When it Storms we will Dance in the Rain
THANK YOU INFERTILITY…….
In honor of national infertility awareness week I just wanted to say how thankful I am for our journey.
There are all different layers, and stories to infertility and recurrent pregnancy loss. Some have it worse than others, some journeys take longer, and some are short lived. Some struggle with secondary infertility, experience a late loss or lose their babies early. But they are allreal and equally as heartbreaking to the couples and women that are experiencing it in their real lives. And while infertility is heartbreaking, despite my journey and the sadness I felt going through it, I did always remind myself that things could be soooo much worse. After losing my dad to a 2year battle withcancer at 20yrs old….I learned early how precious life is, so even on my darkest days I always told myself, how lucky I was to have the blessings I did have in my life.
Rewind several years ago to when I felt broken, left out; confused, helpless, frustrated, jealous and just downright sad…I would not have wished this upon my worst enemy. The early years of “trying on your own” I try to block out of my mind….talk about challenging!!!! Getting negative pregnancy tests after every procedure that went perfectly was so mindboggling (Especially being a labor and delivery nurse where it seemed the whole world was birthing babies at the drop of a hat!) Then getting the few positive tests, and taking at least 15 more, every day, sometimes twice a day(no joke) just to make sure the line was getting darker…..only to have it all end. As if it was all just a dream. It was soul crushing. The endless doctor appointments, tests, blood work, and consults wereexhausting and left me feeling like I was on autopilot. I felt as if I would jump through fire to have a family of my own. I just kept pushing forward like a robot despite every disappointment, road block, or outcome. And the financial aspect is just flat out ridiculous and unfair, as our insurance covered nothing! I often said we were using all of our money for the future to have a future, and that our possible child’s college fund was spent conceiving them. It is EXPENSIVE and that added burden added so much more stress to the battle! You literally throw thousands of dollars down the toilet with every unsuccessful attempt.
Not everyone wants to have a family, but when you dowant one, and no matter what you do or how hard you try, you still can’t …..It sucks the life out of you! You find yourself looking around at the zoo, the grocery store, the mall, or on TV, and it feels as if EVERY.SINGLE.PERSON has one, two, three kids, and it feels as if you are living a cruel joke. It fills your heart with jealousy and envy and leaves you sick to your stomach at every single pregnancy announcement on social media. Every holiday suddenly became a reminder at what my life lacked, and what I was trying so hard to have. My husband and I started to get left out of social events, and conversations. We felt left out of the exclusive club, and we started to feel like the life we wanted was something we had to look at through a window. It seemed comical at how easily everybody else seemed to be able to have a baby. On accident, on birth control, unplanned, or planned perfectly, or first try, or even last try! Holding back tears with a forced smile, you had to congratulate yet another miracle. And it is a miracle. It is an absolute miracle. Working as a labor and delivery nurse you see not just the good. You see the very ugly and devastating side. I know several amazingly strong women that have lost their babies at an unimaginable time. It is a miracle to conceive a baby, and it is a miracle to deliver a healthy baby. It is not a guarantee and to have one is an absolute blessing.
Others in the throes of infertility battle have asked for my advice, or how to get through it emotionally. I know that while I was in a dark, dark place, my husband and tried to find every sad opportunity as an opportunity to dance in the rain (Which became one of our mantras.) We used these challenges grow as a couple, take a trip, plan a date, meet new people or learn something new. We listened to bob Marley’s Three little birds (“don’t worry about a thing, because every little thing is going to be all right”) on repeat constantly. We held onto other mantras such as hold onto hope to inspire us. We tried to turn our disappointments into purpose by planting flowers for our losses, or sharing on social media to help others. We took pictures and documented our entire journey to be able to look back at how far we came. Celebrating the simple joys in kept us remembering how lucky we already were.
And even when that voice inside started to creep in telling me I may never have children, had me questioning I was meant to be a mom, or had me reevaluating my entire life…. I still held onto hope that it would happen to us. But I did always askmyself, why. Why is this taking so long? Why me? Why us?Why do I keep miscarrying? They told us nothing was medially wrong with my husband and I, but what was wrong with us then? It was all so hard to wrap my head around.
Well on November 9th, 2017…..I learned the answer to my questions. After 5plus years, countless procedures, hundreds of shots, dozens of negative tests, 4miscarriages, 10 IUI’s, and 2 rounds of IVF, I had my daughter Emma Hope….my miracle, and my rainbow after the storm. The answer to all my questions was that I was waiting for her, her and only her. Throughout my journey my mom always told me that someday things would all make sense. If I had not had all of my struggles, I would not have her. Yes, this concept is easy to see on the other side, but it really could not be truer. When you have the baby or family you are meant to have, the waiting and heartbreak suddenly all makesense. Emma was who was meant to be here, meant to be our first, meant to make me a mom, and meant to be in our family.She was why I had to wait so long to have a baby. And she is the reason I am thankful for infertility.
So thank you infertility, for teaching more patience, forcing me to dig deep and stay strong;, and for persevering despite the odds, heartbreaks, roadblocks, and delays. Thank you for giving me a purpose to fight for and to be able to choose hope every day.
Thank you infertility, for allowing me to strengthen my marriage and have 8 wonderful years as a couple to travel and just “be married”. Infertility allowed us to help others and towork with wonderful organizations to help raise awareness. And I am so thankful to be able see the amazing kindness and supportshown to my husband and I from family, friends, coworkers, and strangers.
Thank you infertility, for allowing me to appreciate every single second of my pregnancy. Although I was too scared to enjoy it, and felt like a frozen zombie, I loved every day even when feeling sick, or uncomfortable, or so scared I listened to her heartbeat every single day on a Doppler. Thank you for allowing me to truly understand that such a basic normal thing,such as having a family is actually one of the greatest miracles life has to offer. I feel lucky to have been given such a unique view of being a mom, because when you think you may never be one, every day feels like a dream come true. Thank you for allowing me to see a car seat in the car, or toys on the floor as the most beautiful site, and to appreciate even the most difficult days. Thank you infertility for not letting me take one second for granted, for holding her while she napped for an entire year, for rocking her to sleep every night, for going without sleep just to spend more time with her, for taking 10,000 pictures and 900 videos her first year. For writing special messages in every single book she has, and for celebrating every insignificant first milestone. For spending every penny I have on giving her the best life possible and for finally making years of pinterest boards come to life. Thank you infertility for letting me have the verybest view, after the hardest climb.
Infertility is just flat out sad. It feels like you are stuck in a dark hole, where you helplessly sit and just wait until hopefully it is your turn. But don’t give up. If you want a family, it will happen. Whether it is to have a baby of your own, via donor, surrogacy, or an adoption, it will happen and you will look back and be truly thankful for your journey. And it will all make sense. It is the most worth it thing, and in the meantime holdonto hope, and dance in the rain.