Thursday, June 12, 2008

Seaweed Soup

It's worse to wait. I pressed the key and heard my dad in his everyday voice.

- Yes, Dad, it's me. Yeah, everything's fine. But, Dad...the baby died. Yes, the baby died, that's what I said. The baby is dead...

(How the hell would I know the word for miscarriage in Korean?)

- No, we don't know what happened. Yes, Jeff's right here. We're just leaving the hospital. No, no, I'm not going into work today. We're going home now. Yes, we'll be ok. I'm just going to rest. Ok...

- Hi, Mom, I don't know. I don't know what happened. I know it'll be ok. We're fine. Yes, Jeff's staying home with me today.

- The doctor said we can try again in about a month, after I have my period. It's very common. I know... There isn't much to do to recover. The doctor said I just need to rest. No, she didn't say anything about a special diet.

- No, no, you don't need to come out. I'm just going to lie in bed, that's all. No, no, don't cancel your trip. You've been waiting for so long. There isn't enough time for you to come out. We'll be fine. Really. We can cook for ourselves.

- Seaweed soup? Yes, I know it's good for you. You don't have to make it for me. It's ok. Ok, I'll have some. I'm sure they have it at Korean restaurants... No, I don't know how to make it. Oh, ok, seaweed... really, you pan fry the seaweed? Yes, I have sesame oil. Ok, I'll add some clams. No, we don't have any. Yes, Jeff can get some at the store.

- Yes, I promise, I'll have some. I have to eat it every day? For a week? Ok, ok, I promise.

That night, after I deleted my calendar entries tracking my pregnancy and after I threw all the baby books into a Macy's bag and pushed it into a closet in the other bedroom, I shoved seaweed soup into my mouth, sobbing and cursing at the seaweed, cursing at my body.


  1. Apologies - I left the comment above but wanted to revise.

    I just wanted to say how deeply sorry I am for your loss. I still work in biglaw (happily, for now at least) and have also suffered a pregnancy loss (late 2nd trimester). I commend you for your eloquent email following your dismissal, and wish you all the best in your future pursuits and attempts to build a family.

  2. This is yet another message of support. I think that you are an eloquent writer and have a real knack for bringing humor into downright awful situations -- your personality really shines through. I have no doubt that God will bless you and your husband with a large, loving family when the time is right. For now, thank the heavens that you are out of Biglaw, that you have discovered and exposed your gift of writing and that you have inspired so many with your ability to stand up for yourself. I commend you.

  3. I'm Korean too. Your rendition of your telephone conversation with your parents made me laugh because its just like my conversations with my parents. Not that the subject of your conversation is any laughing matter. It's a Korean thing.

  4. Oh my goodness this post made me cry! Thank you for such a beautifully written, window to the soul post.