When I was in my twenties watching that big 3-0 approach and still childless, I used to dread hearing two things from a doctor. The first was “there’s nothing wrong with you.” This would be an indication that somehow, psychologically I was causing my own infertility because I just knew I was totally psychotic and hiding it well. The second was, “You’re entering menopause.”
I dreaded menopause like people dread death and tax bills and speaking in public. I feared the day when my last hope of being pregnant would evaporate into hot flashes and night sweats and hormone replacement therapy. Some women struggle with “the change” as a sign of getting older. I saw it as the end. It was like a death.
This latest pregnancy has been more exhausting than my other two, and my age is a contributing factor. I am achier and fatter earlier and tired more often and just generally feeling run down. I have an excellent doctor who isn’t subjecting me to increased pressure or testing because of my advanced maternal age, but my body is generally feeling more advanced age than maternal this time around.
Last night I had a series of very vivid dreams, and in one I was sitting in my doctor’s office in Georgia. He was saying, “There’s nothing wrong with you, you’re just entering menopause.” My response was, “Oh. What a relief. I thought I was pregnant again.”