Sunday, May 17, 2009

Musings on bloggyness

Oh, how life has changed. I still read all of the many blogs that I read while TTC and on bedrest, but I feel so disconnected. I want to cheer everyone on, and am continually thankful for the near 2 years of support I have been given from this community. But as a new parent, one of the ones who "succeeded," I feel like a bit of a chump. It is like being stuck between two worlds. One where I relate whole-heartedly to those on the roller-coaster, or on couch-arrest. But where I "fit," momentarily, into the fertile world. I am one of the lucky ones who conceived and birthed a child (not without many scary moments.) Yet I still feel uncomfortable when I see a pregnant woman out and about in the world. Oh, aren't you special to be pregnant and allowed to do your own grocery shopping! I make a lot of assumptions about how easy it is for other women. I know my assumptions are sometimes wrong, even cruel.

The spring has been a rude awakening. As the frost melts, I have been spending more time out in the world-- strolling the boy around the neighborhood. I have run into many an acquaintance who never even knew I was pregnant, let alone have a six month old! It feels weird to have to rehash my rocky pregnancy in a way that is palatable to someone you don't know so well. Surely, not everyone needs to know about the mechanics of my faulty cervix (ewww.) I certainly don't share what came before then. No one really wants to hear about your multiple miscarriages and your lap/hyst.

I am, in general, a shy person-- with strangers at least. It takes a lot out of me to negotiate small talk. I feel nervous and silly. Being a parent has not changed that. I know some women who have "blossomed" after having kids. Their children become a conduit through which they are more free in conversation. "We have the same stroller! Oh my gosh, I have never seen anyone with that stroller!" I don't know if it is the predictability of the conversations, or the strange personal nature of them that turns me off. Either way, I am whole-heartily disinterested in talking with strangers about my son. Yes, that is sweet and nice that someone tells me they think he is cute-- but seriously, what else would one say! Um, your baby's ears stick out funny!?! I don't have the privilege of recounting my smooth pregnancy and uncomplicated, unmedicated birth. I don't get to compare notes after running into a couple I attended birth classes with. I couldn't go to birth classes, because I was stuck in bed! My son is a person, not an accessory. He is a baby like any other. And while he is very special to me, I don't want his to grow up thinking he is the center of the universe. I want him to be part of the collective universe. I guess when it comes to him in public space, I am much more private than I thought I would be. He is not a trophy. He is a little boy.

And perhaps being outed from both camps is ok for now, because my glorious and beautiful boy takes up most of my time (phew, if feels good to brag about how marvelous he is.) But I suspect the day will come when I need to lean on this blog again. There will be questions about progesterone shots, bleeding and a cerclage. There will be musings about how to mind a toddler when you are supposed to stay in bed. At least I hope there will be. Not to say that I look forward to another complicated pregnancy. But I look forward to having another kid. If I am honest with myself, I would really like 4 or 5 (I am totally serious.) But on account of my body, 2 may be the limit. One, may actually be the limit. Who knows. I fear speculating.

I just love that I have this blog, and that I can read about everyone else's experiences too. It is just rad that this world, this place, exists for me-- and for you. So even though my posts are becoming few and far between, and won't forget how I am like you, and how you are like me. And I won't ever stop dreaming that all of you some day get what I am so amazingly fortunate to have. A child.

Oh, and the boy is sitting up! Joy!


Susan K said...

Your son IS beautiful, and you have every right to be proud of him and yourself. However, I absolutely love your perspective on parenthood and giving your child a proper view of his place in the world. There are far too many helicopter parents out there, brandishing their babies like trophies. Thank you for not being one of them!

And I too hope to have at least four or five kids. It's rarer these days, but not unheard of! And lastly, I'm not announcing this on my blog yet, but I am pregnant for a third time (six weeks tomorrow). Hope my third time's the charm, like yours was for you. :)

Anonymous said...

Parenting after IF is a strange place to be. I know what you mean about wanting to continue to support those still in the trenches - I do it but worry about seeming like an asshole.

Given that MOST people do not have to deal with IF or hellish pgs, I think your assumptions are probably correct most of the time. That's how I rationalise mine anyway :)

I hate the way people are so derogatory to babies and children, they are people too, as you say! Nobody wants to hear about how hard it was, because it's all ok NOW, which is very insulting to what you've been through.

You and D do look absolutely wonderful.

loribeth said...

Aww, he's so cute (& so BIG!).

I am sure parenting after infertility is a strange place to be in... but there are plenty of you out there doing it -- so I'm glad you are continuing to post!

May said...

Several years after all my drama, I have settled into a pattern where I:

- try to support people on bedrest that I find through Mel's lost and found

- tell anyone who asks a thumbnail sketch if what I went through to have my kids, in a hope of increasing awareness that it's just not that easy for some of us

It works well for me. Congratulations on the sitting! Big milestone!!

sara said...

Gosh sweetie...he is beautiful. Parenting after all the heck you've been through is tough. There are no books for that, not instruction manuals. It's hard being in that in between place. You're on the side of parent, yet have the battle wounds to not feel quite at home. You're wanting another, yet hesitant to what might lay ahead and knowing no one understands. I'm always here girl...your story is so similar to mine. And can I say how amazing you both look?!?!

jenn said...

I feel you- especially on the baby small talk- I find it so awkward. Of course I think she's beautiful & perfect too- I could talk for hours on all the special things she does, but that's not what anyone really wants when they make the small talk.
It is a tough place to be- the middle ground of parenting after IF. I really don't have any advice as I am navigating it as well!

I can say with all sincerity though- that you & D are so cute! I can't believe how big he is already!