PLEASE NOTE: If you are struggling with infertility or are currently trying to conceive and you DON'T want to read about my pregnancy (which I totally understand), I recommend starting at the beginning of the blog (March 2010) and reading from there. I find out I'm pregnant in June 2011 so there is a lot of trying to conceive posts in between that you might find funny, helpful or relatable. Wishing you all the luck in the world!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Shoulding All Over Myself

Lately, I’ve been finding myself waking up in the middle of the night with thoughts of doubt…

I should have gotten a second opinion sooner....

I should have started trying to get pregnant the second we got married....

I should have told more of my friends about our struggle....

I should lose forty pounds…

I should have asked for my money back after seeing AVATAR...

Thoughts like this are not helpful to either my outlook or my sleep. Aside from the fact that there’s nothing I can do to change anything that’s already happened, the word “should” automatically implies guilt and guilt, in case you didn’t know, is a wasted emotion. This however isn’t stopping me from “should-ing” all over myself…

Yesterday was the work baby shower I helped plan (discussed in an earlier post: http://the2weekwait.blogspot.com/2010/05/infertile-plans-baby-shower.html). I tried to figure out some way NOT to go; an imaginary doctor’s appointment with an imaginary ailment, call in sick (when will companies start letting people take “mental health” days by the way?), break an unimportant limb (if one exists) or get hit by a car (well, maybe just a bumper car) all came to mind. I didn’t do any of these things though. Instead, I went to the damn party. Why? Because I SHOULD. I planned the effen’ thing, it would look bad if I didn’t go and on paper, I’m a lovely, f*cking person!

So, I put on my nicest dress, did my hair, smiled, set up the cupcakes, gave the pregnant women hugs and said my sincerest congratulations. I then hid myself in a sea of single women who talked about their weekend houses, swamped bad date stories and discussed which vibrator is the best (the pocket rocket won hands down incidentally). And although it didn’t help that one of the pregnant women being honored announced that her pregnancy was unplanned, the single women did help me cope. The cupcakes didn’t hurt either.

It was more the hours afterward that were the worst. For the rest of the day, I heard joke after joke about how many women in our group are pregnant (in addition to the two we had the shower for yesterday, there are three more but they are due later this year). Of course, the ol’ “Wow… guess there’s fertility juice in the water cooler and/or coffee” was a popular joke. Then there were the simple comments like, “Women in this group seem to get pregnant so easily” and “This is a fertile department!” I finally put my headphones on and turned on my mp3 player to drown them out. Is there a radio station called, ‘WTFU”? If not, then there SHOULD be.

In addition to second guessing myself, I’ve also been feeling ambivalent about some upcoming events:
  • A few weeks from now, I’m getting together with a bunch of friends; three of them are pregnant and one just had a baby so I’m expecting LOTS of baby talk and frankly, I don’t care how much liquor is served, I don’t want to go.
  • Then, another friend of mine who had a baby a few months ago has emailed that she’d like to catch up. She in particular is one of the people who constantly asks, “So??? Any news yet????” And then proceeds to go on about how easily she got pregnant with her FOUR kids. Love her but don’t want to talk to her. At least not right now.
What stops me from blowing everyone off though is again, that word “should”. I SHOULD go. I SHOULD talk to these women. I SHOULD be nicer. I SHOULD get over it and be a good friend. I’m telling you – this word is killing me.

Thanks to the special guest star taking up residence in my uterus, Jackson Polyp (my charismatic polyp that you can follow for a limited time on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/jackson_polyp), I’m in a ‘trying to conceive holding pattern’. To be clear - I don’t know for certain that as soon as we evict JP from his happy uterus home, we’ll get pregnant right away, but any which way, I know that I logically have nothing to be embarrassed of. Trouble is I am. I am embarrassed. I feel like a failure. I feel like all these pregnant women and/or recent moms successfully managed to get pregnant and I can’t. The only thing growing in my uterus is an uninvited polyp. I can’t send announcements out for that. Ok… I could but that would be insane… or funny… or both.

On July 8th at 10:10am, Jay had a several ounce polyp removed. It’s named Jackson Polyp and looks like… um… the blob from that 1950’s movie. Both Jay and Jackson are doing fine!

I sincerely am a social person and avoiding everyone and everything isn’t me. I really SHOULD just suck it up, go meet these women for drinks and talk to this very fertile friend. There have been times where I’ve acted like a normal, happy, fertile person, and I actually seemed like a normal, happy, fertile person.

Perhaps this is the role I’m meant to play these days. It’ll be a hell of an undertaking. If I pull it off, lord knows I SHOULD win a freaking Oscar.

20 comments:

N said...

Should of's and what if's will kill you! One statement I heard from a friend that has helped me with the should of's is... You make the best decision you can with the information you have at the time. This really resonates with me and helps me not should of.

What if's... those still get me.

Hang in there.

Anonymous said...

Ooh, be wary of the "should"s. They are pretty much guilt trips. Self preservation is what you need to check whenever you bring up the "should" list. Will you be miserable? Will it not be so bad? What is your escape if things do turn bad? Migraine is next to impossible to disprove, is spontaneous, and a perfect excuse... so are most toilet issues.
I'm a "let's see how bad it gets" type of person, but I also have learned -- once bitten, twice shy. Twice bitten, I'm an idiot. : )

lowfatlady said...

Sounds like you did a good job planning the shower. I love cupcakes. I'm sorry for all those comments about people getting pregnant so easily. It really isn't fair. Don't be embarrassed though, you have all of us around you going through the same thing and supporting you.

praying4amiracle said...

I am the same way so know you are NOT alone. I have cut off any social events with my friends that either have kids or are PG..it's just too hard. They are in a different stage of life that is so different from mine we really don't have much to talk about anymore. I am the black sheep of my group of friends. They talk about "mommy groups" where we all used to talk about what new club we are going to try next Sat for someone's b-day party.I am now 28 and childless and friendless..I know waaahh. I too am embarrassed that this isn't happening for me, I have told no one about my Endometriosis diagnosed 2 months ago b/c I feel like such a failure as a woman. I have Endo growing in my uterus so when I get your invite for Jackson I'll send you one for Emily Endo.

Slackie O. said...

What you SHOULD do is take care of yourself... even if it means protecting yourself from situations that will wreck you emotionally.

I also agree that you SHOULD win some kind of award ;)

Tara dS said...

Slackie O said EXACTLY what I was going to say. So make that times two.

How about this for your insensitive friend: "You know, I'm kind of taking a break from thinking about and talking about getting pregnant. Let's talk about something else. How's the _____ going?" If she talks about her pregnancies, tell her, "This counts as talking about pregnancy," and swiftly change the topic again.

Heidi said...

super glad you had some singles to mingle with at the shower!!! singles make my life more sane! :) i had a friend today tell me she was excited to start ttc, and i had to stifle the comment "if you get pregnant before me, i might cut my wrists..."

the only "should" that you should be considering is "I should write blogs more often!" i look every day to see if you've written--you're such a witty writer. you "should" write an infertility book.

thisispersonal said...

The heck with "should." This infertility experience taught me right quick how to prioritize myself, be kind to myself, and say no to things that I'm just not up for right now. As desperately as I wish it to be - life is not "normal" right now. Sometimes, those dinners don't make it onto my to-do list, and that's ok.

And, seriously, you get a crown, a cupcake and a parade for planning those showers. I honestly could not have done that.

Anonymous said...

First of all, I love your blog! Everything really hits home. It really makes me laugh, deep belly laughs too! You are doing a really great thing here for many!
I do have some advice. Go to these events and speak up! Fertile women need to know about us. They need to know that they are inappropriate at times. However, that doesn't mean that they don't have the right to share. But at times we should just speak up and say "Look I'm having a majorly hard time getting pregnant, could we just not talk about your baby the entire lunch!!!" Unfortunately a good amount of the female population has fertility issues. So for all those women who look at penises and get preggo....well there are just as many who are asking their organs WTF is going on down there!!! Your good friends need to know where you are coming from. Even if they get weird, we just need to try to explain it to the super fertile. Truthfully those who don't stuggle getting pregnant will never know how hard it is for us, so we have to tell them. I found that it helped me a ton to do this as well. It brought a sense of reality that I needed. It helped me to see some of my issues causing my infertility.
Much luck and love to you!

Kitty said...

Funny post as always - love it. And as always you've raised some very critical 'issues' that all of us go through. Along this journey I've come to realise (like Anonymous) that Infertility is something that people don't know enough about. We need to speak up and let people know. Be open with your friends and I'm totally with 'anon' on this one, she's given you great advice!
Good luck and I hope you get your BFP soonest!

sienna said...

i could go crazy with the "should of's". i'm just glad a doctor finally found out about jackson polyp there, and that you're gonna get it taken care of. think of it this way - it can't make it hardER for you to get preggo after getting it removed. so you'll only be in a better place than you've been all along. i have a good *feeling* about you, so *fingers crossed*.

yaay for getting through the work shower! i like to mingle with the singles as well at work get togethers. i prefer listening to the tales of one night stands more than i like listening to babies' latest milestones. fo sho :o)

Kristin said...

The title of this post made me spit my diet cherry coke all over my laptop. :)

Anonymous said...

I love your writing, I just wanted to let you know that I read your posts to my husband in the evenings, and we nod at your insights and laugh at your jokes. The brighten my day.

I also want to suggest that you tell your friends about your struggles. The first couple of years of my infertility journey I didn't tell anyone, and it got so lonely. I hope your journey is shorter than mine, but you never know, and if they are any type of good friend, they should know about such an important event happening in your life. During my second miscarriage, I was so miserable not only to be losing my baby, but to realize that no one new or cared. No one new to call and check in, or to send flowers. I finally told my best friend afterward and she made me promise to tell her the minute that I was pregnant again so that she could worry with me. I can't tell you how much better it was to have company in my worry.

Sorry for the long message. Good luck in your struggles, you're not alone.

Kelly said...

My sage advice is lacking today.

But I've just gotta point out that this made me laugh out loud :
"...and on paper, I’m a lovely, f*cking person!"

egghunt said...

You put it so well.... Should haves create guilt which is such a wasted emotion.

I read somewhere that you SHOULD always put yourself first. If a friend NEEDS you and they are in trouble, then you will be there. If they WANT you to be there then, well I'm sorry but your need to be protected comes before their need to rave and brag about their baby/pregnancy. I know its easier said than done and its virtually impossible to shake off those should haves but I just don't like the idea of you torturing yourself just because the guilt is winning. You need to look after you first and foremost. xxx

The Infertility Doula said...

Isn't it amazing that while we are the ones suffering we go out of our way to make sure others aren't uncomfortable around us?! We SHOULD be protecting our fragile feelings and not attend such painful gatherings, but we put ourselves last and put on a happy face.

I love you days said...

I agree. There should be a radio station called ‘WTFU”! You are not alone and I really appreciate your honesty.

Eny said...

I don't think you should do anything that doesn't make you happy or comfortable. Screw them all. I delete every person from my facebook friends when I find out they are pregos. Why torture msyelf for 9 months with fat belly pictures?
Don't go... I wouldn't!

jensays said...

sometimes when you've been doing this for so long and everyone around you seems to have great success, it gets to you. i am so tired of waiting and waiting for all my shit to get taken care of. while waiting, everyone else gets pregnant and i'm over it. in the past month two people have told me they are pregnant and i'm just like COME ON!!!!
long story short, give yourself a pass and once in a while don't go to these things that are just going to cause you stress.
(whatwouldjendo)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this! It hits home. It's nice to know I'm not alone.

Post a Comment