In the spirit of starting a whole new phase of my life which I will call "Post Treadmill," I am starting a new section of this blog called "Miscarriage Handbook" that will include my thoughts on miscarriage from a different place than what I've read and seen in my two years of research.
Some of these thoughts will end up in a book - that is the plan. Your comments are always welcome, either here or in private. If you want to share your story and be quoted in this book, please stop by FirstThreeMonths.com and fill out the story form.
But on with today's thoughts on miscarriage.
First let me set the stage. I arrive at the sonogram place to get my ovaries sonogrammed. The technician is a young-ish male. I have only had one male technician before - an older gentleman. My first thought was "A young guy is about to stick a wand inside my you know what...hello?"
So the combination of freaking out a bit about this new turn of medical events and also the Starbucks latte I had downed a few hours earlier, I was a motormouth trying to talk my way through an unusual situation. Since I've had so many damn intra-vaginal ultrasounds, I just acted like this was a cakewalk.
First he asked is I was doing IUI or IVF.
"Neither," I said, a little annoyed that I'd be asked this question. "I'm doing it au natural." Don't they keep track of these things, I thought.
Next, he asked if I wanted gel or not.
Wanted gel or not? I had never been asked this question and I wasn't sure if the question pertained to lubrication or some other purpose.
"Some women think the lubrication blocks the sperm somehow," he explained.
"I'm not trying to get pregnant now," I replied. "We are just trying to see if the cysts in my ovaries have shrunken."
Gel it was. I guided the wand into the appropriate hole and he began waving it around.
Then I couldn't stop talking. Babbling is more like it. "Is that menstrual blood in my uterus?" I asked and he seemed impressed that I knew that.
Eventually, I told him that I knew my uterus - my exact words were that "I am one with my uterus," but that my ovaries were a big mystery.
He explained that the follicles that burst during ovulation, expelling the egg, sometimes hang around and become dominant - ie. the Monster Cysts. If I were to get pregnant, the cysts become Corpus Luteal and begin producing progesterone to support the pregnancy. I soaked up all the facts and figures, mostly to keep my mind off the fact that this young-ish guy was wanding my wah-hoo.
I began to expound on my philosophies about the reproductive process from a medical standpoint and from my standpoint - The Guinea Pig Standpoint where no one had answers, everything was a guessing game and I was the guinea pig.
We jabbered on for a while during the Wanding of My Ovaries and then afterwards, when I was dressed, continued the conversation.
My main point was this:
We as a society have brainwashed ourselves/women into believing that medicine and technology can cure everything. We believe these promises and then rely on medicine and technology to fix our ailing reproductive selves.
We also - as women - place too much of our identity in the hands of our collective uteri. If we are able to give birth, we are whole. If we cannot get pregnant or carry a pregnancy to term or do any other naughty reproductive act, we are no longer good women. We are not whole. We are not mother material. We are not good.
Modern medicine and technology have put us more than arms length away from our own bodies, from our own natural processes and bodily functions or disfunctions. We believe we can be fixed into being perfect baby makers at the risk of losing who we are.
Women are striving so hard, so desperately to get pregnant at any cost - financially, spiritually, emotionally, physically. We are obsessed with making it happen regardless of how painful it is or how unhappy it makes us in the process.
We have to find peace. We must believe that we are whole, beautiful, vital, amazing women even if we do not biologically conceive a child. We must also honor the many other ways we can become mothers. There isn't only one way - but in our society, even today, that one way is the ultimate nirvana.
We are seeking something that could - for some of us - be against our nature. Why can we not accept our own bodies just as they are? Some are made for babymaking, others maybe not, but we can still be made for mothering without the 9 months of hemorrhoids and gas and 48 hours of labor.
Why can we not accept our natural selves? Why do we subject ourselves to countless expensive tests, subject ourselves to humiliating and painful treatments and go through the rollercoaster ride of trying to conceive?
Somebody has to stop the madness. We are only human, for God's sake. We are fine just the way we are, and if we really have so much love to give, we should all be adopting the countless abandoned children in the world. We are not our reproductive organs. We should not be judged or judge ourselves by our reproductive prowess.
Miscarriage is just nature's way of saying "Not now" or maybe even "Not ever." Why is that such an unfathomably horrific thing in our minds, hearts and souls? Why can that not be okay?