January 19, 2010
Making sense of emotions that don’t make sense
I’ve been trying to write this post all weekend, but I kept not being able to find the words to begin. So, I guess I’ll start with the facts.
On Saturday, I found out that a friend is 12 weeks pregnant, and was DEVASTATED. Then on Sunday, I found out that another friend is 6 weeks pregnant, and was THRILLED. Seriously?? What is my problem?!?
I guess I should share some background, by way of explanation. The first friend (let’s call her SJ) has been a friend for my entire life. Our mothers were best friends since middle school (until a misunderstanding during my friend’s wedding preparations), and we grew up together with our mothers as honorary “aunts”. Our friendship has ebbed and flowed – I pulled back for several years because I found her very self-centered, but refreshed our relationship when she met her husband (who seemed to temper her a bit). Over the past year or so, I’ve pulled back again, mostly because she just didn’t seem to understand what I needed while going through IF treatments. I don’t necessarily blame her for being self-involved – the sun rises and sets around SJ with her mother – but it just isn’t the kind of person I have wanted around me.
Perfect example – she and her husband decided to start “trying” around July or August, and when I saw her in early October, she made a comment about how “isn’t it crazy how much effort and money we put into NOT getting pregnant when we’re younger, and then it doesn’t just happen as soon as you go off birth control?” Of course, that comment was with some meaningless caveat pretending to sympathize with our situation…but to be honest, I wouldn’t have expected anything less (or I guess more) from her. Oh, and the kicker? They are BIG planners and had worked out exactly when they needed to get pregnant so that they wouldn’t have the baby during her hubby’s busiest time at work – and actually had planned to try for 3 or 4 months and then take 2-3 months off to avoid that time. I’m sure you can imagine how I feel about people who are able to plan their children…
Fast forward three months (yes, I’ve avoided her since October), and I started getting all sorts of emails and FB messages saying that we “NEEDED” to get together, that it’s been “SO LONG”, etc. And S and I just knew that they were pregnant. So after I felt like I couldn’t ignore her messages any longer, I decided to invite them to our house for dinner, so that we’d be on MY turf in case we ended up being right. So Saturday night arrived and after SJ elected to drink water and some very awkward silences during the “catching up” part of the evening, she finally told us. Strangely enough, even knowing that it was coming didn’t make it any easier. I literally went into shock. Thank God for my husband – he carried the rest of the evening, asking all of the right questions and being enthusiastic enough for the two of us. I did of course say all the right platitudes, but I was just sort of numb.
Later, after they left, S forced me to realize that SJ had been unusually compassionate, telling us in a relatively subtle way (not the first thing after they arrived), in person, and before the rest of our friends. And she did seem very nervous towards the beginning of the evening, which S took to mean that she cared enough about us to be worried about how we’d take the news. So after crying myself to sleep, and waking up with a crippling migraine, I wrote her an email congratulating her again, thanking her for the way she told us, and apologizing for not being able to react the way I would like. She actually wrote me a very nice message back, so for now, I’ve decided to give her the benefit of the doubt, and make an effort to support her (as much as I can) in her pregnancy.
My second friend (let’s call her FL) – who mostly told me because I told her about SJ and begged her for some better news 😉 – elicited a completely different reaction. Again, a lot of this has to do with my “deservedness” scale (completely unfair, I know), but also because I feel closer to her, and am genuinely happy for her and her husband. FL and I have also been friends most of our lives, since elementary school, but have gotten significantly closer over the past few years (after our hubbies discovered they were soul mates ;-)). FL and her husband have been trying for a while now (maybe 9 months or so?) and S and I have been anxiously waiting for their announcement. More than the fact that they “put in their time” (which to be honest, I wish they hadn’t had to do), is the fact that FL has shown a real interest in our IF journey, and always seems to know exactly the right thing to say. I’m glad I’m able to genuinely be happy for them.
I so wish that I didn’t feel like this, and that I could be happy for everybody because pregnancy is truly a blessing and a miracle…but at this point, I just can’t. Mid-sobbing/choking/hiccupping on Saturday night, I said to S “I literally gave her (SJ) everything that I could”…and sadly, he recognized that too. The few congratulations and questions I was able to ask literally took every ounce of emotional energy I had.
As I told SJ in my email –
I’m sorry if I didn’t react the way you had hoped – it’s not the way I would have chosen to react, but at the moment it’s the very best that I can do. I hate feeling the way I do, and what I’ve become as a result, and it makes me very sad that I’m not able to be 100% thrilled for some of my best friends. I wouldn’t wish our struggles on anybody, and I’m so glad you guys didn’t have to go through that, it’s just hard to not know when (or even if) it will ever happen for us.
I’m not saying any of this to make you feel guilty, but just to try and explain where I’m coming from…It’s so hard to separate my various emotions, and I so wish that I could just be happy and excited for you without our struggles entering into the equation.
After a pretty low Sunday mood-wise (rescued by girls’ night with some of my BFFs!), I managed to regain some of my hope by the time Monday rolled around. Although I am now again considering transferring two embies (if we have that option), in the hopes that we’ll SOMEHOW get pregnant this time around…I am desperately trying to regain my positive attitude about our upcoming cycle.
In other news, I took my last BC pill last night, at which point S says “does that mean your boobs are going to get smaller again? :-(” LOL! I said, “no, probably not, the stims should help them maintain” and he was like “GOOD! And then you’ll be pregnant and they’ll get even bigger, right?!?” LOLOL…poor S…a boob man stuck with a pair of mosquito bites. 😉