A lot of sleep, a shower, a few nice chockies, and I feel like a new woman. It's remarkable what a difference the right medical treatment makes. I don't like feeling morose. But I've still got a few issues to work out, so indulge me just a tad longer, please.
Yesterday I was extremely nervous going into the operating theatre, and made this clear to my surgeon (Dr SB). I said that the last person who had curetted me seemed quite shocked afterwards at how soft my uterus had been. Tut tut, tsked Dr SB. Readers, he took me seriously. He wrote a few notes on my form and made the decision to administer a certain drug that would make the organ contract so that he'd have something to push against. Even if he'd planned to do it beforehand, the fact that he didn't just shush me and knock me out made a big difference, and I went down into the abyss a lot happier.
Waking up without stitched and a bloated laproscopy belly was such a treat. Instead of days of discomfort and stress, I was given a plate of mixed sandwiches and a cup of tea. Instead of seeing me incontrollably shaking from the cold and shock of being stabbed internally, Best Beloved came in to find me sitting up and smiling at him groggily. That's a big step towards healing.
I don't feel a lot emotionally at the moment. I'll probably feel more later, when my body is back to normal, or when I'm finally crossing that line when more chances to try are absolutely out of the question (at the moment I'd like to think that is NOW, but we'll see.)
I tried very hard to stay mentally detached from the whole pregnancy thing because part of my brain knew that it was a dodgy deal; of course it's impossible to be truly detached, because I was there, living inside a pregnant body. Yeah, I know, but no matter how many times I try to think of myself as a complete entity, I never succeed. Mind/body separation is a reality in my universe. I am here, my body is down there. It's always been so.
Bodies are frustrating things, especially female bodies, don't you think? I'm sure male bodies have their own bugs and features, but female bodies just take the cake. Sexualised, worshipped, reviled, abused, enhanced, starved, indulged; there's no neutral position. I must say here that I'm usually great friends with my body. Ordinarily, it's a good strong, healthy body that rarely lets me down. It's not a particularly ideal body by societal norms: my legs are short and lumpy, my bum IS too big in whatever I'm wearing (so I've never asked that question of anyone). But my body gets me where I want to go, does what I want it to do, and in fact has never been short of admirers for too long, so societal norms can go jump.
It was quite a shock to discover, in my late 20s and early 30s, that I wasn't in control of all my bodily functions. I managed to have a baby (unplanned, but blessed every minute he's been alive), but it was a struggle involving a lot of medical intervention and emotional investment that shocked me to my core. Both my body and my baby's body proved to be fragile entities that all the willpower in the world couldn't control. The only things on my side were luck to have been born at the right time and the fact that modern medicine had got to the stage it had. Bumblebee would have been left for dead only 20 years earlier, and last century I would have been left for dead whilst having him.
I can't even begin to imagine what it would be like to be diagnosed with a horrid disease like cancer. I've been reading Humanities Researcher and admiring Stephanie's sharing of her journey through illness to recovery (I hope). That sense of your body betraying your life choices is a resonant one. Everything you want to do has to be put on hold, because if you don't take the time out and listen to your physical needs, the chance of doing anything in the future is compromised.
For me, as I mentioned the other day, having another child was a choice that everyone around me wanted me to make, but I was very reluctant to be proactive about. I have friends and family who have urged me (quite hard, and unfortunately, even today, are still urging) to try again 'while I'm still young enough'. That's the partly the problem. I'm not really still young enough. Anyone that thinks that they can put off having children until they're ready has to really think hard about the risks. After 35, the risks increase dramatically. (This message is not sponsored by the Federal Government.) Old eggs, old body, tired mind. If you have kids after 40, expect to do everything the HARD way. And that's not the life for me. I knew I was pregnant before I did the test because of the absolute, overwhelming tiredness. I was utterly exhausted by very normal activities, and I look forward to getting my energy back. I'm going to gambol like a newborn lamb.
The other part of the problem is a selfish one. Much of this urging is really on Best Beloved's behalf. He would love to have his own kids, but he doesn't want them at my expense. I would love to give him his own kids, but not at my expense. Having another baby (or even trying to get one whole and healthy out of me) means I really honestly wouldn't be able to concentrate on the projects that I hold dear and have been working towards for years. Ironically, in the last two years I've been setting up these projects to distract me from the fact that I'm hopelessly bad at babymaking. But now they've got a life of their own, and it's at the point where if I don't give them a go while I'm young enough to work hard at them, I'll hate myself for not trying.
Baby or books? Family or career? It's an age-old quandry, and I know that there are many many MANY women out there in the midst of it. Doesn't it suck? Isn't it shitty that you can't just order babies out of some gender-neutral catalogue? Isn't it outrageous that there are millions of kids in the world who need loving families and it takes so much money and red tape to be able to adopt them? I'll never be able to understand why that is so. Or why same-sex couples in long-lasting loving relationships get so much grief about wanting to bring up kids when there are millions of heterosexual couples out there who seem to think their kids should be in the doghouse with their pets?
These are the sorts of things I think about while lying in bed. I drive BB mad by saying that if I spend five years trying to have a baby I'll resent myself for never making the books I always promised myself; but if I don't try I'm scared that he'll resent me for not taking his needs seriously. To his absolute credit, there is no pressure from BB's side. He and Bumblebee have been seriously scared on both these occasions (more so last time) and they keep insisting that it's totally my choice whether I want to go through it again. But somehow that doesn't make it any easier.
Hey, I'm a Libran. I can't make choices like that. :)
Anyway, thanks for all the fab messages. Normal broadcasts will resume shortly. [Fyodor, you're a real man of mystery, but thanks for giving me something to think about yesterday in the waiting room...]