I love my mother, don't get me wrong. She and I have had a tempestuous past, particularly during my teenage years, but we have got over all that now and have a great relationship.
The problem is, when it comes to infertility, she just does not get it. I think she tries, and she is obviously sad for us and understands that what we are facing is hard, but she does not 'get it'.
Mum was 27 when she had me and I was conceived no trouble at all, she then sadly had one miscarriage before conceiving my sister at 30. All three pregnancies were planned and happened within a month or two of trying. I think if we got to the point of a pregnancy that failed she might have a better reference point, but this not being able to get pregnant at all seems to be something she finds really hard to compute.
Bless her heart, she tries really really really dam hard to get it and to say the right thing but she has officially exhausted ALL the classics. Every single bloody one. Phrases that are I am able to laugh off or ignore when coming from a friend seem much harder to take when they are coming from my mother. I am afraid she has made me cry on more than one occasion and Remus (the husband) has had to jump in and explain why that is hard to hear.
To be honest, over the last few months she has got much better. I have not had a platitude launched at me for ages. There was even a moment when some granny friends of hers were talking babies and she felt the pain of second generation infertility and I though we had had a real breakthrough. They were totally dismissive of my infertility and my mums sadness at not being a granny yet. I thought at last she had understood. And then, yesterday, she launched a doozie.
Oh dear mother. Your foot and your mouth seem to have such an affinity.
Anyhoo, I went out to an event on Saturday. An event that contained those carriers of disease, those diminutive pox monkeys: little children. By lunch time I was feeling strange and I was at least an hour and a half from home. I got in the car, drove like hell, and used up my last reserves of energy to get myself back home.
As I came in the door I burst into tears, collapsed on the sofa and was immovable for the rest of the evening. Remus was running round after me like the lovely fella that he is and by night time it was (too much information is possibly about to follow) coming out both ends. And that is all you need to know about that.
So on Sunday morning I rang my mummy for some sympathy. Which I did get, she was very sweet and kind and mumsy, wishing she had time to come over and look after me. Until she said it. Yup, she actually said it. Can you believe it? I imagine any infertile lady reading this is going to know exactly the phrase to which I am referring....
My mum said to me, as I was lying on my back feeling ill as feck, having just spewed and shat my guts out....
"You never know love, maybe it's morning sickness!"
"No mum, just no. NO. It is not morning sickness. It would be unlikely to be morning sickness in two and a half weeks time when I am on cycle day 28 or so, seeing as the chances of us conceiving naturally are incredibly low after 17 months of well times sex has failed. I am, however, only on cycle day 12 at the moment, and seeing as I never ovulate until cycle day 15, and I, without a shadow of doubt, had a perfectly respectable period twelve days ago, I am about as unlikely to have morning sickness as you are. In fact, you are possibly more likely too, despite your menopause, seeing as we know you have had it before."
Of course I did not actually say that, although a few months ago I would have. I just sighed, and said...
"No, it's not."
And changed the subject.
I love her, and her heart is in the right place. I genuinely think it is just a case that her mouth says things before her brain can catch up. But seriously mum, no. Just no.
*oh, and I have been fiddling with the design - I rather like so far*