Saturday, October 27, 2012

Actively choosing "no."

It's one thing to know that baby making is up in the air. You know, we don't know and aren't going to know for some time. If this were the natural state of things I think I would feel absolutely okay with our lot.

But when we chose a medical procedure that guarantees that we can't decide to have kids for X amount of time (it prolongs getting the eventual answer), it actually feels really wrong. Like, biologically backwards. Now, having a long-acting form of testosterone implanted in Aaron is without a doubt the best thing for him right now. I don't even question the decision because he needs it. But we're humans... in our 30s... Americans, red-blooded and relatively healthy. Or we were, before last year. We should be able to decide when we're going to have a child, whenever we want, for whatever reasons we have. Almost everyone else does it that way, right? We took a step in the opposite direction, and will probably continue this therapy (it lasts about 4 months, so he could need it and benefit from it multiple times).

Ultimately, we don't need children for this marriage to be all that it can be. If it's just us, for all time, then we'll be fine. I'll probably have 6 dogs and some rabbits, though. And maybe obsess a little too much about the kids that belong to our friends and family, but we'll really be fine. It should just be more of a choice than it is.

Last weekend we had a run-in with a total stranger, who just wanted to thank Aaron for his sacrifice and talk shop. The service member did not marry until 35, and kids didn't come right away. He's got two toddlers in his early 40s. His wife seemed like she was maybe five years younger than him, but it was hard to tell (she was beautiful, actually). I asked him how it was having young kids at his age. He was super cool about it and what he said really reassured me about the possibility of us not being about to grow our family for awhile (that includes adoption, which any intelligent person knows takes more time and money than anyone entering the process thinks possible). So people can be happy and healthy with toddlers while their friends have teenagers. They had a gorgeous family. It was a picture of inspiration for me.

We still have that baby plan I talked about, by the way. When I say "baby plan" I don't mean some chart and action within the next 12 months. It just means that we have ideas about what we'd like to do. It just seems that what feels natural (leaving it open-ended, definitely having a kid within the next few years) and what is needed for success now are two different things.

This life, this war, these injuries have thrown us more curve balls than we ever could have imagined existed. The no-brainer decisions will always default to what is best for my husband's health. I support all of those choices, and encourage him to think only of his recovery. So testosterone implants happened and I don't regret it. Never will. It just... man. We should be actively planning a family at this point and we're not. We're doing the opposite. It's not a happy-happy-joy-joy feeling, that's for sure.

I don't even know how far I'm willing to go with IVF to have our "own" kid. We don't know how we'll go about adopting, either. We have nothing, really. Again, totally opposite direction of where we "should" be, in that alternate universe of no war and no injuries. Stupid war.

But we have an apartment coming up, and furniture to buy. We have a dog coming back to us (even if it's not two, which still breaks my heart and if I have a boy child I might possibly call him Scooter because of the best beagle I ever knew and gave up so he could live a great farm dog life). We have plans and goals and adventures. We are nothing short of blessed. We choose what we can, right? It just doesn't make what we can't choose sting any less.


  1. No, it doesn't make the sting any less. I definitely agree with that.

    You do have time (I'm almost 40 and pregnant, by the way, while simultaneously dealing with my husband separating from the military).

    So you can focus on getting everything sorted out, one day, week and month at a time, and see where you are after that. At least you have an idea about what you might want to do in the near future.

    Knees and apartment first. Maybe a baby later. :)

  2. As a AMA momma who had her first at 39 and second will be at 41 I say rock it. I am not sure how I would have felt if I birthed earlier but I do know that having waited so long my feelings of appreciation may be a bit different. I am glad that I have the perspective, education, earning power and emotional maturity to bring to raising my children. I do not have many peers my age with babies, but there are some. I say have 'em when you want them, and you will. For sure.