Monday, April 30, 2007

Back in?

Today is CD 15. I generally ovulate around day 16, though my temperature was low this morning, so it may be a bit delayed.

In any case, we "tried" yesterday. I put it in quotes because it is too frightening to me to declare it. To simply state that I want a baby and then go about the business of making one. It feels like hubris, oddly. Like I'm inviting the universe to knock me down again.

If I get pregnant this cycle and the pregnancy sticks, I can have a baby before I turn 37*. It matters to me right now. So we tried. But emotionally, I'm keeping my head down, plugging my ears, and chanting "lalalalala" to silence the worries and superstitions. I don't have much faith in myself. I'm trying.

*Edited because I had initially typed "36". Hah. That's funny.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The secret

My best childhood friend has lived a charmed life. She grew up in a generally happy family. They were well-off. She has always been healthy. She has taken risks and they've always worked out for the best. She met her husband at 31 and got accidentally pregnant right before their wedding. Because she's suspicious of Western medicine in general and prenatal care in particular, she saw only midwives throughout her pregnancy. Not even an ultrasound. She gave birth to her daughter at home, with no complications.

All of this has led her to adopt a particularly optimistic philosophy, one that reframes her good fortune as a reward for living the right way. She practices yoga, Ayurveda, tai chi, massage, vegetarianism, and can-do New Age spirituality. She believes that our body states are merely expressions our emotional/spiritual realities.

So you can imagine why I've been reluctant to call her in the months since my miscarriages. But she has been leaving messages and my silence was starting to look suspicious. So, as I was feeling strong and optimistic yesterday, I have her a call.

Two comments stood out:

1) Her response to the general news about the miscarriages and my antiphospholipid diagnosis: "Have you heard of The Secret?"


My reply: Yes, but I found that philosophy particularly unhelpful since it blames people for their own suffering and serves only to comfort the fortunate.

2) Her response to my news that we'll be moving back to our home city over the summer: "Maybe your body just didn't want to give birth in a place where you don't feel at home. I bet that you're going to feel so grounded when you move back that it'll all work out."

My reply: "Hmmm...that's interesting."

But what I wanted to say was, "FUCK YOU!!!! Saying shit like that only comforts YOU and makes you think that you're in charge and that you "deserve" your happiness. And you know what?? You're not in charge! And I can't wait until something comes along to burst your goddamned smug little bubble."


The thing is, she means well. Her heart is in the right place. She wants me to be happy, she wants me to get what I want, and she wants us all to feel safe in a benevolent world.

But she just doesn't get it. And I don't really wish that reality on her. Still, I get so very tired of having to excuse peoples' ignorance in light of their good intentions. I'm tired of the hush-hush attitude that makes miscarriage seem like such a rare aberration that people are clueless about how to comfort us.

So lately, when I'm talking to someone who seems compassionate or smart about things, I find myself more apt to tell them about what has happened to me. Not compulsively, not often. But when the conversation opens up in a particular way, I open up. I feel the need to record it: These things happen. To good people. Life can be random.

I'm just very anti-secret right now. Anti-Secret, too. People are suffering all the time, all around us. And we further isolate them by responding to their pain with fear and avoidance and platitudes. Albert Camus once described America as "this place where everything is done to prove that life isn't tragic." He's right. Life is pretty fucking tragic sometimes. Our only hope is to know that we're not alone.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

At the gate

My new cycle started this weekend. I think we're finally going to try again. I think I'm ready. At least, the thought of trying doesn't fill me with the panic that it did a couple of months ago. And taking care of the new cat has intensified my knowledge that I really, really, really want to have a child. I think I'd be a good mom. I really want to try.

The timing isn't ideal. Adam has to do a lot of traveling in the next couple of months. If we get pregnant this time around, I may well have to start the Lovenox injections while he's out of town. It's scary. I don't even know where to begin. My doctor said to call when I'm pregnant, but who's going to teach me how to do it?

On the other hand, I need to get moving. The pressures are partly biological: I got pregnant easily before, but what if my ovaries are winding down? They're also psychological: I don't want to face Mother's Day without at least having tried to get pregnant again. I'd like to try to have a baby before turning 37, if I can.

If my calculations are correct, I should ovulate around the 30th. Until then, we wait and see.

Friday, April 6, 2007


My trip to see the in-laws was just so, so good. I slept like someone who hadn't rested well in months. I sat in the sun and was quiet. I was proud of myself for facing my fear of flying, Adam and I had a couple of good meals, the weather was perfect, and we adopted a kitten! He just showed up on my mother-in-law's doorstep one morning and jumped in my lap.

"It's like God sent him to you!" said my sister-in-law, who's in recovery and believes that God is in charge of everything.

I'm doubtful. In fact, if I were one of the Seven Dwarfs, that would be my name. But this kitten does feel like a gift. And now that we're back home, the work of getting him settled in and integrated with our existing cat feels...satisfying. It gives me a place to put all my frustrated maternal instincts. It makes us feel like we can nurture life. It gives us something to focus on and laugh about.

Sunday, April 1, 2007

Made it

I'm writing from the other coast, where the weather is warm and the jasmine is blooming outside my window.

My flight here was long and turbulent (I mean overhead-bins-flying-open turbulent). But I was fine. I was not the crazy lady writhing in the aisles. Rather, I was the pleasant lady chatting with her neighbor and even dozing off for a brief nap. Yes, I took a Klonopin. But this trip has reminded me that I'm not broken, just a little traumatized. And it will get better.