I’ve been thinking quite a bit lately about why exactly I am on this particular journey.
I keep going back to my, ahem, formative years; did I take birth control for too long? Did that cervical cancer scare and subsequent LEEP procedure somehow hinder my future efforts?
Did I just plain wait too long?
Was I too prideful at the beginning? Did I put off more aggressive treatments and waste time and resources that can’t ever be renewed?
Is it my diet? Am I eating too many processed foods? I microwave plastic sometimes; can that be the problem? Maybe I grew up under some electrical lines! Oh sweet Jesus–could my love of bacon be causing this???
Some of this reasoning is maybe more plausible than other options, and yet, these are the concerns that plague me daily.
Another school of thought is that it’s all just random selection. This happens to millions of women, and I am just one of them.
Okay, sure. Maybe I am. There still needs to be a reason for it, so you’re not getting off that easily.
And then there’s the spiritual argument: I was selected for this because God knew I could handle it.
Maybe so, but at the risk of blasphemy, sometimes I feel like he is overestimating a bit in his assessment of my strength.
I have so many questions that cannot seem to be answered, and so many dreams that seem so beyond my grasp. Some days it’s tough to muster up the courage to face the world with all of its pregnancy announcements and Teen Mom reruns.
Some days I don’t know how I manage.
Here’s what I do know:
- I have a fabulous marriage. I may have married later than some of my friends, but I married well. I knew I was joining my life forever with that of my best friend, and I knew that his family was going to be my family in every way but blood. I knew that we would be able to withstand anything thrown our way; I just didn’t anticipate that hardship in the reproductive capacity would be something I ever had to consider.
- I am strong. I may have moments of weakness, but I feel that I can survive anything. Sometimes strength comes from not having any other choice but to keep standing.
- I have faith. I get discouraged like anyone, but I have a sense that this is only temporary. Somehow, someday, I will be a mother.
- I am realistic. I know that this is only going to get harder the older I get, and I am fully aware that I may never give birth to a child of my own.
- I am flexible. I can see that getting pregnant with, carrying, and giving birth to your own flesh and blood child is easy for some women. For others, that will never happen. I am open to alternative situations like egg donors, surrogacy, and embryo adoption.
- I have support. I am lucky in that I have a supportive family, and while I still occasionally have that one aunt who tells me “You really need to stand on your head after sex! That’s how I got pregnant!”, I know that they love me and will do whatever they can to help me along on this journey.
- I have an outlet. This blog–my readers, my friends, my family–this is what keeps me going. I know that I am not alone because of the online community of others going through this exact thing. The Infertility Veterans inspire me to keep my head up, and those still in the trenches inspire me to keep my nose to the grindstone.
- I have the will to keep going. For all of those reasons above, I will not give up on this dream.
While this might be a dream that is currently out of reach for me, that doesn’t mean that it will be forever. If I keep moving forward, keep exploring every avenue to motherhood open to me, I will eventually find myself within grasp of that which I so desperately desire.