I dance on the edge of happy and sad. I wear a party hat while I cry. I blow out candles that are not there. I feel hollow and full of nothing.
Itâ€™s my birthday today, so that means it is the
happiest saddest day of the year.Â Iâ€™m willing everything inside myself not to feel blue. But I do. Another year has passed, another year without children. My fertility clinic looks at me now with their eyebrows raised a half a centimetre higher.Â Iâ€™ve graduated into their new patient-category called: “not-yet-40 but still pretty f%$#ed.â€
As the clock hit 12AM last night, I lay in bed with Martin, reflecting on ourÂ last year of struggles. And I purged all of my feelings, spilling out in a wash of tears. I just donâ€™t want to turn one year older. I donâ€™t want this. I know the alternative â€“ I know I should feel grateful for the privilege of ageing. And yet, I just don’t.
Itâ€™s been one of the most emotional years of my life, full of moments of despair, loneliness, and hopelessness, punctuated by a few high points including: the wedding of my sister, the growth and development of my nephews â€“ who now talk in full sentencesÂ and can screechÂ my name â€œTante Cammyâ€, andÂ followÂ instructions from their moms to constantly tell me, â€œI wuv you, Hammy.â€ And they squeeze me so tight until I feel like I will be okay. We had some excursions to the State Fair, andÂ San Francisco, Hermosa BeachÂ and Lake Tahoe. My parents moved into a new house. Again. Our Copenhagen Support Group added a few new members, and we saw a few graduate â€œoutâ€.
I attending training camp in Gran Canaria with one of the world’s best Pro Cycling teams; and I hung out with a Formula 1 driver. I watched more Netflix, HBO and Showtime than a humanÂ ever should, but feel enrichedÂ anyways.
I participated in work’s Tuesday wine-o’clock ritual; and I earned a surprise bonus check, which immediately went into our infertility-slush fund. And I made some pretty okay advertising for my clients.
I retreated more and more into my IF cave. I cried more, saw friends less.
I struck friendshipsÂ online with women like me, and reconnected with some long-lost Kappa sistersÂ who have championed my journey.
Itâ€™s been a full and awesomeÂ and awfulÂ and awesomeÂ year for me. And as I turn one year older, cursing my inability to say my new age, because if I sayÂ it, then it may be trueâ€¦
I am givingÂ myself enough grace to just let me be today.
Happy birthday, Cammy. Keep on going.