you are not alone (national infertility awareness week).
Oh looky looky. It's National Infertility Awareness Week. Time for you to be aware of me again. Not that you aren't - you're here aren't you? - but let the gifts start rolling in. This is my week people and expect a few posts updating you on our journey through infertility, my thoughts on the matter, and a few ill timed jokes because I have limited amounts of tact.
It's interesting sitting here saying "Yah, I'm infertile" with two babies napping upstairs. Ok so maybe I don't look that infertile anymore... How about we say I'm more in infertility remission with just a hint of infertility PTSD. Does that work for everyone?
I definitely wouldn't say I'm infertile anymore only because we have our babies and we've moved on. The "move on" part sounds harsh but I can't figure out how to reword it so stay with me. It doesn't mean our family is done or complete or for sure growing in the future, but we could walk away now and never feel the sting of someone missing from our life. We have a few options if we want to up this party, but for now, we have peace.
Peace was missing for a long time and peace is what I ache for the most when friends, acquaintances, random beloved blog stalkers open up about their struggles. There is an amazing peace that you take for granted when you just know you can have children. Kind of like the peace you have sitting reading this that you are (most likely) healthy, with food in the fridge, and a roof over your head. You don't even realize the peace is there until it's gone.
When you struggle with infertility, the peaceful nature of life - that you can create life and live it and grow your family - evaporates and what's left is this hollow, fractured feeling like part of you is missing. And it is missing! Your children are missing. Your grandchildren are missing. Your future play dates and preschools and class parties are missing.
I look back at our lives during our infertility battle and I remember the unsettling feeling. The feeling like I was going to be alone with Chuck forever - and believe me, that was maybe the most terrifying thought of all (sorry, bad time for a joke. Is there a National Maturity Awareness Week?). You want to crawl out of your skin with anxiety and there is nothing anyone can do to speed up the process. There is no magic button to calm you or jump life ahead of this crappy time or at the very least, just tell you how it ends.
This year's awareness week theme is "You are Not Alone". But god it feels that way. I can say this: if you have 200 Facebook friends, odds are 25 of them are struggling with infertility too. You really are not alone.
And someday you will find your peace too.
We struggled through the muck and anguish of infertility for four years and in 20 months life changed ten fold, everything vanished, and just like that, our journey through hell is over.
You will find your peace. Someday. Somehow. My peace is an understanding that it was worth it. That they were worth waiting. You will find yours, that is my prayer for you.
Peace is out there. But for now, a lot of us are out there too. You are not alone.