Honestly, I don't even know how to start this post. It's another one of those days. I know, I know, I JUST posted a few really good posts, with good news, so where is this coming from? For those of you who haven't experienced infertility, or known me long enough to see me live it with your own eyes, you may not understand the cycle. But, let me tell you how it goes - you pull it together for awhile, maybe one day, maybe a month....and then, one day, you get about a billion triggers in one day, and it all falls apart - you fall apart.
At work today, I was in a meeting, and the subject came up of a work-sponsored family picnic. I made an off-handed joke because my stomach was churning with sadness, "Can we bring our lack of family, too?" Everyone anxiously laughed. Then, later, another work event, a charity walk, comes up and one of the other women says, "Can we bring our kids and the whole family to this?" She looked at me and laughed nervously and said, "Or dogs?" Haha. Again, I jokingly said I would bring my "lack of family" there, too. So many opportunities for the world to show me that I am lacking the one thing I have always wanted - a family, children and all. Yesterday at a work lunch, for some reason, women were sharing their labor and delivery stories (do I have a bullseye sign on me or something?). And those of us who haven't had the privilege of giving birth to our children (despite years of meds, shots, timed intercourse, procedures, surgeries, etc) watch sadly as women so casually talk about that experience, like it it something EVERYone gets to have, something we all can connect to. Well, that is obviously not the case. So, those experiences were difficult. And I would have been ok after those two things, if it had ended there. Surprisingly, I've gotten really good at letting those things roll off my back, so I can move on with my days...if I succumbed to EVERY trigger, I'd be in a padded room by now.
Then, tonight, it all came crashing down ("it" being my attempt at sanity). I don't want to go into the whole story, but the bottom line is I opted out of a casual get-together because a pregnant woman would be there. Actually, that extra pregnant woman would mean that two out of three of the women there (one being me) would be pregnant, because my best friend is pregnant, too. I have learned to handle her pregnancy because I love her and therefore had to find a way to continue loving her, while also accepting her pregnancy as a gift to all of us. But, the thought of the two of them there, both with multiple children AND pregnant, just overwhelmed me. I always think I'm getting better at this, and then that sinking feeling in my stomach comes, and my heart races, and I realize I'm still a slave to my infertility. I'm still grieving. And I guess it makes it worse that I SHOULD be the third pregnant woman there. I should be 17 weeks along as of yesterday, happily showing a baby bump and joining in their happy conversations about their children and their excited expectations for the new babies. I SHOULD be in a different place....but I'm not. Instead I think of my dead babies every day and have flashbacks of the moment the doctor told me our second baby was gone every night. And it hurts. And I just can't deny that it hurts. It hurts from the top of my head to the tip of my toes. It hurts down to the deepest part of my soul. And, honestly, it is a lonely hurting. Everyone else has moved on from this pregnancy. No one else sees me and thinks, "There she is, she should be 17 weeks along right now, happily anticipating her July 18 due date." But I do. I think about it every day...what could have been. What isn't.
I guess I have made some progress. I am not as angry as I used to be. I got tired of being so angry, of hating everyone around me who was pregnant or had kids so easily. The anger was literally eating me alive. So, I feel "free" from that at least. But, I'm still sad. And not like, "oh it's been a bad day and I'm kind of sad." More like, "my heart is breaking into a million pieces and it hurts so badly I'm not sure I can even breathe normally, let alone leave my house." That kind of sad. Where you feel like your chest will implode because your heart doesn't even have its structure anymore - it's just a bunch of broken pieces now. That's me, broken.
I guess I should end with a quote that brings me peace. It is what I am trying to do when things get hard - change my perspective, try to look to a better future. Hence, the title of my blog:). This is to all the ladies in "blog land" who are struggling day after day after day, yet are courageous enough to share their stories:
"Deep inside us, we have a spirit of energy and determination, a spirit that refuses to be broken - and we call this hope. Even when life's challenges overwhelm us our hope inspires us to new heights."