Archive for September, 2009

Babies

I never thought I would want to have kids. Never. I always thought of myself as a feminist, an independent type of person, someone who needed adventure and mystery. I couldn’t imagine having a child to keep me back.

Right now I’m 22, my fiancé and I just moved into a larger apartment with a spare bedroom and a second bath. This is my largest place ever and I feel like we are really becoming a family, him and I. As I work on planning our wedding, I think a lot about our future. I think of buying a house, settling down, and making babies with him. And when I think of the babies, I get this strange sensation inside. A little bit of excitement, and a little bit of longing.

I was always fascinated by pregnant women. Their round, full bellies seemed magical to me. I could never help but stare at these women out in public as though I was sort of drawn to them. I remember being a child and going up to a “pregnant” mannequin and lifting up her shirt to feel her belly only to be punished by my mom for touching things. Even now as an adult I am still mesmerized by expectant moms. I look at their beautiful bellies and am completely in awe that there is a PERSON in there.

I do want to do that. I want to carry a baby in my belly, bond with him, sing to him, laugh with him, and bring him to life. I want to see that he knows me, that he is familiar with me. That he is the only person that might ever really know me because he came from me.

That is where my parenting worries begin. I sort of fear the fact that I so so want a child, that I want to carry one so much. I feel like part of me is being really selfish bringing a child into the world, as volatile and crazy as it is. And yes, there are a lot of children in foster care that really need people to care for them. But I just don’t know if I can live without knowing what it’s like to feel a primal bond between mother and child. Is it too much to ask for that bond to heal a little piece of my heart?

I know it is too much to ask of any child. Doesn’t that make me just as bad as my parents? Adopting a child to fill a void is just as bad as having a baby to fill up the piece where my mom should be right? Even as I write this, I’m in complete turmoil with myself over it. I can’t really rationalize how I feel, but I know that these feelings are raw and not going anywhere anytime soon.

Is it rational to fear that I might not be able to conceive? No. Not particularly. I’m young, in my prime baby making years, and to my very limited medical history knowledge I have no health concerns.

Most of this comes from the fear that I might never get to understand the bond between mother and child. I didn’t have a primal bond with my adoptive mom. The bond I have with her is based more on our shared history than anything else. I am terrified that I won’t be able to find my natural mom and that even when I do, there won’t be room for a meaningful relationship since the language and cultural barriers are so huge. And then there is the chance that she may not even be alive.

I feel as though getting some of what I missed might heal me a little. Just a little. On the other hand I’m scared that it’ll make it worse.

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September 25, 2009 at 8:34 am 2 comments

Getting a Visual

A while back, I wrote a post about how I felt I related to the main character in the movie Wolverine. I identified with him and his lack of identity. A lot of tragic characters are relatable to people. After all, why would we want to spend ten dollars to sit in a dark room and watch these people’s stories if we were not at least on some level, able to relate to them?

Last night I went to see the film adaptation of Audrey Niffenegger’s The Time Traveler’s Wife. The film tells the story of Henry, who time travels due to a genetic anomaly, and his love, Clare over the span of twenty years in and out of time.

When I originally read the book, I never really thought too deeply into the significance of the constant abandonment and how potentially triggering that really was for me. But as I sat in the theater and watched him disappear time after time in front of his wife’s eyes, I could not help but think about how afraid I would be to constantly be alone. There was just something about getting a visual of constantly being left that brought a lot of issues to the surface.

It’s interesting to me that I see abandonment everywhere. In books and movies, in a song on the radio, and in the way that the last little bit of sun leaves the patio at the end of the day. I seek these tales of abandonment like I’m looking for the fountain of youth. I really yearn for the ones that turn out okay. Maybe the abandoner finds his way back to the abandonee. Maybe the abandonee takes revenge. Maybe the abandoner grovels his or her way back into the abandonees heart and everything works out perfectly okay. In these scenarios I constantly see all the ways I could end up alone and try to work myself out of them.

Maybe it’s a survival mechanism. You know, in case it happens again?

In The Time Traveler’s Wife, Clare knows that Henry is coming back to her eventually. Each time he leaves, she knows he will be back after he’s done with his travels. In my real life, I wait for my mother to come back to me. For us to find one another. But I don’t know that she will ever make it back to me. Heck, I’m not 100 percent sure she would even want me back if she could get me back. Maybe our story is more meant to mirror a bad breakup. The farther she tries to go from me, the more I want her?

I desperately hope not. I really hope she misses me just as much as Fievel missed his little brother in An American Tale.

So are these displays of my innermost thoughts and fears yet another way that I allow my subconscious to torture me? Or are they really a teaching tool designed to help me through some of these difficult emotions?

I really can’t be sure.

September 10, 2009 at 9:45 am Leave a comment


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