If I’m being completely honest with you this was not the post that I had planned for today. Originally I was going to share something happier, lighter, probably more fun; my Valentines Day decor. But instead I’m choosing to speak with you about something bigger, something harder, something that’s even a little bit scary to talk about; infertility. My reason being this – I was speaking to a friend recently about a trial I was facing and she stated that she was surprised to hear that I was having any troubles at all in my life because from my social media posts everything looked just peachy. In fact, to her, it looked like I had a pretty perfect life filled with nothing but joy and a lovely home. But that is simply not the case! I’m human and I face trials large and small each day; I just choose to hide most of them from everyone else.
However, I have one trial in particular that I do not wish to hide from everyone else even if its hard to talk about, and downright scary to post about because of my fear of how others will react or what they’ll come out with in response. My struggles with infertility. And, in the interest of complete disclosure I’ve had to deal with close to 15 pregnancy announcements/the births of children for people close to me in the last few months so at this point I feel pretty much like my heart is already fairly bruised.
I was diagnosed with a condition known as Primary Ovarian Insufficiency/Premature Ovarian Failure. There is no known cause and no cure. What it means, put simply, is that my body has attacked my ovaries leading to a loss of ovarian function. No ovarian function = no eggs = no pregnancy. It also means that I’ve had the super fun (insert sarcasm here) experience of going through menopause symptoms in my twenties. Hot flashes, night sweats, weight gain, mood swings; check, check, check, and check!
I cannot even begin to describe the absolute anguish I face on almost a daily basis, nor the amount of tears that have been shed, or the magnitude of my grief with this diagnosis. It’s not easy to grieve the loss of the future I’d envisioned for years, the family I’d always wanted since being a mere child myself, or the future I feel that I’ve deprived my husband/parents/sisters of. All of that in addition to the breaking down of my body at far too young an age.
But despite how difficult it is to discuss, it’s so vital to me to be public about my struggle and here’s why; 1 in 8 couples will deal with infertility. 1 in 8 people!! That is such a high number, but it’s not very often we talk openly about infertility. Shame, confusion, and grief tend to lead many people to hide their infertility diagnosis. I want that to change. We don’t do anyone any favors by not being open about what we are dealing with. We create a community shrouded in secrecy that leaves many feeling alone, like they’re the only ones who can’t get pregnant. That is simply not the case.
I feel like this is especially true in my religion where having a family is paramount to few other things and where being a mother is what is preached as being the ultimate role of women, your divinely appointed job, the one thing you’re supposed to do! Imagine the weight of carrying that teaching around with you when you want so badly to get pregnant but just can’t. It is almost suffocating.
So in light of all of that this is something that I wrote a while ago that I’d like to share for anyone else who may be sharing in my struggle:
Someday baby I’ll hold you in my arms; not just in my heart or in my mind.
Someday baby you’ll wear one of the many outfits stored in totes awating your arrival.
Someday baby you’ll play with the hand me down toys stored in your hopeful grandma’s attic.
Someday baby you’ll listen to the countless stories in books lovingly curated and stored over the years waiting for you to hear them.
Someday baby momma will take you to all of the places she’s dreamed of, made lists of, and saved travel brochures for.
Someday baby all those new baby crafts she spent hours making will be put to use.
Someday baby those countless pinterest boards filled with the products of hours of internet searches will finally be of use.
Someday baby you’ll meet the friends and family who’ve asked when you’d get here too many times to count.