09 December 2006

An intimate portrait...

Here are the MRI shots of the cyst from 2 years ago. Proof positive that trusting one's convictions, listening to one's body and spirit is how miracles happen. This path does not come without sacrifice, but the lessons learned and the gifts that come with it, are worth it.

The front view

The horizontal cross section

And the vertical cross section

All Content Copyright 2006, Juliana Tobón. All Rights Reserved

06 December 2006

An Easy Decision 2 of 2

Child of the waters
go with my blessing.
May you sleep peacefully
in the arms of the Buddha

Gomen ne.


It's been a little over two weeks since the abortion. Physically, it's been exhausting. I've been taking iron to keep my strength up. I bled pretty heavily for the first week or so, and was told it could continue for up to 5 weeks, off and on.
Emotionally...well the old cliche "emotional rollercoaster" comes to mind. I am relieved because I know it was the right decision, for countless reasons, but I have been struggling with conflicting emotions, nonetheless.
For the first week at least, my lover did a lot to see me through what was happening. I feel a true sense of connection to motherhood now that I had never felt before, therefore a great sense of loss. At first I felt like I had lost some bit of my innocence. Even in doing and experiencing things a lot of people would not consider innocent or pure I have always maintained this sense of purity, because I approached those things with pure intent. It may have been the hormones, though, because I no longer feel like this.
My relationship with my lover did not seem to be too negatively affected. He was as loving and solicitous as ever. He did hint at feeling remorse or guilt at having caused me to go through this whole ordeal, but I tried to reassure him. Through it all I felt nothing but love for him, not blame. This was not "done" to me. I am an adult and do my best to take responsibility for my actions. Even as I lay curled up in the throes of miscarriage I loved him and lusted for him. I admit that last one surprised me a bit. Our activities were not curtailed much, except for one obvious restriction.
He encouraged me to rest and heal, said all of the right things.
Then week two. We resumed all of our former activities, which brought on renewed bleeding and cramping. I could see that he felt guilty, but again tried to reassure him. When we said goodbye outside of my work last Tuesday morning I had a feeling. I kissed him and looked at him, not wanting to leave just yet. I had tears in my eyes as I walked into work. The night before he had talked about wanting to move to L.A., feeling that he has nothing to keep him here, wanting to make a fresh start, to give attention to things he feels he has neglected. I had a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach. He wouldn't talk much about how this has specifically affected him, but there was that underlying feeling of guilt again.

I didn't hear from him all week, except for a text and email asking for Reiki for him and for a friend. He had focused a lot of energy on me the previous week and I understood that he might need some time, so I did not call him. By Sunday I was resigned to saying goodbye. We were supposed to go to a show, but those plans fell through. When he asked to meet for a drink, my suspicions were confirmed. Public place. I asked him to bring a couple of my things that he had.

He actually used the phrase "do penance". He feels he has to do penance for what has happened. He feels obligated to be there for his friend's kid to somehow make up for this. He can't bear to be around me, touch me, because it just reminds him, makes him think of what his son would have looked like or when he'd be born...He'd given me some rousing speech about being there for each other, but now he wants to do it alone, and leave me to deal with things alone...or how I would have anyway, with the support of friends and family, had he just walked away when I asked him to.

I even got the "let's be friends". I should call him, he said, if I want to cook dinner some night or go to Colombia or do any of a number of things that we talked about doing.
Ordinarily, once the romantic relationship is over I can slip right into friend mode, but this one will be more complicated. Let's face it, I am a Leo and I don't handle rejection well. While he admitted that few are ever fortunate enough to be loved so unconditionally, he doesn't want it, he doesn't feel like he should have that. He fears that he breaks everything he touches. I am now inclined to agree with him, but I believe it is by choice.
I ask for honesty and I feel lied to. Had he just left before this, I would have had plenty of support. Now I have to deal with feeling like a leper and the disappointment of betrayal on top of everything else. A woman scorned? You bet'cha.

Still, everything happens for a reason. Several of the people that I saw about the cyst in the last four years spoke of it in terms of a pregnancy of sorts. Something that was gestating within me that had manifested physically. They seemed to agree that it would be a rite of passage and a great lesson, when the time came. They predicted that I would really come into my own and tap into something very powerful that was contained within it.

I thank him for the part that he has played in this, no matter how reluctantly.

All Content Copyright 2006, Juliana Tobón. All Rights Reserved

An Easy Decision 1 of 2

Out of deference for my partner I had not blogged about this, but having no one to answer to, I am now free to write as I like. I'm sure I'll receive hateful comments, as this is a controversial topic, but I'm prepared to deal with that---I write what I live.

Written 11/3/06

I peed on a stick and the earth stood still.

First Response says:yes. I'm in a family way.

I've thought a lot about what I would do if I was ever in this situation. I dislike most children. The thought of giving birth has always scared and disgusted me. I think babies are like parasites. In fact, they fit the medical definition. They feed off of the host's body, and in extreme cases they can kill you. The whole "miracle of life" thing has never really struck a chord with me.
I've had a bad feeling about this. I was 2 days late and my boobs feel and look like they're ready to pop. I picked up a test on the way home and it confirmed my suspicions.
As far as I'm concerned , there was only one option on how to proceed. Get good and drunk with my best friend...and then, get rid of it.
I thought it would be an easy decision. Don't like 'em, don't want one. Have an abortion. Right?
I also knew I would have to have a talk with my lover. He knew of my suspicions and that I planned to take the test. We had once discussed what I would do if I ever got pregnant, so I figured it would not come as a surprise now. I did want to give him the option, however, to walk away now so that I could just focus on getting through this and not have to worry about our relationship as well.
I was too drunk to talk to him by the time he came over, but we talked this morning. I told him of my fears. I have heard too many stories. Guy is supportive until it's over, then later practically accuses woman of killing his baby. He said he supports my decision 100%, not that he felt I needed him to say it...I'm scared of having to deal with doctors and ectopic pregnancy and I'm confused by everything I'm feeling, as I'm sure he is. We're going to do this together. He wants to be there for me in any way he can. This is also opening the way for communication that needed to happen anyway.

Written 11/9/06

Well, as it turns out it has not been such an easy decision. Maybe my biological clock finally sprang to life, or maybe it's my partner and the way I feel or could feel about him, or any of a number of things. I actually hesitated momentarily before starting to take the herbs and mega-doses of vitamin C I hoped would induce a miscarriage.
After a week of essentially poisoning my body, nothing happened, except that I felt awful. Not only have I been physically ill, but the emotional burden has been overwhelming.
My best friend and my lover have been my constant support. He has suffered a lot too, emotionally. Despite not wanting children either, the reality of this has hit him pretty hard. We have talked a lot about how we feel for each other. I am never certain of his feelings for me or what we have but he has really made an effort and opened up a lot. I have also pushed for acknowledgment that though it's for the best, it is a life that is ending, rather than looking at it as just a medical procedure to deal with a problem. We've both shed a lot of tears. I see or sense things sometimes (a result of the Reiki) and I saw the little boy that it would be. Not an easy thing to think about, for either of us. We did a ritual of sorts, more of a meditation, really, to say goodbye to him, to explain why...I felt a lot better after that and I think he did too.

The day after I wrote this should have been my first clue. I asked him to look up a couple of places and get some basic info--- numbers, cost, etc while I was at work... Instead, he took a nap. No other explanation.

That night, I did my own research. It took me all of 10 minutes, and not a minute of sleep lost. Of course he was all apologies the next day. In order to impress upon him why I wanted to do it quickly I read to him about the developmental stages. At week 5 the heart starts beating. By my calculations I was at week 4. He looked like he was going to throw up.
That Monday I made my appointment. I was worried about getting the money together, but he insisted on paying for the whole thing. Some manly honor or duty thing.
That Friday, the 17th, he accompanied me to the clinic where they gave me the pills that would induce miscarriage. The first round, taken at the clinic, terminates the pregnancy. The second round taken 24 hours later (along with some strong painkillers) expels it.
They cautioned him to feed me a good meal and then make sure that I took a couple of Percocet, despite my protests. He would have to remain with me to make sure I did not hemorrhage. I wasn't really looking forward to the thought of him possibly having to help me change my pads. There are just some things that should never be shared between lovers.
He was the best nursemaid I could have asked for. He laid out a small banquet and made me a little nest of sorts in my living room. We followed all of the instructions, then settled in to watch my favorite movies.
Even with the Percocet it was some of the worst pain I have ever experienced, when it did hurt. It sort of came in waves. Everything worked out fine though. Pretty textbook. I am so afraid of anything having to do with western medicine that I think I focused on the worst-case-scenario stuff, fearing I'd bleed to death on the toilet or something.
My best friend/neighbor came over with her daughter at one point and kept us company for a bit. As much as my partner tried to be there for me, there are just some things only another woman can understand.

All Content Copyright 2008, Juliana Tobón. All Rights Reserved