I was diagnosed with infertility 2007 after my first of six surgeries for Endometriosis and Adenomyosis, a journey that resulted in a hysterectomy in late 2014. I spent years suffering with the emotional and physical pain of not being able to conceive a pregnancy and I mourned never having a child of my own. The pain of seeing others with a child and knowing that this was not in the stars for me, hurt in ways that no words could describe. I suffered this indescribable pain, mainly in silence, up until recently.
I have two amazing teenage children, that were born to my partner and they are the light to my world. I call them my children although the more accurate term in society is “step children”. I have been in their lives for ten years. It was a challenging transition in the beginning, and then a different type of hurdle, when five years later we merged our houses. However, throughout the last ten years, we have become a strong family unit and I feel incredibly blessed with the family that I have been given. But, there still have been numerous times where that pain, the hurt, that aching, of not having my own flesh and blood, creeps up and tears of agony stream down my face. I wouldn’t trade my children for the world, but my heart hurts for what I was never given.
Today was a big day for me. It was the first event for a mom’s group that I am part of, coffee at the park. You may be thinking that it is a little odd that I would be part of such a group, as I just shared about my struggles with years of infertility, and the fact that I do not have young kiddos, but I am one of the leaders of the group (a non-profit organization that focuses on community, a group that has brought me much joy and happiness) and therefore I was participant in the event. Although there was a higher chance of rain, the skies held out and we even had sun and some blue skies. A slight breeze was present, but other than that it was a glorious morning. The playground was phenomenal, and fun was had by all who attended.
I thoroughly enjoyed the conversations that I had with the other moms and my interactions with the kiddos. But the thing I enjoyed the most was that aching feeling was not present. The sorrow that used to be present in situations like this morning decided not to show, and I was oh so relieved to not have a plus one. It was a relief to see that my heart has started to heal over the last few months and that I can be at an event with moms and children and it not emotionally hurt and distract me from what’s happening in the present. And in addition to it not hurting, that I could actually find joy and happiness in a place that used to bring me sorrow and sadness.
Infertility is devastating. It is heart wrenching and often there is no explanation for it. I recall feeling that there was something wrong with me or that I was being punished. I have worked hard to accept my body for what it is and for loving it as is. I know that I will have days where I cry and I ask God why. I know I will see a pregnant woman, I will ache deep in my bones, wonder what it’s like and wonder why I was never given that opportunity.
But today, I am focusing on what I have been given. I was given a wonderful morning, a day with friends, and then a productive afternoon at the office. I will spend the evening with my partner and the kids that we have raised together. I give praise to my heart for its strength and courage. I thank my heart for what it has done for me, and what it continues to do for me.