Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Saying Goodbye.

Tonight, I held my son as he fell asleep. He's almost 6 months old, teething, and his infancy is passing by too quickly. I listened to my daughter, talking in her sleep, over the monitor in her room and I'm not sure where the time has gone with her either. I thought of their milestones, their births, my pregnancies with them and thought, "never again."

Never again will I hold my hand over my abdomen, mentally counting the days, and wondering if life is growing inside me. Nor will I feel the the strange warmth that was my first indication of a new pregnancy, the butterfly flutter of first movements, the rolling wonder of a baby mid-swim or the jolt of hiccups. My days of waddling with an achy pelvis, wearing clothes meant to make my stomach stand out versus suck in, eyeing the teeniest section of infant clothes and holding my breath while listening for a heartbeat are now in the past. No more waking at night in wonder at the acrobatics inside, patting my tummy and waiting for the return kicks. I enjoyed the excitement of labor (when it was the real deal, not that scary preterm crap) and giving birth, knowing my body played a role in bringing a miracle to light.

My husband and I never hoped for more than two children, and we spent many days wondering if we'd be blessed with even one. When it was confirmed that I was pregnant with our son, I remembering thinking "Really, God? You're going to give me everything I've hoped for? This is really happening?" Even though I'd felt convinced there were supposed to be two, the thought that my dreams were actually coming true just floored me.

Never again will I take my temperature or submit to ultrasounds, tests, medications, treatments and timing in hopes of conceiving a child. There will be no more obsessing over charts, "signs," estimated test dates or my dog-eared copy of Taking Charge of Your Fertility. No more getting excited over a temperature rise occurring the day after intercourse or feeling sick to my stomach as the temperature bottoms out and my period inevitably comes. I won't be driving myself crazy with "magical thinking" - convincing myself this is going to be the cycle because it's someone's birthday, anniversary, a holiday or some other date that just must mean this is it. (Though I do have to say my positive test with my daughter came during a blue moon and my son was conceived on Mother's Day, right in between a regular moon and a blue moon)

No more freaking tampons!

A new phase of my life begins next week, and while I will still be me through and through, it feels odd to think that so much will change and none of it will be visible from the outside. I fought horrible periods, infertility, gave birth to two gorgeous children, have had a horrible recovery period and terrible infection and now I'm getting off the ride, never to return. Forget "stop the ride, I want off," I'm blowing up the train.

I'm okay with being done having children. I couldn't ask for more than the family I'm blessed with, truly truly blessed. I do wonder about the two children I lost, and some recent comments from my daughter make me think the time is coming to truly mourn their loss. Still, my family does feel whole.

I'm not going to miss trying to conceive. TRYING is an understatement, and I feel so lucky that my marriage is one that came through that period stronger, not strained.

But.

So much of the last many years has been tied up in the struggles of trying to get pregnant and have a healthy outcome, there is a bit of a "now what" aspect to it. I'm afraid I'm going to have to wait a bit before going to Disneyland.

I know there will be times when I see a baby and feel that pang that many women know so well. I have loved babies my whole life, and in another set of shoes I might have had many. I can honestly say when its all over, even though I'm having surgery, that I will have had as many children as God would give me. Doesn't have to be a big number to fit that bill.

I'm a bit sad, knowing we're done and done in such a permanent fashion. My hubby had a vasectomy in April, and I was surprised when he walked out to find tears filling my eyes. I felt more than fine about taking that step to be done. Making it official was still a little emotional.

Next Thursday, I'll be having surgery and it's now official. There are simply too many issues with my uterus and it's coming out. I'm okay with that, just a little surprised at how all of this has turned out. Many years ago, I told my husband that I felt I would be done with having children at 30. I didn't have any major reasons for that number, I thought, but I guessed part of it was the tendency for women in my family to lose their reproductive organs at an early age.

I turned 30 just a few weeks ago....and here I am....Done.

3 comments:

~STEISE~ said...

{{{{hugs}}}}

JuliaS said...

Wow - I could have totally written this post! For over a decade I too felt like ttc, getting pg, trying to stay pg was my career.

I wish you well with your upcoming surgery. My hysterectomy is scheduled for September, though I am not as young as you, I will be 2 months shy of 40 then and my little boy is hitting 18 months. I've known since before his 1st bday I needed to have my uterus out - but wanted to put if off until he were older as I have to have it done abdominally.


Good wishes - will keep you in my thoughts and prayers. I know that may sound weird given you don't really know me. I just relate so much to what you have written and some of what you are going through.

Barb said...

Lots of love and support to you. I am 30 as well. That's a big age for either case.

Best wishes