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Sterile

Believe it or not, one of the first things I did when I got home from the hospital was to sort through all my clothes. I dragged the maternity items out of the closet and hurled them in a heap. I flung open the cedar chest that contains the clothes I haven’t been able to wear for many moths, sorted them into stuff I can wear now and stuff I won’t wear till I go back to work. Then I confronted the little pile of objects at the bottom of the chest: A pregnancy book I pored over enthusiastically when I was gestating Bun Bun and didn’t even open this time, and a box containing…

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The first six are Bun Bun. The second four are Bunlet. The last one is Bunter. And the unopened one, well that’s Bundle and Bunting and…

I put the maternity stuff in the clothes donation box, and the pregnancy book in the book donation box. I took all the pregnancy tests out of their box. I left them on a shelf for a few days. Then I threw them all away.

It felt weird to toss them in the kitchen trash on top of some take out containers. But as deeply symbolic as they are, there aren’t tons of good rituals to perform with hunks of plastic. Burning is out, burying is weird (what if they get dug up by some very confused future person?), am I supposed to float them down the river on a little paper boat? Anyway, I was ready to say goodbye to them. I was ready to move on to the next phase of my life before I got pregnant with Bunter, and the fact that I was doing this clothes sorting when I was supposed to be “sleeping while the baby sleeps”* reflects just how extra super ready I am now.

I felt no need to keep that last unused test. You see, with my c-section I ordered up a side of tubal ligation. That’s right, I took this perfectly good reproductive system and sterilized it. I mean, I didn’t do it myself, but there was a part of my surgery where my OB said I have two bits of fallopian tube in a bucket, and I signed a piece of paper that read in big red letters: consent for sterilization. 

On the one hand, sterilization feels like a strange choice considering how much energy I put into trying to conceive. And like a wasteful choice. Surely I should be renting my tattered, weary uterus out or offering my undesirably old eggs to passing strangers. I mean, I grow such good babies!

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On the other hand…My Family is Complete. Yeah, there are no guarantees, but a tubal ligation is extremely effective, plus there’s the abstinence that will naturally come along with having so many children, and I am almost 40, and all that will surely get me safely to menopause without another baby. Right?

I mean, I know that in the past few years I have shown some poor judgement in the domain of not getting pregnant when I don’t want to get pregnant, but some random doctor offered me a shot of Depo-Provera on my way out of the hospital, and when I explained that I’d just had a tubal ligation, she agreed that the Depo was “overkill”. So maybe I can finally assert some control over my biology.

 

 

*As if. I have never taken that approach. I prefer “make cocktails while the baby sleeps”.

10 Comments Post a comment
  1. Having control over when/if to have all the babies is a worthy goal in and of itself. Reproductive freedom! Just like Margaret Sanger intended! (But without the side of creepy eugenics.). My lady parts have also been retired, as it is not possible to share my fertility with others who need it more than me. Plus if I had any more children my mental health could probably not take it (I am not exaggerating; Chased By A Bear and a side of Fucking Depressed, With Mastitis? There is not enough X@nax in the world).

    November 9, 2015
  2. I am impressed at how quickly you got to sorting this stuff. No wonder your house is so beautiful! The decision to close up shop definitively is very wise. And yes you do grow darn good babies!

    Moving beyond the in/fertility stage of life is liberating, even if it does have it’s own complications.

    November 9, 2015
  3. Jos #

    Phew – I just found my pee sticks and haven’t yet brought myself to throw them out. It just feels so weird to get rid of them when I hoped & prayed for those stupid sticks to show a 2nd line for so long…but now I’m just holding onto plastic covered in my pee in the bottom of my jewelry box, which is probably even weirder, eh?

    I’m glad you were able to take control over your reproductive health. Wahoo! That’s a great feeling, whether you are preventing or trying.

    November 9, 2015
  4. You do make fantastically adorable babies. But you are under no obligation to make them for other people, and given that your family is complete, this is the sensible thing to do, and the decision should depend on how things are, not how they were before you got here.

    November 10, 2015
  5. Steph #

    HIGH FIVE Bunny friend!

    November 10, 2015
  6. Oh god, my ovaries! The cuteness. I need this surgery in my life. I’ve been putting off BC decisions for way too long now.

    November 13, 2015
  7. misfit #

    Hiya. I went into hiding. I peek into this place and say. Welcome Bunter! (Snorgle virtually.) Those tests were so SIGNIFICANT and meaningful. Until they weren’t. It’s weird like that. I couldn’t do the tubal for the risk o’ ectopic. And since the universe hates me, I left no odds on the table for that shit. I think that you should print the picture and set it aflame like a Viking to Valhalla. Those things were the oars that bore your family boat. It was a journey. A battle. And that bit is over. To which I don’t say congratulations, because that’s like telling a veteran “congratulations” for surviving the shit, but I do say that I am so glad to see you here. You made it. And I am all kinds of happy for it. Lots of love. Lots.

    November 13, 2015
  8. Such a deeply sensible woman you are. Tubal ligation makes perfect sense.
    You do grow amazing babies, but I’m glad Bunter was the last one on your ‘to grow’ list (and that one was written in invisible marker). You can now focus on other important things like cocktails.
    I hope you are recovering well from the fourth opening of the uterus. I’ve only had it done once, but it was a big deal for my abdominal wall. I hope getting out of bed is getting easier.
    sending gentle hugs.

    November 15, 2015
  9. Did my comment get eaten? I was giving you high fives. I am truly delighted for you, bunny, complete is a beautiful thing.

    November 15, 2015
  10. SRB #

    When I first read this post, my eyes shot down to the picture first and my first thought was “Surely she isn’t pregnant AGAIN?” because I am done. I am glad that you decided to use the bits of string that hold your uterus together to seal that sucker shut. I am ready to rip my uterus out and throw it in the trash.

    Although…that baby is DELICIOUS.

    November 20, 2015

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