Forcing nature

“Just sign on the dotted line and we’ll make a start”

The doctor’s voice is confident. He’s done this a thousand times before, extracting cells to make life-completing miracles. He probably doesn’t give it a thought any more; just sees his bank account getting fatter with each growing belly – and the potential profit sketched across those stark, barren ones.

NoBabiesI falter, mind whirling…is this *really* what I want? Of course it is – it’s the thing we both want – the thing we’ve always wanted and talked about and been heartbroken over when it turned out to be impossible for us. The thing we’ve scrimped and saved for. The thing which will finally make us into the family we always dreamed of being. We even have names picked out.

The preparatory injections have sucked. They hurt, but in a good way – a way I can cherish in my heart as one step closer to motherhood. We’ve laughed about it as my husband did the deed, each morning in the bathroom, with aseptic conditions and gloves and alcohol wipes; not the most romantic, and certainly the only way a prick in the butt could result in pregnancy…

And now we’re here, I’m hesitant. The room spins and seems to dissolve into a series of movie clips rushing past my mind’s eye, faster and faster:

-A woman with her profoundly disabled daughter, caring for her cheerfully amongst all the paraphernalia which goes with her 24 hour medical regime. What if I have a disabled baby and it hates me for creating it?

– A father brokenhearted each time his children leave to return to their mother. Is our relationship strong enough to survive the test of children?

– A mother, broken, in hospital, watching as her son shifts in agony, wishing there were anything she could do to help him or heal him or take his pain away. What if our child got sick?

– Two parents holding down their small, screaming toddler as they check its blood sugar with a needle-prick test, and inject it with life-saving insulin. What if it *is* hereditary – what if it gets passed along?

– A mother watching through scared eyes as her daughter begins to exhibit such terrifyingly familiar symptoms of low self-esteem and negative body image. How could I ever be a good enough role model?

– A woman simmering over with anger, screaming obscenities at her young son, tearing him down and repeating the cycle which she was taught in her own, downtrodden childhood. Those bad habits go deep – I’m not loose from those trappings yet – would I be able to stop the cycle from turning again? Would I become the same monster I knew as a kid?

My mind boils over, and one question comes floating to the top – if we force nature, and things go horribly wrong, will we blame ourselves forever? Would we be responsible?

And should I sign…?


Thanks to Tipsy Lit for the prompt ‘Powerful Magic’ – a character’s decision whether or not to use a forbidden magic to answer a need.

prompted-button Tipsy LitAnd yes, I think it’s quite alright to use my blog as an arena to air some worries and concerns via a fiction piece. We’re not anywhere close to this. Yet. But one day we might be, and I have all these thoughts with no other place to go…

58 thoughts on “Forcing nature

  1. I liked how you managed to include such a variety of tones in this story, mimicking her vacillating thoughts – from the serious and anxious to the comical: “not the most romantic, and certainly the only way a prick in the butt could result in pregnancy…” 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Polling Prompted: Powerful Magic | TIPSY LIT

  3. Nikki was a medically assisted pregnancy and I have asked myself a thousand times, perhaps more, if the spinning out of whatever they spin out caused her horrible eyesight or her scoliosis. I get it. But I wouldn’t change a thing.

    I’m hopeful they spun out that awful addictive gene.

    I know this is fiction but knowing the inspiration I felt compelled to share. I hope you don’t mind.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Is she? I didn’t know that. Does she know? I might send you a PM at some point, if you don’t mind chatting. And no, I know she has a coupla things there, but nothing’s WRONG…not on a big level. And she’s absolutely *awesome* 🙂

      Who knows what they can spin out, but regardless, she has your guidance – you know the signs.

      I’m quite happy for you to share it, thank you 🙂 It’s going into the Tipsy Lit link-up thing on Friday, so it’s not a ‘quiet’ piece.


      • Yes, she knows. All she could say was, ‘Wow, you must have really wanted me.’ 🙂 Anytime you want to chat is fine with me. It was a while ago, obviously, but I remember it all well enough. I know there are only minor things but I still can’t help but wonder if it’s because she wasn’t conceived the old fashioned way. It doesn’t matter to me, it’s just mom guilt. Which is pretty powerful not to mention irrational!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Bless her dear, dear heart. She’s such a lovely girl.

          And thank you…I’ll perhaps ask more if/when we look close to being faced with a decision like this. At the moment, all is moot.

          I guess every mom gets mom-guilt. Part and parcel of being one, I’d assume.


  4. I love this piece. For fiction it is quite real. Regardless of how the journey to motherhood or even potential motherhood begins, it’s the worry, fear and hesitation that encompasses every step. You captured this well!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes…it was fairly easy to place myself into the role…I’ve thunk the thoughts, just the situation was different, and it’s easy to write a framework for thoughts like these 🙂 But yes – I suppose if one becomes a parent mindfully, these thoughts will likely occur.

      Thanks 🙂


  5. Frankly, dear, these are questions even those who get pregnant naturally ask themselves. It’s natural to worry about the children we don’t have yet, especially when they are wanted and loved so greatly. Even now, 14 years into my parental journey, I still worry about whether or not I’m doing well and how my boys will turn out. I’m doing the best I can and I do my best to make sure they know I love them.

    For what it’s worth, I think that if/when the time comes, you’ll be a fabulous mother.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks. I hope that I would be reasonably okay…I still want kids but I worry…what if we force the issue, against nature kinda, and something goes wrong?

      Yes to still learning though – I guess at every stage of development the children are different and need parenting in different ways.

      thanks, you. That helps a little 🙂


      • Well, I’m pretty sure I’ve told you before that Baby C’s mother and I went through fertility treatments for almost two years before she finally became pregnant. Baby C is as healthy as he can be. The things you worry about happen to parents who conceive naturally, too. Whatever happens will happen. No matter what happens, though, I know you’ll love any child you bear unconditionally, and that’s what matters most.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh I love this! All such worthy questions. I think most pregnant women have many of these same questions regardless of how the magic happens, but I can see how “forcing” it would add a whole new dimension of fear. Wow. Very well done!

    Liked by 1 person

      • Truth…I’m not sure how much fiction is in the part about your own childhood, but mine was pretty wacky also (I’m being generous haha). It gives me solace to know the people we come from aren’t the people we become. We can choose. You’re fabulous, and you’ll be a fabulous mother : ).

        Liked by 2 people

  7. Really good story. I particularly like the double entendre I have about the prick in the butt. I have been seeing a therapist to address some of these kinds of worries and get my ‘chimp’ brain back on the sensible ‘capable me’ bus. I guess it’s like anything we want to avoid; we end us seeing it everywhere and out unconscious mind thinks that it will keep us safe by highlighting all the potential problems as worries all of the time. But I’m realizing that my sensible, rational, conscious mind wants me to be safe and happy, too, and if I can just learn to trust myself, then I can do my best to cope with anything. With that confidence in place, I have no further need for the worries. That’s the theory, anyway 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s a good theory to hang onto…I know I have a tendency to cripple myself with over-thinking at times. Or often.

      And thanks – writing the double entendre made me smile…I was pleased with it.

      I don’t know if this is something I want to avoid though, or more of a ‘last chance saloon’ thing (well, if/when we get to it).


  8. DAMMIT! You always do this to me! You pull me in with your brilliant words and I am gripped with such an intense heart pounding attention to what I think is YOUR experience… and then I finally hit the SIGN. Oh you… you’re so good at this stuff.

    Now, excuse me while I go exhale…

    Liked by 2 people

    • To be fair, this one’s pretty close to the bone. It might be what we face at some point…I just took the collective experiences of friends and let my mind wander a bit…

      But thanks 🙂


  9. Children=worry for life. It starts even before pregnancy (as your story aptly illustrates) and continues until…I don’t know…probably death? What I’ve found in my own experience is that when shit happens, parents manage to deal with it. And the very fact that your protagonist is worried if she is going to repeat an abusive cycle means that she probably won’t. It is possible to break the cycle — but being aware of the cycle is the first step! Beautiful story!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You say that, but I’ve seen it repeated in spite of the knowledge that it’s being done, and seen the effects of the self-hatred which accompanies it…I *hope* I’d manage to be more careful but really, who knows? I’ve written more on this elsewhere on The Epistolarians in a piece called ‘Sins of the Father’. So I’m not convinced.

      I think you’re right about parents digging deep and coping when the shit hits the fan, but I wonder if there’s additional responsibility or guilt (especially if something’s wrong with the child) when there’s been a medically assisted pregnancy…


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