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Elegy to my belly button and two other gloomy things

During an early exam, my RE was doing something in the region of my abdomen and suddenly exclaimed, You have a perfect belly button! I was surprised–if I’d ever thought about it before, I’d figured I had a pretty average belly button. I mean, I’m glad I have the kind that goes in, but that’s as much as I’ve considered my navel. The RE was really impressed. He had the med student come over and look, and the two of them stood there over my belly button, nodding and agreeing, Yeah, uh huh, perfect. I guess he sees a lot of belly buttons, so I left feeling some small satisfaction. I have a perfect belly button! This morning I removed the remaining bit of bandage over my belly button, which I haven’t seen in almost two weeks. And it is perfect no more. Now it looks like Frankenstein’s belly button (except he wouldn’t have needed a belly button, but you know). It doesn’t look the same anymore. It’s no longer perfect. I burst into tears. It just made me so sad. I know I sound like a crazy person, but I feel like so many things have been taken from me in the past year and a half, and now my erstwhile perfect belly button! Something I didn’t even appreciate until a few months ago. And I know parenthood is about sacrifice, so I’d better get used to it. But DAMN.

The curfew tolls the knell of parting day,
The lowing herd wind slowly o’er the lea
The plowman homeward plods his weary way,
And leaves the world to darkness and to my ruined belly button.

The second reason for my crap mood is work-related. I’ve been working on a study for about a year and needed to run one last control experiment before writing the project up. I was finally able to analyze the data from the control experiment and it was a total bust–the effect I obtained was the precise opposite of what I’d hypothesized. The project is now in ruins. I don’t know where to go from here, and I feel completely unfit for this career. I know logically that this cycle is part of my job, and part of other kinds of jobs too. It strongly resembles Twangy‘s graph of the creative process, because it is, after all, a creative process. I’ll find a way to be re-inspired. Maybe. Or not. It just hurts so much, and in such a familiar way. You put your soul into something. You wait, you hope. You do everything you can. Little tweaks here and there. The moment of truth arrives, and…negative. I feel like I can’t experience this set of emotions any more. They’re so boring and painful.

Finally, I’m scared about tomorrow’s appointment and I have no reason to be. Which makes me think what I’m really afraid of is getting back in the TTC saddle. These past months have not been relaxing or enjoyable, but at least I’ve not had the acute sense of failure that comes with not getting pregnant. Tomorrow I’ll know where I’m headed, and have a clearer picture of exactly when I can start experiencing that sense of failure again.

I’m just so fucking sad. However, not too sad to say thanks for the fashion advice! (I’m super impressed you recognized the fabric, Trinity!) I’ll try to implement your suggestions and will get back to you. Cause I know you’ll be dying of anticipation.

10 Comments Post a comment
  1. JB #

    Let's have a moment of silence for your belly button. Amen.

    January 25, 2010
  2. *tips a 40 for Bunny's belly button* I had a lap a very long time ago, and I have a scar at 6:00 on my belly button. It has faded and is barely noticeable now (That was, holy crap, almost 16 years ago.)Sorry to hear about the work frustrations! 😦 (I love Twangy's graph.) You're right: dusting off the disappointment is drawn out, boring, and gets old. Blurrgh. You are sharp and clever, though, and you will pull through this, too. Yep. P.S. I can spend all day in a fabric store, much to my accompanying husband's displeasure. I went through a handbag-making phase for a while, and I have been known to build the occasional small shrine to my sewing machine. Grad school hasn't left me much time for projects here recently, and I so miss it.

    January 25, 2010
  3. Ah, Bunny. Sorry you have joined me at the "Gordon Bennet, WHY did I ever think this was a good idea?" low point. And after so much work too.But, but! This doesn't mean you are unfit for the work – not at all. I know that crap bleah feeling that leaks over your body image (poor belly button) and ruins your confidence, in everything, too. Horrible. Good luck for tomorrow. I remember the post-lap limbo as being a kind of safe haven from the TTC roundabout. I absolutely get it, for what it's worth. Keep going, Bunny. Something has got to give.

    January 25, 2010
  4. Al #

    I love twangy's graph – so very true. I'm sorry that your research project turned out to be a bust. I know it sucks and put your soul into something and be so hopeful that it's going to work, only to have it fail. Having that on at both work and TTC is horrid. You WILL find a way to be re-inspired and try again. Things will fall into place. I just wish I knew when (for you and me).I'm sorry that the lap ruined your once perfect belly button. Good luck at the appointment tomorrow.

    January 25, 2010
  5. JC #

    Ahh I'm sorry about your belly button and you research project. That sucks, I'm really sorry, sooo not fair to have two things go wrong.Good luck tomorrow! I'm scared to start TTC again too. Part of me wants to wait another month or more. Ugh!!

    January 25, 2010
  6. I just read every post. You're a stitch!I hope tomorrow's appointment gives you a lot of good information. Your comments about feeling flawed and perpetually stymied resonated loudly here. No matter what, though, you and Mr. B will hand on your feet.

    January 26, 2010
  7. Oh, I so sorry for the crappy day. Ugh, like we don't have enough to worry about withOUT things going wrong at work. Sorry about your belly button – hopefully it is temporary and your belly button will be back in perfect form soon.

    January 26, 2010
  8. I'm sorry about your belly button and your project. Can you hypothesize why you got the results and just say further research needs to be done to further look into this?

    January 26, 2010
  9. Who needs a perfect belly button when you have the perfect outfit for New York CIty?

    January 26, 2010
  10. I was a little worried about my belly button as well after 3 laps, but I will tell you that I can barely see the scars anymore. There's just one that peeks out like Trinity said – at 6 o'clock – and the rest of it looks normal now. Plenty of vitamin E will do wonders :).I loved the fabric you used for your dress, btw! I couldn't comment yesterday – stupid blogger acting up.

    January 26, 2010

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