I had a fine day today. I would even say a good day. Even at work.
I had a few laughs at the office. I went to the gym. While I on the Arc Trainer for 45 minutes, I listened to a really good self-help book, The Power of Now. My husband and I went to the Mets-Phillies game and had Shake Shack and a really good blood orange IPA.
We took the long ride home on the local 7 train. There was a very nice card from my mother-in-law saying how thrilled they were that I was feeling better and how special I am to them.
And all I can think is:
I want them to be thrilled for me because I’m pregnant.
Do they wish their son had married someone younger?
Do they think I’m subpar?
I will be 39 next month. When I was supposed to be 12 weeks along. My husband is two and a half years younger.
In my saddest, darkest, most shameful places, I think I’m subpar. My eggs are fucked or my womb is fucked or I’ve aged out of having a viable pregnancy. You can tell me every statistic in the book that proves how common miscarriages are and it has not, will not change the way I feel until I have a healthy-ten-fingers-and-ten-toes-no defects-baby.
And what if that never happens?
My husband talked about the wedding we’re attending in a couple of months. I thought I’d be buying some sort of roomy cocktail dress. Thought I’d have such special small talk to share with his family members and high school friends. My general shyness and social awkwardness could be chalked up to pregnancy fatigue.
I counted on this pregnancy for so much. I assumed so much.
When we first got engaged, I felt like I had joined some sort of elite club for people who had gone through various life milestones. Not only was I marrying a man who I am madly in love with, I was no longer an unmarried woman pushing 40. I no longer had family members and friends from back home in Virginia wondering what was wrong with me, if I was some sort of damaged goods. And yes, those conversations did happen.
From my well-meaning Aunt Kay: “But don’t you want a husband, Kath?”
From a former almost-flame: “If you still lived back here, I’d date you but I’m looking at you right now and you’re a cute girl and I’m thinking ‘what’s wrong with her?'”
My belly is still somewhat swollen, more likely a result of overeating and overdrinking in the past week but it still makes me sad to look at it and it’s devastating to touch.
I know it’s only been a week but when will I be over this? My husband seems fine.
Why can’t I be fine, too?