Wednesday, July 7, 2010


There is such a thing as muscle memory. For example: When I was a small child, car seats were not required, and we rode in the front seat with mom. When my mom was driving and hit the brake, she would automatically reach over to the hold me into my seat with her hand on my chest. Even into adulthood, she did this to me. It was something she didn’t think about and just did. Another example is that my uncle has not smoked in 20 years. A week or so ago he said he pulled out a lighter to light his welder, and found himself with his hands cupped and lighter lit, as if he was lighting a cigarette. It took him by surprise that his body did that after so many years.

Similarly, our minds can do the same thing. My mom’s dog Haley passed away several years ago. We all loved that dog with every cell in our bodies. About six months ago, I walked into my mom’s house, and caught myself thinking, “Where is Haley?” and I walked to the room she usually slept in. I hadn’t done that in years. It left me missing her suddenly in a deep way.

This weekend, I was looking at families and young kids. I caught myself thinking, “I look forward to having a son, watching him grow, and seeing the characteristics of mine that he has inherited.” That’s when I realized, “What am I thinking? I will not bare any children that will have any of my characteristics. My genetic code stops here.”

I know that I can leave a legacy without kids. But I can’t help but think about a family tree, and how my branch ends with me. It is dead. Had I been careless years ago, I could have children and my branch would live on. Yet I chose the responsible path.

I know this depression will pass, and it will likely return again. I have been told by another lady in my position that it gets easier. These thoughts will become less defining. My fate will become more accepted. My expectations and hopes will change. But for now, I’m only 6 months from my hysterectomy, and I’m still battling my own mind.