This post might freak some people out.
Probably not as much as me.
But it does involve talking about sex and babies all mixed up. You’ve been warned. If you want a giggle then have a look here instead.
So a while ago I went to the doctors and was told ‘You should seriously consider the possibility that you may not be able to have children.’ Now, people who know me may suspect that I left the doctors and had a pint in celebration, but I didn’t. I’ve been puzzling over it ever since, do I really want babies but have convinced myself I don’t? Have my values changed that significantly in so short a period of time? Is this the hormonal body clock thing everyone goes on about?
It took me sobbing on the shoulder of a friend the other week before I got much of a handle on this thing. Because try as I might I don’t want a kid, I can’t be there for someone for twenty years plus, not yet anyway. And yet, when the doctor said that to me I wasn’t relieved or happy or any of the things I might have expected. So, what? Do I just want to say I had the choice that I am in total control over my body and it does what I tell it? Is that it? I’m crying because I don’t have a choice anymore? That’s what it seemed like, it’s what I said to my friend. It wasn’t until I was cycling home that I started to think about what he’d said. That I was crying because my body, which I’ve always been pretty friendly with, my body which I refuse to see as separate (entirely) from my sense of self has done something that I have no control of, it’s suddenly very much separate from me.
He was right, just not in the way he thought he was. I do locate my sense of self very physically, the physical and the spiritual for me are very much parts of a single whole rather than being ‘ghost in the machine’ style separate. The part of me that felt odd when the doctor gave me pause for thought was that physical part of me, it was my body, that physical self, that was sobbing fit to burst and suddenly I feel very separate. I’ve never been much of a one for mind/body split but I am not in harmony anymore. My (normally very co-operative) body wants to be pregnant, I think it actually wants to give birth too (even with my pain thresholds, eep) and it’s very wierd because I, (that thinking part of me) do not want children. Nor does my body really, as far as I can tell it’s desire is to become pregnant. It feels very,very strange, probably because normally when my body gets urges they’re pretty much ‘food’ and ‘sex’. The closest thing that this feels like is whe you’re looking at someone who you know you don’t find attractive but they’re pressing one of your hot buttons (wearing a colour you find hot or demonstrating a hobby or something) and you’re reacting accordingly.
I sometimes have the very visceral reaction to particular men (usually famous ones) which has me wanting to reproduce with them, only not nearly as thought out as that, it lasts a second and is just part of my reaction to them. My body goes through this life with a lot of very strange and visceral wants only a few of which get granted. It got very upset over this particular want and I don’t think chocolate or sex in a bathtub full of offal (if I could persuade someone to do that) is going to put that right. On the otherhand, try as I might I can’t look at the notion of a child and seriously desire it or think of it as sensible in anyway.
I’m finding this conflict of interests a bit of a puzzler in how it feels and quite how hormonally driven it is. I can’t help wondering if it’s going to get more intense as I move towards that mythical ‘thirty’ with all its rumours of bodyclocks. But even if that is so there is no way I am facing a child and explaining that yes, Mum had you because she was acting on bodily urges and nothing else.
It’s not really an appropriate time to properly think about but the thought passing through my brain reminds me that I have promised gay friends the use of my womb in the past and wonders if I could be a surrogate mother…now that really would be, I don’t think I have the words to describe what that would be. On the other hand wouldn’t I just be faced with that same child, albeit with an eighteen year gap, saying that yes it was a bodily urge that I thought could help someone…
In anycase, not something can think about yet.