Posted by: Kate | August 2, 2008


My arms ache a little right now. Not a bad ache; just that feeling when you haven’t done a certain activity in a very long time, so even when it is a deeply familiar and comfortable thing, the muscles are no longer acclimated to the motions.

There’s also a blankness to them, sort of the physical equivalent of the blue spots you see after a bright light; there was warmth there, and now it’s gone, but I still feel it.

I spent a few hours this morning at Jenny’s, holding her just-exactly two-week-old son.

It all comes back so quickly, the postures and the rocking, the murmured tone of voice, the trial-and-error to work through a cranky spell. The intensity of eye contact, intermittent and always a surprise, because somehow those slate-blue eyes can see directly into your soul in a split second. The longer periods of averted eyes, because my dark-brown hairline makes for a good visual contrast for a new little person to examine. The simple awe at just how tiny a human being can be.

I want this. I want to look disheveled when I answer the door, and to have no one notice as long as I brandish the baby. I want that bone-tired, blissful combination of sleep deprivation and breastfeeding. I want to watch my kids awkwardly hold and pet a new little sibling.

There is hope, in the next few months. I saw my OB-GYN on Thursday, and we have a reasonable plan in place: start Provera (to bring on a regularly-scheduled period) and then Clomid (to trigger ovulation), because my symptoms – light periods, minimal cramping, 50-plus-day cycles – sound like I’ve simply stopped ovulating. No blockages or permanent damage is suspected at the moment, so we’ll try the pills-and-insanity route for a few months before considering more invasive investigations.

And, because I deserve a reason to giggle and snark through all of this, I got to bring Willem a special present: a little cup and a sheet of detailed instructions. Because, really, why should I be the only one to have an embarrassing and awkward role in this little drama? I don’t believe that his sperm is at fault here, but it’s a lot easier to check those suckers than it is to spelunk through my Fallopian tubes, so he gets an early chance to shine. As it were.

Sigh. I’m hopeful, and not yet desperate. And after this morning, I’m that much more aware of just how badly I want another baby.

The ache in my heart is a lot stronger than the ache in my shoulders.


  1. I hope you are disheveled very soon.

  2. Oh, Kate. I remember this. Secondary infertility is a weird in between land. The helpful things people say aren’t, and I remember feeling badly because I already had a baby, and there were people who so desperately wanted one, and yet I longed, so much, for more.

    I did the fallopian spelunking and the Clomid, and in my case we will never know if it was the treatment that helped or randomness, but it worked (and how).

    So, hang in there. I’ll think of you.

  3. I’m all for you getting your wish. This shall come.
    Any time near a baby, or in a guy’s case, near a fed, changed, unlikely to throw up, baby, beats even football.
    Heaven was lying back in a rocker-recliner with a baby lying on my chest saying, here, kid, here’s a heart to listen to, go to sleep.

    I don’t pretend to know the intense longing in your heart, just know I’d like your arms filled; maybe with twins, one each for Jacob and Emily. If there’s a way, maybe not the twin part, it will come to pass.

  4. I hear ya. I hope this course of action is successful for you.

  5. Just a smile, and a hope that things come to pass in a way that fills your aching arms with more love.

  6. Both of my kids are Clomid babies. If you have any questions about it, feel free to ask me. 🙂

  7. Awww . . .feel for you baby! I still ‘rock’ if standing in a supermarket queue with little more than a packet of toilet paper! Although I’m not a great fan of infants, I understand the ‘need’ been through the miscarriage route and it makes you want a baby even more. Good luck with the chemical intervention and ‘swimmer’ analysis! At least you’re doing something proactive . . .just remember, they constantly leak at both ends!

  8. I’m thinking of you Kate. At least you’re on the path of “doing’ rather than “wondering”.

  9. That exact course of action worked for me. Twice. Good luck!

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