Two months until forty, more than two years worth of negative pregnancy tests. Her entire life seemed to have passed in a blur until she started trying for a baby. Each month was agonizingly long, each phone call was intrusive, and each menstruation was an utter disappointment.
As much as Etienne wanted this phantom baby, her desire was slipping. It was costing too much of her life and every thought. She felt drained, and for the first time in ages, she felt she’d let everyone down.
Dr. Morgan had said that years on birth control could be the culprit, then she’d said that the passing of her Dad may have wrecked havoc on her body. They’d both had the physicals, and there was nothing wrong with ether. Basically, Dr. Morgan was stumped, and assured them that if they kept trying, eventually it would happen.
But how long was she expected to try? How long before menopause occurred? She knew when Mandy went through her change, but she didn’t know when her biological Mom had gone through it.
Everyone had heard the stories of the couples who stopped trying and got pregnant. It was a nice theory, but she felt irrationally angry at a baby that would play tricks like that. Logically she knew that didn’t make sense, but she wasn’t used to this waiting game. She was Violet-Adele, she went after the things she wanted, and she always got what she wanted.
Etienne had arranged the appointment first thing in the morning. Dr. Morgan sat heavily into her chair, and Violet-Adele knew this wasn’t going to be pleasant.
She started with the good news, it didn’t seem menopause was occurring, yet. They both were in great shape too. However, she hedged that it might be time to start thinking of other options.
She started with the suggestion of IVF, and it sounded good. It would biologically be their child, just receiving a helping hand from Dr. Morgan. Etienne seemed uncertain, he’d already said that he’d like to do everything naturally.
Morgan went over the risks vs the costs. Miscarriage was very likely, which was why they always suggested to start with multiple embryos.
Violet-Adele was suddenly feeling queasy. No, she did not want twins.
While Etienne seemed to suddenly be interested! He rather seemed fond of the idea of twins.
Dr. Morgan informed her that multiples were a risk with any type of fertility intervention, and that ultimately it was up to her and Etienne on their comfort zone. Violet-Adele could tell though that it was up to her, because Etienne appeared thrilled with the notion.
“A complete family in one shot, that makes sense. One pregnancy, one maternity leave.”
It wasn’t that he didn’t make sense, but more that she was not interested in more than one child.
“What are our other options?”
She wasn’t even a mother and she felt guilty for not wanting these pretend children.
“Adoption and surrogate are both viable options. You still run the risk for multiples with a surrogacy however. Adoption would really give you the best option if you know exactly what you want.”
“I should be okay with adoption, being adopted myself. You know, give an unloved child a home.” She paused, before forcing herself to continue, “But I want my own child. I want someone that is a piece of me.”
Etienne reached out to grab her hand, and thanked Morgan for her time. They were going to need time to decide their next step.
They drove home to grab Gustave then headed to work. Since moving to their new house, he was suffering from separation anxiety and really wrecking havoc on their belongings. It helped that Violet-Adele was her own boss, and that Gustave behaved perfectly at work.
He curled into a ball as Etienne pulled her into a hug.
“It’s going to be fine,” he offered. They both felt lost in their own heads that adequate words failed them.
She knew that they could keep trying and it still might happen naturally. There was a risk for multiples with her advanced maternal age on its own, though it seemed less likely to her than IVF.
She called Gustave over and pet his scruffy head. There was a stereotype about women and their pet being their child, and while she didn’t want to become that person, she really enjoyed having her small dog as a companion.
He’d been with her since she moved to Paris, and he didn’t likely have that many years left. Would it be terrible to just focus on him, Etienne, and their careers?
Later in the morning, Etienne came by to check on her progress with the blueprints. They had a meeting after lunch with Mayor Kenzie Goss, and it wasn’t going to go well. They were extremely behind on the Recreation Project, and on top of it, they’d lost the land in a city-wide vote. Locals did not want the new center to be in their neighborhood, as such their rezoning was denied.
They didn’t even have a new lot to offer the Mayor. Despite this, Vi was feeling good about her current ideas. This was her favorite part of being an architect, and it helped take her mind off her ovaries.
Her nephews, Monroe and Roman both insisted that she needed a space with instruments and definitely a basketball court. Their enthusiasm was contagious.
Unfortunately, Kenzie wasn’t in a humored mood over the endless delays. She jumped straight into a raised voice before Etienne had even entered the room.
She tried to calm her down; she really didn’t want this project to go on forever, but Kenzie was used to being pushed around in social work that she took several moments to calm herself.
“I’m used to fighting tooth and nail to get anything done for the children, I apologize for raising my voice.” Kenzie offered after she’d calmed.
While admitting that they didn’t have any land to propose, she did begin sharing some of her ideas, and Kenzie was thrilled with that progress.
They were able to share ideas and brainstorm together. Kenzie insisted they had to add a special space for younger kids, they needed a safe place to stay out of trouble, especially in the winter when it’d be too cold for parks.
The meeting ended on a positive note and all parties were feeling more excited about the project.
After the meeting, the sullen feeling rekindled for Violet-Adele. She seemed capable of solving and diffusing any situation, except for this baby-making business.
For the remainder of the day and evening, she was quiet and withdrawn into herself. Etienne noticed, but needed time to come to terms himself. He absolutely didn’t want her to feel forced into anything, and he sought the words that would bring comfort.
The next morning, he awoke to make strawberry pancakes, a dish that neither of them generally ate.
She seemed impressed with the surprise, but his head was busy stumbling over words to take much notice.
“I think we should stop trying.”
Her smile instantly disappeared.
“I got the impression that you don’t want twins.”
“But you always wanted kids,” she interrupted, feeling rather selfish that she’d be so disagreeable over something that involved both of them.
“Sure, I want kids or the notion of kids,” he paused, struggling for the adequate words, “But all I really want is you, it’s all I ever wanted since you stumbled in to Dubois Design. Just a lost American with a terrible french accent.”
She didn’t exactly enjoy remembering the person she had been back then, terribly lost was a correct description which wounded her current pride. However, she had very many good memories with Etienne in the beginning, that it wasn’t a terribly unwelcome memory.
“We can be a couple for life, keep up our antics and never get tired of one another. Travel whenever we please, and become crotchety old coots that have way too much money.”
“You are enough, this life, with you, that is enough.”
Just like that, after two years of trying, over a plate of strawberry pancakes, they decided that they were enough.
He scooted toward her, and pulled her into his arms.
They were joining all the other couples in the world that had decided to stop trying, but not do anything to prevent it from happening.
For the first time in years, it felt like she could breath and relax.
They continued their morning jogs, and for the first time, Etienne was beginning to pass her in their race. She focused on her training, breathing, and threw herself entirely into the sport of a healthy competition.
Etienne was going down; he would not keep the lead for long! And whatever happened after this point was fine, they could handle it together.
Notes: I’m on a new terrain this time, so the lot I had intended to use, doesn’t exactly exist anymore. I’ll find a new space, but this project is on the backburner until the rebuild is complete. Kenzie is in a rough career, that she has to be pretty tough to get things done as a social worker, so I took her as being a bit strong-handed at the start.
With the rebuild, Violet-Adele has no want for a baby, it might come back, but I’m taking it as a sign that she is having second thoughts. She doesn’t actually have that low of a percentage, especially considering her age. She just keeps rolling high, usually over 80. Basically, with her rolls, she wouldn’t get pregnant at 21.
They won’t prevent a pregnancy, but they aren’t going to have it consume their lives anymore. I could totally see them as the rich socialites that travel. Which is a topic that Etienne actually brought up at breakfast.
Thanks for reading!