Saturday, April 9, 2016

Stuck in the middle

We currently rent the townhouse that we live in.  We really lucked into this house when we moved here.  It was on the market because our landlord was transferred for work, but four years ago when we moved in, the housing market wasn't good, so rather than it sit vacant and pay a realtor, he rented it to us.  It's been a great landlord tenant relationship.  Essentially we pay the rent on time and he stays out of our business.  His mom manages the property (since she lives in the area and he doesn't) and we call her whenever repairs are needed.  Because we've been such great tenants he hasn't raised the rent since we moved in, which is almost unheard of for renters.

Since we are buying a house, we let him know that we would be moving out by the end of May.  He decided that instead of renting his townhouse out again, he was going to list it for sale.  He called me earlier this week to let me know that his mom and his realtor would be stopping by today to look over the property and determine what needs to be done in order to list it.

His mom arrived a bit ahead of the realtor and we visited with her.  We like her a lot so it was nice to visit.  During the course of the conversation we learned that her son (our landlord) and his wife (they were married in June 2016) are having a baby, due on May 1st.  The baby will be her first grandchild.  I don't know why, but it caught me off guard a little bit.  Basically she got pregnant about a minute after they got married (because one doesn't forget fertility math).  I should have expected it.  Which served as a not so gentle reminder of how hubs' and my story is so different from most other couples. 

The realtor finally got the house, also another middle aged woman, and she seemed quite nice.  The realtor and the landlord's mom did a walkthrough on the house.  Afterwards we were talking, it came out that the realtor's son and his wife are also expecting their first child.

Two expectant grandmas.  In my living room.  Talking about their excitement about becoming grandmas.  About planning and throwing baby showers.  About buying things for their new grandbabies.  I had no escape.  It took everything I had not to burst into tears. 

It was a painful reminder that I will never get to experience pregnancy.

It was a painful reminder that my mom or mother in law will never get to cackle over their excitement because I'm pregnant.  Hubs and I are both oldest children.  So both of their oldest children failed to have their own children.

Not what I needed after a pretty craptastic week.

I'm over it now.  But five minutes seemed like five hours.  It caught me off guard and stung like hell for a bit. 

If there was a silver lining to the whole thing, it was that they were so caught up in their own glee that neither woman bothered to inquire about my family planning status.  Which is good since that would have put me over the edge. 

I am proud of myself because I didn't let this brief encounter ruin my day.  I'm finding that situations like this hurt just as bad as they always have, but I'm starting to rebound a bit faster.  So that's good, I guess.


  1. I am glad that you didn't let two expectant grandmas to ruin your day.
    Even when I think I am 100 % healed, moments like that remind me that I am different and that I always will be.
    But - if I weren't different, the two of us wouldn't know each other. I am glad we know each other.
    hugs from Europe.

    1. Agreed. If not for all of this our paths would never have crossed. And for that I am so thankful.

  2. Such a lovely story to read – a nice change from the ‘tenants from hell’ stories that seem to do the rounds.

    And there it is, the stomach dropping, sweaty palms situation that has you cornered with no escape.
    At least they were too caught up in their own stories to worry you with questions. Unfortunately you still had the fallout to withstand and work through.

    Glad to hear you reclaimed your ground faster; onward and upward to that house purchase (and all its exciting new projects. :)

    1. For once it was actually nice to be overlooked, LOL!

  3. I'm very sorry you were blindsided. It's hard enough when you know moments Ike that are coming, but the surprise is always far worse.

    I am glad you are rebounding faster and finding ways to deflect (I.e. Fading into the background as they Pradeep on).

    1. Exactly. At least when you know it's coming you can prepare.

  4. Part ii…
    Just mulling over you both being the oldest child as I was making dinner tonight….

    I wonder how much this birth order impacts on our handling of childlessness.
    Looking back at our situation, my natural ‘first born’ reaction was to spring into action and fix it; being the responsible one, the reliable one, the fixer, and to look for a solution that would succeed, and then feel utterly responsible and a failure when it didn’t.

    I had a similar reaction when my dad died, and I was very aware of something pushing me into that mode - a bit illogical really. My mother coped amazingly well and my siblings were all intelligent adults that certainly didn’t need their older sister trying to step into dad’s shoes.
    Maybe the ‘eldest child’ expectations also play a part in how we cope. Doing it all our life though, we often don’t cut ourselves any slack, it’s a hard habit to break.

    1. Now you've made me ponder this too. I've always been strong and stoic (at least externally) and a fixer. I definitely don't cut myself any slack, but I'm trying really hard to be nicer to me.

  5. The whole real estate situation is a powderkeg for the infertile. It sucks that you got trapped with that conversation in your living room.

    I've been using "child free humor" to try and change my thinking and accept my situation. I find that some of this helps shut strangers up, I just pull out picture of my cats and most strangers get this, laugh at the joke and move on. It doesn't work with the newly mothered and pregnant friends because those people are totally friggin oblivious to your feelings.

    No matter how you cope, being able to move on from random people saying things that trigger you, that is a pretty big step.

    1. I find that sarcasm is my default stance when trying to navigate difficult situations too. I also sort of enjoy making people uncomfortable.

      On the bright side or realtor has never asked us if we had kids. For this reason alone he will earn his commission.

  6. BLARGH. It's so hard. In those situations, I am so conflicted because I genuinely want to be happy and supportive, but also ... sometimes, it just sucks. It sucks having to be magnanimous and put your own feelings aside in order to avoid a CRAZY INFERTILE LADY scene.

    1. It doesn't happen so much anymore, but there was a time when there was a very fine line between normal and crazy infertile lady scene. Saturday was borderline crazy infertile lady scene.