Panorama of San Bernardino

Monday, November 21, 2016

Thank You God It's Me Juanita

Thankfulness can be a stretch for me. Every year at Thanksgiving dinner, my little sister Annette, who is not so little anymore at 42, says, "Everyone say what they're thankful for."

We go around the dining table and it always sounds so cliche. Everyone says the same things: thank you for family, for friends, for the food (that's my mom's favorite), for their spouse, for economic prosperity, and on and on. It is one cliche after another. Said with the most earnest of faces. We all clap. And it is heartwarming but as a writer, and as my usual sarcastic self, I yearn for the bitter irony.

Then I thought, how about this year I be thankful for something that feels like a curse? I should be thankful for my infertility. And for not bringing a child into the world who will have to live under the darkest of Lords, akin to Sauron and Voldermort, and the Dark King.

He who shall not be named. Please don't make me say his name.

Before the election, I wept over my childless life. For the last nine or so years, I cried and prayed asking why or why over my lack of little ones. After failed IVF and a miscarriage and years of trying, it is something I have had to reconcile.

My lack of kids has vexed me. Irritated me. Saddened me. It has left a pit of despair in my heart because I am a maternal person. Just ask my two Shih-Tzus Frodo (hence the Sauron reference) and Chewbaca. They are my furry princes complete with red Christmas capes. I am their Queen mother. Up until now, my fur kids have not been enough to fill the void in my heart.

Then the unthinkable happened. And now, I thank God for my unproductive, barren, infertile, dry and empty womb.

Because my child will never have to know what it is like to deal with what is to come. I will not have to explain the hate, the lies, the corruption, the civil rights destroyed and laid asunder. I will not have to tell dark and true bedtime stories of utter terror. I will not have to be afraid that my child will know nuclear war.

This Thanksgiving, we are forgoing family time and going to the den of depravity, Las Vegas. It feels fitting. It suits my mood. And on that day of thanks, I will sit at a slot machine and raise my beer to toast my bunless oven in these worst of times.

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