The “what ifs” continue and other news

The new year at work has rocketed into action. It was a dizzyingly busy first week back in the office culminating in an eye-widening court appearance and a job interview for a prestigious but contract-only government job.

When I applied for that job I was still on maternity leave and dreading a return to the pressures and hours of a busy law firm practice. I assumed that because my submission never resulted in an interview while I was still on leave that I didn’t make the grade.

As it turns out, wheels in government turn painstakingly slowly. I ought to have known that from having government as a client on occasion.  But.  Government has never been my immediate world. The exception – a remote one at best – was some federal government contract research work I did before the brain injury, when graduate school loomed large on my horizon (and was the basis for the work in the year or so I planned to take between completing an undergraduate degree and entering a foreign PhD program.

Law school was the option others recommended and I pooh-poohed then with my not-so-clever retort that I was not about to become someone who donned a suit and begged for the loot. Ah, Life. Your flair for irony never ceases to amaze me.

At any rate, the interview went reasonably well. And brought out a wistful moment for if I have any hopes of pursing the “what if” of a third living child leaving my current place of employment is largely out of the question given the medication costs covered by my current benefits plan and those I am almost certain would not be covered under the government plan. Quite apart from that I am fairly confident I would desperately miss having a litigation practice and acting for clients rather than a judge and “the law”, writ large.

In many respects I envision the job for which I applied a stepping stone of sorts — a gateway to other “good government jobs.” Pity about the timing. Not to mention the tens of thousands of dollars (we don’t have) that I would be required to repay my current firm if I leave before one year after my return from maternity leave (you’ve got to love the cajones of private practice law firms, no? Yes this was a condition of my employment.).


I am still waiting to  get a date for our consultation with the western Canadian fertility doc who I am hoping might consider working with Dr. Braverman should we (I) decide to pursue that big what if I wrote about here. Not much to report on this front except that the pangs of desire continue as do the pangs of anxiety and self-doubt about whether this is the path I am meant to follow.

On a happier more charming note I had a delightful night out with the almost-entirely female Board and entirely female staff of the playschool the MT attends recently. (Should I change his moniker here to Miracle Preschooler now? MP stands for Military Police and Member of Parliament where I’m from so to be honest that acronym has less appeal. MT he remains.) The company was purely delightful and reinforced my belief that we make the choices we make in part of free will and in part because of a master plan to which we signed on at some prior point in our spiritual existence (of which we may or may not be aware).

Once in a while my over-commitment pays off not only for others but for my karmic self.  High fives to me for joining that Board.

And now I am up at some ridiculous hour with a baby Azulito who has a pitiable cough and a far less pitiable compulsion to play and further his attempts to master crawling. Or walking (he’s an equal opportunity kind of baby at this point). At 4 a.m.

Remind me why I’m considering another trip to hell and back in the hopes of having another child?

20 thoughts on “The “what ifs” continue and other news

  1. Because all the extra love we grow for the children we add to our lives makes us better people. Certainly true in my case where the love for my family is finally big enough and strong enough to eclipse the quiet sadness of my own childhood. Nothing is logical about the desire for more children. We take the path we want to take. I know I am done, and I always knew that it would be this way after baby F was born. But I did read somewhere, a long time ago, that every mother ends up with one less child than she really wanted. A strong testament to the power of our biological urges! X

    • How interesting. I never heard that before. I would love four but that’s out of the question. Given my medical need for expensive immune intervention even 3 seems like a high risk gamble. Maybe I’m done? I certainly agree about the love we grow for our children makes us better people. And it’s exponential not simple addition.

    • YES. Everything that Faye said. I always thought I wanted two, and now we (finally) have them, and yet there are occasional flickers of “Maybe three?” Where this is coming from I don’t know, because I’ve always wanted two. I think it may be as simple as knowing that this era of my life is over and it’s time to move on, and that’s always a little scary. Keep soul searching about it and in time I know you will find your path when it comes to this question.

      Also…I can’t believe you would actually owe your employer money if you left! I’ve only ever heard of that for places that are paying for your education or something. Wow.

      So many big decisions for you.

      • Yes. I thought I would love to have four before we struggled to have one. Then I said I could live with one but that did not feel like my calling and didn’t sit right at all. While I was pregnant with baby A I wished his twin had survived on one hand – the deep seated longing hand – but was so relieved to be avoiding the complexities that would have brought on the other – more practical – hand. The grief I’ve felt over watching our friend place her daughter feels much bigger, deeper and more demanding-to-be-heard than anything I experienced before except the calling to keep trying to bring home baby A. I think you’re right – there is a grieving of the ability and the time to bear children for sure and I know that’s wrapped up in here for me – but what I cannot quite decipher at this time is whether the impracticality and (let’s be honest if not so brutally honest as my friend MLACS was) madness of this longing is primarily grief in yet a new form or a force to be reckoned with. I have this sense that the girl we lost in 2013 is hovering nearby. And whether that means that baby’s spirit would return as a girl I don’t know but what I do know in my not-so-rational heart is that this isn’t a love of drama or a whim or a checklist. It’s coming from someplace much more visceral and spiritual at the same time and even if I decide it isn’t right to try again I know I will have to make peace both with myself and whomever this spirit nearby is.

      • PS I can’t imagine anyone but lawyers finding away to do this to parents. If you take medical leave you are not required to pay it back if you leave after returning before any set time. Which has me thinking if this would survive a human rights law challenge…

  2. I’m kind of shocked–I didn’t know you wanted another baby! Did you know? Or is this desire something that crept up as your maternity leave was ending? Do you anticipate needing to go to NY for treatments again? And the switching of jobs… Honestly SBCH, I have to ask you, are you addicted to drama? Do you not want to live in physical and financial peace? Do you not want to focus on being present (physically and mentally) for your two small children (how thin do you actually plan to spread yourself, and is it fair of you to expect your family to acommodate your wishes)? I am a bitch, yes, but I am not trying to bully you here–I am genuinely wondering what your motivation and rationale is…are you being realistic? Not for me to say. Just because I couldn’t do it doesn’t make it wrong. But these are my thoughts. XOXO

  3. Holy shit I’m horrified you’d have to PAY them if you went elsewhere if you leave before a year after your mat leave.

    The top commenter – the “every mother ends up with one less child than she really wanted.” That one hit me hard. I have this deep ache in my heart and belly – I want another baby. But it just doesn’t feel like it’s in the cards for me. Not right now, anyway. Maybe I will always feel this way?

    As for you having another – I still stand by the thought that a soul is calling to you to do this. And you wouldn’t be human if you didn’t feel a *little * anxious about it. I think all moms do, whether they’re having their first or 5th!

  4. Why must we be such practical people? I mean, practicality is what probably had us waiting so long to have kids right? Amidst the crazy haze of Dumplin’s colic, I got a bit caught up on your posts. Thanks for linking back to the what if post. I don’t even know what to say about your friend and the impact of her situation on you. It just sucks. As for the job- I think that just interviewing keeps us fresh and up to date. There’s nothing worse than stagnating in your career. Government jobs are so hard to get- everyone wants a pension- but if your current job has such a good drug plan, then that’s an important thing to consider if you’re going to pursue your “what if”. I personally would love another child (3 is ideal for me), but DW says no. And while I don’t have a gender preference, I must say that I would be a bit sad if I never had a chance to mother a daughter. But it is what it is, and if we make our own happiness, my heart will still be exploding with two little boys filling it. Sending you so much love and peace. I hope everyone is well.

  5. I hope you get the job if you want it ! Wow, that’s great that you got out and got to hang around some adult females. I hope you will remain on the board and expand your interests… MT said you can not change his moniker not ever ! Lol. Good luck with the consult. You need a girl in that house ! Lol

  6. No I agree keep the MT. Hahaha. Do not want there to be confusion with an actual MP. We do use that acronym lots in our country…. Sending hugs and remember the hard stuff only makes the good stuff that much better. If you decide to go down that path a 3rd time you can do this. You are so very strong!

    • Thank you Jo. In lining up a telephone consult with a new clinic to find out if they’ll work with Dr. B and getting asked for all the forms and medical history again recently I’ve started to get cold feet. It’s such a roller coaster even deciding what to do but the real challenge would be doing it and honestly don’t know if I have it in me.

      • Sending hugs and much love. Through our live experiences we have proven we are tough and stronger than we ever would have imagined! I have a friend that lost her husband a number of years ago. I always told her that she is the strongest woman I know. To be 34, widowed with a 5 year old. He had a brain tumor and was ill for 5 years. I always told her that I would in no way ever be that strong and could do so. Life has proven me wrong. You are so very strong and have great courage. Always know this! HUGS!!

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