Monday, May 28, 2007

Hello Darkness, My Old Friend

So, i am up very late on the eve of my husband's surgery and i am a little anxious. Coping with said anxiety has involved the ingestion of mountains of glutenous food and chocolate along with watching hours and hours of movies while only breaking to speed read two romance novels a day. Yesterday i was trying to figure out a way to watch a movie and read a novel at the same time. I want to escape into movieland and i want my senses to be completely absorbed. I dont want to be me at this moment. I dont want to think about my life, or what my life might be like if anything happened to my husband. What would become of me? memememe. Suddenly, i am very concerned about facing the rest of my life without him.

And what a long lonely life that would be. I am happily estranged from my father and not very close to my mother. These tenuous ties have also strained the links between me and my siblings (thanks mom and dad!).

Nonetheless, i am surprised about the amount of anxiety i have over this surgery tomorrow. This is the surgery on the 4 cm lump found in my husband's thyroid, the cancerousness of which is to be determined once it's taken out. I did not have this much anxiety over the two surgeries he had last year over his nether regions. Maybe i was a little too drugged up for that or too excited with hope, the worst opiate of all.

So, here i am, past midnight, reading novels and now writing. Surgery is tomorrow at some point past 10am. He is to be discharged the day after, God willing.

I think, though, that my anxiety speaks to deep, unrevealed desires. I truly desire a different sort of life. I know this and have known this. I didnt realize how desperately it claws at me just beneath the surface.

And, this other sort of life has nothing to do with children. It's unbelieveable and shocking, but true. In fact, we have been remarkably well living childfree these past two months. I haven't blogged much of it lately because i frankly couldnt believe myself. I was waiting for the shoe to drop. The deluge to begin. The cycle to start over. But it hasnt. I am not only living child free, i am free of the hope of it. Can you imagine that? I simply don't care's even simpler than that because that statement implies rancor, but i'm not angry. In fact, i am happy to be childfree. I have discovered that there are so many things i want to do and explore and learn (now that i've finally given myself the complete permission to do so), that i wouldnt really have time for a child's needs right now. So if anything, i am relieved to be free of any parental duties.

This relief didnt just suddenly occur, but is more a result of finally overcoming a traumatic childhood. I have been suffering from post traumatic stress syndrome since i was a child, and before that, i was deeply depressed (FUN childhood). In therapy, i learned the skills i needed to cope with post traumatic stress but believed that i might forever be "coping" with it, given that much of it occurred before memory set in.

Recently, i have come to completely understand the source of my childhood traumas and, instead of feeling angry, i feel relieved. I always knew something was up and that my emotions related to something, and i finally learned that i was right. I was right in my sadness, right in my heartbreak, right in my depression, and right in my anger--though i was never quite sure what i was right about. I had thought it had much to do with being childless. In fact, it has nothing to do with that. And that knowledge has set me free--free of the fantasy that my own children would fix my broken childhood. But all the pieces are finally in place now and i am finally unbroken. It is possible become whole again, after all.

It is interesting to me that throughout all these years of wanting, desperately wanting and hoping for a baby, i never could really bring myself to pray for it with any ferverence (except in this last bizarre year of IVF, where prayer was the only antidote to my hormonal insanities). I believe that on some deep level, i always understood that an actual baby was not what i truly wanted.

What i wanted was my own babyhood back, and righted. What i wanted was to feel whole--to feel contentment in the moment, to know happiness. I finally have the peace that i have been waiting for all my life.

Now, i worry that it will be shattered tomorrow. And i suppose that worry is natural under the circumstances. It's probably the lingering effects of post traumatic stress talking.

Old habits, baby. If you dont kill them, you will die a slow death of million little anxieties!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

The Secret

No, i aint holdin out on y'all. But, apparently, there is a "secret." Did y'all hear about this? According to this book, the secret to life is that "like attracts like." That is, whatever you want you can have, if you just think positively. If you think you can, you will. Whatever is in your life, is there because you willed it...

Ahem, aside from the fact that the book is written for a first grader, complete with large print and colored thick paper, i believe that i have completely debunked the theory that you can will into your life whatever you want so long as you "think" about it long enough. I thought about having children for more than 25 years, especially the last 15. Towards the end, i was thinking about it every single second of the every day. It was getting kind of clinical, and i didnt realize it until one day i suddenly couldnt breathe. I thought i was dying. After a rush to the emergency room and gazillion tests, it was nothing but a panic attack. The ER doctor pulled up a chair next to me and quietly asked "is there something bothering you?" No, nothing. I was fine. I wasnt stressed or unhappy. I had a good job. The only thing, if anything, is that i thought about having a baby ... Every. Single. Second.

So, i had to give that up. It was either that or stop breathing at random. And since having a baby was impossible anyway without basic inhalation and exhalation, i had to choose breathing. Selfish me.

The moral is, the Secret sucks (the book, that is). Yeah, it works (for others, i assume), but not always. It's not simply a matter of will it and so be it. That's oversimplifying the issue just a smidge, don't you think?

My husband returned the book to the bookstore. If you know us, you know that we would rather throw something away before we went through the hassle of returning anything. And, we are pack rats never throw anything away. When asked about the reason for the return, dh said, "It didn't work."