… it’s not as if you can just say you’re busy washing your hair. Taming biology is not quite as simple as many opining on the New York Times website seem to think. There were several times in our 30s when we resolved to accept that our bodies were simply incapable of conceiving a child. We did our best to be rational and not let emotions and primal longings dictate our life. We were, after all, supposed to be “evolved,” right?
We looked at the statistics. We debated the trade offs. We decided that the world didn’t need a little Pammie or an Alex Junior. We dedicated naps to friends who were fighting sleep deprivation from long nights with colicky babies. We tried to reassure each other, with a smattering of superiority, that we were more than our fertility.
That worked for, oh, several months at a stretch. Then the urge to reproduce would come back larger than before propelling us forward with the next medical treatment, the next in a line of what almost felt like hokey-pokey-esque routines aimed at getting our cells to co-mingle. (I’ll let you play with how to modify THAT song to suit this analogy).
I’ve yet to meet any couple who says, let’s not try using the old fashioned way. Whaddya say we go the high tech route? It’ll be great! Let’s give a few of the local hospitals and fertility clinics a whirl. You know I’ve always wanted to have my private bits examined at length by people in white coats. And those hormones injected with the long needles? What’s more romantic than that!? Won’t it be great to spend thousands of dollars on treatments not covered by our medical insurance with no guarantees? What ARE we waiting for?
Even I was amazed at how far I was willing to go. The risks to my health I was willing to take. The desire to conceive was that strong. Rational? Heck no.
Mastering biology. Well, I challenge some of the 300 people who’ve commented so far on the NYT site to turn off that part of their brain stem. As evolved as we claim to be, Mother Nature still exercises some serious power over us.
Ethan, one of the people who commented on the NYT site, had these thought-provoking questions for those quick to condemn infertility’s impact.
P.S. I am beyond touched and humbled by the kind comments coming in to this site. So glad to “meet” all of you. I celebrated my 45th birthday last night with much optimism about what lies ahead. I hope others are as comforted as I am to see that there is plenty of good will to go around. Along with the good will there are a few stories associated with the comments that I will highlight in the coming weeks.