The Widening Gyre

November 15, 2010

Reporting to you live from where Wifebian and I are from. Somewhere up North, mid-Atlantic even.

I am in the home of a friend who has left me with her delicious couch, internet connection and cable TV for the morning.

Non-monogamy update: Wifebian and I had a nice talk with Borderline. Prior to this, Wifebian and I had resolved to give Borderline and Green a present. This one  day, all four of our horoscopes were freakishly speaking to one another. I will cut out the horoscopes, give them a copy of The Ethical Slut and a copy of Ashley and Kisha — the most boring porn in the world, but it’s about black lady love and if I’m trying to communicate anything in this situations it’s that our relationships to our partners matter and need to be nourished and treasured.

Baby-making update: I’m feeling more and more confident. The time is coming . . . approaching like a behemoth or a widening gyre. Plus, I had a pregnancy dream last night.

Reasons to be hopeful:

1.) I live in a town teeming with progressive people — straight and gay. If a newspaper ad is going to unearth a low-cost candidate, this is the place.

2.) Wifebian and I get paid once a month at our new jobs. So, although we wont have a health savings account to mine for big chunks of known, budgetable, predictable cash, our jobs will be dumping large lumps sums into each of our accounts every 14 days

3.) Within the year my student loans will be gone, freeing up 500 dollars a month

4.) I am hormonally, structurally, anatomically, physiologically cleared for baby-making

5.) I work and have to care about work for only 72 hours out of the week, leaving 4 days – during the traditional work week, during business hours — to finagle doctors, tanks, customer service representatives and other people’s schedules

6.) My new health insurance covers up to 5,000 dollars of infertility treatment — pills, injections, catheters, consultations

7.) We are expecting massive tax returns this year, especially me, because I just set it up so the government would suck me dry all year and then dump my money back on me this year. “Smart” way to save and invest my money, no. “Highly effective”, yes.

Questions that remain:

1.) Why was my pregesterone at 40 that one time?

2.) Who will be our sperm donor?

3.) What is the new name of that clinic that my coworker used five years ago?

Next steps:

1.) Answer questions above

2.) Seriously propose to Wifebian that we draft an ad, seriously draft ad, consider publications, price it

3.) Complete health insurance paperwork by Friday

4.) Email coworker and see if she wants to meet for lunch. Secretly pray her donor is known and local and deeply committed to starting many lesbian families with his seed

In closing, I can safely say in all confidence that break #1 will be over by February 2011, at the latest. I will be 33 years and 4 months old.

Wedding Hair

October 31, 2010

At the wedding, I was given the task of doing hair for a 6 year old and a 9 year old. Their mom went back to her hotel room to get things done while I brushed and braided and talked with the girls.

I have always had a daydream of being a hairdresser. Or a manicurist. A taxi driver or a bar tender. Some job that has historically functioned as a proxy therapist in our culture. It turns out, the 9 year old wants to be a hair dresser too. As I was waxing urgent that maybe I really needed to give up my social work gig and become a hairdresser, my friend, who hates puppies and babies said, “Maybe you just need to have kids.”

And I thought about when I was little girl and people would brush my hair and comment on how thick it was, or how brown, or how it was just like my dad’s. The girls’ hair was so thin and wispy, light brown. I asked the 6 year old what side she wanted her hair parted on and she said, “I don’t know,” and I said, “Of course you don’t know; you’re only 6!”

Their hair was wet and tangled, like they hadn’t used conditioner. I wondered what kind of mother doesn’t tell their kids to use conditioner. We didn’t have a comb, so I had to use a brush. I grabbed chunks of their hair at the base, like I remember people did to me, and raked their heads with the brush. I said, “If I hurt you . . . don’t tell me,” And got some laughs from the adults in the room. The girls were very easy-going kids, neither even said ouch once and I told them how tough they were. When I complimented their mom on their toughness, I hoped she couldn’t tell I had wondered why their hair was so tangled in the first place.

Mothers tell me they feel judged a lot. And women in general, women who don’t know one another, have a habit of saying something with the best intentions, then worrying if what they said was taken the wrong way, while the other woman receives the thing with the best of perceptions and then wonders how she shouldve taken it. Or maybe that’s just me.

Eventually, the girls’ hair laid flat against their shoulders and straight down their small backs, in a brief sheet of dry softness. The soft, brief hair of small girls.

And why wasn’t their mom doing their hair herself? Brushing their hair felt so intimate. I especially felt self-conscious once their mother came back into the room. I couldn’t believe another woman was letting me touch her daughter’s hair. Then I reminded myself that, after awhile, it seems like parents get used to their kids and time spent away from them can be more of a treasure than time spent with them. She thanked me for doing their hair. I don’t know if she was grateful for having time away or grateful that she avoided a small family feud by at least getting their hair “done” at all. The girls’ grandmother was ready to pony up big bucks and my services were offered as a consolation. 

Point being, I really want a child. A girl one. And the other point is that there are so many things I haven’t even thought of when it comes to how wonderful it will be to have a girl, like being in a room with three generations of women from two sides of different families, eating fruit, tying bows and doing hair before a wedding.

Contented

October 28, 2010

I am writing from the public library which is a very . . . male environment with certain . . . smells, but one of the men has a wee baby next to him and doesnt appear to have any smells of note to a bystander. This helps remind me that we are all in this together, even at the library.

But libraries certainly arent the place where one can unwind and type the heart of her life out. Wifebian and I havent decided about whether we will spring for internet at home, yet. Hopefully, our neightbors will let us slip them some cash in exchange for their wi-fi security code.

I do have a baby-related rough draft of a post ready for you guys, describing certain . . . feelings regarding the doing of another’s woman’s daughter’s hair at the wedding I attended last week. It is poignant and incisive.

Otherwise, these days, I just worry irrationally and not about starting up baby-making again. For example, how am I going to come up with $2,000, become insured, register at the sperm bank and find a baby doctor by December 1st? I also have a daydream in which I invite  carpenter over to our one-bedroom apartment and pay him to build a loft to sleep foster children, one that DSS will approve of.

Or her. Or her to build.

Wifebian dropped charges against the neighbor because she felt bad. The restraining order is good until December. We have been in the new house almost one week and will be moved out of the old house by Halloween. The kitchen is unpacked. We ate dinner at the home of a new friend last night. 

And, I voted today. And got a public library card. The contentment and democracy are oozing out of me.

The wife, the dog and the house are all very content, too.