I went on to say, "She's a HUGE part of his life. She picks him up everyday from school and is pretty much my co-parent in raising him. I am a single parent..."
"Oh really? Is he an only child?" Nurse asked.
"No. I have a four month old daughter at home."
"Oh my gosh, I am SO SORRY!..." (Sort of an awkward pause here but I didn't really notice because I was focusing on my baby who had just come out of surgery and was NOT happy about the cast he had found on his wrist).
She went on to say, "I totally understand. I mean you are me. I mean like 10 years ago. My husband asked me for a divorce when I was pregnant with our second child. It must be so hard on you, I am so sorry you are going through this."
"Uuuuhhhhh...." I responded with great intellect.
She kept going, "But you will be so happy later that you ended up having both children. I mean my girls are the best of friends. And if things hadn't happened when they did then my daughter would have been an only child and well, they are best friends now. So even though it may seem horrible now, you will be glad later because you will have them both. Are they both boys?"
"Um no, I mentioned a minute ago, my baby at home is a girl. I have a son and a daughter..."
"Oh well it will still probably end up the same way. They will be great friends. And they have you for a mother and you are a great mother. I can tell. We nurses can tell these kinds of things. They are both lucky to have you; you are doing a great job."
It was such a weird exchange. I mean the timing was simply not appropriate for me to explain that if we were talking about 3 years ago then yes, I was in a similar position as her. I was married and my partner DID leave me when our baby was four months old. BUT for one thing the partner was a woman. And for another thing that was four years ago. And for my latest child I would identify as a single mother by choice. But that wasn't the case with my first child. In that instance I would have been considered that wounded divorcee, but this time? Not so much.
And like I said, I wasn't about to get into a discussion with this woman while I was there to make my boy feel better and get him out of his anesthesia safely and in the best way possible. So I just left it at that. But it was weird. And conversations like these seem to come up often. I haven't really figured out a way to handle them yet. I just take it on a case by case basis.
When I met my mother at my house after we were discharged she said, "That nurse was really concerned about you."
"Huh? What?" (Have I mentioned how tired I am?)
"When you went outside to pull the car around she asked me if you were okay. She asked if you were handling the divorce okay and if you were devastated etc."
"Yeah," I answered, "I wasn't sure how to handle that situation so I just left it alone and focused on The Boy."
"Oh, well I handled it for you," my mother went on. "I told her, 'First of all she's gay. And she was with a partner for over 7 years who left her when [Boy] was four months old. But then she didn't want him to be an only child so she decided to have her second daughter on her own. So this time she did it on her own and she is MUCH happier. So you don't need to worry.' It took her a minute to process it all but then she seemed to get it."
Leave it to my mother to just lay it all out there like that.
I'm not sure where I'm going with this post anymore and I have been awake since 5:15 this morning and am officially kinda loopy. I just thought the entire situation/conversation was weird. Nothing is ever just an easy answer or conversation with people when you are gay, and divorced from your partner, and then a single mother by choice.