Chapter 1 My Name is Sarah and I am Infertile
Hello Ladies!!! (Oh and hello to the few ‘supportive’ men who were bullied into reading this blog). I am infertile and no one likes to talk about it, if you’re infertile you’re not alone. Let me start at the beginning, I was born on…HA! Just kidding, that blog would suck. No, let’s start at the other beginning. My husband and I moved in together in the fall of 2009, soon after we got engaged. My husband, Trevor, proposed after we jumped out of a plane together, yeah, we’re those cool people. We got married in August of 2010. I had no plans of starting a family anytime soon; I said I wanted to wait until I was thirty-five to start ‘trying’. Well, I’m turning thirty-four in a week and I have a dog, two kids and a house in the suburbs, so that “plan” sure as fuck went to hell in a hand-basket and fast.
We went to pick up our dog in June of 2010 that was when the motherhood juices really started flowing. We were towards the end of our engagement; the wedding was right around the corner. Brady, our Australian Labradoodle love of our lives, was the perfect thing for us. I tell people that Brady is my first born child. I truly believe that he thinks I pushed him out of my vagina, and to be honest if you saw the way we spoon each other at night time, you would think so too.
I trained Brady over the summer. I would play with him on the floor of our living room because he was too little to jump onto the couch. Then he would fall asleep on my lap for two hours and I would be stuck there on the living room floor. When he woke up I would carry him on my hip (like a child) to my elevator and take him for a walk. If I didn’t carry him, he would pee a little in the elevator. When I did carry him he would pee a little on my shirt and make it look like I was a lactating mother, but I didn’t mind. He was my child.
I had a little bag of training treats attached to my pants and a clicker to house train him. One time, in the elevator, someone asked me if I was the dog trainer.
“Oh no,” I said, “I’m just neurotic about training him.”
When he went for his first haircut, which turned out to be a disaster, I cried for two days straight. Trevor called them and made them refund us the money because he couldn’t listen to me sob about the dog’s hair any longer. He was my child.
We were a very happily married couple. I liked being married and not having kids, Brady was plenty for me. I liked living in NYC and getting drunk on the weekends. I really liked sleeping in late and ordering bagels to be delivered. Then when the sun got to the right spot in the sky, ordering wine to be delivered too and starting the whole cycle over again. It was perfect. I didn’t need kids, however hearing Trevor tell Brady “go get Mommy” totally made those Mommy emotions ping off the charts.
In June of 2011 my best friend told me she was pregnant. A few weeks later my sister told me that she was pregnant. Correction, I told my sister that I thought she was pregnant, we’ll get to that. Regardless, that’s when I started getting the “pregnancy bug”.
What is it? Why is it that when women get pregnant and have babies it makes other women want to get pregnant and have babies? Why? It’s not like they have a Louis Vuitton purse and I too would like one. Well, let’s be real, I’m a school teacher so in my case it would be more like if they have a Michael Kors purse and I too want a Michael Kors purse (to the five men who were bullied into reading this blog please pause and ask your bully what that means….. you back? Great!)
My best friend, who we are going to call Shameeka because that name is awesome, and I were on our way to a bridal shower for another friend. She wanted me to come to her apartment and drive to the bridal shower together. She was insistent on this. I didn’t understand why. It wasn’t making sense. We kept texting back and forth about it and finally I gave in. I pulled into her parking lot. We moved her car so that I could park mine there. I was putting my bridal shower present in the back of her car when I saw a CVS Pharmacy bag full of pregnancy tests and tampons.
“Uhhh, are you pregnant?” I asked, positive that the answer would be no.
“Yeah, I am,” she said. “And you’re messing this all up, we were supposed to drive together and I was supposed to tell you in the car, but now you saw the bag and yeah, I’m pregnant.”
She had the biggest smile on her face. “OH MY GOD!!!!” I squealed, as I gave her a huge hug. We talked about her pregnancy and how she felt the whole way to the bridal shower. Once we got to the shower we were surrounded by things that she couldn’t eat or drink. Coffee, mimosas, soft cheese, the list went on. After the shower we drove to Barnes and Nobles and I bought her a number of pregnancy books for her to read because neither one of us knew what to do when you’re pregnant.
A few weeks later my sister called me just to talk. She had just gotten married that April, and had gone off the pill the end of May. It was June. She started telling me about all these random symptoms she was having and how she was sure that she was going to get her period any day now, but that it hadn’t come yet.
“What type of symptoms?” I asked her suspiciously.
“Well, like my boobs hurt, a lot. I’m tired. I don’t know. I just want these symptoms to go away and my period to come already.” She said.
My sister, who is perfectly balanced equal parts smart/not smart, didn’t know what was happening. “Paige, how long have you had these symptoms?” I asked, like I was asking a child about missing homework.
“Umm, well, for about two weeks now, I think,” she said in her not smart talk.
“Paige, your period isn’t going to come you dumb fuck, you’re pregnant!” I said.
“No, I really don’t think so,” she tried to convince me.
After much back and forth she agreed to go buy some pregnancy tests. She called me back two hours later.
“Umm… so, I think I’m pregnant” she said.
“You think? What does that mean, you think?” I questioned aggressively.
“Well, I took two pregnancy tests and they both came back positive, so I think that means I’m pregnant.” The not smart part of her continued.
“You think that means you’re pregnant? Paige it’s not a ‘you think’ situation. You’re fucking pregnant!!”
“Yeah, I am” she conceded.
My sister’s pregnancy went off without a hitch… kind of…we’ll get to that. My best friend’s pregnancy however was not on the same track.
Shameeka suffered from a miscarriage eight weeks into her pregnancy. She was devastated and so was I. I was so excited for her to be pregnant. I had been checking in on her every day to see how she felt. It was June, Field Day. All teachers hate Field Day, except for the PE teachers who run and organize it. Prior to the invention of black workout pants Field Day was actual torture. Let’s take all these women who don’t know what to wear and put them onto a field so they can awkwardly sweat through their shirts and pants. Nothing says ‘school spirit’ like bra and crotch sweat. Shameeka didn’t technically have to partake in Field Day. I walked into her room that morning.
“How are you feeling today?” I asked with a smile.
“Weird” she said.
“But like normal weird right?” I asked.
“No, not normal weird. I feel very crampy,” she said as she looked up at the ceiling and fluffed her hair away from her face with both hands.
“Well, cramping is normal this early on, isn’t it?” I asked, not even thinking about the alternative.
“I think so, but this feels different. I’m taking a half day and going home.” She said.
“I’m sure it’s nothing, but good. You should. Go rest. I’ll call you after work.” I smiled and left her room, thinking nothing of it.
After the amazing Field Day my grade level was hosting a First Grade Orientation meeting for parents of current Kindergarten students who were going to be in first grade in September. It was a meeting to explain to them the expectations of first grade, which they did not believe, understand or respect.
After the meeting I got in my car to drive home. I saw a missed call from Shameeka and instead of listening to the voice mail I just called her right away. She didn’t pick up. I left a message. Then I checked the message that she left me as I was getting on the southbound highway.
“Hey, it’s me,” she started, “so I had a miscarriage. I’m ok. I’m going home. I just wanted you to know.”
I gasped out loud. My heart sank to my stomach. I started breathing heavy, tears were welling up in my eyes, making driving difficult. I called her back immediately. I left another voice mail apologizing profusely for not listening to her message first and for not being able to pick of the phone in the first place because of my stupid first grade meeting. I drove the whole way home to the city with foggy, cloudy, tear covered eyes. When I got home I cried into my labradoodle pillow and then worse when we actually spoke on the phone that night.
Her miscarriage hit me really hard. How could my best friend and a perfectly healthy girl suffer a miscarriage? If that could happen to her, could that happen to anyone? This was all new to me, but it scared the shit out of me. I wanted to start “trying” to get pregnant with my husband because I was in no rush to get pregnant and why not pull the goalie. (Pull the goalie means go off of the pill that had been preventing me from getting pregnant for about ten years.)
The whole subject of ‘trying’ to get pregnant is such a hoax. Any woman who is ‘trying’ to get pregnant or doing the whole ‘we’re just not stopping it from happening anymore’ is full of shit. The second that a woman starts ‘trying’ to get pregnant she officially wants to be pregnant. The minute she takes her first pregnancy test and it’s negative and she was hoping it was positive, her mind is made up. She wants to be pregnant and she wants it – yesterday.