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18th November 2008

the mill stone of the milestone

A livejournal friend of mine had a baby a week ago. We’ve been friends for over 2 years now, and I’ve witnessed her many struggles to have another baby after 10 years of infertility. I think she had given up on a miracle, but with a referral to a new doctor and a new drug, less than nine months later, baby Caroline is now occupying laundry baskets.

I turn 30 in 4 days. Three decades of life and experience. I feel old and painfully young at the same time.

A friend asked me the other week if I still thought that I might get married, that I might still fall in love and I had to admit that I had been holding on to that fragment of hope. With all of my crying and despairing of boy after boy breaking me by not reciprocating, deep down, I figured there was a miracle out there, some guy who would look beyond my many flaws. Turning thirty makes one confront the reality of those foolish hopes directly–thirty years and I’ve never been on a third date, much less waltzed off into the moonlight. Regardless of what the storybooks say or the disney movies portray, I’m unlikely to get that happy ending.

Turning thirty means facing the realization that this might be it. Walking into an empty house every day with only me as company. Working at a hospital every day. Never getting to snuggle up after a hard day. No hand to hold. No first kiss. No redheaded kids. Just me.

In some ways, I’m so happy with my life. For the most part, I love being a doctor (I don’t always like the training aspect of it, nor the billing and documentation, nor the drug-seeking behavior of a few patients). I love my house. I have an incredible amount of freedom. I have the bestest friends in the entire world.

But in so many other ways, I feel like I’m in limbo, single and waiting for my real life to start. Every day, I’m still treated much like a child. I’m not allowed to make decisions without consulting my attending. I get emails that threaten extra work time if I don’t complete evaluations or dictations or something, a punishment akin to sitting in the corner during free time. At church, we’re all adults, yet we still have chaperons and monthly dances and group activities every Saturday night. Limbo. Too old to be considered as a potential date, but too young to be granted full rites of adulthood.

I am exploring options of enriching the forever single life of mine. Reexamining travel and service options, such as going back to Kenya for a rotation (I had pushed that thought out of my head). Finding a cooking class or dance class or fencing class (idea from my attending) to participate in. I’m not sure if it’s going to be enough to combat the loneliness.

Why did I mention my friend above? Because, even with facing the inevitable, I’m not sure I’m ever going to be able to completely snuff out the hope for a miracle and for my own everafter ending. And that, I think must be the most ridiculous thing written on this blog ever.

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