Sunday, September 26, 2004

Loooooteal phase

Occasionally, J. likes to let out a whooping rendition of a song he calls "Loooooteal Phase," a la They Might Be Giants' "Minimum Wage." J., however, does not fully grasp the actual meaning of the luteal phase and belts out his greatest hit at wildly inappropriate times--such as when I'm balled up on the brown chenille futon with murderous cramps on CD1, wishing black misery on all of the world's fertile women. (The rage lasts about an hour, though the jealousy persists.)

For me, the luteal phase brings on two weeks of conflicted feelings--a sort of cyclical bipolar disorder. There's the relief of having completed the ovulatory phase, meaning we can stop having obligatory daily sex, as well as the seemingly insuppressible surge of hope that this month, this time, the result will be different. It also brings about the stark awareness that I'm pointlessly trying to fool myself. The "symptoms" that the rebelliously hopeful part of myself likes to obsess about--uterine twinges, occasional breast tenderness, sensitivity to smells--are doubtless harbingers of nothing more than another gruelling menstrual cycle.

Why is it--how is it--that I contain both hope and the certainty of failure in the same moment, the same breath? That I can resign myself to the inevitable but still break down when it becomes manifest?

Today, I'm at 15 DPO. I'm guessing the futon will be serving its usual purpose this afternoon or tomorrow, and I will once again curse myself for having allowed any shred of optimism. And then I'll start the whole process again.

God, I'm starting to sound like a broken record.


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