We started Valentine's Day with an argument - how romantic. Granted, it's never great to start the day with an argument, but it seems particularly ironic on a day devoted to love. Over the years of our marriage, we've experimented with some of the common "rules" for arguing, such as "don't go to bed angry," "use I feel statements," etc. Well, not going to bed angry only meant staying up later arguing, which was never constructive. Granted, you sleep better if you can resolve things before bed time, but that's just not possible sometimes. And let's face it: while there are times that "I feel" statements communicate your point, there are plenty of times that they leave a lot out. The one rule we've found works pretty consistently for us is "whoever cares more wins."
Whoever cares more wins works most of the time. What do you want for dinner? He wants fish, but right now the smell makes me queasy? Okay, we'll have something else. What do you want to do today? These sorts of decisions are easy to solve with whoever cares more wins. It's even worked pretty well in determining financial priorities.
However, it fails utterly when it comes to decisions relating to IF and adoption. When the decisions involved lead to a life-long commitment and can cost close to a year's salary, there is too much at stake for either of us to simply let the other have his or her way. We are mostly on the same page regarding continuing TTC; unless our doctor can give us a compelling reason why a new treatment protocol would work, this is our last month of TTC.
Our doctor's office has reaffirmed that there are no changes to the treatment plan, despite last month's blood work being a little disappointing. It's starting to feel like they are out of ideas, though an optimist could claim that perhaps they are just convinced that the current protocol should work. (Husbandido gives them more of the benefit of the doubt than I do.)
The last two weeks have been busy and stressful; last Saturday was another of the giant birthday parties for Husbandido's family (4 birthdays, 16 or 17 people). Plus there was the nagging e-mail from my aunt about needing pictures in preparation for my grandmother's 90th birthday bash and the overwhelming preparations for running Fr. Robert Barron's Catholicism series at our parish. Though I was trying so hard not to volunteer, guilt got me to agree to speak to someone about it, which somehow turned into running it. (Funny how that works, isn't it?) And today is, of course, CD2.
As we approach the end of TTC, we are more seriously reconsidering adoption. Husbandido is pretty strongly in favor of moving ahead with it, quickly. I have more doubts and concerns; adoption was never something I considered before IF. With my background, I cannot deny that genetics and prenatal environment are important in determining who a person is. I don't claim that parents and environment don't matter, though recent research suggests that they matter less than we might like or imagine. I am terrified of spending a fortune to adopt and a raise a child (or children) who will then turn around and reject us as not their "real family" once he or she is grown. If we are going to end up old and alone, isn't it better that we at least have the money to cover a decent care facility rather than being stuck in the facility for the indigent? (Yes, I am quite aware that is a worst case scenario, thank you very much.) In trying to research adoption, I have found a plethora of opinions, from whole-hearted support to adoptees who wish they were aborted to those who think adoption is evil and we should all just give the money we would spend adopting to birth mothers so that they can keep their babies. What I haven't found is good, solid research on the long-term results of adoption. How common is it that they maintain good relationships with their families? How common is rejection or estrangement? We can speak to those we know who have raised adopted children or who were adopted, but as the saying goes, the plural of anecdote is not data. In the end, it will probably not be research that convinces me but a leap of faith. (I hate making leaps of faith.)