For some reason the Jenny of yesterday hated the Jenny of today, and came up with the brilliant idea that Mr. T and I should do a very intense dance class and immediately follow that up with a yoga class. So I spent the better part of my day sweating, mumbling "this bitch is crazy" to Mr. T, and fully committing myself to the belief that exercise isn't worth it without at least the potential of an orgasm. Yoga is new age for 'try to get your head up your own ass by any means necessary' in case you were wondering.
It's exactly what I needed and I'm totes gonna do it again Wednesday. (Last night may or may not have ended with me finishing the Amanda Knox memoir, and hurling it across the room shouting "I just don't know!!" Jenny needed to unwind.)
Right now all I'd have to do is look at you and all your chis would be aligned or vibrate or whatever they're supposed to do. I am wildly powerful. Trying to stick your head up your own ass ironically makes you feel like you've unstuck your head from up your ass.
Towards the end of class as we were breathing, the teacher talked about how strengthening your spirit is just as important as strengthening your body if not more so, and that spiritual potency comes with age and practice. It was on topic with some things that have been going on in my mind, lately. Some dark things.
Now, if you're religious or are sensitive in the G-O-D department, you can skip this post, I won't be offended. I have a feeling to some it may seem like I'm about to get all blasphemous up in here. Let's end it on a high note before I start vomiting out my slightly dark thought process. I give you a Panda seeking spiritual enlightenment through yoga, see you in a couple of days.
As I have admitted on here before, I am an agnostic heathen without an interest in religion... okay well that's not entirely true, I'm fascinated by religion. Religion is just not going to be something that's apart of my own personal spiritual life.
I don't want to generalize anybody here, I have obviously met religious people who are open-minded and wonderful, and completely blow my mind. From my own personal experience with religious people, however, the awesome ones are the minority. That's not to say that the rest are bad or anything.. it's just usually even if they get you in with kindness, at some point whether it be loudly or with a whisper and a wink, they basically say 'oh, but we're better than this group of people over here... those people are sick'. No me gusta.
I have, on more than one occasion, had to explain to a person selling religion at my front door that after this life, as is true with any after party, I'm following the gays. Better cocktails, better music, exquisitely decorated and usually free of judgmental assholes. (I like my judgment catty and fun, not discriminatory).
When I went looking for my birthfather in my teenage years, I found that he had found Jesus in prison and was super religious. We're talking women can't wear pants or cut their hair, speaking in tongues, tap dancing and snake juice religious. Naturally he took one look at me and pretty much assumed I was the devil incarnate. (I'm happy to report that he has mellowed out since then).
So for me, agnostic means I believe in something, I just don't presume to know the details.
When someone says to me "I know there is a G-d", I think... awesome, I wish I had that kind of confidence, I'm strangely comforted that some people do.
When someone says to me "I know there is a G-d... but he has these tiny rules, see. He loves you, but if you cut your hair too short, get a tattoo, kiss someone of the same sex, step on a crack in the sidewalk or eat the wrong kind of cheese on a Tuesday He's gonna have to damn you to hell", I think... wait, you talked to Him/Her/It? Directly? Is He speaking to you now? Should I call someone? And what's the point of that love bit if we all know that as a human being I'm clearly going to fuck up a bunch of those tiny rules...
And if you ask the latter type of person why they believe these things, they usually point to some form of very old book. And I can't help but think (pardon me for saying these things 'out loud') if the only book to survive 1,000 years from now is Twas the Night Before Christmas, I would hate to think that people are running around thinking that they must sleep in kerchiefs and have window sashes.
I like to believe in something, some universal force. Mother nature, collective consciousness, old man on cloud, I don't presume to know.
I tend to think of it more as mother nature/universal force, but for clarity's sake let's call it G-d. I believe in G-d. What I don't believe in for a second is man's ability to interpret Him.
That being said, in regards to infertility I'm really having issues even attempting to interpret G-d/Mother Nature/The Universe. We're having a little bit of a tiff, me and It.
I've picked up a few things from different religions that I like or make sense to me. My best friend in elementary school took me to synagogue with her sometimes, and I adopted the idea that you shouldn't write out G-O-D on something if you ever plan on throwing it away. My family is Roman Catholic-ish, and I take a St. Christopher with me when I travel. My college sweetheart was a liberal Muslim, and I learned from him that fasting can sometimes lead to clarity (mostly fainting, but sometimes clarity). I've had an inexplicable connection to St. Michael my whole life - he pops up everywhere - I love the idea that an Angel can also be a badass who is kind of warlike. I like a lot of Buddhist teachings, and reincarnation is one of those things I could see as being True.
I also used to be one of those obnoxious people that thought 'everything happens for a reason'. I'd say a little prayer in my head every night, thanking the universe for all the great things it's given me, and reasoning that It (whatever It is) has never let me down unless It really, really had to. I even held onto that belief when my Dad died which was a really, really hard thing to do.
And now that's all kind of dead inside of me, it just seems like unbelievably naive optimism. Now I'm mostly feeling superstitious and pissed.
Superstitious because I have lost all feeling in terms of hope and faith in things, and am mostly just in fear that if I don't have that I will be struck down with even more issues.
People tell me to believe, to have hope. I did that, I did.. and somedays I still do. But often times I find myself just exhausted. I'm waving the good ole hope flag mostly because I'm afraid if I don't that I'll be even more screwed. But I am fucking hope in a perfunctory, don't-want-to-hurt-her-feelings fashion. The passion has gone.
I understand there are people who have it way worse than I do in the family-creating department, I do I do I do, and I know I'm being a whiner here... but if the lesson I'm supposed to be learning here is that building a family doesn't always happen easily, that it takes a long time, is sometimes a curved path? Sweet baby Jesus, I GET IT.
I'm adopted. I've had the experience of looking up birthparents, one was great one was awful. My Dad died when I was 21 and it crushed me. I've had every possible response to a sibling a person can have. I've been trying to have a baby for 4 years, I've done fertility drugs, IVF, had an early miscarriage. As far as touring the 'non-traditional' family side of life, I know I haven't had as thorough a tour as some, but damnit it's been thorough.
And even though I'm still nervous that even thinking these things (much less writing them) is going to result in me being struck down by lightning, I don't really feel like I'm learning anything new, at this point, from not having children.
Meeting new people, seeing new perspectives, learning about the comradery that happens with shared tragedy, yes. Still learning. The actual human experience of not being able to have a family? I'm maxed out.
If there's supposed to be some lesson here, it's been done. It's as if the Universe has asked me to listen to "Thriller" 9,000 times in a row. The first 1,000 I was intrigued, the 2nd thousand I still managed to find new things about it... Now that I'm hitting 10,000 I'm no longer finding anything new, I understand each component of it and the collective whole of it as best as I'm ever going to. The song is stuck in my head, I'm ready to move on, now I'm just being Thriller-raped.
And if this whole experience is supposed to strengthen my relationship with Hope, well.. No. I had her, she died, I revived her. I had her, she died, I revived her. Each time I revived her she came back looking more haggard and less of herself as she was before, and now she's just a vegetable. I keep waiting for her to twitch a finger, blink, give me some sign that I'm holding on for a reason and I find it incredibly hard to believe in her without some reassurance. Don't get me wrong, sometimes I can find the little finger twitch in my vegetable-like Hope (I happened to be seeing possibly the only Doctor who knew about our protein deficiency! That counts for something, right?). Hope is my own personal Terry Schiavo. I don't want to be the dick to pull the plug but at what point are you the dick for not letting go?
By letting go I don't mean giving up on having a family. I am, after all, just a few months away from sci-fi IVF 2.0. There is a chance that we will have normal fertilization this time around, and there's even a chance that I'll end up pregnant. Some days I feel hopeful about that and some days I don't. I'm mostly trying to stay as realistic about it as possible - no hopes up, but no doom & gloom, either.
By letting go I mean letting go of the idea that I have to feel good about it all the time, that optimism equals reward. Letting go of the idea that if on some days, like today, if I can't muster the tiniest bit of a hope-boner for my future that I'm somehow going to be struck down. Letting go of the idea that the people who don't get a happy ending are the ones that didn't believe in it strongly enough.
We all know that there are women with unboundless optimism who don't end up having babies, and women who are totally pessimistic and/or asshats who end up having a bakers dozen.
There's just no rhyme or reason to it. All hope might do is maybe make the situation a little more livable, but it doesn't change the outcome. So why do I feel guilty when I'm not feeling it, or like some unseen diety is going to say "yup, that's the test - you had to have it everyday for four years. I'm sorry to say you failed, no baby for you".
I am hope-impotent. Sometimes I can get it up and functioning, but there's no longer a logical reason for when and/or if that happens, and I'm gonna need some Hope Viagra. Mostly I'm just sick of feeling guilty about said impotence.
I like to think that sometimes.. at least in movies, the girl with blind hope ends up being disappointed and the girl that has lost hope ends up being surprised. Right? Hope makes the situation livable but it's not necessarily the cure 100% of the time. There's no law that says the Universe rewards you for constantly having blind optimism about things.Where does this guilt even come from, the guilt that if I don't believe strong enough all the time I'm going to be struck down?
I'm agnostic! Yet somehow, when the thought creeps into my mind "this is a bunch of horseshit, there's no reason in the world for this" I'm still afraid I'm going to be cursed because of it.
The only thing that I do confidently believe is that if there is a Higher Being, He/She/It is not a thought nazi that is going to punish me everytime a little bit of sadness, humanity or crisis of hope/faith sneaks in. If there is a Higher Being that temporarily puts you in tough positions, I'm confident it's not with the expectation that you handle it perfectly all the time. It's about enduring, not perfection, and I'm enduring as best as I can.
I feel dirty and awful when I'm feeling hopeless, doubtful, tired. I feel stupid and naive when I'm feeling full of hope and optimism. Damned if I do, damned if I don't.
Of course I'd probably feel better if I felt confident in my happy ending all the time. I will continue to feel that way as much as possible. But it doesn't help me to, when I'm not feeling it, throw a giant heap of guilt on top of it.
So I'll be brave, ladies. I'll say it. Sometimes I just can't get it up. Sometimes I am so exhausted that all the tinkerbell-clapping and how-to sex guides in the world aren't going to get it up.
All I can keep reminding myself is that I am very lucky, in a lot of areas, and that it's okay to have days where I feel hopeless just like there are days where I'm full of hope. I'm lucky that I have a marriage where I can easily say to Bub without flinching "I pick you over kids, hands down", and it doesn't take away from that if I'm sometimes bitter to be in the position to have to say that in the first place.
Somedays I'm stoked and excited about all this, convinced it's going to work. Others I just feel shitty to be in this position in the first place. I think that's okay, and I suppose I have to work on whatever stupid guilt I feel about not feeling roses and sunshine all the time... Like there's some very judgmental man on a cloud from the stone ages docking me every time I'm not full of optimistic glitter and sparkle.
I think that's enough blaspheming for the day.