Needles and Airplanes

Stef and I spent Sunday at my Mom and Dad’s house, spending a great deal of time speaking with them, and with Grandma, about babies—hypothetical babies, of course. At a later point in the afternoon, John called as well, and he had some things to say about the same matter. The reason I bring this up is because I’ve discovered a peculiar preoccupation, on the part of my father and my brother, with the progesterone injections I continue to give Stephanie each night.

The first question they inevitably have regarding the process which we now find ourselves in the thick of, is “For how much longer do you have to give her the shots?” And when we explain that it could be as long as six more weeks, there is a bewildered reaction on both their parts. Dad grimaces and John, were I able to see his face, would probably be grimacing too, based solely on the tone of his voice.

The men in my family, me included, have always been terrified of needles, and it’s only been through this ordeal that I’ve finally found the strength to overcome that fear. Giving the injection is second nature to me now, even though I still freak out a bit when I hit a blood vessel or when a bit of the medication leaks out. I could never have imagined, coming into this, that I’d ever be this comfortable with a needle in my hand. But the grimace that Dad and John have, the one I used to have, isn’t something I have time for anymore. I don’t have time to be nervous or upset about giving injections. I just have to give them.

Aside from baby talk and lunch straight off the grill, we sat around the boob tube for a couple of hours and watched The Aviator, looking out for John, who had been an extra in the film. The film felt rather uneven to me, and a bit all over the place, so looking for my brother in the crowd shots proved a welcome respite from racking my brain, trying to figure out what the picture was about, what it was trying to say.

Cate Blanchett was tremendous as Hepburn, though. And DiCaprio’s performance was spot on. It was just the execution of the thing that bothered me. Scorsese has done much better.