Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Eyes on the Prize
I'm angry. If you've read any of my other postings I guess you know that already. Even though it makes other people uncomfortable, I refuse to be ashamed of my anger or apologize for it. Fuck that, I earned it. I paid for that anger with my dreams and hopes and tears. It's mine, I own it. I embrace it. I look it straight the eye and stare it down. And each day, it gets a little bit smaller, a little bit weaker, because anger thrives on neglect and only grows when you ignore it. If I continue to shine light on my anger it will eventually shrivel up and die.
But I want to take a minute today and ease up on the anger just long enough to remember why I've put myself through all this in the first place. Why I will endure more testing, get a second opinion, have this new fibroid removed--whatever it takes to improve my chances of success--and undergo another IVF cycle just as soon as I am able.
I want to be pregnant. I want to start protecting and nurturing my baby when it's still nothing more than an amorphous blob. I want to bond with my baby before it's born, and hear its heart beating inside of me. I want to sing to it. I want to see ultrasound pictures of my unborn baby and laugh about how much it looks like an alien. I want to puke my guts out. I want total strangers to come up to me in the grocery store and touch my belly. I want to waddle.
I want a baby. I want a sweet little lump that's completely dependent on me. I want to feel my heart melt the first time the baby recognizes me. I want to make funny faces until the baby smiles. I want to see my husband gently holding our baby in his arms, and toting it around in a Baby Bjorn. I want to be jolted awake in the middle of the night by the sound of a squawking baby monitor. I want to sing our baby back to sleep knowing that he or she doesn't care that I'm tone deaf because they've known my voice since before they were born. I want to change stinky poopy diapers and clean up projectile vomit. I want to google "how to make a baby stop crying" out of sheer desperation.
I want a toddler. I want to play peek-a-boo and sing "wheels on the bus." I want a small person running around the house getting into everything, and I want to stick those little plastic plugs in all our outlets and put breakables out of reach. I want there to be brightly colored plastic toys scattered through every room. I want to teach my child the names of all the things that make up their world and I want him or her to think I know everything. I want to read the same bedtime story over and over until I can read it with my eyes closed. I want to be mortified when my toddler has a meltdown in the middle of Target, or bites another kid on the playground. I want to read all those parenting books and figure out how best to discipline my otherwise perfect offspring.
I want a child. I want to teach it to love the great outdoors and to know right from wrong. I want to be Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and to leave tiny gold glitter footprints on my child's pillow the first time the tooth fairy comes. I want parent-teacher meetings and after-school activities and science fairs. At the risk of further aging myself by referencing the movie Splash, I want to go see my kid play a tooth in the school play. I want to be given birthday presents crafted from popsicle sticks and dried macaroni. I want to encourage my child's interests and talents, and celebrate when they succeed. I want to dry their tears and reassure them of my unwavering love when they fail. I want to bandage boo-boos and chase the monsters out from under the bed. I want to be asked "why?" over and over and over and over again, and I want to say, "because I'm the mommy, THAT'S why!"
I know it won't be easy. But I want it so badly I ache. I want to face all the challenges of parenting: the good stuff and the bad. I want there to be something in my life that is more important than me. I want us to be a family. And it breaks my heart to think that it may never happen. But the hope that maybe, one day, it will....well, that's what keeps me going, even through the darkest days. That's the prize on which I keep my eyes.