Monday, 4 June 2018

5 years reflections: resolving

So, I’ve been struggling a little with “being resolved”. Even though I feel for all practical purposes that we are resolved, as in, finished having kids. But it sounds directional. So wrapped up and tidy. And I don’t feel especially tidy or like I have a direction. I’m dealing with a healthy amount of internal chaos, although it feels like purposeful chaos. It occurs to me that I like the continuous present tense better: “I am resolving.” Also there’s an incompleteness to the statement: resolving to do what? Indeed!

As I move toward the next phase in our lives, I’ve found the best way, at least right now, to resolve is to embrace being complicated. And to recognize that there are multiple layers to resolution, and I’m going to have to deal with them a few at a time. 

Where I’m at:

The family discussion: Mr Turtle says he feels very fortunate to have two children, and I can’t say I disagree. We also talked about permanent birth control, and he volunteered to be the one to have a procedure....which filled me with a surprising feeling of relief. Although we went through infertility together, I feel like most of the drama was enacted on and in my body. Even though I was extremely lucky in many ways, it was still a physical and psychological burden. To consider putting hormones in my body (nope nope nope), foreign objects (ugh, not really appealing) or surgery (not wild about that either) feels like an additional burden. For Mr Turtle to offer to take responsibility for this piece, without being is an act of great kindness and generosity, and I didn’t understand what it meant to me till it was offered.

I don’t know when a procedure actually happen, and we need to have more conversations, because the emotional piece is still complicated for me. But I think what I need most is to acknowledge it, and to work through it. I don’t need to be frozen in time. I can act like I know what I’m doing, even if I don’t, all the time.

Blogging and related commitments: I like torthuil. Writing about my experiences and inner world during infertility struggles helped make it manageable. The connections I made with this blog kept me above water many times. At the same time, I feel like I need to grow away from anonymous confessional blogging. I started blogging here because what I was doing (journaling) wasn’t answering my need. And I’m starting to feel that way again. Although I don’t want to shut down torthuil either, if for no other reason that its existence gives me perspective by providing contrast.

What will I write, in what context or community? Not sure, but it will involve writing a new life into reality. Much the way torthuil did. When I started blogging, I was facing the unknown, unsure if we would ever have children, questions of science and ethics and relationships and personal limits swirling around me. Now these questions have been answered, as well as I’m ever going to be able to answer them. It’s time to look for new questions.

With that in mind:
  • I’ll continue to write here. I’ll probably move the pages and template around a little. But all the content will stay up for now. I am not sure why, but it still feels necessary to have my story out there, in public, accessible. I don’t care about having a ton of readers (I value those I have) and I don’t even know if I have a point in writing. But visibility is a risk and....I need to take that risk. I need putting my words down to be an act of courage. 
  • I will no longer actively follow trying to conceive blogs. It’s not my pressing issue anymore and I need to step away. With the following exceptions: the blogs I already follow, anyone who reaches out to me, and anyone I get interested in just because I do. I can’t not read an interesting story. 
  • I’m going to start thinking more deliberately about what I want the rest of my life to look like. Miracle babies and all! It’s discombobulating to realize The Rest Of Life doesn’t have to take second priority to getting pregnant. Wonder of wonders. I can actually think of something else.
The possibilities are just starting to occur to me.

Shortly after I wrote the notes above, I had an interesting dream. I was in the deep water playing on a sort of raft or surfboard. For some reason I had personal possessions with me that were valuable, including a journal. These possessions kept falling off the raft, but I didn’t feel a deep sense of loss until the journal was lost in the depths. And I wasn’t sure what was written in it, even, but I thought it contained memories of our early marriage. However upset as I was, it never occurred to me to stop playing in the water. Rather I left behind the raft and all the stuff I had with me and started taking these huge bouncy leaps through in the water, as if I had a giant pogo stick. I suddenly found the ability to jump high in the air and go farther and deeper than I ever had. And there was a group of people somewhere in the distance, who were saying: you can come join us. I don’t know who exactly they were, but it was easier to join them now that I was free of the raft.



  1. I just found this post, as it didn’t populate to feedly, and feedly still won’t allow me to comment here. So odd.

    Lots of introspection here. It is definitely hard to be in between things. Or to end one aspect of life to start another. I have been stuck in that weird space for a while. It hurt too much to completely call it quits, so I have put it on the back burner right now until I can come back to it less emotional. (If that’s even possible)
    I do hope you continue to write here. It doesn’t have to be anything profound, just sharing your life from your corner of the world is enough, in my opinion.

    1. Thanks! Yes I plan to keep writing. But also thinking of where else I could be thoughtful/creative.

  2. Interesting post. I would say that we are also "resolved" though it also brings up complicated feelings. Right now our lives feel complete with our daughter which is great. I feel a sense of freedom at the thought of never going back to fertility clinics too and nice to not have to constantly think about fertility and all that! I don't know if we might feel differently as time goes on.

    1. That’s good to hear. After our first I felt like I had a nice holiday from fertility related matters. Although we did start thinking about a second a few months in. It was great. With Dani’s birth though, it’s been different. There’s a sense that I need to work through the idea of being done , so ironically it’s more on my mind than the first time. I wish you the best whatever you do!

  3. Ahh, this topic. I refused to have my tubes tied and R didn't push me on it, even though I feel 99% certain we aren't having more babies and I have all of my baby things in a huge bag to donate the second C doesn't need them. But it is so weird to be "resolved" on the topic and, I am finding, to let go of this part of my life that has been front and center for the last 5 years (TTC). It feels deeply engrained in me still, even though I am most certainly not wanting to get pregnant now. Anyway, thanks for sharing where you are on this topic for now... and for reminding me that I never picked up my birth control prescription and probably ought to do something about that. Doesn't it seem crazy to even worry about preventing pregnancy after all we have both been through?

    1. Yes, I can relate. We are still working through it. I thought things were settled after this convo but then the topic of oops babies come up a few times it’s complicated for both of us. I know I want to be done obsessing over getting pregnant. That’s so 2017 lol. I don’t know if we could live a relaxed “What happens happens” life or if we have to take action so there’s no more uncertainty.