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Beer, bonding, birds & balance!

After Wednesday’s horrid shock, we were all terribly shaken up. Even though my parents didn’t say much, I know that along with K & I, they felt pretty roughed up too. While K had his work to lose himself in, the three of us just sat silently for many hours, unable to do much beyond staring into space. The wonderful man my husband is, he somehow convinced all of us to step out in the evening to cheer us all up even as he, himself, was clearly shaken up too. Since my dad is really fond of beer, he took us all to a biergarten nearby. I refused to have anything; I was still numb. As the evening progressed, I finally felt myself relax, one garlicky sweet potato fry at a time 🙂

They all managed to convince me into having a gluten-free beer, my first beer in over two years (I used to LOVE beer!!!). It was delicious, the best beer I’ve had in forever! The stilted conversation soon started flowing over the awkward little mounds of sadness and shock that we all were carrying within us. We all drank, my mom also joined in. They kept pressuring me to have another beer. It was almost like they wanted me to get a little tipsy, loosen up a bit. Well, loosen up we did. We spoke of things as they were, things as they had been. We gave voice to our collective frustration and anger at why this struggle had continued for so long and was still going on. K teared up as he thanked my mom profusely for all her help in the past three years, the way she helped me through each surgery, every procedure. Eyes were misty and hearts were baring themselves. It was sad but so sweet, all of us reaching out to each other, sharing unspoken apprehensions, acknowledging the deep love we feel for each other. I thanked God for blessing me with such a wonderful family. I feel so darn lucky my husband gets along so well with my parents. Perhaps, for the first time ever since we got on this journey, I did not feel guilty about consuming alcohol!

On a different note, ever since we got back from Colorado, I’ve been leading a pretty slothful existence. Partly because I was in a lot of discomfort from the retrieval and then in serious pain from the period that followed. I was beat. The thought of physical exercise just did not appeal. I was also sleeping late and waking up late which meant I wasn’t having my thyroid med on time and eating breakfast really, really late. I realized I need to snap out of this self-imposed sloth-dom. Thursday night, I went to bed early and woke up on time for my med. Made breakfast and then decided to go for a walk on the bay trail.

A simply brilliant sight awaited me. How was I to know that the 2014 Birdsong Conference was being held today!! Here are some sneak peeks:

I was, at first, taken aback, then delighted both to see these little fellows congregating so solemnly all along the shore and also to hear their non-stop chirping. I swear it felt like they were all gathered there for something terribly important!

Here’s another ‘breakout session’ :))

I don’t need to tell you, do I, that I came back from my walk feeling infinitely better, almost buoyant even! It felt like that scene was created right there and then just to uplift me!

So that’s where I’m at. Feeling relatively peaceful, although not entirely without anxiety about the forthcoming results. Acupuncture this week really helped me relax. I have also decided to finally get proactive in finding a good therapist. Therapy has helped me greatly in the past when I was dealing with a really traumatic phase in my life and my acupuncturist has been urging me to find someone to talk to for the longest time. She feels I will benefit from unloading myself to someone who is not emotionally invested in me; someone whom I can say anything in front of without any worries that they will react. I have avoided it altogether for the longest time, partly because my acupuncturist herself does such a great job of keeping me sane and partly because I did not want to add yet another item to our already burgeoning fertility expense list.

But, especially after Wednesday’s shock I think I need it. A big reason why I felt so shaken up was my reaction to the whole nonsense. It gutted me to the core in an unimaginable way and while I cannot control in advance how I feel in the coming future to whatever life has in store for me, I want to work on cultivating an inner peace and fortitude that will hopefully help me when needed. Therapy is part of this plan. Returning to yoga and starting meditation will also be key. It’s been a very tumultuous three years and I really want to invite some balance into my life.

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No news is good news…

…but no, not that kind of good news!

It’s been such a packed few weeks. My brother moved back to India with his family (I miss them so much!), K went to India/ Singapore and came back, we’ve been going out for lunches and dinners and shopping trips with my parents who are still staying with us. The days pass by in a fairly happy blur; I am (finally) making some progress with my work and it helps to have company at home. My mother’s been making the most ridiculously yummy food for me and I’ve been happily gorging on it everyday. I’ve shopped way more than I should have and K bought me two gorgeous pairs of loafers from Singapore which I can’t wait to wear!

On the baby-making front, all’s quiet which, sometimes, is really nice. There’s no rushing to make it to doc appointments, no coordinating for stat test reports, no getting pricked! I got my period yesterday, though, so it will be O time soon and from then onwards there’s no looking back. My protocol this time is slightly different; I’m doing estrace for almost two weeks beginning two days after I get my surge and I’ll also be taking clomid to add to my crazy cocktail of meds!

In the meantime, I’m sleeping fitfully, drinking copious cups of raspberry tea, eating lots of nourishing home-cooked food and staying warm in my cosy collection of PJs 🙂

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I don’t want to be like this.

I have been trying to work since morning. I made a commitment to myself this weekend that I will pay far more attention to my dissertation than I have so far. I intend to stick by that commitment. It’s hard, though. I sit at home and work and it gets lonely. I know I have the option of going to a library/ coffee shop but I stay home so that I can eat fresh, home cooked food and also because the library is overrun with little kids and babies and the coffee shops usually have nothing that I should be eating/ drinking.

It’s been an okay morning so far. I have been making some sort of progress. But now, right this very moment I am unable to go on. I feel frozen. I feel annoyed. Angry, actually. My head hurts. I am pissed off. I was going through an online forum and it just struck me how story after story expresses pervasive hurt, anguish, lament and a debilitating frustration at not being able to conceive. It hurts me. It shakes me up. I read this everyday so why now? I have been dealing with this for almost 2.5 years so what’s new? I don’t have an answer. All I know is that it fills me up with a white-hot rage even as it drains me of vitality and so I find myself in that no-man’s land between a scream and a tear, between protest and despair.

I am angry at those who bear kids so easily and then spend all their lives complaining what a hassle parenting is. I am angry at those who are careless enough to let their children suffer while they pursue selfish paths. I am angry at those who think infertility is a passing phase and that I should just snap out of it! And I am particularly angry with those whom I love the most, the ones that surround me, the ones I call family and friends. Close friends. They anger me most because while I know they care (and that they care big), I am unable to accept their concern, their love. The relentless snark inside me keeps saying it’s easy for you to say, you haven’t been down this road. Their affection rankles, their sympathies infuriate me most.

I really don’t want to be like this.

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The pieces that do fit.

It’s been a rough month. And the immediate future does not promise to let up on the pressure. I have not battled this thick, smog-like overwhelming sadness in a long while. Not for want of trying times. Oh no, life’s doing its darnedest best to keep me on my tippy toes! It’s just that, all along, somewhere within me the hope has remained alive that soon, one way or the other, things will happen just the way I have always wanted them to and I will get my perfect little baby, snoozing contently in my arms. But now… now I do not feel so sure of anything. What has happened in the past few weeks doesn’t exactly make for a grand tragedy. Yet it has, in one fell swoop, wiped me of that very basic necessity -hope! And now the hard task of recapturing that hope, one moment at a time, looms ahead.

But is this really all that is? Granted, having a child is probably the most important thing in the world for both my husband and me. And yes, I do cringe every time someone tells me how this experience will make me stronger, more resilient blah blah. Why do I have to be God’s favorite work-in-progress, I protest! But I have to admit, there is a lot that is good and pure and warm and blessed that I need to keep reminding myself of. So here’s my attempt at counting the blessings, for there are so many of those -the blissfulness of loving companionship, the unflinching support of loved ones, the luxury of material comfort, the means to afford fertility treatment, the access to great doctors and medical facilities, the asset of a thinking mind, the list just goes on and on…

I have always believed in the jigsaw-puzzle-ness of life. Pieces that click, force fits and empty spaces. The unabated joy of finding just that right bit of sky amongst many that mimic its reality. The sweet satisfaction of completing a complicated puzzle. I used to love jigsaws for how they would reveal a story -softly, gently, one piece at a time.

Why then do I only look at the empty spaces now? Why is my focus only on the gaps that remain, the pieces that are missing? For is it not true that for every piece that chooses not to reveal itself just yet as the perfect fit to the amoebic curves that exist, there is the silent fortitude that the completed portion of the puzzle displays?

Here’s to my story and to the patient, perseverent efforts to make it come to life!