“Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come,
or a plane to go or the mail to come,
or the rain to go or the phone to ring,
or the snow to snow or waiting around for a Yes or No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.”
Dr. Seuss had it right. In his book, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” he harnesses many of the truths about our ordinary lives, one of them being the waiting.
For a year and a half, I have been waiting for my health to return to “normal.” I’m not sure normal exists anymore, at least not in the same way that it did before. Since having viral meningitis, I have to do daily things just to manage the symptoms and lingering problems that come with it. Stretching, slowing myself down, taking time to check my spelling which I never used to have to do, entering in every little detail into my calendar just in case my brain forgets, forgiving myself for forgetting things, which Will happen, the list goes on and on.
But these all seem like small tasks when it comes to the bigger issue at hand. I’ve been waiting for my body to return to normal not just so I can feel better, but so I can finally get pregnant.
This year I turn 30. It’s a landmark birthday for me and one that I’m very happy. Since my car accident, I’ve been celebrating Each birthday as a little victory. It’s amazing to be able to look back and say, “wow! I am still here and got to live another year on this beautiful planet!” But, since as long as I can remember, I always imagined that I would have a child by the time I was 30 years old. It didn’t seem unattainable when I was younger. I met the love of my life at 18, we got engaged when I was 23, married at 24, I got a job when I was young and have built a career. Last year, we spent our first year in our new home. It seemed like we had everything lined up and ready to go. But, my health stopped everything.
For my 30th birthday party, my husband went through some of my old childhood things for a game he made.He found a lot of diaries and journals and told me afterwards that he felt like he got to know me even better than he already did. The one thing that surprised him the most was how often I wrote about having kids and how often I mentioned that I wanted them when I was still young. I guess you could say 30 is still young, but I feel like an old soul trapped in a body that doesn’t always work and it’s heartbreaking.
My friends, my colleagues, the people I see every day share with me their joy of having a child, of being pregnant, of moving onto the next step. I am elated for them and overjoyed when they share their news, yet there still part of me that feels utterly destroyed at my inability to do the same. It has nothing to do with their joy, it has everything to do with my own failings. I hide it well. I still go to the baby showers, I still stay in touch and ask how they’re doing, I asked them how they’re feeling. It’s the right thing to do. I know that from my car accident. But sometimes I wish they could understand without feeling guilty what it’s like to sit here waiting to hear the cry of a baby and yearning to fill a bedroom with furniture, little clothes, and a rocking chair.
I’m waiting. Still waiting. Someday I won’t be, I pray. I’ve gotten good test results this week. It’s starting to look more promising. And I can only hope that Dr. Seuss got it right again when he ends that page…
“NO that’s not for you!
Somehow you’ll escape
all that waiting and staying.
You’ll find the bright places
Where boom bands are playing!”