When Hubby & I visited the Tulum Mayan Ruins, I have to admit that I hope it would be a mystical or magical experience. And in many ways, with the incredible rain storm we encountered, it was. Saul, our half-Mayan tour guide, gave us a little “tip” just before he sent us on our way to explore the ruins. He told us that at some point during our time at the ruins, we should close our eyes and open our minds and we would experience the exactly how sacred and spiritual this site was to the Mayan people.
So as we’re walking in the midst of this downpour of rain and as we’re wading in the warm sea at the Tulum beach, all I kept thinking about was how special it would be if, indeed, something wonderful would happen. And as Hubby & I get ready to exit the ruins, we closed our eyes and opened our minds. Now honestly, the only sound we could here was the rain steadily falling and the crowds of people chattering around us trying to stay dry. But me? I hung on to the hope that perhaps this special ground would prove to be “fertile” for us. In fact, I already had the name “Maya” picked out if I did become pregnant with a daughter.
This past Saturday, my hopes of a miracle pregnancy were once again dashed. And while it doesn’t sting so badly as it has over the past ten years, it still hurts. (And I do mean “hurt.” Damn those cramps and bloating and the feeling of being “off-balance.” It’s sucks that this monthly “symbol” of womanhood just reminds me of what a failure I am in that department. But I digress …)
Now I probably would have just picked myself up and chalked that dream of a miracle conception as yet another one of my silly attempts to bring hope into my life. But then I watched the movie “Waitress.” Which, as I think of it now, was probably not a good idea to watch, especially in the “hormonal” state of mind I was on Saturday.
The premise of “Waitress” is that of a waitress (Jenna) who has this incredible talent of making such wonderful and uniquely-named pies. She is married to a husband who is very jealous and controlling. Jenna’s biggest dream is to win a pie-baking contest with a $25,000 award so that she can leave her husband and find happiness by owning her own pie shop. But then Jenna finds out she’s pregnant. And suddenly she finds herself having an affair with the new married OB-Gyn in town. And then she feels as if she’s stuck in this loveless and unhappy and unsatisfied life.
(Now, if you’re wanting to watch this movie, I suggest you skip the following paragraph and move on to the next. There really isn’t any major spoiler to this movie, but if you’re like me … I’d hate it if someone ruined the whole movie-watching experience by telling me exactly what happens in the end.)
Throughout the movie, Jenna starts to write these letters to her unborn baby. The letters start out sounding bitter and angry and even at one point, pretty hostile (in my opinion) and resentful of having to carry this child and then have to spend the rest of her life unhappy because of this child. Even as she’s in the delivery room, you can clearly tell that she still does not want anything to do with this child. It wasn’t until her baby girl was placed into her arms that she finally found both love and happiness. But not only that, she found the strength and confidence within herself to divorce her husband, end the affair with her doctor, and open her own pie shop.
So why, after watching this movie, did I find myself overwhelmed with emotions? And why did I find myself yet again crying uncontrollably in Hubby’s arms?
The most obvious emotion I felt was the anger and jealousy towards the main character. Jenna is pregnant and I’m not. Throughout the movie she voices how she doesn’t want to be pregnant and she doesn’t want to be tied down with an unwanted baby. And here I am wanting to go through pregnancy and definitely wanting to have a baby. How can I not feel anger and resentment after years of not being able to fulfill my dream of starting a family?
Less obvious, was the empathy I felt towards Jenna. Here she is, living in a situation that she is trying to change, but for one reason (a controlling husband) or another (her unexpected pregnancy) things keep her from changing it. It’s similar to the way that I’ve felt about my infertility. Since marrying my best friend, what I’ve always wanted … what I always dreamt about … was having a family. I wanted to become a parent to children that I would love and cherish and raise to hopefully be smart and successful adults. That was my dream, my wish, my goal in life. And yet, everything Hubby & I had done under the sun to create a biological child of our own was unsuccessful. In that sense, I felt “stuck” in a situation that I couldn’t change, just as Jenna felt “stuck.” I couldn’t create a child, let alone sustain any pregnancy, that was both a part of me and my husband. I’d never know if certain traits (like the shape our child’s nose or his/her smile) was more like my husband or me. It’s those things that I cannot change. And it’s certainly those things that make me feel my sadness a little more deeply.
As I watched the ending of the movie (no, no spoilers here), I just felt so unfulfilled. Which was totally the opposite of what Jenna was feeling. It’s not that I’m unhappy with my life … no, that’s not the case. Because I certainly do have a ton of happiness and a lot to be thankful for in my life … the number one thing of which is a completely loving, devoted, and overall awesome husband/best friend. It’s just that the dream I have (the one with the white picket fence, the tall tree with a tire swing holding all of our kids, and the front yard that overlooks the ocean) seems like it’s exactly that … just a dream.
And I know that I still have that opportunity to make that dream into reality. And I know exactly what my next step is going to be. In a few days (when this blessed monthly event is over), I will pick myself up and resurface from this fog of sadness. But today, right now … I honestly just want to pull myself under the covers and sleep.