The One Where I Talk About Fertility & Babies (Again)
I love the start of a new year. The idea of a fresh start, new beginnings, and another chance to have a great year are always so appealing to me. For most people, we take the opportunity to set goals for what we want out of the year and maybe think about who we want to be and how we want to have grown by the time we reach the end of 2019. But despite the excitement of what the new year will bring, I'm finding myself in the same spot I've been so many years before - plagued by the incessant question that begs to know, will this be the year I become a mom? Or will I start 2020 the same way I have started this year and many years before it - wishing for a child that I'm not sure I'll ever have? As much as I wish I could just switch off those haunting thoughts, I've learned that it's near impossible. How do you just turn off your desire for something you so desperately want, something that you feel is a missing part of your life? How do you simply just "not think about it", as so many well-meaning and well-intentioned people have suggested?
For me, I feel like reminders of (in)fertility and babies are everywhere - and perhaps part of that is because that's just where I'm at right now in my own life. But lately, as in the last couple of weeks, these topics truly seem to be everywhere. I recently saw a news story about a new health organization startup whose mission is to simply educate and assist younger women in thinking about fertility options for the future so they're prepared before it's too late. Of course, I think that's amazing. But I also can't help but think, why wasn't that around when I was in my late 20's or even early 30's? I often find myself wishing that I could just go back to my younger self and tell her to not wait to start a family. That if I knew then what I know now, I'd see that no reason is good enough for waiting.
Then there's the awful news out of New York last week, that abortion there is now legal up until the day a baby is born. That one has made me feel sick and a bigger part of me just has no words. My dad used to talk about the depravity of mankind, and that's all I've been able to think about since I heard the news. Like, is this even real life? There are SO MANY FAMILIES who so desperately want to adopt babies (🙋♀️🙋♂️), and here we have a new law legalizing their deaths?! It makes me sick and angry and depressed all at the same time. I can't imagine a scenario where this is necessary. Ever. I have seen so many people outraged by this news, and I know there are MANY outraged and heartbroken in the adoption and infertility communities. I don't know what to do except pray. And sign a petition. Which I did.
So here I am. On this endless infertility-baby-adoption merry-go-round. And every time I find myself here, I inevitably come back to the same thoughts and conclusions. That I shouldn't give up hope, that nothing is ever impossible with God, that maybe there's a good reason why we didn't have kids when we were younger, that there's very likely a child (or children) out there in the future that is supposed to be a part of our family. And even though I have probably (ok, definitely) become a bit more cynical than I used to be, I do still believe that God hears our prayers, sees our tears, and has a plan for us. Some days I sure wish He'd share it with me, but following in the footsteps of my parents, I will continue to trust and to hope. When I get caught up in all of this and am feeling really down, I often find myself thinking back to the story of Hannah in the Bible, who couldn't have children yet prayed so desperately for a child. (The Bible actually says she was in "bitter distress" as she prayed. I can relate, Hannah). And not only did God give her one child, He gave her multiple children.
And since I've rambled on long enough, I will end this post by saying that if this is where you find yourself, fellow fertility friends - inundated and overwhelmed and hopeless and maybe also hopeful - find encouragement in knowing that you are definitely not alone, and we will soldier on in this messy journey together. And if distraction is needed, there are always projects to do at the house. (Ok, that note was to myself 😄).