Sunday, January 20, 2008

Peel me a grape, I'm infertile

I went to Target yesterday. With a big list. Toothpaste, contact solution, toilette papier, lightbulbs, Advil...pregnancy tests. No need, of course, for pregnancy tests right now but I will need them in a couple of weeks after my FET. I'm going to learn about the yes or no right here at my home turf, thank you very much. I'm doing this as much for my fellow infertiles at the clinic as for me. It wasn't pretty last November.

Checkout at Target. Toothpaste. Scanned. Contact Solution. Scanned. Pregnancy tests. Scanner: "Oh, honey are you pregnant?"
Me: blink. "No."
Scanner: "Oh, are you buying this for a friend?"
Me. blink, blink. "No."
Silence. Standoff. Resume scanning.

What a dumb thing to ask a perfect stranger. Dumb. Dumb. Dumb. It was wildly insensitive and hugely inappropriate. I immediately mounted my moral high horse. I would never be so insensitive and callous and .... Except, I have been. Recently. Not too long ago, a co-worker was showing me pictures of her two year old. She was proud that she got her daughter to sit down and allow a picture to be taken of her in her birthday finery. And I said, "I love her little birthday mullet." I really said that. Instead of gushing about how cute she looked, I focused in on a two year old's hair. Silence. It was an insensitive, thoughtless thing to say and I meant absolutely nothing by it. I just said the wrong thing.

And it got me thinking. Am I beginning to define myself by my infertility? Lately, I'm far more likely to focus on the insensitive things others have said in passing than the many gifts of friendship I've received. I turn rabid every time I hear "When you have children..." or "you'll know when you have children." Yet, 9/10 times the people saying these things have no idea about my situation. And the remaining 1/10 isn't just trying to stick it to the infertile. Though I have confided in very few people, by damn, I expect everyone to be sensitive enough to, well, consider every single life event I could possibly be going through and simply stop saying stupid things. I'm a tender flower, you know.

What it really boils down to is that feeling sorry for myself is becoming too much of a commitment. I'm spending inordinate amounts of time and energy walking on eggshells around me. Lordy, I'm no fun to be around anymore.

Bring me the smelling salts.


luna said...

I know how you feel. I'm tired of being so super-sensitive but I can't find any other way to be. (but really, that is such a super stupid and nosy thing to ask a total stranger at target -- like WTH business is it of yours anyway?! my guess is she has a bunch of kids and just wanted to talk about them and pg... ugh.)

I'm also tired of feeling sorry for myself and imagine that others are probably tired of walking on eggshells too. sometimes it's exhausting feeling like this. the whole thing really sucks.

anyway, just wanted to say me too. and good luck biding your time until you poas. ~luna

Duck said...

I'm with ya! Tired of being supersensative, but, some people are a wee bit ignorant - i mean it's a "test" if you knew that you were pg - why would you need to "test it"?

Io said...

I totally wind myself up before I go places where I think I will have to deal with stupid stuff that makes me all whiny and sensitive. I start thinking about what people might say and how I will respond and I get upset before it even happens.
It's so hard to calm down and realize that when somebody says something like "Do you have children?" that they are not calling me out on IF.

I'm with Luna on the checkout lady at Target however - I mean, if somebody buys condoms does she comment on their sex life?

Rebecca said...

I'm sorry, but "birthday mullet" is hysterical! I know what you mean about other people's's amazing what people say not even thinking and I've been guilty of it too. Never again will I ask a newly married couple when they're going to start having kids b/c it took us two years to get to the point that we are! When people would ask me, I'd be as honest as possible...I allow everyone to wallow with about insensitive, huh? Don't beat yourself up too much...this whole thing is a commitment!

Denise said...

You sound like me. I totally would have gotten all worked up from that comment. Why do perfect strangers think it is their business to ask such personal questions? It is a big pet peeve of mine when people working retail comment on what you are buying while you're checking out. So inappropriate, but it seems to happen everywhere.

Being so sensitive and AWARE of IF every moment of the day is exhausting. We all deserve to take naps at work or something.

TABI said...

That cashier needs to be slapped! Completely out of line. I agree that it's exhausting being so sensitive about it all, but it's so hard not to be. My entire social life has changed because I'm on defense 24/7 to block out any chance of stupid people making stupid comments that enrage or hurt me.

Almamay said...

Sharing your birthday mullet comment made me laugh out loud and really cheered me up on a day I needed it. Thanks!

Mrs Captain Jack Harkness said...

When I bought a pregnancy test last year, the lady at Safeway asked me whether I wanted it to be positive or negative.