Heavy

I woke up this morning, put David on the bus and settled in for my work and a large cup of coffee when I came across this post from my blogging friend, Melissa. For those of you not connected to the infertility realm, Mel is one of those people who has a heart of gold and has been a champion for all of us who have fallen into the wrong side of the statistics. There have been times during my own struggle when her blog saved me. This fact I am not exaggerating.

But sometimes those we look up to and commiserate with have their own bad days too.

Her post hit me like a brick.

A very large brick.

Go read it, and come back here.

No really….

I’ll wait…

I think the overriding feeling that I took away from her post is that never-ending wish that things weren’t so damn hard. That all of our dreams were more easily attainable.

And (yeah, I’m gonna say it)… that life was FAIR to all of us.

I need to spin off of Mel’s post on this subject, so bear with me here. Not sure where my thoughts will lead to… but this post and a certain piece of info I learned about yesterday sent me careening off the rails.

It was troubling news that angered me. It propelled me into THAT place. I can’t go into any specifics, but someone in my real life is pregnant and has no freaking business being pregnant.

I wish I could give you all the whole story. You’d choke. You’d gasp.

Yeah, it’s THAT BAD.

In any event, I spent the remainder of the day thinking… where is the fairness in this? To bring a baby into the world that will need and want and have no provisions available. To be born into a bad situation. No opportunity to thrive. A dysfunctional and potentially dangerous situation.

And all the while here I am. Spending thousands of dollars to get to a dream that is wasted on someone who has no right. Not knowing (ever knowing) that my investment of time, money, and love will produce ANY tangible result.

(Whew, let me breathe for a moment).

Here’s the thing…

Infertility has taken away so much from me and my family. It has invaded every last corner of my little world. It has made me less of an outgoing person. It has destroyed my body image. It has made me fearful for my only child (because WHAT IF something were to happen to him!?!). It has drained my emotional resources, and my financial resources.

The perfect life that I envisioned slips away, little by little. Sucking the life out of it.

All the while people are getting married, making plans, deciding on how many kids to have. Having babies, planned and (ooops!) unplanned. Not even THINKING anything could go wrong. They have no idea how quickly their world can be stripped away. No idea.

Until they end up here like us. The misfits.

To end up in a vacuum like so many of us. Where the world exists in a holding pattern. When time moves from cycle to cycle rather than calendar month to month. Where sitting down to dinner at a table that seats 3, 4, 5, or more people makes your heart ache for the empty chairs that have no living children sitting in them.

Knowing that a decision to stop treatment could mean feeling like that forever.

Constantly feeling empty.

This is what keeps me going. I see the future of unfulfilled dreams and I turn and run. I run as if my life depends upon it. Because the alternative is just too hard to think about.

Quoting from Mel: “It’s just that you never expect that you’re going to be infertile when you’re skipping back down the aisle at your wedding, your heart literally traveling out of your chest like a released balloon.”… “It is possible, I’ve heard, that you can change your dream. You can adapt to anything. These are just the growing pains of holding a dream away from your heart and examining it closely. Dreams don’t like to be separated from the body; they howl. They cry.”

I could not have expressed this better or as eloquent as she.

To carry the burden of infertility and loss is like carrying the universe on your back. It’s heavy, dark, and sometimes it seems just too infinite to measure.

11 thoughts on “Heavy

  1. wow, i agree with everything said above. i have been fighting a losing battle with infertility for over 5 years now, and I am currently waiting for the beta after my first IVF cycle. i found your blog and read several, and i am following it now! good luck with everything

  2. Thank you for directing to me to read Mel’s post and for sharing so openly in yours. As I shared in my comment on Mel’s post, I can so relate to the “at leasts” and to being incredibly grateful for the blessings in my life. However, I agree with both of you that I don’t think that precludes us from still wanting more, especially living siblings for our children.I too think about if chasing our dream of another child is worth it sometimes or fair to our living children, but as Mel said, it is nobody but our decison to make when the time comes. Most of the time I try to live my life and not ask why or get caught up in what is fair… but there are days and times, as you and Mel have shared today, when it seems impossible not to question, wonder, hope and still dream.I do believe that we who have been touched by infertility and loss appreciate what we do have more than some may, but that doesn’t make our trials anymore “fair.”Anyway, babbling now… so I will stop. Thank you for sharing Sherri. Walking this journey with you and others like Mel does “at least” make it more bearable.

  3. I haven’t read Melissa’s post yet, but I will, just as soon as I gather myself together a bit. I am fortunate, and I know it. I came out the other side (as you so perfectly put it) with two beautiful children. But as you said, my battle with infertility took so much out of my life, my marriage and my heart while I was in the midst of it. I may have walked away from it with two beautiful gems, but I will never — can never — forget how the experience permeated my life and changed my soul forever. My heart is with you.

  4. First of all, her post is just beautifully written. It was really artful.Second, and this might be way off base or utterly unpopular, but your post makes me wonder if this dream is worth it any more. It seems like it just makes you so miserable. Do you think you would be happier just letting this dream slip away? Again, I am not in your shoes, but I was just struck by that thought that perhaps it isn’t worth the dashed hopes and misery.–MM

  5. It never gets any easier, does it?I often find my self questioning the “fairness” of the whole situation.If only I could wave a magic wand and it would all be fair….{{HUGS}}

  6. Honestly I have come to the realization that it isn’t ever going to get better, but I can change my attitude.Being happy isn’t having what you want, it is wanting what you have.

  7. Maybe that is why we write it out–just to connect with another person who is thinking the exact same thoughts. I can’t believe I’m going to go through a babyhood only once. And I can’t believe I would do this to myself all over again. I want a promise if I’m going to this, and I know that can’t be given. It’s just a hard time of year. When you stand there in shul and they’re talking about how the whole year is going to play out. And you wonder where you’re going to be 12 months from now.Thank you for writing this.

  8. The two of you should really be smacked for making me cry this early in the morning, TWICE. I mean really, come on now.It’s so strange to see so many of your own thoughts mirrored in the blogs of others… whose journeys are so different, yet so much the same. I think that’s why this is such a close-knit community. There’s very little (spoken) judgment, and overwhelming support here. Because we have all either been in the same place, are in the same place, or will be in the same place. And crossing over to a new gray area doesn’t make the fears and struggles that come along with it all any less gray.My point is that even when your heart is breaking so much that you can’t stand it… and your mind is spinning around so quickly that you can’t catch your breath… it’s okay to be scared here. And it’s okay to not be all cupcakes and sprinkles. And it’s okay to be pissed off. And it’s okay to wish it was you and not her. And it’s okay to not always be so strong. In all of this, this small niche in the blog world is the only place where you can find solace and support from others who really do know exactly what you’re going through.So while I don’t have any magic answers that can make this kind of raw, unfair pain go away… I can be here, and I can listen. And I can be confused and scared and pissed off right there with you.

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