The appointments have been on the calendar for a month now. My partner’s neat script reminds us that we’re going to see Dr. FC. That’s what it says on the calendar—Dr. FC. Not the doctor’s name or the clinic, just FC for fertility clinic. The abbreviation is partially to keep the visit a secret from visiting friends or family, whose eyes might land on the calendar posted prominently on our fridge. The abbreviation is partially because three referrals will result in one decision—there’s no point in recording all of the names on paper or in memory. And the abbreviation is partially to keep our own anxiety in check, at least I imagine. My partner chose and wrote the abbreviation, but that’s one of the functions it serves for me. It makes this less blatant.
Because I’m sure that I will be excited. I’ve wanted a child from the time I announced to my kindergarten boyfriend that we were going to have three children together, from the time I read my mother’s outdated pregnancy book when I was twelve, from the time I started coming up with future children’s names in high school. (None of these names will be used on actual children, for the record.) I’m sure that I will be excited, but I’m scared. I’m scared by my own comfort in the life that I have, both its familiarity and its excitement. I love volunteering, I love last-minute plans, I love evening meetings and weekend adventures. And I hear that both pregnancy and having a child change that. I’m also scared because of my partner’s reluctance. Having a child has not been high on her to do list. Which is an understatement. In a decade-long stare down, she blinked first. Which is to say she’s decided that being with me is more important than being without a child. But she didn’t get out of bed today, the day of the first Dr. FC visit, in a fantastic mood. This is also an understatement.
After a morning fight and tears, I’m scared. I’m not scared because of the fight or tears, but because they highlight my uncertainty going in to today. Is this the right decision? Will it be? There’s no way to know, unfortunately. All I know is that, for whatever reason, I can’t not. And that in 40 minutes I’ll be greeting Dr. FC by name.