Vent Sesh: Babies

November 2, 2011

Welcome to my first official Vent Sesh.While you see a lot of smiles on this blog, is that totally real life? We all deal with issues yet so many of us brave the world with a happy face each day. TAGG is here because I believe we’re all in this together, just wanting to live our own great lives. I’m hoping by sharing here, you can relate, understand and sympathize in a way that improves your life or the way you connect with others. PS: Here’s my little Vent Sesh icon I’m pretty excited about…

I want to start out by thanking you for taking the time to read this.There’s a lot I’ve learned this month, including eating your feelings does not make the situation better, and… only makes you more upset about that extra dimple on your thigh (truth).

What I’m venting about? Babies. Rather, my inability to have another one.

I learned during a doctor appointment in late September that what we had a feeling was the truth: I can’t conceive another baby. While I’ve had this awful hunch since I got sick, diagnosed with a rare disorder called transverse myelitis in 2010, I don’t think I (or we) wanted to admit it. It made it a little easier when every doctor I saw suggested I speak to another.  Then, during a visit to my neurologist after I ran out of my nerve meds, she told me what I didn’t want to hear. How could I be off this one medication for at least three months before trying to conceive, when after one day of not having it (I ran out), the nerves in my feet, legs and stomach felt so awful I couldn’t sleep. How could I carry a baby when I have a somewhat experimental procedure on my literally now-spastic bladder to make it so I don’t pee all over myself?  The answer is I can’t.

Devastating. I sat in the car hysterically crying.

I felt especially guilty — and am continuing to work through this — because  technically my body ‘can’ have another baby, but the intense physical pain and bedridden state are not realistic. That’s hard to deal with. Putting yourself before your possible babe.

I don’t think I let this news sink in for a while. I told a few close friends and family members. Some responses were comforting while others were not what I wanted to hear. “I’m so sorry to hear but think about how lucky you are to have a little girl.” Umm, lucky? I can’t have a baby and I have major health issues. Lucky? My secret bff (my counselor) said it perfectly: people say that because they don’t know what else to say and they don’t want to feel the pain you’re feeling. She compared the ‘luck’ to someone who just got ran over by a car, but only one leg was pinned down so someone tells them how ‘lucky’ they are that it wasn’t both legs.

Think about that. Really take it in. As I sat there listening, I started to realize that I’m sure I’ve been guilty of the same. It’s like you want the people closest in your lives to share this important stuff, but how do you handle receiving it? The most comforting comments are from those who just listened, saying, “Wow, I am so sorry for you. That must be really hard news.”

I’m writing this because I now fully realize the pain, hardship and emotions that come with this type of news, and yes, we do have one baby of our own so we are fortunate. There are millions of women battling IVF and other fertility treatments, dealing with loss, wonder and pain. It’s awful and emotionally draining. Yet, we live our lives and don’t tell most around us.

I am also sharing it because my daughter turns two this month. You know what that means? The onslaught of people asking when we’re having another. It happened to me a few weeks ago at a happy hour fundraiser when two acquaintances asked me, and seemed surprised when I said “I don’t know, err, we’re happy where we are now.”

Their question hit me like a ton of bricks. I ran into the restroom crying, not mentally prepared for that. Not ready with an answer.  At the same time, I couldn’t imagine spilling this type of news in those situations because, man, how awkward for the other person. 

As for another inevitable question: yes, we’ll consider adoption but we’re waiting for now. My counselor suggested giving it six months to heal otherwise it’s just putting a band-aid on and who knows the emotions that could be brought up years from now if we don’t come to grips now. I agree. This gal is smart. That advice really relates to anyone dealing with loss of some sort.

So that’s that for my first Vent Sesh. A lot to take in, I know. I’m not asking for a million comments. Hoping some know that they’re not alone, and others remember that so many of us are dealing with things even when we have a smile on our face.

There’s a lot more to all of our stories.

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