Friday, October 9, 2009

The New "Normal"

This morning I woke up, refreshed and ready at 6:15, and commented to my husband:

"Wow! What a great night's sleep. I only got up to pee 3 times!"

At which point he snorted, rolled his eyes, turned over, and went back to sleep.

Obviously, infertility, treatments and pregnancy have changed me in countless important and fundamental ways. But this morning's episode got me thinking about the countless, semi-trivial ways in which I've changed over the last 3 or so years (beyond the constant need to pee and the ability to fall asleep immediately afterwards -- and OK, sometimes during).

To wit:
  • I'd never gotten blood drawn before my first infertility workup, and was so grossed out/scared that I had to shut my eyes and do deep breathing. Now I avidly watch and discuss things like the color of my blood and needle technique with the lab tech.
  • Pelvic exams and other occasions where medical professionals insert things in my hoo-ha are no longer a big deal.
  • I've come to appreciate work as a distraction from disappointment.
  • I've come to realize that I can indeed live without red wine for extended periods of time.
  • I've learned how to ask for help lifting my suitcase into the overhead bin (sort of -- this is a work in progress).
  • I've always been sensitive about my weight, and people commenting on it. Now I find comments about the growing size of my belly reassuring, and actually enjoy when people touch my belly.
  • On a related note, I used to perish the thought of walking around in my bathing suit. Now being in the water feels SO GOOD, I let it all hang out and don't even really think about it (except when my giant boobs occasionally pop my suit open).
  • I crave sweets.
  • I have hair growing in odd places.
  • When my husband tells me I look beautiful, I don't fight it -- I just smile and appreciate the compliment.
  • Have I mentioned the size of my boobs?
What about you? Anyone care to share in what crazy ways this whole roller coaster ride has changed you?


babyinterrupted said...

My husband is allergic to bees, and I used to FREAK OUT at the possibility that I might, one day, have to use an epi-pen on him. I trembled with fear at the idea of doing an injection myself.


(That is me, laughing at my former self.)

Also, I used to be so embarrassed about pap smears and stirrups in general. Now I practically drop my pants for the dentist. :)

Donna said...

I never ever thought I would be able to give myself shots... now I do it twice a day as a matter of course.

And I'm completely not embarassed by getting undressed to have 6 - 8 people look between my legs anymore either.

Still can't say I'm happy about the "Really! It's not twins?" comment though....

Sue said...

I agree with ALL of that. I also have to laugh b/c the first time DH gave me a shot of gonal-f, I cried...I was so scared to inject these medicines into my body...and then cycle after cycle, I'd actually look forward to it because it would give me hope and I'd think I could actually feel those eggs growing! Crazy.

Carrie said...

Certainly all of the above!

I am much more cautious in my hope for healthy babies as well. The first pregnancy after my daughter I was buying clothes the DAY I found out I was preggo. Three miscarriages, IVF and a triplet pregnancy later, someone had to FORCE me to buy cribs.

So while dozens of people have seen me mostly naked (which seems normal now...) it is the inability to believe something good can happen until it happens.

Gosh, that was depressing.

On a lighter note, if I don't run to the bathroom (preggo with triplets? Run? Okay, WADDLE) then I pee my pants. Happens at least once per day. ;)

My Endo Journey said...

I can't believe how comfortable I am in a surgical suite (2 laps, 1 hysteroscopy and 2 IVFs later).

My level of nausea and how I'm okay with it!

All of what you said.

Whoa on the crazy random hair growth! :)

Michele said...

OMG, how HASNT it changed me!

A funny change: chatting while medical staff, from one to what seems like a billion, are all "up in" your business. No shame here!

Ben & Anne said...

Same as everyone above! Also it's changed me for the worse:

- I get so angry inside when I hear about unplanned and unwanted pregnancies, especially to people I don't think deserve them, i.e. those who won't quit smoking etc. When did I get so judgmental? What happened to 'live and let live'?

- I used to be able to suppress the control freak inside me.... now I don't know how I will possibly let anyone hold my baby when he is born, how I'll ever sleep as that will mean stopping watching him or how I will let him take any risks EVER (he was so hard to conceive.... I am convinced if I blink or turn away once I'll lose him). I know I need to get over this VERY quickly as it's really unhealthy - so much easier said than done!

And for the better:
- I hope and believe that I am more aware and sensitive in speaking with people about personal things going on in their lives. After years of painfully telling people "we might have kids one day, we're just not ready yet" - LIE! I know that things are not always what they seem.

- Needles? Pelvic exams? Hospitals? Surgery? What's the big deal?!

- I am so grateful for my life and I thank my lucky stars each and every day that I have been fortunate enough to get through this. Who knew I could be so lucky?