Having infertility has been a very painful struggle. The pain is similar to the grief over losing a loved one, but it is unique because it is a recurring grief - I've always wanted children -I've always wanted to be a mother. I've felt that I'm being punished for my own deficient DNA. Maybe my genes are broken and I can't reproduce because nothing good would result – or that god doesn't intend for me to be a mother.
So, I constantly grieve the loss of the baby I may never know. I grieve the loss of that baby who would have had my nose and Steven's eyes. Each month I see a change in my body and hope that maybe that baby will be conceived after all. No matter how hard I try to prepare myself for bad news, I still hope from one month to the next. Bad news comes again, and the grief washes over me anew -month after month, year after year. It's a wound that opens right up just as it starts to heal. This is where I live. This is the void I struggle with. I have feelings of failure - I must not be a real woman? I'm broken. No matter how much this is untrue it devours my spirit. I've been battling reproductive system problems most of my life. This has made me resentful, depressed and angry. I'm still working on acceptance.
Another empty space in my heart is the awkward relationship with my husbands family. We don't hug or feel comfort in each others arms. We don't trust one another emotionally. Rarely now do I feel comfortable to speak my mind around his family or ask for advise. Mostly, I'm passive to react to situations that involve confrontation. Some of the dumb shit that is said to me just stops me in my tracts which I stew about later. I don't know what to say half the time. Misinterpretation is everywhere. It's a blockage - in our relationships that no plumber can fix. I know where I stand in this family, it's no surprise. As I watch my father-in-law with cancer, my heart flutters each time I see him. My brain has flashes to a future of what Steven may look like in his last days. I'll never be ready to see my partner face death.
In reflection, "Accept the things you cannot change and change the things you can."
Developing thicker skin would save loads of time. But mostly, I can't focus on negative perceptions. Much of my baggage is my mommy and daddy shit. Neither of mine tried hard enough to be the best - and they both failed to keep me. Having lost both my biological parents to circumstance has definitely had an effect on my ability to form attachments with specific people. As easily as I can be generous, my ability to become self-serving is sometimes not far behind. This is not a top quality of my persona - which needs some work.
What I need to do is embrace my confidence. I do have love in my heart and a willingness to love any child that becomes ours. It's taken years but, Steven has become much more animated now, especially around other people - he even sang songs with the girls we had for respite care. I love him completely when he takes part like this. Our relationship is more giving and fulfilling when more is going on around us. I say this because we work, play and live together -without much time apart. I'm not saying life with children will be easier, it just feels richer somehow.
I must thank the people at resolve.org The National Infertility Association. Without them, I never would have wrote this entry. I never thought It was okay to feel the way I do, or that it was okay to express my feelings this way. Now that it's done, I've been liberated in some regard. The pain doesn't go away, but at least I can look back, knowing I've been honest about where I've been and hope to make some progress in the future.