After fourteen years of marriage it’s just something that isn’t considered anymore. Why would I change my method of birth control? That little blue pill has served me well over the years. But that is just the question I had to face at my annual pap smear/pelvic exam.
Method of birth control…while carefully studied and evaluated in my teens, it has not been thought about in any mindful way since. I remember the excitement of learning about (and experimenting with of course) different methods: natural, rhythm, barrier, UTIs, etc. before settling on the little blue pill. I explained to the doctor my reasons for reevaluating my birth control method…yes, my husband has left me and sadly that means I am not having sex and oh, while you’re at it go ahead and test me for every STD you can think of because my trust has been eroded and my husband has gone off his head, it may be syphilis for all I know. The doctor then launched into her defense of the little blue pill, as I was sobbing naked (naked, not just from the waist down because I had worn a dress that day, but full body naked under a backless paper smock) on the examining table about my situation, and how there were still benefits to taking it even though it wasn’t necessary at the moment, i.e. regular periods, lower risk of ovarian cancer, etc.
I decided to continue filling my prescription for birth control because as my friend stated, “you don’t really need any hormonal changes at the moment, you’ve got enough to deal with.” But I also got fitted for a diaphragm while there, because it’s so intriguing. Okay, so I’ve really always just wanted the mysterious pink case it comes in (it’s a bit of a palaver to use actually). And as the doctor says, if you’re going to be in new relationships, there’s nothing like the condom. Which sent me into another spell of naked crying. New relationships? Condoms?
After a trip to the pharmacy to fill my not one, but two birth control prescriptions, which is just a bit of silliness on my part as I’ve no need to control anything being that I’m celibate, I found that a funny thing happened. My husband moved out (not funny) and this 10pm pill time ritual that I have participated in religiously for the last seventeen years, disappeared. I never forgot to take my pill in all this time and all of a sudden, I started to do just that. When I began to realize what was happening and that there were going to be no consequences, I decided to go with it. Why not? I never wanted to take the pill forever. In fact, I never really wanted to take it at all, it’s just that my fertile body and my panic attacks at being pregnant didn’t really mesh in my early years. Once on the pill, I thought age 35 would be a good time to stop and contemplate having children. Well, half of that is there at least. And so, with a little reluctance and some sadness, I said goodbye to that incredible little blue pill…and hello to a not dissimilar color of new bedsheets. I can’t keep sleeping on the monogrammed ones from the marriage afterall.