Had a meltdown yesterday. Couldn’t stop crying. Happy New Year!
It all started when J and I got home from visiting our friends, M and T, who live about an hour away, for our traditional New Years’ celebrations. This year, though, things are different, because T’s about 8 months pregnant. And I’m actually happy about that. We’ve been wanting these two—who are older than us—to have a kid for a long time, and we’re so glad they threw aside their reservations (primarily financial) to go for it. We had a really nice evening, though it would have been nicer with some alcohol, as all but one of us is going the clean-and-sober route. (I’m mostly doing it to be in solidarity with J, but it also seems smart given that I had surgery only a month ago and will be doing more IVF in a couple months.)
But for some reason, I can’t get off of my rant about J’s mom, and how much I hate the way she does Christmas (it’s become so loaded down with presents it’s exhausting, and embarrassing, and against everything I believe in, and I HATE IT HATE IT HATE IT—but that’s a rant for another day). I was bitching all of New Years Eve about it, then bitching in the car on the way home, then, when we got home, I managed to turn it into something HE was doing wrong (twisting the blame is one of my most prized lawyer skills) by not backing me up in my determination to change things next year.
Fortunately, backing down is another skill of mine. Finally, I sighed and said, “I don’t know why I’m so fixated on your mom and Christmas—it’s a full year away.” He responded calmly (calm is his forte), “You’re frustrated because nothing in our lives has changed in the last 10 years.”
I sat there for a minute, sort of stunned. Then, in a me-typical manner, I started to cry. Didn’t stop for an hour or so. The thing is, he’s right. It’s the SAMENESS of everything that is killing me. Everyone else’s life is changing, moving on. My sister’s child is FIVE, for god’s sake, reading and joking and heading off to kindergarten this year; two of my closest friends are almost done with the pregnancy, which in itself seems like a pretty crappy ordeal; and I can’t even get off the starting block. And everything we think about doing is on hold. No reason to reorganize the house—that will have to happen anyway after I get pregnant. No need to worry about a new hobby, or cultivating new friendships, or making some goddamn changes to the way we do Christmas. It’ll all change anyway, so why bother? It’s like three years ago we put our lives on temporary hold, like hitting the pause button on the Tivo when you get up to pee, assuming it would all resume soon. Only it didn’t, and we’re sitting on the couch staring at the same damn still image, waiting to start the show again. In the meantime, everyone I know has finished that episode and moved on to the next show, and the one after that.
I don’t even want to experience pregnancy anymore. I used to look forward to it, although I’ve always had concerns about how my body would handle it. I thought about my body changing, about hearing a heartbeat, about feeling it kick, about people treating me differently, yes, even about the stupid baby shower. Now I just want to skip all that crap. My body has already been invaded, poked, prodded, and now cut open and reassembled. If I could just have a baby without involving my body at all…if I could just have my body back to myself. Maybe then I’d feel alive again, sexy again. But I have to go through pregnancy, and then a c-section, in order to get the baby, and I’m still at least one IVF cycle—and possible a more cycles and a second mortgage away—from even getting there in the first place. And then there’s the miscarriage that might happen. I just don’t know how much more of this I can take.
Can’t deny it. I’m horribly depressed. The kind of depressed where you can’t see a future, where you don’t enjoy anything you used to, where you would gladly turn to drinking and drugs—but even that relief is denied me because the vessel must remain pristine. I got through my surgery, I’m recovering well, J’s doing all he can to improve his sperm motility, and I’ve been pregnant three times. Odds are very good that we will soon have a pregnancy that actually sticks. So why don’t I feel better? Why can’t I picture this working? Why don’t I believe I’ll ever have a child?