Monday, October 13, 2008

Ambiguity

I am fortunate enough to have established a wonderful relationship with my mentor. She taught me what it meant to be a nurse practitioner. Taught me how to embrace being a *nurse* when I felt like I was functioning like a physician ...and how to combine the rolls. She retired after a recurrence of ovarian cancer, and I took over her job. She's doing well now - but besides the job, she also left me the vast majority of her books that remain in what is now my office. She was a very earthy not quite granola crunchy kind of health care provider and I loved it. A couple of months ago, I had a rare break between patients, and picked up a book to help pass the time: Womens Bodies, Women's Wisdom. I nearly immediately flipped to the chapter on infertility, and got pissed. Like ...raving lunatic MAD. The line that set me off:

"On a personal level, many women do not get pregnant because in their hearts they really do not want to - they are afraid of the demands a child will make on them."

Also? This:

"In one study, women who were unsuccessful with fertility treatments were found to be more successful in the outer world than those who conceived....Many infertile women are working sixty to eighty hours per week and are exhausted; then they pursue having a child as though they were writing a Ph.D. dissertation."

Most of the chapter speaks to the causes of infertility. The author is fairly adamant that a big part of infertility is the infertile's indecision regarding whether or not she is ready for and truly wants a child. That much of infertility is somehow resolved when the individual figures out the conflict. She also talks about a lot of other psychological factors. My initial thought was to rip the pages of the book out and have a book burning party. But after stewing on the subject for ...I don't know ..a couple of months, I'm kind of perplexed.

Because maybe ...I am ambiguous about it.

I do wonder how I will manage a very busy career and a newborn. When I had the golden child, I was fortunate enough to work for my dad in a family owned business. I was essentially a stay at home single mom for 2 very blissful years. I don't know how to do it any other way. I don't know if I could drop a newborn off at daycare, pump all day, and be okay with the role conflict at the end of the day. I also worry about my relationship with my husband. Because of his medical issues, he's not entirely gung-ho about the baby thing. He's worried that he won't be around long enough. I'm also terrified of that ...but not in the same way. I tend to worry more about random accidents and sudden death that I do his particular health issue ...but he's the one that spent the day in the ER with a near death experience yesterday. I worry about finances. I worry about going back to sleeplessness. I worry about the total selflessness that occurs with a newborn when my 13 year old is pretty much on auto-pilot now. My soul aches for the overwhelming love you feel for a child that is moving inside you. I ache to share the experience with my husband because I did it all by myself the first time. I need for him to know the type of love that a parent feels for their child. I wonder if some of my behaviors aren't self-destructive. You know...like ...threatening divorce every time I take Clomid. And not exercising enough. And not eating the right foods and not avoiding the wrong foods.

I am ambiguous. I am infertile. But ....am I infertile because I feel ambiguous?? I hope not.

I hate ambiguity.

1 comment:

Cassandra said...

Here from Lost and Found and Connections Abound...

Welcome to the IF blogosphere!

That is preposterous. How does that explain all of the unwanted pregnancies? They secretly wanted them? Arrgh.

Maybe the book should be called Women's Bodies, Writers' Stupidity. Or, Women's Bodies, Leave Us Alone and Stop Judging Us.