Cycle Schmycle (or Let Me Count the Days)

I do not know what compels me to write about this today. The only other place I have gone to work through this crazy story is the quiet recesses of my journal. That and prayer.

I think I write it here, today, because I'm very very tired of thinking about it. Of having it spin about my brain, manifesting itself in odd little ways, like in the books I choose to read and in the shows I choose to watch. And if I'm not looking for it, it pops up in the unlikeliest of places (like in the book I'm reading now). And if I am looking for it, it eludes me. Like I said: very very tired.

It's been 16 months since the day I took that test to put my mind at ease, to dispel the niggling notion, the sneaking suspicion, the absolute fear - once and for all - that I might be pregnant. Rather than a dismissal, I got a confirmation. Right there in black and white. That was on a Monday.

I will not get into the gory details. Mostly because I just don't have the heart for it, even after all this time.

By Friday, I was warned that something might be wrong. I also found that I had changed. Dramatically. We had not planned, nor were did we have reason to expect this pregnancy. But it changed me. Within a week's time. Less, actually. I began rooting for it to succeed, in spite of the warnings, in spite of the doctorly advice and medical caution, in spite of the slippery slope it threatened to send our carefully planned life down. In less than a week's time, I went from being a woman to being a mother. I had redrawn the map of our future, and grafted that baby into it.

The next Monday, after the warned-of danger had failed to materialize over the weekend, I got an ultrasound. The tech translated the grainy visual for me: "empty". Right there in black and white. The pregnancy, wherever it was, never arrived at it's appointed place. They called it "not viable".

Tuesday afternoon, I got a shot in my butt. It made me sick. Body and soul. The following Monday the bleeding started. Drawing all the blood away from my heart and my brain. I muddled through the subsequent food cravings and aversions, the nausea, and weekly blood draws.

My doctor said I probably wouldn't have another ectopic pregnancy on the next try, but if I did, she'd force me to have an HSG test. That's what she said. She'd force me. But only after I went through it all over again.

I found another doctor and visited him this past January. He said "knowledge is power" and that he'd really like me to have the test just so we know. Turns out my health insurance won't cover any fertility treatment. I argued with the doc's office and my insurance provider that, technically, it's not fertility I'm concerned with.

What I'm concerned with is knowledge. Knowing. When I explained this, the doc's office really got it, I think they really did, but they couldn't do anything, and so half-heartedly agreed, at my request, to code it creatively so that it might, just maybe, fly under the radar of those insurance harpies, all the while warning me insurance still might not cover it. It's $600.

I canceled the test. We're not there yet anyway. Not in that place to be concerned about fertility. I'm in the junction that proceeds that place, where only vague curiosities abound. Hub is a few miles back.

And while half of me feels like all will be OK whenever we are in that place of really wanting to know, whenever we arrive there together, I also feel a little reckless. Like I should want to know about my fertility bad enough to come up with the cash. Or at least not let the question of money dissuade me so easily.

But mostly, I just feel really really tired of thinking about it. Of tracking my cycle, this monthly numbers obsession that began in the wake of post-ectopic heartache and uncertainty. Of wondering when, how, if it will happen. Whenever we're ready. And once we get to that place, if more heartache will ensue. The deepest depths. Body and soul.

So, I've recently resigned the subject to its former place: somewhere officially off my radar. But visions of that re-charted future are in everything I do. I cannot escape them. I am not the person I have been. And as much as I try to return to her, she does not exist. Instead, that mother pops up in dreams. In the early hours of Mother's Day morning. I wake up, the dream at the forefront of my bleary mind, suddently remembering what day it is and the first words out of my mouth are "ah crap"!

And I'm tired.


"May you be in love every day for the next 20,000 days. And out of that love, remake a world." -Ray Bradbury