Friday, November 2, 2007

November: The cruellest month

T.S. Eliot wrote that "April is the cruellest month." Now, for me, February has always been my least favourite month -- cold & dreary, and right in the middle of that loooonnngggg stretch between Christmas & Easter with no long weekends to break up the monotony (although Ontario's new Family Day holiday may now help in that regard!).

But when I think of "the cruellest month," for me, it has to be November. November was always my second-least-favourite month -- cold and grey and dead -- redeemed somewhat by the Remembrance Day bank holiday and the promise of Christmas to look forward to -- although tempered by the mad year-end rush at my workplace (fiscal year end October 31st, year end results released late November/early December, followed by annual report, annual meeting in March, etc. -- all of which involve me.).

Back in 1998, I had something to look forward to in November. I was 37 years old, married 13 years and, after some 2.5 years of trying to conceive, finally pregnant! & due November 14th (later revised to November 20th, & then 25th). I fantasized about being able to watch the Toronto Santa Claus Parade from the window of my hospital room with my baby in my arms. But when November finally came around, there was no baby. Our daughter, Katie, was stillborn in August when I was 26 weeks along. I went back to work in October (even though I could have stayed off until December -- long story) and so, instead of enjoying the first few days of motherhood & maternity leave (thus escaping the year-end hell at the office), I found myself back at my desk, trying to focus on my work instead of what had just happened to me, & resenting every minute of it.

Now, nine years later, I still feel twinges of sadness instead of joy when the Santa Claus Parade is on TV -- and as I run around at work & try to squeeze in some Christmas planning, I keep thinking that I should be planning a little girl's birthday party too. Life is unfair. :( And November is a month that I am glad to see go by quickly.

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