I had my annual ladyparts doctor appointment the other day. You’d think this would be old hat for me at this point, given how much poking and prodding my area has received over the last few months, but no.
I sort of thought I’d be fine, TBH. I was even kind of bragging about it to my husband and any friends who still pick up the phone when I call.
“I’ve reached my saturation point on the doctor anxiety,” I said dramatically, to more than one person in the days leading up to my appointment. “At this point, anyone can have a look.”
Then I got to my doctor’s office and started weeping like my dog just died.
The problem is that my doctor was nice to me, and as you’ll see when I get to the latter part of my fertility testing journey, I’m not used to that at this point. Also, she wasn’t quite listening to me, or more accurately, able to hear what I was saying. Also, as well, and furthermore, I didn’t feel like I could tell her what I was feeling, so it was hard for her to get a full picture of what was going on in my head.
I like my ladyparts doctor a great deal. She’s about my age, trained in the city where I grew up, and swears during our appointments. All of this makes me feel like we could be related. At the very least, I feel a connection with her. So what went wrong this time?
Well, I gave her the update on our fertility appointments, and she said the one thing a person can say that will make me start sobbing immediately.
“You’re just at the beginning of this journey,” she said. “There are a lot of paths to having a family.”
The adoption shit. Again.
I don’t know what it is about dealing with infertiles, but people really seem to want to tell us that we should adopt. Never mind that adopting isn’t easy, inexpensive, or right for everyone. In most people’s minds, it’s as simple as trotting down to the orphanage and picking out little orphan Annie.
Even people who know better will suggest that adoption is the way to go. A really good friend of mine, one of the single nicest, most intuitive, and most emotionally intelligent people I know, recently suggested adoption to me in the most horrifying way I can imagine.
“Don’t close the door,” she said. “I could see you, in 10 years or so, really falling in love with an older child and being so happy you opened your home to them.”
“Did I do something to upset you?” I asked. “Because I don’t know why you’d say something like that to me otherwise.”
I didn’t really say that, because a) I’m not a monster, and b) I totally am a monster, but I don’t want anyone else to know that, lest they start shunning me when we’re at the watering hole together.
Adoption is great, but I don’t want to do it. Unfortunately, when you say that, you sound like you’re saying that adopted kids are murderers who smell funny and will really cramp your style, which only includes cute, fluffy babies who look like you. So you can’t say it. This gives everyone leave to give you their stupid fucking opinion about how you should adopt.
I don’t know this for sure, but I suspect part of the reason adoption comes up is that we all love to tell heartwarming stories. I’m guilty of this, too. I love it when someone triumphs over adversity. I loved that story about the guy who found the baby in the subway, for example. But it’s not my job to be as amazing as that guy, or to provide a cool story for you to tell your friends. Let me be my middling-awful, non-inspirational self. Leave me alone, if you can’t endorse my way of being in the world.
Of course, it’s also possible I’m assigning too much importance to a throwaway comment that was meant well but not overly well thought-out. To be fair, she also sort of pushed me into saying I’d try IVF, which I also don’t want to do, but more on that tomorrow.
(Picture: Rennett Stowe at Flickr)