Wednesday, August 25, 2010

RE REdux

Things are going well here (knock on wood). It took us a while, but we're starting to settle into a bit of a schedule, and the babies are even figuring out that night time is for sleeping (and eating, but at least not for being awake for hours at a time). I have a lot of help (my mom comes one day a week, a mother's helper comes a few times, and now we have someone at night a few times a week for a couple months because we're exhausted). I can't complain. My babies are beautiful.

I was contacted by the RE's office a few weeks ago to find out how everything went in the end, and they invited me to come in and visit with the babies. I called to schedule it and they gave me an 11:45 appointment. I assumed that they gave me what was essentially a lunchtime appointment because there wouldn't be patients there who would get upset.

I was wrong.

Man I felt like shit. I pushed my double stroller in, trying not to make eye contact with anyone, and checked in at the front desk. In the meantime, a woman got up and went outside, leaving her purse behind on the chair, and stood with her back to the door. I wasn't sure at first, but it soon became obvious she was wiping her eyes and trying to pull herself together.

I felt bad for her. I felt bad for ME, too. I didn't want to hurt anyone, and now someone was outside crying, solely because of my presence. Man, what an awful feeling - a feeling I felt BECAUSE I am infertile and I know what it's like. A fertile person wouldn't have had a clue. I kept on not making eye contact with anyone and feeling terribly uncomfortable. A nurse went out to get her and she came back, grabbed her purse (also without making eye contact), and went through the door to the exam rooms, the nurse grabbing a box of tissues on the way. Sigh.

It was just weird. I know, everyone writes about feeling like they don't fit in anywhere (fertile world or infertile world), about wanting to be able to celebrate their pregnancies and children without feeling guilty, and so on. I felt all of that. I know I'm so, so, so lucky, even when I don't feel like it when I have one or two screaming babies in the middle of the night. I understand how that woman felt. And I understand how fertile women feel, when they offer to give their kids away, because although infertility sucks and isn't easy, quite honestly motherhood isn't easy either (but it doesn't suck like infertility does).

But I did choose motherhood for myself, and I would never hurt someone purposely. And so for yesterday, for those who are still going to the RE and who would have been horrified to see me show up with my double stroller and apparently nonchalant attitude, I'm very, very sorry.