Sunday, April 27, 2008

IVF Cycle 1: Opposites Attract

In 40 minutes time, I will find out if I am pregnant or not.

I like to think that I am a cautious optimistic - a positive person who sees opportunities and the bright side of things, while also being realistic. But really, I am more accurately described as a cautious pessimist.

"Okay", I say to myself. "Everything has gone almost exactly like last time, and I got pregnant last time. I have nausea, I have sore boobs and I am spending half my life emptying my bladder. But that doesn't mean anything at all. It's just the drugs. Don't get your hopes up. You can't possibly get pregnant this easily." Cautious pessimism prevails.

As a white, mostly middle-class Australian born in the 1970s, my life has been very privileged, if you compare it to the majority of the world, with only moderate effort on my part. But I still have a deep belief that the universe hates me.

If I am pregnant, I will secretly assume that I am liable to miscarry at any moment. If I'm not pregnant, I'll assume that I am in for multiple unsuccessful cycles that will leave me physically, emotionally and financially exhausted. For some reason, this makes me feel safe. As if assuming the worst, mentally and emotionally preparing for it, provides a kind of safety net. If something good happens, that's great. If it doesn't, well, I predicted it all along and at least I have the tiny satisfaction of being right.

The Big Dude, on the other hand, with his extensive experience of suffering and serious trauma, is a Pollyanna-style optimist. He is always certain that every aspect of our lives is going well and is sure to improve any moment. Despite more than 15 years of poor health, he goes to bed every morning fully expecting to be well again when he wakes up. He is convinced that the universe is plotting for us. He is sure that we are already pregnant, that everything will go well and that parenting two children will be a delightful experience.

Of course, we are driving each other mad. He can't understand why I am always so bloody negative. I am irritated by his sunny confidence and refusal to join me in seeing the universe as the cruel, brutal place that it really is. It's lonely, being right about everything.

Why do opposites attract? Is it just to torment us?


Blogger Fiona said...

The universe IS cruel and brutal when it comes to this. No promises are ever made and there's so much you have to go through. My friend treats it as you do, to get through it. Hugs

4:32 PM  

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