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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Tales of Sucking Sounds, And More

Greetings, Y'all!

Well, shit. This is a post I've been dreading writing.

Don't get all excited - nothing juicily awful is happening. Well, I guess some might think it's juicy in certain ways. I've just had some serious writer's block and can't seem to coax the words out regarding this particular...thing. It's like being linguistically constipated. But I'll give it a shot right now, and hope that whatever streams out onto the keyboard makes at least moderate sense. Oh, and it does have to do with that inhaled "hee-yoop" sucking sound from a few posts back, so hooray.

Where to begin?

I know: let's take it back to one sunny day in the middle of July, this past July, about a month after I'd posted about my grating tocophobia - that was, intense fear of having a child. On this particular sunny July day while Kevin was at work, I found myself lying on the soft grass beneath a tree at the neighborhood park, crying probably more uncontrollably than I have in a long time, and watching big fluffy clouds roll across the sky through a blurry film of tears. I had a crying-headache and I'd forgotten a Kleenex, so I blew my nose on a leaf.

(Leaves are not the best snot-absorbers, for the record).

The whole day felt like an out-of-body experience. My legs propelled me home from the park, straight to the phonebook, as I sobbed intermittently like a kid who'd been bullied at the school yard. In fact, that's kind of how I felt: bullied around. I felt like life or God or someone up above - that big Darth Vader being controlling the gears - was fucking with me. My hands flipped through the white pages, easily finding what I needed: Planned Parenthood. My fingers dialed, my mouth asked:

"How much does the abortion pill cost, and how long do I have to take it?"

"Six-hundred dollars. You have until eight weeks after conception."

"Cool. Thanks."


Which brings me to the hee-yoop sucking sound. In a bizarre twist of reproductive fate, it had to have been THAT VERY WEEK in June - one month earlier when I'd posted about my tocophobia - during which (as my doctor put so elegantly) a wee-bit of spooge got near my crotch and my cervix eagerly went:

HEE-YOOP! Sluuuurp! Sucking up that sperm like a starved camel in the desert. In fact, I may very well have been pregnant when I WROTE that post!

"But...I can't be knocked up!" I told my doctor after skeptically providing a pee-test. "We were diligently doing the pull-n-pray method! My friend Jen's sister said that method works! And she degree in public health or something, for fuck's sake! I. Can. Not. Be. Pregnant."

"Monica, you're pregnant."

Crap, I thought.

Followed by:

"Infertility sisters of the blog-o-sphere: I'm sorry that my cervix did an inward sucking hee-yoop. I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry. If I could give you my eagerly sperm-eating cervix with it's apparently gloriously raw-eggwhite-textured, soul-sucking stickiness, I would. I'd fed-ex it to you overnight. Something cosmically warped and unfair is happening right now, and I can't stop it. I'm sorry."

Look. I have no idea why I wanted to stop this pregnancy, why my first instinct was to slam on the breaks. Never claimed to know how the human mind works, the post-KuKd mind works, where fear comes from, how fear extends its roots deep into the mind and morphs into something bigger and scary than it really is. All I know is that when I suddenly got nauseous and puked that morning in July, I knew I was knocked up - and I was. But there wasn't any joy in this - only terror and weirdness.

* * *

Remember that post about plans, back in late July? About my going to see a shrink, about how having a child simply didn't fit into my new *plan* of living a kid-free life with all the unfettered joys and liberties that entails?

"What are plans, anyway?" She told me, that blond therapist. "They're a defense mechanism we create inside our heads to make us feel like we have control over something. But we don't. Forget about your notion of plans, because it's a made-up concept."

So yeah, the shrink. That was a few weeks after I'd stared, disbelievingly, at the pink plus-sign in the bathroom. Kevin was undecided, open to whatever - but I think he knew, as I did, that I was...well...not acting exactly rationally. Before rushing into Planned Parenthood, he said, maybe going to see a therapist would be a good idea - just to sort out things in my head. So that visit was really about this:

ME, toting strong black tea in a mug: "I'm knocked up and feeling really scared and resentful about it. This is my 4th time getting knocked up and I've never, ever, ever felt this way. I've got another week or two to decide if I want that abortion pill. What in the name of god is wrong with me?"

"You've had a history of miscarriage and stillbirth," she said. "It's normal to feel cautious."

"I really didn't want a baby right now. Wasn't a part of the plan. The *plan*," I told her, "was to drink and travel and have lots of sex for the next five years. Then maybe - maybe - revisit the babymaking idea. We already have our tix to Ireland, even."

That's where I got the whole plan-lecture. Sigh. She was right.

* * *

Crazy things: that's what she asked me to do as part of"therapy." But then again, I deserved to be asked to do crazy things, since I was kind of acting...well...crazy scared, crazy impulsive. Namely, she asked me to write a letter to the fetus.

"What? Why? This is weird."

"Go on. Here's a notebook. Try writing 'Dear Fetus.'"

I felt really self-conscious doing this fucktarded activity, but I cooperated like a submissive resident of a mental hospital, and I wrote it: Dear Fetus.

"Good. Now, write: I'm afraid of having something come into my life that I can't control. I'm afraid of having my plans burned yet again. I'm afraid of attaching to you, because I might lose you. If I were really connected to you, here's what I would do differently."

It was a lot to write, but I did it.

"Good, now make a list of some things. For example, you told me you would have told your parents by now, your friends."


"You wouldn't care about giving up your Guinness while you're in Ireland. That wouldn't bother you so much."


There were a few more things, and my "homework" was to finish that list later on, at home. I told her I would, but I never did. I don't like getting tasks from people.

* * *

The universe inside my head began to subtly shift as the summer went on. The abortion urge fizzled away, the fear - lots of it - fizzled away, too. I got distracted with life's little things - traveling, biking, working, that damned rash on my lower back. And gradually, low and behold, a feeling I hardly expected began to settle in - quiet, hesitant, shy, barely perceptible:


It crept up on me unexpectedly like a tide lapping in, pushing fear and insanity out: vague thoughts of baby-related stuff, imaginings of a warm infant to come.

* * *

So, there's a grapefruit-sized fetus inside my pelvis right now. I'm four months along. It's a boy, this one, which we know from early testing. I could name him something just for reference purposes - like a holding card for developing infants - something cutesy and fun like I've seen other people do - Baby Boo-Ya or Lil' Pumpkin. But I'd kinda rather just ride this tide out for a while longer, takin' things day by day around here. That's how we roll.

Third boy in three years, fourth pregnancy of my life. Cautiously optimistic? God, that sounds so cliche and over-said. But yeah: I'm telling the gatekeepers up at the MTV Realworld Penthouse for Bitchin' Stillborn Babes not to keep the lights on for this particular little bugger, but maybe just hang around to let the door open, just in case.

Man, a whiskey would taste good right now. Do they make any kind of O'Douls equivalent of the hard stuff? :-)


Anonymous said...

CONGRATS monica!!! just overjoyed for you

Hope's Mama said...

ohmyfuckinggod! Wow, Monica. Just WOW!
I had wondered if a post like this was on the way. I don't know, just had a funny feeling.
I'm just so damn happy for you and sending you all the love and positive energy I have left over!

ezra'smommy said...

congrats monica...I know that cautious optimism, I'm living it daily too.

Shannon said...

I get the scared..totally get it. I am IN it too. I am only a mere 5 weeks and a bit, and people are thrilled (I can;t keep a secret) and I did IVF so I want this, but I am terrified.

Congrats...I hope this works out for you!

Pundelina said...! Congratulations to the both of you!!!
I'd be completely terrified too. But also hopeful and because I'm me and not you I just feel completely hopeful and optimistic that everything will be fine.

Now teach me how to do that trick with your cervix ;)

(By the way, there's a lovely blog award waiting for you over yonder too.)


jill said...

Holy shit this post was so emotional! I wish you all the best with your pregnancy! Many congratulations! :)

*~*Lis*~* said...

You know every time I read a blog title I think "is she saying she's knocked up again?" Ecstatic that I was right this time! Congratulations!!

Sara Joy said...

Not sure exactly what to say, but I know it starts with congratulations and ends with I'm so happy for you. Somewhere in the middle are the things about it's ok to feel however you feel and dear goodness I am praying for good things.
Reasurrances are silly and unfair, but joy is best shared with friends - even those we've never actually met. So even though I know you must be cautious and your feelings are mixed, I am overjoyed for you and hope your excitement does nothing but grow with that little one in your belly.
All my best,

Reba said...

i remember all those feelings so well...i was having them myself this time last year. congrats and glad to hear it took someone else a while to come to terms with it all. not that i want anyone to experience the feelings i had, but it's somewhat reassuring to know i'm not the only one out there who really didn't want to go through all this again. (for the record, i am now SO GLAD my own cervix sucked up the splooge, too.)

Anonymous said...

I have been reading your blog for a few months now. I am a baby lost mama, I lost my baby in June. I just wanted to say your blog has gotten me through some rough patches and I am so happy for you and your grapefruit belly. Wishing you a happy and healthy pregnancy and baby to be. thank you for your words, and your writing...

Michelle said...

First of all CONGRATULATIONS that is HAPPY NEWS!!!

Second of have been through so much my friend. Who could blame you for all you have bee feeling. I GET IT! TOTALLY!

I am hoping that nothing but good things happen for you. That in 5 months you are talking about this beautiful baby boy you have and how you couldn't imagine life without him.

I can't wit for that! I am truly happy and excited for you!

Rachael Taylor said...

I am so happy to hear the news! And I can completely understand your cautious optimism. It is cliche, but I think the healthiest approach.

I was watching one of those stupid TLC shows today about "I didn't know I was pregnant" where the women go 9 months and unexpectedly a healthy baby pops out of their vagina. I know that it's completely irresponsible, but I've always watched those shows with amazement and yearning wishing I would wake up one day and a healthy baby would pop out of my vagina unexpectedly. Wouldn't it be fabulous to just skip all the emotional turmoil and just get to the result we want?

So, here's hoping and wishing these remaining months are peaceful and speedy for you and we have a healthy baby boy at the end to read about. Can't wait!

Tina said...

Oh my goodness!!!! That is GREAT Monica! I am so excited for you. I know you are proceeding with caution, but I think it is great to be able to still feel some excitement. Sending all good vibes your way! xx

P.S. I am still laughing at fucktarded!

Amy said...

Congratulations! I'm so glad you're able to feel excitement despite your cautious optimism. I totally get that. Hoping for a speedy pregnancy and healthy boy for you!

Sophie said...

Oh god! How very exciting and terrifying. Um yeah, not surprised you are feeling very conflicted. I am still very scared about everything and I only have a week or so to go. I choose to be optimistic mostly though some days I wilt under the pressure. I wish you all the best in bringing this pregnancy to a happy and healthy conclusion. Congratulations!

Anonymous said...

Congrats! Hoping that this ends in a EGO (Expected Glorious Outcome)

Sharon said...

Congratulations Mon!

angie said...

Whoop, there it is. (my sister is trying to bring it back, just doing my part.) And eek, and squeal...and damn, non-alcoholic bourbon is something totally totally needed in this world. And I am going off like a woman after a cup of coffee, speed and a near-death experience. YAY! YAY! WHOOPEE! I mean, literally.

Anabelle said...


Anonymous said...

Congratulations! That is such awesome news. The guarded optimism is completely normal.
Take care
-Molly from Pittsburgh

wifey said...

How absolutely fantastic! Congratulations!

amylynn said...

this is great news, what your therapist said about plans hit me too. Sending all the positive energy I can!

Fireflyforever said...

Yay, thrilled for you and the determined wee grapefruit who braved the cervical log flume.

Not congratulations. Just bag loads of hope that the doors on that penthouse are BARRED this time around.

Katie said...


Barbara said...

Bloody hell, what marvellous, scary news!

Do you think I could teach my cervix to do that thing?


Brenna said...

You must be a damned good poker player woman! Wow. The whole story of the little old Irish farmer with his "have a boy first, then a girl" advice takes on a whole new resonance. I understand your caution, I truly do--but I'm exicted for you. I hope the waves are kind to you from here on out!

everydayistheendoftheworld said...

Congratulations. I love what your therapist said about plans being an attempt to control things, it's good to hear - but at the same time very hard to hear. Definitely something to keep thinking about.

Amy said...


Rebecca said...

For the record, I said that withdrawal was SURPRISINGLY effective - not 100%! Oh, and I have a degree in anthropology (even though I work in public health), so why would you listen to me, anyway?! :)

I think your therapist's words about planning resonated with a lot of us. The whole thing proves what I've always felt - as soon as we truly let go of wanting something - and in fact find ourselves fiercely feeling like we want the opposite - it finds us.

That happened to me with meeting my partner - I was totally finally convinced that I wanted to live a single life and had never been more content, when I suddenly met him and was open to going really slow in a relationship for the first time ever. And when we had finally resigned ourselves to moving on to figure out the adoption process, our 5th and final IVF was actually successful.

But of course I get the feelings of ambivalence and fear. I still haven't come up with anything cuter to call our almost 7 1/2 month fetus than "it," which my mom definitely does not like!

I'm hoping with all of my heart for all the best for you, Monica.

Ya Chun said...

it's just better not thinking we have any control over anything.

fingers crossed xxxx

and that is a wise, wise guy you've got there.

chicklet said...

First off, I love your shrink - very reasonable person he/she is. Particularly re the plans stuff.

Second, I had the fear too. Not to the same extent obviously, but at the time, this kid was NOT in my plans and was totally in the WAY of all my plans. But as your shrink said, plans are... well, you already know that:-)

Third, gawd I'm hopeful that you don't have to go through any more shit. I won't say congrats because, well, we know your history, and who knows how this will go. But I know how I HOPE it'll go. Good luck my friend.

Inanna said...

Wow. And yay! And more wow. and more yay, too!

the misfit said...

Dude, you are SO holding out on your friend, the internet. But I think the internet probably forgives you.

Also, FWIW, I think I would do a substantial period of adjustment/denial if I got a positive too. I'm not ready to make excited phone calls and buy onesies. I would wait upon doom, fairly assured of its arrival (doesn't mean it would come). I guess I'm not sure - did they ever figure out a cause for your miscarriages? Is there something you could do to reduce the likelihood? (Like you wouldn't do that if you knew.)

Praying for a healthy pregnancy and baby.

Cara said...

Holy Shit Mon. And you know I don't comment-swear..but Holy Fucking Shit!

Your last Exhale email makes sooooooo much more sense right now.

Needless to say, I'm THRILLED for you and Kevin. And, if anything is going to kick that writer block's ass it will be the range of emotions over the next five months.

Whatever you need...

Kari said...

Finally we get to find out the source of the sound! And my wish for you to get knocked up comes true. Hooray!

KuKd Chick said...

Ahhh! Thanks y'all! Aren't blogs great? You get to just spew forth random stuff about your life and people write back and intuitively say precisely what you want them to say. Why can't I get my husband to learn that trick?

KuKd Chick said...

Angie - been meaning to ask you - what IS it that you're smoking in that profile picture? A flower? A joint with a flower on the end of it? Do tell!

The Unproductive One said...

Congrats Mon, I want to say I'm surprised but nothing surprises me anymore when it comes to announcements, it's always the ones I'm not expecting to announce who do....


Yvy said...

Congrats, congrats, congrats.
Am desperately hoping all goes well!!

'Murgdan' said...

Wow. Just wow. Feeling good for you, Monica.

manapan said...

Congrats! I hope everything goes well!

And damn, I really wish they made nonalcoholic spirits. That would have saved me a lot of misery in college... :)

Lani said...

how i missed this i have no idea. wow. i am really so happy for you, even if its not part of the plan.

Kahla said...

Well holy crap, how did I miss this post? I know you are cautious and I think that's totally understandable given all you've been through, but I'm so very happy for you. Congrats!

Karen said...

I missed this post!! Happy that you're feeling happier about this unexpected expectation. Sending you and baby boy all good thoughts and hoping all goes well. Feeling stupid that I asked you to have a Guinness for me while you were in Ireland....

Desiree said...

I've read your blog for a couple of months now and I lost my baby on Wednesday. If you can come back, I can.

Thank you for continuing to live so you can show the rest of us how it's done.