The other day I was driving the Kid home from his Judo class when I started thinking a lot about my life, and where I've been versus where I had planned to be. I started to feel overwhelmed and sad because I was feeling like I haven't done anything. I don't have a career, I've made a mess of trying to get a degree, I got sick, I gained weight, I can't get pregnant - just all kinds of thoughts about how I've messed up with my life, how it's not what I envisioned, how I've failed. The worst was thinking about the difficulty I've had getting pregnant again. Watching the Kid play with brothers after Judo, I started to think about what he's missing in his life since I haven't given him any siblings. I mean, since I'm an only child myself (as is the Husband) I know that the Kid will be fine if he's an only for his whole life. But I didn't want that for him. I don't want that. And our family doesn't feel complete yet.
It's something I don't talk about much with anyone, not even the Husband a lot. I have friends who also can't get pregnant again, so I know I'm not the only one. I'm not alone. But there are times I feel a lot of guilt for not being able to give the Husband another child. I feel guilt for not giving Luc a sibling. And it seems my options are really limited as to what I can try to do because of having bipolar II disorder. The fertility drugs can wreck havoc on a healthy woman; on me it could end up with a stay in a psych hospital. And that's not me being dramatic.
What makes it worse is that I have a feeling things may be easier if I lost this weight I've gained. So why not just lose it? Well, one reason is the classic cycle of me feeling guilty, getting depressed, and eating crap to 'feel' better. The other is that I hate facing what I've done to myself, and that would be thrown into my face when I start to workout. I know, I know, lame excuses. It's my own psychosis to deal with, especially when I start to feel guilty for letting myself get to this point. But what if I lose the weight and still can't get pregnant, I don't know what I'll do.
Later that evening I tried to reason with myself, telling myself that I have accomplished two things I've always wanted: I have a husband who loves me and has stuck by me through all of this craziness, and at least one healthy child I longed for for years. It helped in a way, but it wasn't until tonight that I realized what is my greatest goal, what it is I really want. I was watching a movie called, "The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio" starring Julianne Moore and Woody Harrelson. It's based on the true story of Evelyn Ryan, a housewife in the 1950s who entered and won quite a few jingle contests. She seemed to be a highly intelligent woman who got stuck the way women did back then in having to accept that all she would do is get married and have children despite her longing to see the world. And while the prizes at times were trips, she could never take them since she was trying to raise 10 children while her husband, who loved her a lot, battled alcoholism, so she would cash out the prizes. But what seemed to come across is that she worked so hard to be happy with what happened in her life, to spread that to her children, and loved them so much that it seemed they all fiercely loved her in return.
The end of the movie showed her actual children all grown up, and even at that point, where Evelyn was gone, they loved her and remembered her fondly. It really struck me, and made me realize what I really, really want at the end of my life: To have been loved and still be loved. I know that it's not something that will just happen. I have to love too. I have to work on myself so I can deserve the love, if that makes any sense. Because if I live my life as if I should get that love automatically, well, it makes me seem like a selfish bitch doesn't it? But when I think about the end of my life and think about what I would want to have accomplished, I would want to know that I did my best to love my husband and my son, and to place a knowledge of love in my son to pass on.
The rest of the shit I got worked up about won't matter when I stare death in the face. Didn't get a degree? Who cares! Didn't lose weight? Who cares! As long as I can be confident that I did all I could to make sure my loved ones know I love them despite all of the crap life flings at us, and that my son knows how to love so it can be passed on, that is a legacy I'd much rather have than anything else. Anything else that happens will be a bonus, and I'm not going to stop trying to achieve other things too, but what's most important to me is love.
I don't know if any of this rambling makes much sense to anyone outside of my head, since words can sometimes fail to really convey my thoughts, but I felt a need to try. To put this out into the world, even if it's not noticed. Maybe it's so I can declare it out loud, so to speak, so I can come back and remember what I'm feeling right now when I hit those days where I hate myself for things that really shouldn't matter a whole lot. Because all of those things are so hollow if I haven't accomplished what matters most to me.