Meryl Pataky spent the early part of last year bending neon tubes into droopy floral arrangements drizzled with tar. The art pieces were for a series and solo show called “Not Long for This World.” It was a reflection on Pataky’s longing for motherhood in a world that appeared to be fraying at its ozone edges.
Pataky has been trying to get pregnant for over a year now. She’s had two miscarriages in that time, the second one at the beginning of California’s pandemic lockdown in March. “My husband and I are back to drawing board, having very deep philosophical conversations about what it means to bring a child into this world,” she told me in July.
While many are delaying pregnancy because of COVID-19 and its economic fallout, Pataky, 37, is trying to conceive despite the risks, knowing she might not being able to if she waits. “Everyday we have different anxieties,” she says. “Surprisingly, I feel calm and steadfast about it.”