solitary: 1sol·i·tary
Pronunciation: \ˈsä-lə-ˌter-ē\
Function: adjective
Etymology: Middle English, solitarie, from Anglo-French, from Latin solitarius, from solitas aloneness, from solus alone
Date: 14th century

1 a : being, living, or going alone or without companions b : saddened by isolation

Last night I had a very weird dream. I don’t remember much about it in its entirety, but what I do remember is waking up and feeling like I solved a great mystery of life.

In this dream, somehow I ended up sitting at a round table with about 10 people whose faces I did not recognize. We were talking about fears. I didn’t feel scared, but rather… melancholy. Someone commented from the other side of the table that their worst fear is death.

My response was immediate, almost as if the words were just falling out of my mouth without my lips moving…

“I am less fearful of death, and most fearful of being alone.”

It was nano-seconds later that I woke up, with those words still hovering in my head as if I said them aloud in the waking world.

I thought about it in the shower and and it was perfectly clear that as much as I would not like it to be so, it is my primary motivation in life.

It is the reason for everything.

As independent as I’ve led my life, I’ve let that fear mow me over in recent years. But when I look back to the choices I’ve made thus far, it’s been the driving undercurrent all along

…how could I have not realized that?

This therapy adventure has certainly opened my mind in ways I had forgotten about, or didn’t have the key.

Specific to infertility, I am realizing that my want to complete my family has a lot to do with this one specific fear. The motivation has little to do with “kicking infertility’s ass” and more to do with surrounding myself with people I can count on. People that my son can count on that will still be here 30-40 years from now. Let’s face it, when I get old and if S. isn’t here, I do not want David to be alone. I don’t want him to have that burden.

I may be projecting my fear needlessly onto him, but it’s something I think about more often than I should. This is probably the only reason I haven’t truly given up. And if I am being honest with myself, I will never be able to move on until I feel comfortable that David has a sibling. Someone who can’t easily walk away, uninvesting themselves when it is convenient.

I envy those that can and have made the active decision to push family-building to the back burner and move on. I’ve wondered if it is possible for me.

My therapist says I can do that if I wish, but it will take time.
I definitely can envision a life without cycling. I am 99% sure that I do not ever want to walk into a fertility clinic again. 

I am 100% sure that there is a child waiting for me, if I put myself out there.

It is very surreal to me, to know that before I had David, I always had this invisible attraction to adoption. I didn’t even know my “fertilty” status at the time, but I had always envisioned something extraordinary for my family. Perhaps I should have listened to my heart many, many years ago.

We are in research mode. No timeline, no stress. We will walk wherever the paths leads.

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14 thoughts on “Solitary

  1. CDLC: Thank you for shedding some light on something I also struggle with. I often feel this exact same way. I'm hoping to also surround myself with those I can count on, and provide unbreakable friendships and relationships for those I love.

  2. I also have a fear of being left alone. I.e. I have no children and my husband dies and it is just me. This is my biggest fear and probably the hardest one to deal with. When I was working in sales at a department store an elderly lady came in close to closing. She was clearly distraught. Turns out her husband had just died; she had no children and no family. She was utterly alone. I helped her find an outfit to wear to her husband's funeral and that memory has stayed with me for over a decade. creme de la creme

  3. What a beautiful, honest post. I think many people are fearful of being alone, but isn't it amazing how knowing what your motivation is makes is so much easier to manage your feelings about it? When I had my daughter I realized that the reasons I was so stressed about starting TTC early and so devastated by my first loss was because of my mother's story of loss and the fact that we both have unexplained amenorrhea. Just realizing that brought so much clarity to my life. I'm still dealing with those fears as I think about trying to give my daughter a sibling, and I too feel like I need to do this, but just knowing why I get so stressed about it makes it all so much more manageable.I hope you find your way to your second child. I think now that you know why you must arrive there, the journey will be a little easier.Creme de la Creme #125Creme de la Creme Iron Clad Commenter Attempt 2010

  4. Here from CremeI hear you sister – my biggest fear is also being alone not just by being childless – but by everyone around me having their own families and me just not fitting in with where they are at in their lives any more. I heard about this guy who wrote down all his fears all 182 of them – so perhaps in admitting our fears and listing them we make them a little less intense.

  5. I feel the same way, but my fear is more symmetrical. I'm afraid of leaving Eggbert alone, but also, like Lut, afraid that only Eggbert stands between me and despair. That's a lot of responsibility for one little kid.

  6. Food for thought.I find it hard to step away from the second round with IF too. Perhaps the same fear is pushing me too, though I put in different terms in my head. I'm terrified of losing my daughter and being left behind without the will to live. (Arrived here from the Crème de la Crème list.)

  7. Here from Creme de la Creme… I have to say that I am thankful that throughout my 4 years of dealing with infertility/attempted adoptions I've never had to fear being alone. I always go back to my faith and know that God is loving and faithful and He has something extraordinary planned for my family. I know He does for your family, too!

  8. I have adopted and I am soooo thankful for my only, and wonderful son. I don't want him to live alone, either. No siblings, according to infertility and dad who is "too busy". (I have taken that for what it is worth since the infertility stopped his desire. Now, he might just be "too busy" entirely. Oh, well….I have a beautiful, adopted son….and I am blessed.

  9. Shelli, great post, and I'm happy that you are finding your way. Listen to your inner voice – I've learned mine usually had the answer I was looking for all the time. When I started down the IF path, I kept in mind one of my favorite quotes, from Helen Keller:"When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us."

  10. great post, kid. I have many similiar thoughts…though selfishly, I know some of them are linked to my not wanting to be alone, either…not just out of a fear for my son's alone-ness. I still envision laughter or fighting coming from another room while I'm in the kitchen…and I'm hoping that dream is still out there for me to catch.

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