Ok, so I vaguely knew today was coming. Shoot me for not anticipating and being all Lifetime network Zen about it. I am basically referring to that thing called menopause. I got my first glimpse of hell this afternoon and already I am scanning the contract looking for a loophole or escape clause.
I am 41, so am not an idiot. I know we are entering the land of “Frick and Fornication!” cursing here, and the hot flash I experienced at work today is probably a picnic compared to the stuff that I can expect as time goes forward. The thing is…I felt like I was on fire. ON my face. ON fire. Yeah, I wanted to dunk my head in a bucket of ice and call it kindness. Instead I could only fan myself with a convenient piece of cardboard and mutter the mantra of all woman who have gone through this before me. “No More Periods. No More Cramps. No More wading around in water retention.” All these things are good, but….this also means I have a set of two hands of years left to ever have a baby ever again. EVER AGAIN! Shit.
I loved becoming a mom. I loved every freaking minute of being pregnant. Every Freaking Minute. Now, do not even scoff and tell me that I must have had an easy pregnancy than, cause, you would lose that bet in a micro minute. I had to work 8-10 hour shifts at Walt Disney World all the way until I was 2 weeks overdue, and I did not get the easy jobs, nope not me. I got to stand at a counter or register and work just as hard as ever. Though, to be fair, towards that 2 weeks overdue date they attempted to make me sit on a stool while at register. Problem was that the register was 5 feet off the floor with a stool the height of a small 6 year old child to sit on. Basically I felt like Humpty before his fall and ended up standing to retain my sanity and stop the vision of a cracked egg from scratching itself on the backs of my eyelids.
I also had weird shit happen to me while pregnant. I got lockjaw for 2 days out of the clear freaking blue. Could not open my mouth more than a fingerwidth. It left just as suddenly as it arrived. Then, I developed gallstones, painful fuckers too!
I eventually (After having Z) had to have my gallbladder removed. Men, if you ever suffer gallstones you have the priviledge of being able to claim you have felt the first stage of what it is like to be pregnant and in labor, don’t get cocky though, I said FIRST STAGE. I l know this to be true because I had both gallbladder attacks and labor pains and I can testify that you are worthy of the “Shit, THAT HURT!” club.
Moving on with the list, I gained 2 whole pounds the last two weeks of my pregnancy, which my doctor had warned me might happen since Z was 2 weeks late. I was so close to Gestational Diabetes that every week she was still in there she gained a damned pound. Resulting in a 9 lb, 1 oz baby that was wearing 3 month old clothes in a hurry. Forget Newborn, my kid was all brick. Then there was her head. Dammit! Her head was bigger than my pelvis. Which resulted in a C-section and constipation (I will spare you the details of that, even I wish to not remember)
So, why the hell would I not want to stop having babies after all that misery? Because she was perfect. She was perfect every single moment of that pregnancy. I loved every single shitty moment, and every single wonderful experience. The good, the bad, and the fugly. I loved it. I had worked to get pregnant 6 years and my body produced. It created a baby. I looked at my body in the mirror after that beautiful child was born and said ” You and me body, we are at peace with one another!”
I am not a skinny chick. Being raised to love food by my Irish family and my Italian step-family, put paid to that sort of crap years ago, but, there is always that female pressure that makes you wish you looked something like anyone else but you. Except, that day. That day I was no longer an enemy to myself. I was grateful. Fucking grateful. My body gave me a baby, carried to term, and made sure she was strong enough to announce her eviction was a travesty for all to hear. Some are not so lucky as I was, I never, ever, forget that. My body gave me the one thing that I will forever thank the heavens for, a child. My Z. The person I unashamedly light up when seeing every single time she enters the room. Every. Single. Time.
So, there it is. The reason I am really sad to be going through the first flicker of menopause. The reason I am not whooping it up looking forward to never having to buy pads, tampons, condoms and other essentials no single woman can ever be without. I know woman are having babies into their 40’s, but the health risks are higher, my sister Joey D has proven aptly that twins most definately run in our family without the added bonus of older age meaning an increased chance of such, and I live in a basement people! A nice basement, but a basement. Having a baby requires a lot of something I do not have. Money, time, and support (preferably from someone who helped produce said bundle of joy, or at the very least signed up to be there alongside me) Don’t give me feminist crap, we all know 2 parents is the ideal sitch, even if single mom’s f*ing rock!
So, Here I sit with my secret heart box ripped open as I scan the names of the babies I will probably never have. Yes, I have 2. One girl, and one boy. Though, I lean towards the boy, I really would adore either. What are their names you ask?
Elizabeth Anne Ruth (Ellie), after the movie Up! Ellie, (Anne) after my sweet friend Anne, and my step-mum Joann, and (Ruth), after my Ruth who I met once but fell head over heart for simply by being in her presence for 3 short hours of my life, gazing into the eyes of a Gold Aura aged 97 years.
Si Kai River (Make fun all you want. I have this name in my heart) (Si) which means Gentleman in Vietnamese (Kai) which in Burmese means Unbreakable, In Japanese means Forgiveness, Willow Tree in Navajo and in Hawaiian means Ocean.I think it is a perfect name in any language. Then there is River. I like River because it is the name of a beautiful person, and I always promised myself I would honor that person if I ever had a boy. I don’t feel a need to explain further than that.
I know, you all might think my boy names seem a bit flaky compared to the girl names I chose. The thing is, they are the same to me, because both have deep reasons for each name chosen.
Anyway, I sometimes wonder what a girl named Ellie or a boy named Si might be like, and maybe I don’t want to let go of him/her yet.
I felt like my face was in a toaster today for 15 minutes, but the real burn is in my heart, it has not stopped hurting just yet.