Fits and Starts

When you think about it, we are all waiting for something at any given point of our lives. I am waiting on multiple things: on myself to be ready to try again with Dr. Uterus, on my mom’s visit this week, to hear from the Golden Retriever rescue organization to see if I passed the phone interview on Friday so that we can graduate to the home visit. Inevitably, though, once the thing that I am waiting for actually comes around, there is always a bit of a let down, as if the anticipation of the thing was far more interesting than the thing itself.

I’ve come to realize that waiting and anticipating are rather shallow activities. They are passive, like letting life wash over you rather than getting out the door and doing something. There is the temptation to view filling up the time with activities as distraction. I think in fact, that it should be classified as living, not distracting yourself while waiting.

To be sure, there are times when waiting is actually very therapeutic to me. If I get to an appointment early, and can sit there and read trashy magazines, it is almost as calming to me as having a purring cat on my lap. There is something about knowing I can sit there and do nothing without the need to justify that I am doing nothing that makes me super relaxed.

Most of the time, though, waiting is self-defeating for me. I feel as if I have wasted the time waiting and anticipating when I could have been out doing things. On the other hand, I feel that if I had just gone on doing the whole living thing, I would be giving the message that I wasn’t that interested in what I was waiting for (never mind that I don’t know who would be getting this message).

With infertility, I feel as if I have been waiting for my life to begin – with the birth of a child. I’m only now beginning to realize what many of you are probably yelling at the screen: my life has been going on the whole time and frankly, it’s been passing me by as I waited and waited and waited. I have read many blogs about waiting during infertility, this notion that your life is in a holding pattern until this one variable can be worked out. I’ve done that for three years and I don’t feel as if I have much to show for it.

So, for me, what does it mean to start living again? Well, it means making plans without first thinking about whether or not I will be pregnant. It means doing things that I want to do because I don’t know when I will have the opportunity in the future. It means getting the dog now rather than after we have kids as Sweetie wants because I want one now. It means just living my life without looking at the calendar.

Like many things, talking (or blogging in this case) is a lot easier than doing. But, I’ve now put it out there. You lovely ladies (and gents) will hold me to it. You will call me out for twiddling my thumbs or throwing pencils in the ceiling. You will remind me to get off my duff and do something.

So, go, Mrs.X! Get moving!

image: dhammza

21 thoughts on “Fits and Starts

  1. I love your comparison of reading trashy magazines to having a cat in your lap- classic!

    I agree, the waiting thing is so hard, I feel like I,too, have been in limbo for 3 years, and I never want to look back at my life and realize that I wasted this precious time. It’s hard though- I think there is a balance somewhere, I try not to be too hard on myself, you know?

  2. I totally relate to this post. I have spent the last three years of my life waiting to get pregnant. I haven’t been on vacation in nearly two years because I’ve been tied to my RE’s office.

    I’m ready to chuck it all. I want to be able to drink wine and soda, go on rollercoasters, and travel to far off places. IF sucks.

  3. Hi there – I am visiting from NCLM. Yes, I totally agree with your post…I have been “waiting” for almost 6 years now…and I have just a few months ago stopped making decisions based upon whether I may or may not be pregnant (like travel, applying for new jobs, etc). It is so much better this way — I really do have a good life — and if I do end up getting pregnant, I am going to look at it as the icing on an already pretty good cake.

  4. My husband and I were just saying this the other day, how we feel like we’re always waiting for our lives to start: First it was marriage, now it’s a baby (and a lot of other little things along the way).

    Your photography is amazing!

    Here via NCLM

  5. Me too! For the past several weeks I’ve been mentally yelling at myself to get off my a$$ and get on with life. I’m hoping that one of these days all this “relaxing” I’ve been doing just gets old.

  6. i’m a really good waiter — although i’m always late for everything so i don’t always get a chance to sit around and read trashy magazines!

    i finally feel like i’m allowed to start living — it only took almost three years to get a diagnosis, and now i’m giving myself permission to fill my time until my doc gives us the go-ahead.

    us infertiles have to be kind to ourselves, which is so hard to do when we spend so much time beating ourselves up for circumstances that are out of our control.

  7. This post reminded me of a line from a song:

    “Just remember what the biker chick said, that you’re really alive when you wish you were dead…”

    Not that you’re wishing you were dead, of course. Anyway…

  8. Yes! Thanks for the inspiration. Definitely, one of the things I hate most about infertility is how much it’s “eaten up” soooo much time — time that I have not allowed myself to even look at the morning sunrise and smile with gratitude. Also, I’m in the prime of my life here! Looking back, I’ll be so sad if I wasn’t living as best I could despite not being pregnant.

    Here’s to savoring the day… and living!

  9. It took me 2 long years to get to that realization – and I’m still working on living it today, 2 years later…

    It’s not an easy road, but for me, I know it’s the right one. I hope you feel the same.

    and, YAY for Golden Retrievers! We have one, and she is absolutely the Best.Dog.EVER!

  10. I’m happy to play carpe diem drill sergeant, as in “Mrs. X! Have you pursued your joy today?! No, well drop and give me 20!” πŸ™‚

    All joking aside, I’ve often felt that I’ve used my potential pregnancy as a possible out for making demanding decisions. I’ve not pursued dreams because, hey, next year I’ll likely be expecting so… Or I don’t need to address this negative situation yet because soon I’ll have an out in the form of a bun in the oven.

    But life doesn’t wait, and my body doesn’t cooperate, so I’ve just started acting as if there’s no point in waiting. And it does lead to greater contentment and joy, I’ve found.

    I think you’re discovering something similar.

    They better let you adopt a pup! Or they are total goofs.

  11. Oh yes…oh yes! DH and I have come to realize that we have been acting as if we were waiting for our lives to start when they have been going on and passing us by all this time. We’re making the effort to try to take control of our life and live again.

  12. I’ve been waiting for my life to start for 15 years, since university ended. Not waiting to have a baby, just waiting for something to come along to engage me, to interest me, to inspire me.

    So now, I’m inspired to get out there & find it, instead of having it {whatever the hell “It” is} find me.

  13. This post made me think of a scene from Mr.Magorium’s Wonder Emporium. Mr.M & Molly have just set all the clocks in a clock shop to strike 12 o’clock at the same time.

    Mr. Edward Magorium: 37 seconds.

    Molly Mahoney: Great. Well done. Now we wait.

    Mr. Edward Magorium: No. We breathe. We pulse. We regenerate. Our hearts beat. Our minds create. Our souls ingest. 37 seconds, well used, is a lifetime.

    I think so many of us waste our lives waiting for the next thing instead of living in the here & now. Wonderful post!

  14. Go you on being determined to live your life. The waiting part is terrible. I just want to go on vacation, I don’t want to think about how it might affect a possible pregnancy.

  15. Thank you so much for this wonderful post, Mrs X – it really is a salutary reminder to us all.

    It’s all too easy to put your life on hold, to avoid making decisions, to wait until you know one way or another whether you will ever have a child – but your post has certainly inspired me to get out there and start living!

  16. Just think of the time before your baby gets here as time to cram as much in as you can so you’ll be able to impress the baby and have all that much more to teach them as they grow older.

  17. Waiting is really difficult, especially if you have a goal in mind that seems ever elusive. I waited for 8 years before I reached my goal, but my BFF, who was waiting the same time as I was, never got to her goal. But we both have two lovely kids. It just sucks. No doubt about it.

    Here from NCLM

  18. Limbo and waiting stinks. I often look at the calendar and think, can I go to that conferenc or will I be ovulating then? Can I accept that invitation or will I be unable to fly at that point. You are right, it is silly to live life waiting for something.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. It is nice to know that someone is carzier than me πŸ™‚ I put a poll up, at the end I will share my diagnosis…and then you can all point and laugh at the mental girl πŸ™‚

  19. This post reminded me of Dr Seuss’s Oh the Places You’ll Go! (“the most useless place, the waiting place”)

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