I get the distinct feeling I'm being watched.
Well, perhaps not "watched", so much as "wondered about". Yesterday, my mother called me at 5:30 am HER time, which even for her is a bit extreme; she said she woke up early, as she sometimes does at age 75 (she'd probably kick my ass from Paris to Prague if she knew I just told 100,000 strangers her real age) and was "thinking about me". Wondering if I was all right. Then in the next half hour she proceeded to ask grill me 3 more times how I was; was everything ok; was I feeling all right? No amount of my replying, "I'm fine, Mom. I'm great. Really great. Super great! Never better! I'm deliriously well and happy! I'M FREAKING FINE, ALREADY, NOW CAN YOU GET OFF MY BACK?!" seemed to satisfy her.
Sometimes, she gets that way. She's my mother and also a congenital worrier. So I chalked her Spanish Inquisition up to her just being Mom. But then I remembered that a few days ago, my best friend came right out and asked me the question I now suspect has been on the minds of millions thousands many at least a couple of people I know, but which they have been afraid to ask:
"So what's going on with this baby-making business? You still trying to have one?"
(That's what I love about my friend; no bullshit between us. We can say it all. It's the cornerstone of our friendship for over 20 years. Like how we kid each other about the time we got drunk at a bar in town and got locked out of our apartment... )
And I told her the truth: that we aren't preventing a baby. But we aren't really "trying" either. Because I suspect that ship has sailed, so to speak. For whatever reason, it ain't happening. And now, I don't think it's going to. I figured I might just as well come out and say that. Officially, we're done trying.
You'd think I'd be more upset about it, wouldn't you? But I'm very philosophical about things, and if something I want isn't happening, then it's for good reason. We knew it was a long shot to begin with. Georges and I already have a great life together and there are three wonderful kids already in it, one of whom is going to need us for many years to come even though the older ones are nearly at the jumping-off point (they will still need cash, however, and therein lies our one remaining source of power). It was disappointing at first but after a while, what I really started to feel was relief: relief from worrying that it wasn't happening as well as relief from worrying about what if it DID happen. As much as I truly wanted to have the experience of having a child with Georges and will perhaps always have some regrets that the timing just wasn't on our side, because of our ages and my own health risks and, well, my near-phobic fear of pain and losing sleep, I often had very mixed feelings about childbirth and motherhood. My relief at not being pregnant now exceeds my disappointment; the balance has shifted. And it's fine.So, life will continue as we'd always planned from the beginning: we're together and more in love than ever, we're doing our fair share of enjoying and raising the three kids until they all have their own lives, and then we'll still be together and have time all to ourselves -- a very beautiful thing. Eventually (please, God, let it be a LONG time off, though) at least one of the kids will present Georges with grandchildren and then I can get my baby fix, but without the stretch marks, horrific pain and sleep deprivation. And now I can go back to wishing menopause would hurry up and get here, already, so I can get over those pesky monthly cramps and mood swings. The sooner, the better, thank you very much.
With that, we close the "baby experiment" chapter. No need for pity or sympathy, as we require neither. We're cool. All is truly well, Chez Us.