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Friday, December 25, 2009

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Goodbye Vodka. Again.

Exactly two months after the discovery of the expiration of our zygote, I found myself staring at a faint blue line. Again.

It was my Grandfather’s birthday, a wonderful man who fought in WWII, sired four children, lived a quiet life as an accountant and wrote dirty novels. He loved dirty jokes, scotch and his family. He had died the year before.

It was also Halloween.  A day of masks, of make-believe, of tall tales.  It was a day meant to be fanciful, easy-going, full of booze and naked women.  And it was the day I learned I was pregnant again.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Goodbye Sobriety.

Four days after my surgery, we found ourselves at a beach house on the water, on a night that a full moon overlooked Koko Head Crater. It was night, we were surrounded with a few of our closest friends, and we were grilling steaks. And we were having a wake.

Was it strange that we were celebrating the short and brilliant life of our baby?

There was a bottle of vodka, two bottles of tequila, one bottle of bourbon, one bottles of wine, and a twenty pack of Bud Light. There were seven people, six steaks, and lots and lots of cookies made from expensive Valhrona chocolate. If a zygote hadn’t just died in my uterus, it would have been an awesome party.

It seemed that we were coping the way my generation did – alcohol. Copious amounts of booze flowed down our gullets. By 2am, the girls and boys had retreated to separate parts of the house. Gossip about ex-boyfriends was interrupted by screams of “I’m an ASSHOLE…Asshole…asshole…I’m an ASSHOLE!” My attempt at videotaping them singing Britney Spears was a failure. We horrified wealthy neighbors who didn’t know who were the obnoxious people that were house sitting a multi-million dollar mansion. We finished all the booze and cookies. We left, and my girlfriend and I watched our men pass out on the ground, finished my 100-proof bourbon and watched the sun rise.

I like to think my zygote would have been pleased.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Goodbye Pregnancy

Miscarriage sucks ass. There’s really no getting around that fact. No matter when, no matter how. Whether it happens naturally or you have to go in for a D&C, which I did, it sucks fat ass. There’s no real way to understand the pain of it unless you’ve been there. I used to imagine, when I was pregnant, what I would feel if I were to miscarry. I felt like I was trying to get myself prepared for the worst. In those instances, I’d tear a little and cry some imagined tears, but nothing prepared me for the torrential downpour that erupted out of me every half hour when it really happened to me. If I wasn’t sobbing, there were still huge tears running down my cheeks as I watched the Food Network. I’d stop crying as I watched Forensic Files, only to have the program halt for a Huggies commercial, and I’d start crying all over again. I honestly didn’t know I was that attached to the bitty guy in my belly, but every time I thought of the way we loved it, I’d sob again. There were so many little things we did with love that I didn’t realize until it was gone and we couldn’t do them anymore. I wasn’t prepared for that sorrow.

There were, in fact, a lot of things I wasn’t prepared for about saying goodbye. I wasn’t prepared for the surgery. I wasn’t prepared for the hospital rooms, patients split up by curtains, herded into beds like cattle by overworked nurses. I wasn’t prepared for the questions that I would be asked. I wasn’t prepared to have people assume that I was there for a willing abortion, since the procedure was the same. I wasn’t prepared for the TV in my “room”. And I wasn’t prepared for the nurse.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Goodbye What Was Never Meant To Be

The morning of my first 2nd trimester appointment, I pulled on the maternity skirt my friend had lent me and a shirt that sort of masked the barely there bump of belly. It was amazing how my belly went up and down; poofed out then popped back in as flat as it had been before. I told my husband, as he got dressed, that sometimes it didn’t even seem like I was pregnant.

As I lay on the bed with my legs in the stirrups, he held my hand as we watched and listened to our doctor maneuver an ultrasound wand over my belly. All we heard were crackles and pops, like the cereal. [I could almost imagine those silly little elves pressing their pointy ears against my skin.] She had me turn on the main ultrasound machine, just in case she didn’t have the right spot. We watched her face, her efficient face, normally so business-like and multi-tasking with a purpose, we watched the face that we trusted to give us the straight shit on things get a little quiet and a little less business-like. We watched her eyes, eyes that were normally efficient and quick to dart to her next task, get a little sad and slow. And we listened as she told us that we were having a miscarriage.

Our baby, it seems, had stopped growing sometime between the 8 week ultrasound when we saw the heartbeat, and the time the 12.5 week ultrasound rolled around. Our baby, it seemed, was one of the less than 5% to go away after the heartbeat. Our baby, it seemed, was dead.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Goodbye Polite Society

Pregnancy is a strange anti-filter device for the world. To survive polite society, people usually have some sort of filter on their brain, keeping them from saying everything they think. You may think your boss is a prick, for instance, but that filter keeps you from saying it aloud, and thus succeeds in keeping you gainfully employed. You might think your husband is getting a bit chunky, but you keep it to yourself to make marriage work. You might think your friend is a fucking loser, but you keep it locked deep inside. Without the internal filters keeping our mouths at bay, polite society wouldn’t be so polite at all. It would, in fact, be a pretty unpleasant if interesting place to be.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Goodbye Pretention

No one I knew was ready for parenthood. Not even parents were ready for it. There really should be a class to take, a test to make sure that you stood a chance of teaching a kid the things it should know to take on the world. Anyone less than 75% passing on the test should have to wait until they matured to take another one…determining their viability as parents. Don’t they test the sperm of sperm donors for viability? Aren’t egg donor eggs scrutinized? It only stands to reason they should test the brains of future parents to rule out psychosis.

When we first went in to buy pregnancy tests, we checked out all the different varieties – like all people do. There are the plus signs, the equal signs, the early response, the earlier response, the earliest response. Then there’s the “easy to read” pregnant/not pregnant test that actually spells out whether you are pregnant or not pregnant.

It’s pretty dumb, to be honest. Who needs it to spell out that you might or might not be pregnant? Who can’t tell the difference between a plus sign and a negative sign? The differences are very, very clear, and honestly if you can’t tell them apart there are doubts to your efficiency as future parents. At least, that’s what we thought.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Goodbye Birth Control.

I stopped taking that miraculous drug that had kept me from being pregnant for the last ten years of sexual escapades. The move was made, the deed was done. The screw was out of my husband’s shoulder. We were settling in (badly) to responsible day jobs. The prenatal appointment was over and done with. Our family histories were discussed, my drinking and smoking habits were only slightly fudged, and we were given the ok to go fertilize. I was recommended to act like I was pregnant…i.e. stop drinking. In our world, this was going to be a long, very long procreation process.

With that one doctor’s visit, everything was about to change. It was the life we chose, and we needed to make this breakup real. We needed to cut the tie with our flasks. I needed to say goodbye to my miniskirts. We needed to put away the bottle of Patron, say goodbye to nicotine and hello to prenatal vitamins. We needed to make a complete overhaul of our lives…and we realized the best way to say goodbye was to get it over with quick. Cold Turkey.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Goodbye Life.

Goodbye:
Pert nipples. High Fructose Corn Syrup. Bud light. Tequila. Spontaneous trips. Champagne. Sex anywhere in the house. Sashimi. Sex any time of the day. Clothes that fit. Sex.

Hello:
Pregnancy.

Sometime around my 27th birthday, I decided to break up with my life. It’s not that my life and I weren’t getting along; in fact we got along a bit too well. My liver would crave bourbon, I gave some to it. My lungs asked for nicotine, I obliged. My brain wanted a nap, I passed out.

In truth, my life and I loved each other very, very much.

This love was a honeymoon type of love though; something not destined to last the test of time. It began in college and continued for years, until I became that guy that was headed into his 10th year of college. I was becoming the dude that still lived in the frat house with the freshmen who was mocked endlessly but bought beer and tequila for them and thus remained allowed to sleep in a bunk with the thirty new pledges of the year. I became the old dude who still peed in a communal urinal. My love was pretty pitiful.

Sometime around my 27th birthday, I decided it was time to break up. Let go, so to speak, of the easy relationship it and I had developed over the past 27 years. Separate. Divorce. Say goodbye.