I was never that woman who dreamt of having many children or starting my own “Brady Bunch.” Babies, little booties, and bottles were always an afterthought to enjoying a successful career, one peppered with travelling the world and enjoying a range of other adult activities a childless, flexible lifestyle could provide. However, after my husband Jason was diagnosed with leukemia and underwent a bone marrow transplant (which I wrote about here), it would be an understatement to say that my priorities and narrow definition of family underwent a fundamental revolution. One year post-cancer, I began to dwell on the thought of living and dying without a family of my own.
Cancer had forced mortality to become an issue that often occupied my thoughts during sleepless nights or long car rides, and in my worst nightmare, I became the modern antagonist of some sort of widowed cat lady fairy tale. I imagined myself an old hag with cracked skin in a big castle, hoarding treasure and cackling wildly all by myself, full of bitterness and regret over my own solitude. The adult lifestyle that once felt so plush suddenly transformed into a thorny horror story, and Jason and I decided to try IVF. Keep reading »
Last month, my husband Jason and I had our fiercest argument ever. In our six-year history, I have accepted that occasional spats are part and parcel of every couple’s attempt to weave two independent lives into one harmonious fabric of existence. Even marital vows oblige us to respect the glaring reality of love’s peaks and troughs, as we openly recite “through good times and in bad” like an ominous premonition.
However, this bad time was as explosive as a nuclear bomb. Jason made himself scarce and I refused to speak to him for almost three days. After our respective time-outs, our cooler selves regretted hurt feelings and longed to reclaim the sense of closeness forbidden by our passive aggressiveness. After a long deep and meaningful conversation, our mess was sorted, apologies were exchanged, and our issues were put to rest. Life has marched forward since, but my spiritual side insists that there is a life lesson to be learned. Do inevitable outbreaks of oral fireworks light up the relationship landscape or inescapably end in matrimonial discord? Likewise, is there an acceptable level or frequency of conflict all relationships should abide by, or should conflict be subjected to a zero-tolerance policy?
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