I've just been out to dinner with the other women from my Mums and Babies group. Not surprisingly, talk turned to second children as all of us are in our late 20s/early 30s, parents of 18-20 month olds, and naturally we are getting long of tooth and dusty of uterus. All of these women know about my light dabbling with infertility treatments, as I fessed up when P was just a few months old.
They are often curious about infertility and IVF, so I act as Resident Expert on Matters Fertility. This despite the fact that I know less than jack, as evidenced by my pre-IVF posts in which my embarrassing lack of knowledge regarding the most basic female reproductive physiology was most apparent. I won't even tell you what body parts I confused when actually pregnant. What can I say, I was just a really casual bystander with the medical side of IF treatment. I was all about the drama instead.
Anyway, given my full disclosure these women are really cautious about what they say about pregnancy and fertility in front of me. "When I get pregnant again" is sometimes altered to "If I get pregnant again", lest the poor barren one get offended. One of the reasons I'm always hesitant to share my dark, infertile past is that I don't want people to feel forced to modify what they want to say. I don't want to always be the recipient of a sly sideways glance after someone has spoken of getting pregnant on the first try.
On the other hand, and this is where the perversity and illogicality prevails, I would be annoyed if people didn't think before they spoke. In essence, you're fucked either way when it comes to my perception, so don't even bother. I'm not going to be happy if you carefully choose your words so as not to hurt my feelings, and I'll be annoyed if you open your mouth and something ignorant spills out. What's a poor fertile girl to do?
Tonight the banter wasn't too shocking - quite a fair amount of "when" rather than "if", but I suppose if they have no reason to doubt their fertility they wouldn't be inclined to allow doubt to enter the equation. There was the one throwaway comment about possibly deciding when one is 45 to have a third child, assuming of course the second would be had, and that a third would easily arrive when in one's mid-40s.
I've spoken before about wishing perhaps we were not so weathered, worn, and battered by infertility to the point that we anticipate the infertility of others because they are just too naive. It's an ever-recurring theme with me. I got what I want out of the whole IF deal, yet I expect other women who haven't had similar trials to just *expect* possible infertility. Why would they? I want to think that these happy events happen without any sign of complications, but I'm far, far too jaded for that.
I don't to be the wise old sage. I don't want to be the one silently sitting at the table whilst these "when" conversations are going on, thinking to myself that they would be doing themselves a favour by making it an "if" conversation. So many of them think it's an age-related issue; as long as they squeeze the conception of that second kid in by 35, they'll be fine. Of course they know that I was 23 when I started infertility treatment and 28 when I finally got pregnant, but I'm just a black mark on an otherwise fertile landscape. Unless someone tells you they didn't get pregnant easily, it must have gone without a hitch.
I'll spare you the talk that went on of how to have sex in a manner to guarantee that you get pregnant with a girl. Even if I drank, not all the wine in that tiny Indian restaurant would have been enough to suppress that memory. These are the conversations those people have ladies, for realz. I would have been happy to have gotten pregnant with a goat, let alone specifying the gender of any fetus residing in my uterus. To read books dedicated to girl-making sexy time, well...my time could be much better spent cleaning my oven or scraping pigeon shit off my skylights.
Must go have sex now, with my legs at a 45 degree angle post coitus whilst wearing a crown made of pineapple chunks and one slipper on my left foot. I want to have a boy, you see.