Friday, May 11, 2007

True North

The day after m/c#2, I collapsed in a heap in front of my bedside table and started sobbing. It was the middle of the day on a Saturday. But, for me, everything was black, dark and shady.

I was convinced that I would never have a child. I saw my life stretched before me like a desolate road across a desert in the winter. Sure, I was taken care of and there were even moments of happiness, but there was this big hole of regret and longing that could never get filled. . .for the rest of my life.

I was afraid, no, make that terrified, to get pregnant again. But even more worried about what my life would look like without a child.

As much as this sucks, not being a mom would suck even more.

A bright pink book from the stack of fertility books stacked by the bed caught my eye. I forget the title but the book is an IF and ART primer, which reads kind of like the “Girlfriend’s Guide to Pregnancy.” I don’t know why, but I flipped to the back of the book to the chapter on adoption.

A sentence caught my eye: “Someday, you will be a mom. Whether your child comes through the birth canal or from the international arrivals terminal…”

All of a sudden, I saw it. Cowboy and I standing in line at customs with an older baby in my arms. I imagined exactly what we’d be wearing. I could feel myself holding back tears of joy as Cowboy handed 3 passports over to the customs agent. I started sobbing again.

I knew in an instant that this might be our path.

Cowboy gave the green light. He’d be open to adoption. In fact, he was attracted to the fact that we’d be giving some child in a pretty hopeless situation a brighter future.

I started researching adoption* right away. I was desperate. I needed to hang onto to something, anything to prove to myself that I would be a mom someday.

What scared me the most was that, even with ART, there is no guarantee. Go to Cyclesista and it seems like about 3 or 4 of every sister ART cycling hits the jackpot each month. Everyone else, thanks for playing.

I know this seems harsh, but it's the truth.

And I don’t know if I could go through serious ART and for it not work or to miscarry again after these previous miscarriages. Could I physically survive it? Of course. Would it break my spirit? Damn near. Would I be brave enough to try again like some of the tenacious women out there in blogland? I seriously doubt it.

And where would I be in the worst case scenario? Right here where I am now, only in worse shape emotionally, physically, financially and spiritually.

I’m not sure I can sign up for the potential of it. How chicken shit is that?

My therapist and OB strongly suggested I see an RE. Don’t give up, they said. I think they saw my immediate attraction to adoption versus ART as a defense mechanism.

But several weeks later, I still get the mental image of the three of us coming through international arrivals and I start to cry. Happy tears though.

Is this just the picture I’ve created to hang on to the dream of motherhood? My security blanket for when I'm feeling frantic?

Or is this truly the path to motherhood that I feel the most comfortable with?

Will I mourn never being pregnant and giving birth? Will I forever long that my child won’t have Cowboy’s twinkly blue eyes?

Or will I be content with simply being someone’s mother no matter how I got there?

Today I feel like I’m at a crossroads staring at these paths, trying to decipher a map, guessing at which path will take me to Destination Mom and be the most gratifying along the way.

So with these questions weighing on my mind, I wish each of you a Happy (pre) Mother’s Day. Because I know everyone who wants to be a mom will get there one way or another.

I hope you are content with your motherhood path. I hope I find my path soon because right now I'm hanging out at the trailhead. Slacker.

* Depending how far we get on the adoption decision, I’ll save the international versus domestic adoption issue for another post. After quick research, for our family, international seemed the most logical choice but I know it is not the answer for everyone.


Coffeegrl said...

I had a similar emotional reaction when I read something essentially the same from Alice Domar's book about conquering infertility - it's possible for all of us. It's just that the journey can suck. But I completely sympathize with the very emotional reaction!

Chili said...

I wish you all the best in finding the right path for you. The journey does totally suck, but it's one worth fighting to take. Great post.

Alice said...

I share similiar fears--and adoption is something I am kicking around as well.

Bumble said...

This post almost had me in tears... happy tears though. What a wonderful image. I know you'll be a mother however you end up there. x

Sticky Bun said...

This is a great post. You will be a mom...and I wish you peace as you struggle through the journey to get there.

thinking of you...

Thalia said...

adoption is the right path for many people, you need to give yourself the chance to figure out what's best for you and your cowboy.