are you thankful for?


At 12:08 PM, Anonymous statia said...

It's ok to take time to be bitter. I think we all do. Because a lot of time we do focus on the fact that we don't have a child and the people that do, seem to take advantage of that. But at least you see what you're thankful for too. Besides, like you said, you won't have to rush back and forth to the doctor.

That said, I'm thankful that I've aged enough to realize when to sit back and take a break from it all. That it's not the end of the world if we don't have kids. I have a great husband, two great dogs, nice things that I've worked hard for. Happy Pills, and a nice fat Christmas vacation coming up. Even if I do nothing, I'll still have that time off of work.

At 2:10 PM, Anonymous Wavery said...

Well done.

At 2:58 PM, Blogger Donna said...

The fact that you can list so many things you are thankful for is a sure sign of mental health. Not to mention a wonderful marriage. My life would be a vast wasteland without my husband. Take the holidays to be together and rest.

At 6:58 PM, Blogger Spanglish said...

Your list of things to be thankful for is lovely... I hope you enjoy a small break. Those little breaks are so needed.

At 7:13 PM, Anonymous Lori said...

Isn't it refreshing to think about the good stuff for a change? It's so easy to get bogged down by it all.

At 9:09 PM, Blogger Millie said...

I think breaks can be very beneficial. I loved your list of things that's you're thankful for.

As for me, I'm most thankful for my husband and that we're on the same page when it comes to building a family. It would be so much harder if we didn't wan the same things. And I'm thankful that we'll have an exciting vacation in a short while to boot.

At 8:09 AM, Blogger Lola said...

I'm jsut catching up with my blog reading and I can tell you I am NOT thankful for what you've been going through. I am so, so sorry! it just sucks great big turds!!

I AM thankful beyond belief that I have found such an amazing community of fellow bloggers dealing with infertility and miscarriage. It has saved me.

At 10:50 AM, Anonymous wessel said...

ACK!! Computer just ate my comment.

I'm so, so sorry. This is just awful news.

I loved your list of things to be thankful for, and I admire you for writing it. I wrote my own long list, but the computer ate it. Anyway, it is nice to be able to think of positive things for a change.

Wishing you a lovely holiday season which renews your soul and gives you strength.


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