Thursday, July 24, 2008

The unfairness doctrine, revisited.

Back in March, I wrote about "The unfairness doctrine." As in, "It's just not fair that [insert name of unfit parent here] gets to have children, and I don't." Of course, we infertile people don't like to admit that we even have this thought, but we do.

The unfairness doctrine raised its ugly head for me again when I found out recently that a family friend is pregnant with her second child. She's a wonderful person and a great mom, so normally, this would be cause for celebration. And I am happy for her. Really. But here's the thing: She got pregnant during a visit from her estranged husband, who lives on the other side of the country.

So my first thought when I heard this news was: It's just not fair. I mean, on our third and last IVF, which was medicated and timed to the minute, we transferred four embryos and a goddamned blastocyst, and I still didn't get pregnant. And I'm married to a guy who's one of the best dads I've ever seen. If anyone "deserves" another baby, it's him.

But then I noticed something else. This time, the unfairness doctrine only lasted for a second. (OK, maybe 5 seconds.) It resolved quickly into an internal shrug of the shoulders and the thought, Oh well, who can explain how the Universe works? I didn't feel that blow to the heart that I used to feel when hearing or reading about someone else's pregnancy. Could it be that I've actually come to terms with my infertility, and with being the parent of a singleton?

A lot of doors have opened for me since we stopped trying to get pregnant. I finished a book, signed a contract for the next one, and had a short story (which the publisher wants me to turn into a novel) accepted to a publication. In my "other" life, I also got a great new job that I'll start Monday. Not everything's perfect (witness my thigh and my sex life), but it's pretty good.

I will always wonder what our second child would have been like. And it's hard not to be aware of one's cycle, or worry about what you eat and drink. But in some ways, I'm moving on.

I was also going to talk in this post about one of the great panels I attended at BlogHer '08: called "When the Road to Motherhood is Anything But Smooth: Infertility, Adoption and Miscarriage Bloggers." But this post is getting hang on to your horses. I'll talk about it, and the fabulous Sex and Relationships meet-up I sat in on, in my next posts.

1 comment:

zhadi said...

I can only begin to imagine how you must have felt when the infertility issue came up. I admire your strength and courage to have reached this point of acceptance...and I'm so glad you and Nima had one spawn to share with the world! You're an amazing woman, Cindi, and may life continue to open doors for you.

Btw, if my thighs were as slender as yours, I'd be a VERY happy woman.