Oh, my. It's been a long time (again!) since my last post. The end of the semester was insanely busy. I took on more responsibility towards the end for teaching and grading and all sorts of new things for me. More grant applications, more relationships to develop, more things to *think* about. Sometimes my brain hurts from all the thinking. On the plus side, I haven't been bored!
In amongst everything else, there have been holiday-related things. Cards. Visiting my in-laws. A planned visit (starting tomorrow) back east, to see my parents. We got the cards finished - and mailed - by Christmas Eve, which I thought was pretty darn good. We had a lovely low-key visit with my in-laws, which was a first. My brother-in-law flew in, and we really enjoyed ourselves, long and snowy and sort-of-scary car ride up notwithstanding. We're happy to be going to see my family - and happy that it will also be for a short, defined period of time.
And then, in among everything else, I got blindsided. An invitation arrived for my cousin's wife's baby shower. Baby #1. The one I wrote about several months ago - because I was glad that we weren't going to have to be home to face all of the giddiness and questions firsthand.
I sucked it up and RSVP'd 'no' to the baby shower - I truly can't make it. And again, it's one of those things where I am glad that we live so far away. Glad that I have this insanely busy job, that prevents me from going back for a quick weekend visit. Glad that I don't have to face all of this in person.
Then I realized that I had to get them a gift. *sigh* My mother suggested getting something while I'm in town - which, honestly, is a pretty reasonable option. Just in case, though, I decided to check out the baby registry.
It's a boy. No one told me they knew that.
And, good grief. The ... stuff ... they registered for. We never got to that point, obviously. And though I have gotten presents for many babies over the years, I'm not sure I have ever seen another registry this ... big.
And, this seems really stupid, but it's also like there are so many dreams and hopes and wishes tied up in all that stuff. Baby joggers. Bottles. Little t-shirts, and sleep sacks, and blankets. We never got to the dreaming stage.
This is the first time it's been hard for me to look at all that stuff, and figure out what small token we should buy for a new life. Maybe it's because it's the first time it seems real that it will never happen for us.
I've been on edge a bit recently, too. There have been multiple stories of babies and children being abandoned, treated brutally, even killed. Those always hit me hard. Why is it that some lowlife can kill one of her many children in a fit of rage, and we can't have one? And, my best friend from childhood again asked about what we were 'doing' about my infertility. At times I regret having said anything to her - she asks every few months, usually when someone else's children come up in conversation. This time, it was her sister in law, who delivered at home in the woods at age 40, after conceiving her 2nd child without any help whatsoever. Seriously, could I make this stuff up? I wanted to yell into the phone that no, I am not her, and no, it's not going to just 'happen'. But I stayed quiet, and just got off the phone as quickly as possible.
Well, this was rambling. That's what I get for keeping things bottled up, and forgetting I have this as an outlet. I am hoping to make it through this visit back east with minimal inquiries into the state of my uterus and / or ovaries. I am hoping that I can keep it together. And I'll be sure to update again here when we get back.