It is a strange and rather twisted thought. The moment I realized that for over 30 years, I was attached to the Foreign Service, and had never felt like myself. The realization that the one thing I was addicted to, was actually hurting me.
I never slept, I had odd reactions to simple tasks, and felt more comfortable in an airport lounge, than my own apartment. I kept lots of secrets from my new husband, and felt like I had more in common with those I went to work with everyday.
One morning I woke up with intense pain, I crawled to the washroom, not only threw up, but was bleeding severely. I whimpered, it was the most intense pain I have ever had. It was new exactly, I had suffered from severe menstrual cramps since I was “blessed” with my period, and my cycle was always wonky.
I knew something was really wrong. I cried out to my husband, he ran towards me, and calmly told me we needed to go to the hospital. I replied, it’s o.k. just call my doctor. My Doctor was the only constant I had over the many years we had moved, I always came back to the exact same GP. I knew he would get me to come in at 7am for an emergency appointment. I could barely move to get some clothes on.
I got into our car, I looked at this amazing man beside me, and realized. I didn’t want to chose a strange life of secrecy and no friends outside the department over him. My Father died early because of his career, and I didn’t want the same.
Throughout the few days I stayed home and went to medical appointments, my husband stayed by my side, and no one from work checked in, not even my so-called friends. When we got the grave news that it may be incredibly difficult to conceive, it was a secret that we as a couple shared, I never told anyone.
It was from those days I realized, that no matter how much I loved working in the Foreign Service, it would never make me feel like me, I would always be playing a part.
That decision was the most difficult and the easiest to make.