My dinner with Clueless Preggo was really kind of swell (I'm on a Mad Men bender now that the new season has begun, so expect lots of "gangbusters" and "donneybrooks" peppered throughout my posts for the next 12 weeks). She loved the gifts, particularly the cotton sweater. We talked about a lot of things other than babies, though I asked a few of the obligatory questions and listened to a few of the obligatory stories. And she asked at the end of the evening how we were doing with our efforts, to which I said something evasive and vague about enjoying the summer. But mostly we talked about work and school, her new apartment, things going on the city, tv shows, and gossip about friends-- the usual New York chit chat. (With more on gossip about friends to come).
Since then, however, I've been thinking about luck: who's got it, how we find it, where we see it, how we define it.
I blog a lot about how lucky I am. It's mostly to remind myself to feel lucky, even though making a baby has not turned out as I thought it would. It's also because I know my life is really good, no matter how depressed I get at times, and I want to treasure all the beautiful blessings that have been given to me.
For Clueless Preggo, I think I'm a walking, talking, occasionally-bleeding-out-a-baby reminder of her own luckiness. And this is because I suspect she's been feeling rather unlucky generally in this pregnancy. She didn't belabor this, but in explaining why she decided to find out the gender (girl) of her baby, she said that she "thought it would help her bond" after "being so sick and unhappy at first" and "not wanting to be pregnant." She of course immediately retracted the last statement when she became aware of her audience ("It's not that I wanted the pregnancy to end, of course not, etc. etc.). But I get the impression that with working until midnight many nights a week and being really ill she was feeling pretty sorry for herself for a while. Which, you know, may be valid and understandable, but I don't have a lot of sympathy for it and I won't cluck and hover and give ah-babies to someone who gets to have a baby right as soon as she decided she wanted one.
So yeah. I get to be a great big blinking reminder of "Be Happy That You're Pregnant!" just by sitting down for dinner.
But I'm not immune to the reminders, myself. At the end of dinner, Clueless told me a little about a mutual friend of ours, a former sorority sister of mine who wound up going to business school with Clueless and becoming her very close friend. Sorority Sister was married a year ago to a very kind, smart man (who happens to have gone to high school with my best friend, Doctor Lady. Just another day in the urban Northeast, I suppose).
Clueless told me that Sorority Sister and her husband learned a few weeks ago that he has an incredibly rare type of lymphoma. He's thirty years old. They're going to have to freeze his sperm before he starts treatments so they can hope to have children one day. There's a 70%-80% chance of remission after five years. Which is better than they feared, but still.
Clueless told me not to be prurient and gossipy, but to ask for my thoughts and prayers for this couple. I was completely gobsmacked at this news. I can't believe that this is happening to one of my peers, to someone in the same place in life that I am. Lawyer Guy and I held each other extra hard that night, reminded of how incredibly lucky we are to have each other right now, no matter what comes in the future.
It's not nice to be the indicator of someone else's good luck, so I'm not going to contact Sorority Sister and say anything. She didn't tell me this news, and she and I haven't spoken since Clueless's Christmas party last year, so I just don't think it would be appropriate (though I'm open to hearing otherwise). But I will be praying for them and thinking of them and hoping that they can leave this episode in their lives behind as quickly as possible. They're a wonderful couple who I can tell truly love one another, so I'm sure that even in this they've managed to find the joy and luck in being together. But I hope that they have even more to celebrate soon.
Among the gifts I gave Clueless was an elissa hudson Etsy print that I had framed. AMB linked to these prints at her blog a few weeks ago, and I loved them just as much as she does and quickly picked the one for me. A family of giraffes--Big, Medium, and Little--and right below them the statement "Lucky Little Family."
I didn't get that one for Clueless, lucky though I think she is (I gave her the penguins in pink). I'm saving the giraffes for myself. I'm saving it for the kind of luck you get after misfortune, which is maybe (if you make it there) the luckiest luck of all.
I'm back, and it's hopefully not a once-off!!
3 weeks ago