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Posts tagged ‘Family’

Because Of Course

I once read (in a peer reviewed academic article) that moms who have relinquished experience secondary infertility at higher rates than the general population.

I have several hypotheses as to why this might be so, but I have no data to back any of them up and I’m not sure that right now my hypotheses matter.

What I do know is that right now I’m struggling with feelings and self hate. If I believed in God maybe I could foist the hate in his or her direction, but I don’t so instead I am the recipient of my own emotion.

Did you know you could have PCOS without having any actual ovarian cysts? Based on the tests I’ve had, the books I’ve read, the doctors I’ve seen, and yes some unwise google searches it’s not going to be easy for me to get pregnant now that I want to. Because of course it’s not. Either eating my feelings has made me fat and fucked up my hormones or my fucked up hormones have made me fat but either way I’m not in prime baby making shape. I was supposed to have a GYN follow up in January, but I chose to not attend. I’ll reschedule eventually. I will. I always do.

It’s quite possible I gave away my only shot at parenthood. It’s also quite possible that fear of repeat unplanned pregnancy led to me pumping myself full of hormones for the last 13 years which has me all out of whack now. Either way I did this to myself.

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Tuesday Reflections on ThrowBack Thursday

Kidlet and I are friends on a social media platform. (He initiated the connection so no it’s not some weird non-boundary having birth mom predatory thing) <– why do i even still feel i have to make these types of disclaimers!

ANYWAY

Kidlet and I are social media friends. Sometimes I’ll post a Throw Back Thursday picture of him or of us, especially around his birthday or just when I’m missing him particularly much. One such photo he commented on was from our very first face to face live and in person visit. I asked if he remembered that visit and he doesn’t really, which could have made me sad. Perhaps it should have made me sad, but it actually makes me smile.

It makes me smile because this means I have been a real physical human being person in his life for as long as he remembers. There is no time when I was just a name, or photo, or holiday card. He has known me for the entirety of his memory.

I used to worry that we didn’t start visits soon enough. That my inability to visit sooner had created this split in his experience the part of his life where he didn’t really know me and the part where he does.

Perhaps this is entirely selfish, but i’m glad there is no such division. I’m glad he has known me for as long as he can remember.

It might seem like a small thing, but it’s big to me. and it makes me smile.

 

Sometimes It’s Hard

Sometimes it’s hard being a Black* Chick married to a White Guy.  Being a six hour plane ride from my family and only a 45 minute from his makes it harder.  We spend a lot of time with them which only increases the amount of time I spend in soley white spaces.  White, conservative, Christian spaces. It takes a lot of energy to be the right kind of me for that. I always end the evening drained. I don’t say this to play the martyr. I LOVE my sister-in-law even if she was born in the 90s and I have to exclaim “WHY ARE YOU SO YOUNG” way too often when she doesn’t immediately understand my pop culture references.

But sometimes, just sometimes, I wish I had (more) Black friends.

School is a bit more diverse, but there are no other Black social work doctoral students. Chinese, Korean, Japanese, White, Indian (from India), Mexican, Latino American but I’m the only Black. It’s great to be around such diversity the international components and perspectives are great.

But I wish I had (more) Black friends.

I wish I could talk about white privilege without having to qualify it and jump to intersectionality to quell the “but I’m not as privileged as…” comments. I wish I could talk mention racism without having to immediately apologize.

I’m tired of conversations like the one I had yesterday.

“I’m not saying he’s a racist I’m saying what he said was racist.”

“lets say…condescending…or problematic…”

“uhhh it was racist”

“thats not helpful”

I wish I had Black friends.

I want to go see Dear White People. TeacherMan admits he thinks it may make him uncomfortable**. I know how that feels. I don’t want to be the cause of that so I told him I’d go see it alone. This upsets him.

I wish I had Black friends.

*I used to use the term Black-ish, but now thats a tv show. so yeah.

**Not the word he used but I can’t remember the exact word so close enough.

August 14 2001

It took some doing but all the calls were called and the arrangements arranged and all that was left was for a baby to be born.

If only it was that easy.

Amidst the contracting and pushing people showed up. My mom, my boyfriend, his aunt who’d driven him…maybe more I don’t really remember.

There was also a steady stream of strangers coming in to check this or that as is the joy of giving birth at a teaching hospital. I don’t remember much about them either, but why should I they barely spoke to me. Until, that is, one of the strangers brought me a paper to sign.

Turns out I was going to need a Caesarian. I remember asking why and being gruffly told if I didn’t either I or the baby or both would die. My mom ended up being the one to go into the operating room with me. I’m glad because she was able to joke with me when things got scary. For instance when I heard a crash and then “ooppss” or when a voice said “whats that?” both of which are things you don’t want to hear while you’re cut open on a table.

I knew he was finally out not from some announcement. No one said “it’s a boy” or “congratulations” or even “he’s okay” the words I heard instead were

He’s white

I guess dominant and recessive genes aren’t something doctors are taught in med school.

Momma was the first to hold him and she held him near my face so I could see him. And while the operation had felt like it had taken forever the moments i had looking at my baby were gone too soon. They whisked him off to the nursery while they finished sewing me up.

I spent most of the rest of that day in the recovery room area offering to share my popsicles with orderlies (blame it on the morphine), napping, and waiting for my baby’s parents to arrive.

August 13 2001

In August of 2001 I was pregnant. My sister was out of town leaving her car with me. The morning of the 13th started out pretty unremarkable. I stopped and checked my sister’s mail the headed to the clinic for my check up.

After waiting for the typical forever a nurse took my vitals and showed me to an exam room where I waited to be seen by a random OBGYN. I never saw the same doctor, but it didn’t really matter since they all treated me with the same indifference. Ah the joys of a military hospital.

The doc du jour did a quick exam and left the room speaking only a handful of words if any at all. I took that as my cue to leave.

As I walked away from the clinic the nurse who’d taken my vitals stopped me. Apparently the doctor wanted me to go to report to Labor & Delivery.

Once again the staff barely spoke to me. I had no idea why I was there. They connected me to some machines and drew the curtain around my bed.

On the other side of the curtain was another pregnant 18 year old. Only she was married to a soldier while I was the unmarried daughter of one. Perhaps this is why the staff actually explained their procedures to her, answered her questions, and generally treated her like a human being.

I called my father at some point and he came down for awhile. We were told nothing would be happening for awhile so he went home.

I tried to call the parents I’d chosen for my son but couldn’t from the hospital so I had my mom call from home. (Looking back I’d hashtag this as: Holy no cell phone inconvenience batman)

I also called my boyfriend to let him know where I was.

They hooked me up to pitocin and stripped my membranes (broke my water) at least twice. Sometime after 11 that night more phone calls were made to assemble the troops. It was time to start pushing.

And that is how I ended August 13, 2001. Alone behind a curtain scared, in pain, and waiting for my people to join me…

Open Adoption Roundtable #11: It’s Beginning to FEEL a Lot Like Christmas

Heather, over at PNR has posted the next OAR writing prompt.

An open-ended prompt this round, because it’s always interesting to see where each of us takes it:

Write about open adoption and the holiday season.

Yes, I know the lyric is “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas” but for me Christmas is about the feelings.  So far the Christmasy feel boils down to:

COLD: as in it’s been 8 degrees this week when I arrive at my internship in the mornings. So cold that it half my commute just for the car to warm up enough for the heat to be of any use.  So cold that I wear thigh high socks plus wool socks plus boots and my toes are still cold.

FESTIVE: DirtyRed went out and bought a tree and she and GeishaGirl decorated it. THey’ve been burning holiday candles for weeks and their stockings are hung above the fireplace.  For my part I had a peppermint martini at my favorite resaurant this week YUM!

MERRY: The only music being played in my car since the day after Thanksgiving has been Christmas music (well except for the ONE day I allowed Mohawk to pick the music)

So what does any of this have to do with adoption? The last feeling that lets me know the holidays are here is:

LONELY: as in I can try to imagine what Kidlet is up to this time of year.  But I won’t be there.  I wont experience it with him.

I have a video his parents sent me a few years back, him playing with his dreidel and counting in Hebrew (TOO CUTE!)

I’ve been to the house so can imagine quite clearly the spot where their Christmas tree will sit.

I’ve seen him open birthday presents so I can change the wrapping in my minds eye and have a good idea of what his face will be like on Christmas morning…

But he will never walk hand in hand with me and experience the magic of Zoo Lights.

I won’t be able to teach him the simple joy of St. Nikolaus Tag.

He won’t gather with my family  and neighbors Christmas eve eating taquitos and laughing.

He won’t pile in my parents van and drive from neighborhood to neighborhood searching for extravegant light displays.

He won’t return to my parents house to open gifts.

He won’t sleep over and wake early to find that Santa has arrived.

He won’t be able to steal bits of food and sweets while I help momma cook Christmas dinner.

I’ve missed all these things since Christmas 2001, but its worse now watching my sister share all these things with my nieces.

Yesterday I hit the holiday wall. I should have written this post sooner so as not to be a downer.  I’m going to bed now, wake me in January.