Friday, January 16, 2015

Chapter 4 - They are Only Dreams (part 1)

I had a dream one night shortly after Dr. Kim told me I was infertile. A child’s cartoon jingle from the Handy Manny show was playing on the television in our family room. A little girl danced on the carpet, swaying in time with the sing-song jingle of the show. The music repeated. Over and over it played, searing itself into my brain. The image was indistinct but the music was clear as day.

I awoke in a sweat. I wanted to touch the little girl, I kept calling out to her but she wouldn’t turn around. I wanted to see her face to confirm she existed. Perhaps I wasn’t ready yet. Perhaps I needed the music in my head, just the rhythm, like a heartbeat.

In those early days, I wanted to believe visions could come true. I desperately wanted something to guide me through the forest of infertility but having visions freaked me out. It didn’t occur to me then that God might be communicating with me in the only manner I would recognize. During those times, I wasn’t looking to Him for guidance. I was dreaming and simply throwing out prayers of desperation. I made bargains with Him, pleaded for a baby.

I didn’t think my visions and nighttime dreams were anything more than random delusions crafted by my desperate mind. Whenever I had one, I didn’t fully expect they would come true and yet I clung to them for the comfort they offered. There were many difficult obstacles to overcome and these visions helped me cope with the disappointment. They kept me going when everything in science said to give up.

By this time, I hadn’t much confidence in science, at least the traditional medical path of dealing with infertility. I started seeing a hypnotherapist a short time after being diagnosed with AS. Her name was Carol and upon our very first meeting, I sensed a deeper sense of understanding from her than anyone I had ever met. She had helped many women get pregnant. I was hopeful she could help me, too.

Carol was a person who looked into your eyes so deeply when talking that you would forget everything except for the conversation at hand. She had dark, soulful eyes and amazing porcelain skin. She was mesmerizing. Time stood still while we talked about my troubles and the challenges of infertility. Through our sessions, she helped me calm myself and focus on having a baby.

We met once a week and each time, we built upon the dream and eventually, our friendship. “Three deep breaths, Jennifer,” she purred. She counted them with me and then taught me to find a pleasant vision, a place where I felt safe and happy.

Through Carol, I learned to lower my blood pressure and calm myself when I was afraid or despondent at our situation. Gradually, I became less afraid of the visions and instead, would stop and catalog them almost like taking a snapshot of my mind.

Dreaming about the little girl made me more determined to press on. It was comforting to feel her presence but at times, overwhelming. Mike didn’t have visions and dreams about a baby so was less optimistic about our chances to conceive but most of the time, he kept his doubts to himself. Mike has always been a realist and sometimes even a pessimist. However, if I was willing to push on through the challenges, he agreed we should pursue every available option. He knew I could not resist the relentless call of this baby. And so, I kept digging for information and kept seeing Carol whom I soon discovered was a valuable medical resource, too. She had successfully navigated through difficult medical issues in dealing with her multiple sclerosis and her daughter’s heart condition. She had helped many other couples work through the medical system in the quest to conceive.

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