So, I am up late reading blogs and went from being overly ecstatic that it is my Spring Break to overly emotional as I read blogs about infertility and adoption. So many women are writing how I feel or have felt and some are even stirring interesting topics that I did not even know I had an opinion about. I love when thoughts are formed from feelings that I never knew were there. In a future blog maybe I will write about those ideas, but tonight I want to focus on a big one that took me a long time to get to. (Side note: I have no idea what it feels like to have a miscarriage or to lose a child unexpectedly. My heart goes out to those that have, but I know what it is like to be told that your hormones are so low and getting pregnant is so dangerous that conceiving is not an option-ever)
My husband and I were never the type that wanted to be parents from the beginning. We both got married at 24/25 (it felt old then, but we look back and think we were so young). We knew we wanted time for just us two so we laughed at those that had kids so quickly. We enjoyed our late nights and selfish spending. We enjoyed exotic vacations. We learned later that the time was necessary to build a stronger marriage. If we had gotten pregnant earlier we would probably have a biological child, but either in an unhealthy marriage for the kid or divorced. 100% guarantee. The link to our marriage story is included…don’t judge us, but it’s true. https://vimeo.com/54825100
When I learned I had Lupus, that was the number one question in my mind “Did I wait too long to have children?” You know the age old thought is the thirties too late? It is easy to begin to doubt or regret, but knowing what our marriage needed to endure, I kept going back to no. No, His timing was perfect and we were not meant to have kids any sooner. I kept reminding myself that kids in a broken marriage would be a disaster…we were not ready. Saying all that we are literally the LAST ones to have babies! The last. It did not get hard until we hit thirty and even then we were in no rush. In fact, we enjoyed trying. We kept believing that we would get pregnant at any time so to enjoy the moment. After year one, we got a little anxious, but it wasn’t until I got the news that I was infertile did it hit hard. We dealt with it privately and kept it mostly to ourselves. Not out of shame, but out of “it is not their business”.
Baby showers were hard, kids’ parties were hard, pregnancies were hard, baby talk was hard. We go to church so we were flooded with God says you should make babies. We were trying, people!! But here is the deal…you have two choices in your pain. You can be happy for others or let their happiness bring you down. It was the hardest thing I ever had to do and I was not always good at it. Towards the end I was very bad at it, but I kept believing “Their happiness does not determine my happiness.” Nathan said it like this, “Their story is not our story and God’s plan for their life is not His plan for our life.” Did that mean that God wanted me to be infertile? NO! But he brought good from it. I supported others even when I did not feel like it because I knew my days were coming. I did not always do it without crying or having a margarita first…I am sure I showed up to many showers drunk 🙂 but I showed up and later they were there at mine (sober I think)!
All my friends understood if I didn’t go. In fact, they encouraged me not to come, but I would never get that invite back, that party back, that shower back or that birthday back. Life was going on with or without me and I chose to live it. I believed that my moment of celebration would be coming and I would want everyone to fully support me when that day did occur.
Celebrate they did. We have such an outpouring of love from friends, family and strangers with the adoption of our son. They know our journey. They know our struggle. They know our triumph. They know our faith. They know that all those little baby steps led us to this BIG step and that our child is perfectly timed and perfectly us even though our blood is not in him.
So, if you are in that moment where life has beat you down and you just can’t take it then know you need to do what you need to do. Your true friends will always love you no matter what and they get it. We get it. I get it, but consider a different approach and remember that others’ happiness does not determine your happiness and good things can happen to them AND you. God’s blessings for them have no direct effect for his blessings on you…read that again and soak it in…it has been my greatest life lesson to avoid Facebook jealousy. Also, if you experience joy in the midst of their heartache then that is okay, too. There is a season and time for everything. Trust that.
The good news is: Please know my heart is not trying to seem cold or say get over it. Far from it! Infertility hurts and that pain is real. All of it is challenging. I am just sharing that my in my journey I learned that I could not live life based on other people’s circumstances. I had to trust that my day would come and it would be just as good and in some ways my day felt better than even my best dreams. Our son is amazing! He sleeps through the night, he has a full head of hair, he is the chillest baby ever…he smiles all the time and he is healthy! He was created in God’s image to do good things that God prepared in advance for him to do. We are just a small piece fulfilling God’s plan in a much larger puzzle.
Three more tips:
1. Go to baby showers looking hot! Skinny jeans, tight sweaters and smelling like a woman and not like spit up 🙂
2. Go on those sexy vacations while you can. Also, enjoy late night dinners at fancy places…money is spent differently after baby.
3. Claim a friend’s kid at parties. I have a friend with four so she can afford to share one.
I needed to hear this today. Thanks. And yes–I always claim someone else’s kid at parties, too. I get to enjoy holding them, sharing food with them, laughing with them, and then I get to give them back to their parents right when they start getting crabby for a nap. 🙂
Best way to go! Love em and leave em when they get cranky 🙂
Well said, and yet so many feelings. I’m just beginning to come to the realization that Layla will be our only child. I’m thankful for her, and will remain that way all the days of her life.
You never know what the future may bring, but Layla is a blessing! We see us a family of three as well unless God puts a different desire on our hearts.