Now that I am on the other side of infertility, I feel slightly uncomfortable writing about it. I think I dealt with survivor's guilt when I finally became pregnant. We conceived naturally after 3 years of doctor's appointments and being told IVF was our only option. We endured a miscarriage during that time period and finally have our spoiled rotten baby boy almost 2 years after that heartache. I have friends who are still struggling and I have others who had to go through so much worse than we ever did. So I suffered survivor's guilt. Why was it easier for us than others? One of my hardest moments was feeling past mistakes in my life made me deserve the trial of infertility. I'm here to tell you that is not right, none of that is the right way to think of infertility.
I know what it is like to have that bitterness in your heart to hear of yet another pregnancy announcement.
I know what it is like to see mothers treating their children badly at the grocery store and wanting to snatch their child and run for the hills.
I know what it is like to get your hopes up for a doctor's visit only to hear worst news than you prepared for.
I know what it is like to hear mothers complain about their kids and imagine screaming at them how lucky they truly are.
I know what it is like to cry the entire way home from a doctor's office 3 hours away.
I know what it is like to talk to your spouse about other "options" one of those including divorce.
I know what it is like to avoid certain events where lots of children will be around.
I know what it is like to have friends with the nicest of intentions say, "just adopt" and "we have a friend who got pregnant with twins!".
I know what it is like to cry painful tears when that medical bill arrives for a treatment that resulted in nothing.
I know what it is like to argue for hours on the phone with your insurance company only to find out a bill wasn't covered because of infertility.
I know what infertility is like and now I know what being a mom after infertility feels like.
I know what it feels like to feel guilty for having a baby when close friends still haven't conceived.
I know what it feels like to be pregnant and still bitter than it took THAT long.
I know what it feels like to worry till the day your baby is born that something could go badly wrong in pregnancy and labor.
I know what it feels like to see the Lord's hand in all of it, to be grateful for faith and for the love and support of family and friends.
I know the anxiety, the depression, the shame, the embarrassment, the mix of emotions. I know it all.
Infertility affects 1 in 8 couples. Take a minute with me and try this exercise:
Scroll through your Facebook friend list and count 8 couples. Do you know them personally enough to know 1 on them is dealing with or has dealt with the pains of infertility? 1 in 4 experience a miscarriage, so take 4 of those Facebook friends and 1 of them has had a miscarriage.
You do NOT have to endure this trial alone.
Check out Resolve.org for 25 things not to say if you know of a friend dealing with the heartache of infertility.
To read my posts from last year's infertility awareness week click these links:
Join the Movement: Inclusion
Things Just Got Real
Basic understanding of the disease of infertility.