I want to first say thank you to all of you for reading and responding to my two last posts. The intersection of IRL and blogland worlds is a funny one, and I appreciate the respect and compassion with which you allowed me to puzzle over this issue. I don't think it is settled for me, and maybe it isn't for you either. Sharing our blogs with IRL friends is not something that everyone feels comfortable with. The reason why I chose to share it with a few of my IRL friends is that I am not always able to tell them how I feel. Sharing my blog was my attempt at being more open with them. I am also aware that some of you may not agree that this is a good idea. And that's ok. We all do what works for us. We use our blogs in ways that can benefit our difficult process with infertility. I hope you can respect my way of doing things.
I went to a job interview yesterday. The job is a one-year maternity leave coverage. I even took a picture of how fabulous I looked in my suit, new blouse and matching bag, but the pictures turned out lousy. I didn't have the right shoes to go with the outfit, which is probably a reason why I won't get the job, but the rest of the outfit looked alright. Mr. August teased me about obsessing over the shoes. I guess it was a safer thing to obsess about than my inadequacies, so I focused on them. I laugh at how I do this, since I am not very appearance focused (I barely wear any makeup, my hair style is low maintenance).
So, let me tell you about anticipating this darn interview. I was convinced that the psychologist who is going on mat leave would be interviewing me, along with a selection of other psychologists who work at that agency. I'm sure you can appreciate the freak out I was having about the prospect of being interviewed by a pregnant woman. My strategy was going to be to not look at anything below her chin. To my surprise, she did not interview me. I didn't even get to meet her.
The interview was pretty stressful. I nailed the first question, but some of my answers after that were weaker. I can only hope for the primacy effect of the interviewers' memory functions, where they will remember more vividly what I said first as opposed to what I said in the middle or last. The interviewers were 2 ladies from HR, and no psychologists were involved, which I found strange. After over an hour of answering their 7 questions with as much depth, specificity and illustration as I could muster, I then had to do the written part of the interview. This involved sitting in a room by myself for 30 minutes (not a second more) and answering two questions which would have taken me 60 minutes to answer decently and 90 minutes to answer well. I was pretty exhausted when I left, and was very tempted to be hard on myself.
But I stopped that 'hard on myself' momentum right in its tracks. I've been working super hard (with the help one amazing therapist) on letting the stronger, wiser part of me take care of the younger, terrified part of me. And there was a golden opportunity to show myself that I was there for me. As hard as it was to really get behind this idea, I HAD done the best that I could with the interview. I had prepared well, I took all the steps necessary to be successful, and I had promised myself that no matter what, I would leave there with my dignity intact. And I did.
I went to an interview in early June and it did not go very well. It wasn't catastrophic, but it resulted in me promising myself to not apply for a job until I had finished writing my thesis. You are wondering if this means I am finished writing my these?! No. Sadly, I am not done yet. But progressing. I just had this job opportunity fall on my lap and it was too good to turn away. But I worried about feeling less than confident and having that come through in the interview. I think that I didn't appear as confident as I would have liked, but I showed more confidence than I feel most days.
After the interview, I went to visit a friend from residency. This friend is pregnant, of course. It was nice to see her, even with all the pregnancy and baby talk. I knew she would prod me about Mr. August and I's time line for having kids and I was prepared to tell her that I am infertile. I knew she wouldn't handle it very well, but also wouldn't handle it horribly. Because three of the women from internship are pregnant right now, my friend said she was taking bets with others on who was next. She put her money on me. HA! HA! HA! Very funny! Then I told her I was infertile and then she said we could adopt. What else was she going to say? I didn't get my underwear in a bunch about it. I just thought, how else can she handle this? How else are we supposed to negotiate celebrating the joy of her pregnancy and the grief of my loss? We just kept licking our ice cream and switched topics.
Looking back on yesterday, I feel like I handled myself well overall. I did the best I could. So did everyone else I encountered, including my pregnant friend. We are all doing the best that we can. Here is a poem by Anne Hillman about this very topic:
We look with uncertainty
Beyond the old choices for
To a softer, more permeable aliveness
Which is every moment
At the brink of death;
For something new is being born in us
If we but let it.
We stand at a new doorway,
Awaiting that which comes...
Daring to be human creatures.
Vulnerable to the beauty of existence.
Learning to love.