Tuesday, October 19, 2010

the things I've learned

I am not - by any means - a religious person. Throughout my adult years, I've made the transition from believer to agnostic to atheist. My feelings about God were pretty well summed up by Kurt from Glee a few episodes ago: "God is kind of like Santa Claus for adults." Indeed, Kurt. Indeed.

Don't get me wrong - a lot of people I love are spiritual and believers, and I respect anyone who has faith and sticks to it. In fact, I think this whole journey would be easier if I did believe in a benevolent God, overseeing all with some sort of plan for me. I just don't believe that's true.

I have found - and perhaps this explains some of my disdain for organized religion - that those who claim to be the closest to God say some of the cruelest things and have the least empathy. I may not believe in God, but I do believe that Christ lived and was a social revolutionary who opened his arms to one and all; I also believe that Christ would be appalled by many of the things that are done and said in his name.

Anyway, I've learned a few things over the past few weeks. And some of it has to do with people of faith.

1. Religious people can be very very cruel. Sometimes, I am sure, this cruelty is unintended. Other times, I think some people hide behind the shield of religion to say whatever the fuck they want. We've recently heard that God doesn't give a person more pain than they can handle (really? then why do depressed people kill themselves? Did God abandon them?); that it will happen for us in God's time (so is it God's time when crackheads and abusers give birth to babies who will face a lifetime of horrors?); that God has a plan and everything happens for a reason (really? God planned for me, and my IF/RPL sisters to experience this heartbreak again and again? If that's true, God's kind of a jerk, and definitely not a woman).

2. I can sometimes be overwhelmed by the surprising desire to punch sweet little old ladies in the face, particularly when they spout the nonsense mentioned above.

3. People who don't have pets, and don't get why my girl's untimely (in so many ways) death has left me in ruins, are almost always assholes. Likewise, people who love pets, and have lost pets, seem to have bigger hearts and more kindness in their souls, and are generally more likable folks. Just as I am unable to befriend the fertile, I am also unable to befriend the petless - I'll never understand them, and they'll never understand me.

4. Sometimes, especially when the universe is falling apart, people you have never met can lift you up more than those you have known for years. Thank you, internet friends, for embracing me. I will try my hardest to pay it forward. And I feel really driven to meet you all, and share a drink or two and some laughs. Maybe I'll actually get motivated to plan "Camp Dead/No Baby," even if I have to come to your homes and drag you out to join me. You've been warned.

5. The people who have always been there for me - my mom, my brother, my hubby and some others - are rock solid, wonderful people. I need more people like them in my life. Seriously. It is so beyond true that when you cry, you cry alone. I've reached out to long time "friends" and have not been terribly surprised by their non-response. I get it - it's more fun to hang with the friends who are getting married and having babies and looking forward to happy-filled futures than with someone like me, who wonders if I'll have the strength to face my fate and slog through another hour, another day.

6. The personality trait - stubbornness, I guess - that propelled me towards success in my pre-RPL life is holding me back now: when I decide to do something I commit. And I've decided, dammit, that I want to have a baby, and that nothing will stop me. Rationally, I know that there is very little chance of things working out for us pregnancy-wise. I need to accept it and learn how to live with that new reality. I just can't. I will try anything to experience a  full term pregnancy, to see my belly swell and feel the little kicks, and know that for once, I gave birth and not death. Sigh. I just can't let go.

7. The depression diet works. I'm down quite a few pounds. I've realized that I am the type of girl who cooks my feelings, so that others may eat them. I'm finally learning to bake (I had a traumatizing experience with cream puffs years ago, and though I am a darned good cook, I've avoided learning to bake until now). I also drink my feelings - which really isn't good, and is something I'll be addressing with my kick ass therapist - and have become quite friendly with tequila and whiskey. Tequila plus whiskey plus baked goods - sometimes all in the same night, and sometimes all at 3 am - make life bearable.

Okay, tequila fueled ramble over. Love to you all.


  1. We could so be IRL friends. I heart you.

  2. (*hugs*) I can relate to a lot of this. Not everything, but definitely a lot. Hang in there.

  3. I <3 the people in the 3-6 category! I have a huge disdain for organized religion as well...some of the reasons you have mentioned above so no judgement here. :) Hope you are okay.

  4. ((HUGS))

    I agree with everything you wrote :)

    My downfall was jim beam when I needed a nice cozy escape. sigh.

  5. Yup. You pretty much summed up how I feel about religion (and a lot of other stuff). We should be neighbors.

  6. This IF journey has definitely shaken my faith. I was always more spiritual than religious, but I don't know what I believe anymore. I can't see a master plan behind our IF struggles either. And yet, I do believe some things, like our adoption of our son, were meant to be. So yeah...I'm torn. Oh and also, I wish I lost weight when I'm depressed--I eat my misery instead, so it's been all gain during our 4+ years of TTC. Sigh.

  7. I'm with Willow...all gain for me in my depression.

    And I'm TOTALLY with you on the religion front. I've also gone from believer (although that was when I was very young) to agnostic (in college and beyond) and now to atheist. I just can't believe that any god would be such a dick to me and the rest of the infertiles I know. My first husband changed his mind and didn't want kids anymore, so I went through a fairly rough patch when we divorced. Then I met my husband who wanted kids, but we had to go through infertility and a failed IVF. So if that was "the plan" for me, I think it sucks. So the infertility stuff pushed me over into the atheist category.

    I was primarily agnostic before because of most organized religions' views on homosexuality. I'm just not a fan of anyone who thinks that loving (and marrying) someone of the same sex is a sin. Or the ones that want to save or cure someone of being gay.

    Wow, your comment about religion really got me going!

    Anyway, I think you are awesome, and I would totally attend any camp you set up.

  8. I am thinking of you. Promise me you will go and consult with an RPL specialist.

  9. You are so amazing, I wish I could meet you too. I understand how shattered you are over sweet Osa's death. Hoping you are able to remember the good moments you had with her.
    Glad to hear you are down a few pounds and that your therapist kicks ass. You deserve only the best.

  10. Crap, I just realised that you dog's name was Lulu. I'm so sorry! I wrote the wrong name 'cos I've lost my memory! Forgive me :( Everything else I said was right!

  11. Since we've been dealing with IF I've started wondering why people can't just admit they don't know what to say and have to spout stupid crap that they think is comforting (even though it usually isn't). Then I hope I didn't inadvertently hurt too many of my friends/family saying something dumb over the years.

    Oh, and if you ever do decide to punch one of those well intentioned old ladies in the face....I think you'd be totally justified.

  12. I can totally relate to your feelings about religious people. I've had practically the same interactions with my MIL. She is a nut. She has no empathy whatsoever. To her a miscarriage "wasn't meant to be", she doesn't think of it as her grandchild. It makes my blood boil. Yet if someone had an abortion it's a completely different story. I call that being a hypocrite. (Don't get me wrong, I'm pro-choice, but if you're against abortion you should have a little more regard for a baby that was dearly wanted but died regardless of how. And while I'm on this tangent... I think God is the biggest abortionist out there. But I don't see people picketing churches with miscarriage and still birth statistics on their signs.)

    I read something funny the other day and thought you might enjoy it: "Religion is like a penis. It's fine to have one. It's fine to be proud of it. But please don't whip it out in public and start waving it around. And PLEASE don't try to shove it down my throat."