The Great Hope Debate

29 May

I’m back after an amazing weekend with Shmerson. If you want to see pics, just check my twitter feed on the right. Much fun (and beer) was had by all (well, the beer was actually had mostly by Shmerson). The three days away really gave me some space to relax. I didn’t even know how much I needed it until we got there.

Then of course, I was blown away by what I found when I got back. Mel over at Stirrup Queens (AKA the Oprah of ALI blogging), pointed out my last post as part of her friday blog roundup, and the reactions I’ve gotten have been overwhelming.

I think just writing that post helped put quite a few things in perspective for me. Your comments took it even further. From Kristin pointing out that I’m showing classic signs of depression, to AK berating me for using the term “That” to describe my last miscarriage, to Me0Me giving the astute observation that I merely have to expand my bubble, not necessarily “pop” it. And those were all just from the first few hours. Your deep and eloquent thoughts and comments really touched me and I really want to thank you all.

I think the biggest lesson I learned from that last post is if you raise a question in this little blogoverse of ours, you will receive love, understanding and support. Because most of the questions we have don’t have open and shut answers. But all of them require tools, not clear cut yes’ and no’s.

Which brings me to a skype conversation I had with Marie yesterday. It was mostly our usual fun chatter, but at one point, due to something that happened earlier in the day (I’ll spare you the TMI details), I had to bring up the upcoming HSG.

A little background: My HSG is currently scheduled for June 5th, though because my cycle is still wonky from the miscarriage I may have to push it to a bit later. I’ve been kind of obsessing about this HSG. Not so much on here. Not even in most conversations I have (both with bloggy and real life friends). But in my head – well – it takes up most of my time.

Here’s how my conversation with Marie went:

Marie: When is the HSG?

Me: No clue. That’s the problem. Scheduled for June 5th but if AF shows up after the 2nd I’m gonna have to reschedule. Currently crossing my fingers she’ll show tomorrow or the  day after. That would be perfect. Though very unlikely.

I just had something happen this morning that totally got my hopes up  that the whole problem is an infection because of the D&C. I’ll spare you the details but now I’m totally convinced it’s an infection

Marie: Yay! Wait, that’s good, right?

Me: Well here’s the deal: HSG can go 1 of three ways

1) tubes are all clear (sucky – because that means there isn’t an explanation and who knows what we’ll do next)

2) tubes are blocked with scar tissue (sucky, because even though there’s an answer I’ll either have to get surgery or get the go ahead to go straight into IVF)

3) Tubes are blocked with mucus due to an infection, and the HSG will actually clear the blockage

I’m trying to bargain with the spaghetti monster for #3.

It’ll hurt like a motherfucker, but at least I know the next time I should be all good.  So I’m trying not to get my hopes up but of course I’m gonna find every excuse to get my hopes up.

Marie: Well yeah you have to have hope

Me: No. Hope makes me pissed when I get disappointed

Marie: Would you rather just be pissed to begin with?

Me: Good question. Trying to figure that out now. Still have about a week before I have to decide. We’ll see.

Then I promptly changed the subject. This little skype chat, I think, brings up the crux of my current internal struggle. I love hope. I really do. It makes me feel giddy and awesome and helps me fall asleep at night.

But I also hate hope. Because hopes are more often than not – at least in my case – crushed. My last pregnancy came at a time when I was completely hopeful, completely optimistic, and completely at peace.

Then I spent a night in the hospital and all of it was crushed. In an instant.

It’s been about 6 weeks since my miscarriage. I’m starting to build up hope again. I hate that. I hate it because so far, each time I’ve gotten my hopes up, they’ve been smashed into little tiny pieces.

Albert Einstein once said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

So by that logic, in my case, having hope makes me insane.

So wouldn’t I be better off nihilistic and pessimistic? Wouldn’t that – in fact – be a much saner place to be in my situation?

Yet hope creeps up, because I need it. Because otherwise I don’t know if I could handle everything the universe has thrown at me.

And I hate it. Because I feel like it’s insane to have it.

On Friday night, our anniversary, Shmerson and I went out to dinner. We both made toasts in honor of our first year together.

My toast went something like this: “They say the first year of marriage is the hardest. I really hope ‘They’ are right.”

Hope. It’s a four letter word.

What do you guys think? Is it crazy to hang on to hope when you’re in such a state of limbo? Would you rather have no hope at all, and be pleasantly surprised? Eager to read your thoughts.

18 Responses to “The Great Hope Debate”

  1. Esperanza May 29, 2011 at 17:15 #

    I think it depends on what you are hoping for. If you are hoping for a specific answer to why you’ve suffered these losses, an answer that will be presented as it is solving your problem (ie scenario 3 mentioned above) I think there is a good chance that you will be disappointed and feel angry and resentful towards your hope. If you feel hopeful that you will someday be happy and feel healed, that things will be okay somehow (even if right now you don’t know what “okay” might look like) then I think hope is a very powerful tool indeed. I feel it’s the difference between praying for a specific outcome (like having a successful pregnancy) and pray for the strength to deal with whatever happens. If you pray for the strength you have a much higher chance of having your prayers answered (and your hope fulfilled).

    Sorry for any typos, I’m writing this on my phone.

    • Mo May 31, 2011 at 01:44 #

      You’re completely on point. I just wish I could focus that energy. I think that’s what I’m really struggling with.

  2. zygotta May 29, 2011 at 17:59 #

    I always hope for the best
    that way, you have at least the bright and happy hope days

    in any other scenario, it will be just the unbearable, pessimistic, dreary, gloomy, uneventful survival

    that’s not what life is meant to be
    that’s how i pushed through the mishaps of various degree so far – and i firmly stand by this point of view!

  3. C May 29, 2011 at 19:28 #

    Hope is the thing that’s an asshole, that perches in the soul, that taunts you without words, and never stops at all.

    My apologies to Emily.

    • Mo May 31, 2011 at 01:45 #

      Love it!

  4. Kristin May 30, 2011 at 01:22 #

    Hope can be a real bitch but, without hope, what is there to keep us going? It’s so damned hard to allow yourself to hope after multiple losses but, if you don’t allow that bitch in, you miss out on the joy and anticipation she brings with her. {{{Hugs}}} and I’m only a phone call or a skype away.

    • Mo May 31, 2011 at 01:45 #

      That’s a good point. Thanks Kristin! *hugs*

  5. Libby May 30, 2011 at 03:09 #

    I got to a point where I just expected the worst and was waiting to be surprised. I don’t think that was a good way to be. If you don’t hope, then you lose sight of why all of this is happening. You start to focus on the awfulness of it instead of the end result.

    And the end result ROCKS. No matter how it happens, it rocks hardcore.

    • Mo May 31, 2011 at 01:46 #

      That is true. I guess it’s just easy to get caught up in the little milestones instead of looking at the big picture.

  6. Odyssey to Hope? May 30, 2011 at 04:52 #

    I have re-named my blog to reflect your question my sweet-a journey to hope in a nutshell. I think without that tiny beacon of hope that we all STILL HAVE after each loss, if we were to be without it? Where would we be? I think that hope- and not just when we are taling about loss- gives us something to aim for. Hope has gotten me OUT of the stste of limbo that you currently find yourself in. Mine is a different sort of limbo, but I hold in my heart, the hope to keep me going until it is my turn to be a mother. Without hope, we have nothing.

    • Mo May 31, 2011 at 01:46 #

      You’re the sweetest. *hugs*

  7. bodegabliss May 30, 2011 at 22:12 #

    I struggle with this, too. It’s almost like I just can’t bring myself to hope because of the fear it will only lead to disappointment again. But really, the disappointment will happen regardless of hope, so why not hope? Right? That’s what I’m telling myself, anyway. 😉

    Happy Anniversary!

    Lots of love!

    • Mo May 31, 2011 at 01:47 #

      As usual, that’s a damn good point you make there. Love you!

  8. BleedingTulip May 31, 2011 at 04:15 #

    Hm… well, I guess sometimes I can’t help but have hope. I guess if I had NO hope, than I wouldn’t even be trying, right? But I also don’t want to be unrealistic with myself.

    And that Albert Einstein quote doesn’t really apply to you. Because you ARE trying different things, going to see doctors and specialists.

    I really hope AF shows up early for you, and that whatever they discover on the HSG they come up with a good game plan.

  9. slcurwin May 31, 2011 at 09:05 #

    We can never let go of hope completely. It’s the only thing that keeps us going. And having people around that love you helps too. Even when things seem at their most asstastic.

  10. me0me May 31, 2011 at 20:10 #

    I so related to the subject I couldn’t bring myself to reply, had to give myself time to think… And then I read Esperanza’s reply and was like- yeah. That’s it.
    Fucking hard, really fucking hard, but that’s it.

  11. marriage20 June 1, 2011 at 13:02 #

    I have struggled with the hope thing a lot, and I don’t really have a good answer. Before I found out that it’s very unlikely I’ll ever get pregnant, I had already shifted my thinking from expecting/hoping to get pregnant every month to expecting not to be pregnant every month. It might sound like I was being pessimistic, but I actually felt a lot more relaxed when I just assumed I wasn’t pregnant. And since I found out that I most likely won’t get pregnant, I’ve felt this weird sense of relief.

    At the same time, I feel more hopeful than ever before that everything is going to turn out okay one way or the other.

    So, for me, hoping for a specific outcome is bad and causes stress, but hoping for generic okayness down the road is good and makes me feel better.

    Thinking of you and hoping for good news from your HSG.


  12. Suzy June 6, 2011 at 06:56 #

    I’ve done a lot of thinking lately on those four letters…hope. Even managed to blurt out a blog post. To save reiterating it all in comment form: it is here >

    I think I would rather have no hope at all, and be pleasantly surprised. But I am a dirty hope junkie. I can’t help myself…

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