Tuesday 6 September 2011
Confession time. I'm experiencing a bit of the old green-eyed monster today, and I don't I like it. In the past couple of days a few friends and colleagues have confided in me that they and their partners or husbands are ready to start trying for a family. And I don't know why, but rather than feel happy and excited for them (as I want to and as I should) I feel jealous - and also anxious that they will fall pregnant before me and the Boy.
My reaction disturbs me and I wonder why this kind of news impacts on me so much. I'm not generally an envious person, and I rarely find myself jealous of other aspects of people's lives. I have many friends who are better off financially than me, have more high-powered jobs than me, and who move in more glamorous circles or take more exciting holidays than we do. But in the last few years I've stopped giving myself a hard time and comparing myself with others, and I've learned how to relax and be content with my lot. And I really am happy with that lot - I treasure my relationship with the Boy, my bonds with my family are the strongest that they've ever been, I have a loving and reliable circle of friends, my work is challenging but regular allowing me to also have a happy and full social life, we have a great flat and we have enough money to do (most of ) the things we want. In fact rather than feel jealous, I tend to feel either an irritating smugness or a knowing thankfulness at how great my lot is, and imagine if envy was ever to be part of the picture it would be other people feeling jealous of me.
But since we lost baby Beans, the baby issue has become a very difficult one for me - I talk to the Boy about this and we laughingly call it the 'b' word, to keep the issue light and in perspective. While it's ok to be around friends who have small children, I am finding it very difficult to be around pregnant people that I know, or to hear news of friends' and colleagues' new pregnancies. I hate that. I feel so sad, when I really want to be pleased and excited - as people were for me and the Boy - but maybe it's still too raw, and reminds me what has been lost and that if life had worked out a little more favourably I would still be pregnant now.
And I suppose that's what bothers me about closer friends starting their journey towards parenthood and the anxiety around them having children. If they fall pregnant before the Boy and I, I won't be able to avoid them or the issue, and I will have to be stronger Still and try and take it in my stride. At the moment I can get away with the avoidance defence tactic - but that won't be the case forever and I will have to face up to what we have lost. But maybe that's what needs to happen as perhaps then - and only then - when I can do that, I will be almost there in managing my loss.