Tuesday, December 25, 2012

The cat's out of the bag, and Grandma-to-be is in the loop!

I wanted to dedicate a post to telling my mom about my plans.  A little background first: when I told her I was pregnant all those years ago, she said, "I hate your guts," and hung up on me.  She now denies doing so, but that's not the kind of thing you can hear wrong. . .or forget.  I was 21 years old; not as mature as I should have been, but not exactly qualifying for a spot on Teen Mom either.  I was the exact age she was when she got pregnant with me.  In fact, we both conceived around the same time respectively.  She later told me that she was worried about the relationship my ex and I had.  She didn't want my child to grow up with parents who were in an unhealthy relationship, always breaking up and getting back together.  She knew how much that affected me, and she didn't want it to happen to another generation.  She eventually came around-sort of.  She answered my questions about how to combat morning sickness, what to talk to the doctor about, etc.  When I started to miscarry, I called my dad first for support, but then realized that I had no idea what to do, or what to expect.  I didn't want to go to the hospital; truthfully, I was hoping that the ex would show up to support me, but he decided to turn his phone off (insert insults and hand gestures here).  When I started to feel what I later learned were short contractions, I called my mom, who was in the hospital being treated for pancreatitis at the time.  She talked me through everything on the phone, then told me what to do afterwards.  When I went to the doctor's office the next day, she reminded me to ask for a Rho-gam shot.  When I had a memorial service for the baby, she was there.  Granted, she and my dad sat on either side of me and didn't speak to each other, but they were there nonetheless, and it meant the world to me.

You can see why I had decided to keep her in the dark during my TTC journey.  I realized that she would be supportive in the end, but I know that it is imperative to be surrounded by people who are going to be behind you 100% during this process.  Her feelings would be indifferent at best.  So, I told my dad, other family members, and a few friends, all of whom have been amazing.  When the PCOS card was put on the table as a possibility, the midwife said that my mother could provide me with helpful information.  Her fertility/pregnancy issues were likely caused by PCOS as well, and any information she could give me could help the clinicians come up with a treatment plan to prevent me from having the same issues.  So, I tried probing her gently, phrasing the questions in such a way that they wouldn't alarm her.  This is hard to do, especially when I was trying to ask specifically about her fertility.

I decided it was time to tell her the day I had the ultrasound.  I knew I had symptoms already, so when I got a good look at my ovaries, I knew right away what was probably going on.  When I talked to my mother that afternoon, I was very upset.  She said she didn't understand why, since I could be treated with birth control pills like she was.  I told her that that wouldn't be a possibility and asked her to sit down.  Beating around the bush was only going to prolong it, so I simply said, "I purchased donor sperm earlier this year with the intention of becoming pregnant early next year."  She dropped her head to the desk she was sitting at; many "Oh God"s were said.  She asked for a drink, which she rarely does.  I made her a screwdriver.  She made a face and said it was strong, then thought about it, and decided maybe that was a good thing.  :) I let her know that other family members knew about it and were supportive.  I told her the same thing I told my dad: she could be involved as much or as little as she wanted to; it was her decision.  I let her know that I had been thinking about it and planning for quite some time.  I made sure to tell her that I didn't need any financial support.  I asked her if she had any questions.  She said she didn't want to talk about it, so I let it go, went into the garage, and cried.  This was not how I wanted this conversation to go.  We were at my grandparents' house cooking dinner, so I put a happy face on until we were cleaning up later on.  Mom asked me why I had been crying, and I blurted out, "I might be barren and you don't care!"  I know that I am probably not "barren" (what a disgusting word that is!), and that this was a bit reactive of me, but I was upset.  She took a deep breath, and reminded me that she was able to get pregnant with twins at age 35 with half an ovary and scarring from the surgeries.  I giggled and told her that it was a bit more complicated since I wasn't getting the sperm for free.  She went back to the "Oh God"s and stared longingly at her now-empty glass. 

A couple of days later, she did mention that some of her old colleagues might know of some REs I could consult with.  I think that this is her way of supporting me as best as she can.  On Christmas Eve, she was going bananas over my 6 month old neice (cousin's daughter, but I call her my neice).  I asked her why she was so ecstatic over her sister's grandchild, but so uncomfortable with the thought of her own.  She smiled and said it would help if the child called her Auntie instead of Grandma.  I suppose that's a good start for now.  The cat's out of the bag, and hopefully that will be a good thing.  One of the ladies on the SMC forum said some reassuring things to me.  She said that once she sees the baby's sweet face and realizes all the love I have for him/her, she will come around.  Come to think of it, my aunt was the same way with my cousin's baby.  She wasn't sure at first, but eventually, it was apparent the idea of a new baby was growing on her.  While my cousin was in labor, she never left her side.  She adores that little girl, and even dresses her in my cousin's baby clothes!  So, maybe all will be well in the end...we shall see!                    

   

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