The last three weeks in the "fertile" real world have hit me pretty hard. When you are struggling through something as painful and private as infertility it feels like there are triggers everywhere. For me the worse part is the guilt that comes with the feelings I can't control. My best friend's little boy turned one last week. I feel as if I couldn't love this kid more if he were my own. His first year of life has been full of challenges for him to overcome and the road ahead of him is a long one. However this brave little boy is sweet, happy, rambunctious, and curious. He continues to amaze us everyday with his strength and courage. But being as involved as I am has a price and sometimes it's my heart. His birthday party this weekend was not only a celebration of his first year of life but of all of the struggles he has overcome. And while my heart is filled with so much joy to see him growing, smiling, playing and laughing, it also breaks a little every time I see him give my husband a kiss or my mother-in-law pick him up. Selfishly it's a reminder of what I can't give them - a baby of their own. And while this specific situation is close to my heart it feels like I'm surrounded by a million others.
To me this part of the infertility struggle is the most private. Regardless of if your family and friends know you are fighting this battle, the difficulties that face us every day often go unnoticed. It's the lady at the grocery store with the toddler. The co-worker in your office who just announced her pregnancy. The girl (emphasis on GIRL) in my neighborhood with her big pregnant belly The painful reminders are everywhere and there's no escaping them. So while your family may know that you are sticking yourself with needles everyday and pumping yourself full of hormones they most likely have no idea the internal pain that you have to deal with daily.
My husband and I sit side by side on the couch and the silence in the room when a pregnant woman or a baby comes on the TV is deafening. The birth announcement that came in the mail is like the elephant in the room. And each of these is a reminder of how very far we are from having a family of our own. The jealousy sometimes feels like it will overtake me. And then I find myself questioning God's plan. Wondering (again) why this is happening to us and when will it ever end.
We've all been there when the feelings of happiness for a friend or family member and our own internal feelings of sadness, bitterness, and jealousy feel like they may tear us in half. Most days I'm proud of how I handle the pain. How I'm able to push my own feelings aside and focus on someone else's joy and blessings. But it seems lately there's been more dark days than light. But Spring is coming and with it comes the sunshine. I'm hoping and praying a little bit of that shines on our life and can bring back the light.