Thursday, May 6, 2010

Good Friday

Thank you, thank you oh wise women of the blogosphere.  Such wonderful and thoughtful comments on my previous post.  I am taking them all to heart.  I plan on being especially appreciative and mindful of my good fortune to be a mother this Sunday. I may also take advantage of a warmer day to go for a bike ride - my first ride of the season if all goes well.

Now I want to back up a bit and give a little background to the previous post.  It is a subject I intended to blog about several weeks ago but never got around to it.  It started the day LBII was born and solidified a week later on Good Friday. (No, I haven't found God or anything, I just remember it being that day because I was going to blog about it for Perfect Moment Monday . . . "Perfect Moment Monday: Good Friday" . . . catchy, no? )

For better and worse, Brad and I knew without doubt that we were done trying to conceive as soon as LBII was born and apparently healthy.  I would be lying if I said it has never occurred to me to try for a third, but I think that is mostly from my desire to finally get it right and have a home birth.  Besides, two kids keep us plenty busy, I am already 42 years old (Brad 41) and it would cost us approximately $30,000 just for the chance.  Although Brad is completely supportive of trying for and having a third child (as in, "You and your next husband can go right ahead with that."), we know it isn't really in the cards.

That can be rather freeing.  Our lives are no longer on hold the way they can be while trying to conceive.  We no longer need to plan our entire lives around how much it will cost, when it will happen and what we will do if it does or doesn't work. We can (gasp!) make plans about other things.  Like our first trip to Disneyland or shopping for a new house, or finding a different job in a warmer climate or getting back in shape emotionally and physically.  In those first few days, Brad and I talked more than a few times about how it feels like our lives are unfolding and opening up again.  Brad bought a new bicycle and will start biking to work.  I imagined getting back to my pre-treatment body and enjoyed not feeling the weight of infertility on my shoulders.

I continued to let the possibilities percolate in the back of my mind.  Then a week after LBII was born, on Good Friday by chance, something happened.  We will all sitting on the couch.  LB was asleep on one end of the couch, I was holding LBII who was also sleeping and Brad was sitting next to me.  It was unusually quiet in the house and it was a rainy day.  We sat there for over two hours listening to the rain, occasionally talking, just sitting and dozing off for a bit.  It was just incredibly peaceful.  I looked out the window and watched the rain and enjoyed just being and appreciating all that we have.  Then it occurred to me that I could do it.  That now was the time.  I could let go of my negative, angry, bitter tendencies.  This is our new beginning and it is the time to create new habits.

It was like knowing you need to get into better shape and suddenly finding the motivation to actually start exercising more.  Since then, I would like to think that I have been continuing to move in a positive direction.  I am still in the early stages and time will tell whether I end up svelte or back on the couch.  I'm not taking big steps - no crash diets, just trying to create a lifestyle change I can live with long term.

Currently I am trying to notice when I felt that tension in my body and mind - whether it is about infertility or something as trivial as the dog tracking mud into the house.  That alone has been quite the revealing.  I spend a huge amount of time wishing things were just a little bit better. When I remember and am willing to practice, I try to let the tension go by acknowledging it and then countering it with something positive.  My mental thoughts might be something like this: "Dog.  Mud.  Frustrating. (breathe) Easy to clean. All is well."

Much to my surprise, it isn't that hard.  I mean it is, because I forget or am unwilling to try; but it isn't in that when I am willing to try it usually works. In an instant I am in a better mood.  And just like starting to trim up a bit gives you motivation to keep exercising and dreaming about the bikini you will wear, changing a moment from negative to positive keeps me going and dreaming of all the more time I will spend happy instead of sad.

That, dear readers, is why I asked for your advice.  I noticed all the negative energy surrounding the coming holiday, but couldn't figure out how to turn it positive.  Your collective advice was spot on.  I think, as funny as this sounds, I needed to hear it was ok to stop hating the day.  I also feel very good about marking the day in a personal way without "celebrating" the day.


battynurse said...

You're right in so many ways that we can control how we react to a situation. We may not control the situation but we control our reactions. By letting go of anger, frustration and bitterness it makes sense that ones out look on life would be much improved.
I hope that you enjoy your bike ride and that things continue to go well.
Oh and I laughed at that line about Brad being ok with trying for a third.

Anonymous said...

That does sound like a wonderful day. I close my eyes and try to imagine how wonderful that must have felt. I hope you hold on to that memory and are able to recall it as a way of guided meditation to bring you peace.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Leah Maya Benjamin said...

some of it just takes time, and some you have to mentally help along. No matter how much I didn't want to be hateful and bitter it was just there. I think it was right befor eyour baby shower that I realized I just wasn't that hateful and bitter anymore and boy it felt good. Feelings of hurt and jealousy still loom of course but that awful feeling is mostly gone and that is wonderful. Its much nicer on this side hope you get over here soon! yeah its sunny today!

Anonymous said...

It's really hard to go from being DE's poster girl to mom of two. A little identify crisis is a-ok.

Frenchie said...

This is beautiful, and I can certainly take a page from your book--about turning negative moments/thoughts into positive ones. I love your revelation on Good Friday, and I am so happy for you and your family. I love the image of the four of you on the couch, it is just beautiful.

Unknown said...

You simply cannot imagine how much the raw openness, the candor of your blogs has helped me today.

I have a similar background to you. 7 years of infertility, 9 IUIs, 6 IVFs resulting in one miscarriage and one stillborn, biological son in June 2009 (he was from the 6th IVF and died from a random cord accident, nothing to do with our history of infertility). Now we just tried a 7th IVF and for the first time we didn't make it to transfer (this just happened a few days ago), and I have come to see that my eggs are such a long shot at this point that I feel it's truly a waste of money to further pursue.

I am considering donor eggs only for a couple of days now, so I am still in shock and grief with a tinge of relief at this journey being possibly put to a happier conclusion. I thought I was the only one with a history so utterly tragic. And I'm plagued with all the feelings of "Did I waste time at this point? Or that point?" (I read you blog about your feelings about going with donor eggs).

Thank you. I am feeling much better than I did before I found your blog, and don't feel so alone. I really love it that you got to be a mom. I know that, like you, if I can have a baby with DEs, I will still have a journey of digging out and resolving the hurts of the last 7 years, the losses, the time that I was in what I came to refer to as the "infertility prison". Thanks again for letting us into your inner world, which so resembles mine.