introductions usually follow a pattern and inevitably i get asked if i have kids, just like i probably inquire of others.
i used to just say no. the finality of that no triggers something in the questioner, who usually has several follow up questions in the “do you want children?” category. i’m not even sure why that question really cuts. it might have something to do with not wanting to be summed up or categorized or have my current childless status overshadow a life of experience and desire.
now i answer that question with, not yet. and sometimes, depending on the person, i’ll mention that i have been waiting a while for that not yet to become yes.
after uttering my most recent, not yet, a not so uncommon thing occurred – the other person began to regale me with her plan. most importantly that if she were to have a third child, it’d have to happen soon since she was not having a baby after 30.
two years ago when i researched doctors throughout seattle i found the highest rated clinic. despite my friends’ raves, it really wasn’t all that great for me. i liked my doctor, but she was hard to get to, blocked by assistants and nurses. the receptionists and front desk girls were repeatedly clueless and rude often pushing me to tears. after two miscarriages in a year, i did not feel like they knew me, or remembered my file or had anything to offer me other than, “keep trying and see if it sticks this time!” it seems that clinic is good once you are pregnant, but they aren’t sure what to do with you when you are in baby limbo.
since march i have felt really lost.
lost because every month that ticks by with its accompanying moon time means another month lost. lost because my old doctor wanted to charge everything as fertility and we weren’t in a position to face that yet. lost because although she is a good doctor, i felt forgotten, floundering on my own. lost because it is hard to wade through doctors and offices and insurances. it’s hard to make those kinds of decisions. it’s even harder to get answers out of clinics because once i explained my brief history they automatically placed me in the fertility category and i felt like there was more that could be done before we got there. lost because everyone has advice to offer and all of it is so different from my experience and makes me feel like i wasn’t doing enough, that somehow, the burden of me not having babies was my fault. lost because i am not ready to say i can be happy no matter what comes.
last week i took my “nearing-mid-30s” self to a new doctor. a doctor that had not popped up in my research and was in a completely different city. a doctor suggested by someone i had just met at church. a doctor who was incredibly kind, who listened to everything i had been through and prescribed and been tested on and suggested a different course. a doctor who patted my knee like a grandfather and said, “we’ll get you pregnant kiddo.” a doctor who walked me to the check out desk himself. a doctor who gave me hope for the first time in a very long time.
sometimes i feel like taking up arms against my sea of troubles, but unlike hamlet, even though our flesh is heir to heart-ache i am not yet ready to sleep.