Sunday, July 17, 2005

Reality Check

I was going to write about this last night, but, for a change, my infertility woes took a backseat to the delights of reading Harry Potter....

Sean went out to PA yesterday with his mom, 'Lil Man and the Dementor to a BBQ at his uncle's house whilst I navigated my way through Bergen County for the bridal shower (not an easy feat, anyone out there who knows that area of NJ would probably agree with me) and the conversation from hell with my director about Cunt Rag. We left the house around the same time, and I was kidding around (sort of) and asked him to please make sure that my reproductive system was not a topic of conversation at the party. For those of you who have followed my IVF saga, these are the same relatives that I dealt with on Easter Sunday (if you're not sure, look in the archives for the drama) because my mother-in-law decided to tell her family, without consulting me first, that I was doing IVF. So, understandibly, I was on my guard. But Sean promised that there would be no infertility talk going on. So, on our happy way we both went.

He got home around 9:30 last night, and when I asked him if he had fun he said yes, it was fun, had a lot to eat, played games, blah blah blah, but he seemed a bit upset. Then he said that something happened that bothered him for the rest of the day.

There was a woman there, a friend of his aunt's, a very nice woman apparently, that he casually talked to throughout the day. When her and her husband went to leave, of course, my hunky hubby being the well-mannered gentleman he is, got up to say goodbye to them. The woman asked Sean about how long he's been married, so he tells her that we're going to celebrate our 5th anniversary in October. Then the woman asks if we have any kids, and he said no. Then she comments that we've been married an awfully long time not to have any children. So, Sean told me that he got a little upset when she said that and said to her "well, children are a blessing-but, it's a blessing that's easier for some people to have than others", and walked away from her.

He said that he didn't mean to be rude or anything, but it upset him that this woman could be so forward about asking something that's so private. He told me that his mother, later on, told the woman we were having a hard time getting pregnant (but no details) and the woman felt horrible about bringing it up. Sean was a bit upset about the whole exchange, because he's not that kind of person, and he was in a bit of a funk for the rest of the day.

I really felt for him. I did. I told him that he shouldn't feel guilty about his reaction, because we're more sensitive to questions like that, given our situation. At the same time, though, I wanted to say this:

Now you know how I feel, every single day, every single time someone says something stupid like that to me.

But I didn't. Because, in the end, does it really matter?

Last night showed me that I'm not the only casualty in this war. That I'm not the only one who hurts, who gets depressed and sad and thinks that this is all shitty and wonders what I've done to deserve all this hell.

I get so wrapped up in my own misery at my body that I forget that my own husband is in agony over this too. That it bothers him as well, perhaps even more than it bothers me. I know that he feels horribly guilty because I'm the one who has to go through all the tests, shots, surgeries, and the indignity of having ten million people looking up my coochie every month, when all he has to do is splooge into a cup. Survivor's guilt.

So, I say to this woman, whoever you are--thank you for reminding me that, even though it is ultimately about my body, it's not always about me and how I feel.


Heather said...

I never ask any married people when they are going to have children. I think it's just rude. My DH and I tried from the moment we got married. We had our sixth wedding anniversary right after Phoebe was born. BTW, she was 4 weeks early. She wasn't due until after our anniversary.

Shelli said...

wow. How nosy of her, but what a G-d thing, like a reminder, too.

Hugs to DH from me.


cat said...

They suffer along with us. I forget this too many times. Thanks for reminding me too. ((Hugs)) to you both.

Good luck w/ the show this weekend!