While I realize that this would be impossible to tell from my posting rate, the last week or so has been a whirlwind of activity here in la Casa de Eggbert. Mystery and I had a childbirth/baby care class three times last week, and while it was great fun, it also kicked my well-padded ass energy-wise. I'll post about the class itself another day (too many stories, too little time). In the mean time, I want to talk about infertility.
For the past few months, I'd been feeling a little post-infertility. I don't mean that I was suffering from amnesia, or anything as sinister as that. I will never forget where we've been, and will never stop caring about my infertile sisters and brothers and their struggles. I just meant that I have been in a phase of excited anticipation, rather than one of sadness and fear. Oh I still have fears, I fear that Eggbert will come too early, that Eggbert will spontaneously die for no good reason, that I'll be such a basket case of a neurotic mother that Eggbert ends up hating me, that Mystery will be so relaxed as a dad that he accidentally sets Eggbert on fire. You know, the normal stuff. However, I have now started to believe more and more firmly that there will actually be a baby in my life in a few months: two months and two days, plus or minus a week, to be precise. I even ordered a crib yesterday. An actual crib. Sleeping spot for an actual baby. Pretty much useless for anything else. So, I wasn't really in an infertility head-space, so to speak.
Then I went to childbirth class. The instructor was a mother of four, who clearly gets pregnant at the drop of a hat, as she regaled us with tales about how her last was an "oops". I was surrounded by big bellies and glowing faces. I heard crack after crack about how sex during pregnancy is fine, because "how do you think the baby got there in the first place"? I thought about raising my hand and saying "with the help of a team of crack embryologists and a big syringe", but thought the best of it. Had there been an opening, I suppose I should have spoken up. Part of me wishes I had spoken up. The other part reminds me that this falls squarely into the "too much information" category as an announcement to a group of complete strangers. So I just sat there and squirmed. It didn't help when the instructor went on at great length about how breastfeeding makes you more fertile (?!?), and the importance of using contraception while breastfeeding. Or when the other students started talking about what month would be best to conceive #2. For the first time in a good long while, I felt thoroughly infertile.
Being a pregnant infertile isn't a bad thing. It beats the hell out of being a non-pregnant infertile, that's for sure. I'm mostly very happy and at peace with my situation. However, it is still jarring to be reminded of how little the "normal" population understands about how infertility, and how off their radar we infertiles really are.
I've also (stop reading here if you don't want to hear something that sounds so ungrateful that it may make you want to club me over the head) found my mind wandering to a very wistful place whenever the topic of shopping for baby crops up (which happens a lot). My decisions about how much to spend and what to buy are constantly affected by the twin realities that a) We're unlikely to be lucky enough to have a #2, and b) We probably won't live in Korea forever. So, every object that I buy is likely to be used for only one child, and then will have to be a) given away or sold in Korea, or b) shipped overseas. So, rather than buying the perfect crib (I found it, for the low low price of only ~900 USD), I bought an adequate crib (~120 USD), and rather than buying a changing table, we're going to make do with whatever surfaces present themselves. As for a cute dresser for baby stuff? Well, how about a set of plastic drawers from the Korean equivalent of Wal-Mart instead? I realize that none of this stuff really matters. All that I really care about is a healthy baby. Still, I feel like I'm missing out on yet another one of those little joys of first-time parenthood. Each time these thoughts pop into my head, I can't help but spend a moment wallowing in the thought that this is likely to be the first and the last time that I ever get to experience pregnancy. That makes me sad. Still, I am so grateful to have had the experience once. It is enough. It may have to be.
We ARE going to buy a good stroller, though, dammit! Recommendations are very welcome.