~ There is only one journey: going inside yourself. ~
- Rainer Maria Rilke


La Vida in Vitro, Part 2 ~ Friday, August 22, 2008

Two Roads Diverged in a Yellow Wood...

It's rare that the metaphorical crossroads in life loom so clearly and in such close conjunction as they seem to be right now.  We came into London on Thursday night, all set for our first day of tests, ultrasounds and injections, all of which would determine whether or not I will be able to conceive and bear a biological child.

But, I will be getting up at 6 a.m., because that is also the morning that my registration for classes at U of T opens.  So, from six to six-thirty, I will be trying to sign up for classes for the coming nine months, after which, I'll out for my first day of tests, which will determine whether I will have a child in the coming nine months.

I've been at crossroads before, and have had to make choices, but there is a peculiar resonance to this close a juxtaposition.  Two roads before me, not necessarily mutually exclusive, but very likely to be (because of different other physical complications, it's very possible that if I get pregnant, I'll be ordered to bed rest pretty early on and will have to give up on the idea of classes).  This particular morning, I'll be taking the steps I need to advance along two widely divergent paths.  

It will be several weeks of following this particular road, before the fork comes--but for now, it's a matter of, on the one hand, trying to work out what classes I'll be able to register for, which ones I'll be wait listed on, and how I can get off waiting lists and into the classes I need to qualify for a Master's, and on the other, doing the injections and blood tests and trips to London.

In a few weeks, this uncertainty will be resolved, and I'll be advancing along one or the other route.  But for now, there's this odd sense of irresolution and doubled lives, like two possible transparency overlays, where there's a map, and if you put one transparency over it, it shows one route, but then if you put a different transparency over it, a totally different route--with maybe just a few roads in common--gets highlighted.

I'm trying to be positive--there are exciting prospects along either path.  After all, it's up to me to try to get the most out of my life, regardless of the path it takes.  I might not have much control over how many eggs my ovaries are going to produce, nor whether any of them will fertilize as a result of some candle-lit dinners and one-night stands in the petrie dish/test tube.  Then, there's the question of whether one of those that does fertilize, once back inside, will implant and start growing into a baby.  

None of that is much in my control.  The one thing that I can control is how I look at the situation.  This is the end of the line for us, from the fertility perspective.  My body has been damaged and sliced up by the surgeries.  I'm working with essentially half an ovary, in total (my other ovary, which has also been reduced to half its size, is apparently inaccessible).  I'll be injecting the maximum dosage of drugs, in the hopes of getting *something* cooking in there.  But it simply may not happen.  

Given that, I have to be very careful about the kind of hope that I'll allow myself to experience.  Throwing all my eggs (so to speak) into one basket (ovary?)--the biological child route--is dangerous, because it's entirely possible this won't work.  And if it doesn't, and I'm totally invested in it emotionally, it will be devastating.  I have to focus instead on the ultimate outcome--a child, someday, somehow.  In Vitro is one possibility--a route that for now is still worth exploring.  But there are other ways, and I'm open to them.

Still, fingers crossed, for now.

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::Posted by Anduril Elessar @ 7:00 PM::::


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Anduril Elessar
Susan Deefholts

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La Vida in Vitro, Part 2 - Follow-up
La Vida in Vitro, Part 1
La Vida in Vitro, Epilogue to Part 1
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