Thursday, March 25, 2010


A friend wrote a post that inspired this endless, self-centered comment, so I thought I'd keep it here.

Discontent, I think is an apt word. I wonder, though, would that have come eventually? Now I feel old and jaded. I look back at my old self and her rose-colored glasses, how I willed them to stay put on my face. But does that come with age? Or is it just being grown-up? Knowing that there will always be something -- or someone -- missing?

I whinge on about having lost my passion, about being disillusioned, but sometimes I wonder if that's not an excuse for really diving into something again. Risking the rose-colored view, the hope, again.

Perhaps this new small city (where my friend will be moving soon) will hold the opportunity for feeling content professionally. This may sound terrible, but I wish I had been further along in my studies, in my career when everything screeched to a halt. Sometimes it feels like I don't have the wherewithal to get back on the horse and finish the final lap (or whatever metaphor fits) -- perhaps if I had been closer to the end, I could have limped on. Right now, it feels like I'm stuck on the ground, wondering how invested I am, and how much I'll waste if I just stay where I am, sitting in the dirt. Or, perhaps, where I can get from here.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


How do you forgive your body?

Especially if you don't get that subsequent pregnancy. Do you ever?

(Assuming, of course, you can fully forgive yourself?)

Right now

I'm supposed to be reading Foucau1t.

I'm supposed to be writing a two- to three-page paper about how I "theorize difference" for my class this afternoon.

I'm not.

Sitting on the bed with a cat under my left arm, and a dog against my right hip. Wasting time.

Listening to the children at the neighboring elementary school play at recess. Noshing on pretzels.

I don't know what to do with myself. My work. Marriage, family, house, life. I don't know how to make it all work, do something meaningful. Maybe I'm just afraid to try again.

My therapist asks me if this is the legacy I want for the boys. My sadness, my anger. My...lostness.

Is everything I do now their legacy? Is this all because of them?

No, this is because of me.

But my shrink seems to bring this up, repeatedly. Is this their legacy? Is this what you want their legacy to be?

She is probably trying to push me. Sometimes I need that. But that question just makes me sadder.

It's not that I can't go on without them. Or that I don't want to.

I don't know.

For this class, I've had to do some writing about some of the research I've done, use the project as a basis for exploring ways of talking about research, representing it. I did a formal, "authoritative" description based on interviews and blog posts of the same DBM. The next week, we had to base a creative representation on the authoritative description. I wrote a poem. It came out fast. Hard to tell if it was me or the DBM I worked with. My prof liked it a lot, meaning she thought it was a moving piece -- tactile, physical.

I got a B+ on the proposal I did for that awful class, the one that took me so long to finish. A B+, which I'm happy with from this prof, and a lot of useful feedback. Constructive praise and criticism. And a B for the class, which is just fine for me. I found myself reading the proposal, over and over again. Wanting to show it to people: my advisor, other profs... but not because I was so proud...It was more like, "Now what?", "What can I do with this?", "Is there something I can do with this?", "Tell me what I should do next", "Tell me this is good."

I don't know what I want. I don't know what I want to do.

My class? the one I teach? Sucks ass. One student is failing the course entirely (per the Chair) because he plagiarized more than 40% of his last paper. At *least* two students don't know my name. There are 5 weeks left in the semester.

I know rotten classes like this are inevitable, but this is not motivating me to pursue academia as a career.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Biting My Tongue

A colleague who, two weeks after my loss, told me that "everything happens for a reason," is presenting on his experience doing rescue work in Haiti after the earthquake. He is Haitian and first-generation American.

Ohhhh, man, am I a horrible person.

He talks about how all these desperate parents try to give him their children. "I did not enjoy the making of these children, why would I take on the responsibility..." Okay, this is out of context, but wow. Also, the organization he went with was trying to smuggle children out of Haiti and into the US. Apparently, the guide made tons of promises to families that she couldn't keep, promises to get their children to the promised land.

I am an angry, terrible person.

So much pain. Death. Destruction.

Where is the good? Please, tell me.

ETA: In discussing his efforts to get out of the country, and his eventual success,"I knew God was not going to leave me..."

Must be nice to be so blessed. (I really am a terrible person.)

ETA A: "Please learn to be humble. Obesity, eating disorders, other problems are really problems of privilege. You could lose everything. You could lose your home, your loved ones, you could lose your life."

Really? Hmm. Never thought about that. I could lose ones I love. I could lose my life. Wonder what that prospect is like. Hmm.

I don't dispute that some problems come with privilege. Is some pain more valid than other pain? I don't know. 200,000 people dead 1.5 million homeless. Millions injured, thousands more will die from their injuries or infection.

I don't know.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


So. It hasn't been great.

Up and down. Bitching left and right. Oh, and the anxiety is fun, too.

I spent part of spring break in NY and Boston. Originally just planned on NY, as my grandmother is not doing great, and I haven't seen her for a while. And, really, I hadn't been home for a year and a half. More than that, even.

But then a got a note from JK. A member of her immediate family died, and I felt like I needed to be there. I would only be a couple hundred miles away, so I kind of went into hyperdrive and changed my flight and rented a car. Spent the first few days in NY, the last few in Boston. Went to the funeral and the luncheon after. Wished there was more I could do. At the same time, felt kind of in the way. I'm glad I went though. Just to be there with her, her husband, family. And got to spend some quality time with JH, another dear friend in Boston, as well as several meals with others.

In NY, there was a lot of good, but a lot of not so much, too. Overtired from my trip. Lag time between who my family tend to think I am and who I have actually become. Oh, and grief and anger and all that messiness around the failed cycle and who knows what we're doing next. And it seemed the first part of every gathering was about the baby. Which, you know, duh. But not what I needed.

Literally in town for an hour and a half (after about 12 hours of traveling on no sleep), we (me, my dad, his girlfriend, my brother, his wife, L) sit down to dinner at a favorite mandarin Chinese food restaurant and the first words uttered are about so-n-so's due date and, L, when is your sister due? How is she doing?

Are you fucking kidding me?

There were breaks from it, but it was always there. Basically, the conflict between who they expect me to be and who I am now (plus, you know, my virulent rage at the universe) made for some interesting, if not difficult interactions.

Awesome deli experience with my dad on the first full day. Had a great breakfast with my brother and his wife, and then a wonderful lunch and afternoon with my friend, B.

With my friends, I was okay. I was able to mention my pregnancy, my loss, my depression without them freaking out. I could throw it into conversation and there weren't awkward pauses or looks. Tension. Even JK's family who were deeply grieving one of their own, took the time to thank me for being there, and to acknowledge my own losses over the last few years.

It was affirming.

But I could feel myself starting to get anxious and stressed about my travel back to the mid-west. Often clumsy. Flustered.

Made my flights fine. Made it home with no trouble. Wonderful greeting from husband and pets late at night. And after being home for an hour or two, it settled in.

Sadness. Anger. Anxiety.

frustration. hate. don't wanna.

How does the song go? back t0 life...back to rea1ity.

Yeah. great.

Then anger turned to depression and panic and then anxiety settled in. Hard. Not quite panic attack level, but that weight on the chest, around the neck. Heart pounding. I finally took a half a K yesterday evening and it helped. Appt with the pharm tomorrow morning.

Miscellaneous conversations with members of my family are just proving to reinforce my frustration with them, with the way we interact, with their expectations of me and of each other. I am afraid that once my father dies, we will all go our separate ways. I fear my grandmother is not long for this world. She is sleeping a lot these days, even with the meds and oxygen and everything else.

I fear I'm falling again. We are moving into a different space, reproductively. Still talking about ivf vs adoption vs any other possible options. But not really since I got back.

I think C is ready for adoption. I don't know if I'm there yet. And there's so much other stuff attached to it.

**(Accidentally hit Publish)
And school? I have no idea. I'm behind in so much and struggling with what I have currently... mostly struggling to care, to get it done. I have to teach and I"m doing a crappy job. I say, "I don't want to do this anymore." and C says, "So quit and get a job."

And that doesn't sit right either.

Feeling lost and trapped at the same time.

I know I am so lucky to have good, loving friends and family, a husband who I know loves me with all his heart -- and whom I love with all mine -- a roof over my head and food on my plate. A potential career.

Am I asking for too much to throw kids into the mix? Can I even manage it?

Maybe I am asking too much.