A bit more than a year ago when I was on the brink of my first transfer with Mia and Urs, I wrote the below which I have copied and pasted. There is a question contained within that I have found myself pondering with increasing frequency. I do have hope for this cycle, but how do I hope for this cycle?
Yesterday Niobe wrote a short, but powerful post
on the topic of hope. Will she hurt less by proxy of hoping less? How
can one have positive hopes that the struggle of infertility will
eventually lead to a baby when all evidence points to the contrary?
In its best light, hope is lovely, the subject of cross-stitched
pillows, greeting cards, and mass-produced decorative wall prints.
"Hope for the best," people say, and conveniently leave off the
completion of "but expect the worst." The worst – the
metamorphosed reciprocal, the rotten thing that writhes beneath Hope's
fair skin, like ominous thunder in the distance of a tranquil day. Hope
is as dangerous as it is beautiful; the lion is a gorgeous creature to
behold, so long as it is contained within its cage.
Hope is multifaceted and the side you see is dictated largely by
your past experiences. I have come to believe that hope is something
borne from desperation. People don't hope for something unless there is
an idea that that something might not come to be. I started not with hope, but with the ingrained expectation that
I would get pregnant not too much longer after trying. After six or
seven months, the expectation turned into the hope that I would get
pregnant before the 1-year line in the sand. Line crossed, I then hoped
that I would be able to achieve pregnancy without help, because it had
become glaringly apparent that something wasn't right. When my sister
got pregnant after my second year of trying, hope was a bitch that I'd
grown tired of entertaining, and I approached each cycle with no
expectations, or hope, at all.
Since then, I've had hope rebuilt and shattered and back again, and
my previous waltzes with her determine how I approach the dance floor.
This time, I'm willing to tango. But I know there are others who prefer
to sit on the sidelines with their eyes squeezed shut and fingers
pressed into their ears. Some don't even want to hear the music, and
who can blame them when all they hear is an incongruous dirge?
to you, holding on to it fiercely because it's all that you have left?
Or do you lock it down and turn away from it, fearful of the crouching
beast and its ability to swallow you whole? If you feel comfortable
sharing, what are the past events that dictate your perspective on
hope? My personal view is
blended, shaped a bit more by my experience with infertility than it is
by my experience as a surrogate.
Hope is shifty, an amorphous mass which often changes before you've realized it has. This time, I have no desire to take hope by the hand for a spin across the floor. Her lullaby does not soothe me to sleep; instead it is the seed of night terrors. I don't want to let her melody carry me. I hear her, but I'm too afraid to listen. When — no, if — hope decides to curl herself around the throb of a heartbeat within, then maybe I'll lend her an ear. For now, it's just enough to know she's there, even if I don't care to acknowledge her.
I throw this question out to the blogosphere again; how do you hold your hope?