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Monday, August 23, 2010

The Shadow of IF

This weekend was a fun one... although busy. Friday night we survived the downpour that was our lawn-seat experience at the Jack Johnson concert, complete with a few extra sound and light effects provided by Mother Nature (LOTS of thunder and lightning)... it was truly one of the wettest nights of my life... Wet, but memorable.

And most likely our last experience with lawnseats... enough with the middle-schoolers and people stepping all over your stuff, already!

Got home late from that, only to get up early the next morning for a quick breakfast with my younger SIL and MIL, and then it was off to the middle-of-nowheresville, to visit with my friend, M, from college. Her parents literally live in a town off the last exit in GA, practically on the state line of GA/SC.... and completely in the boonies. But! They live on the lake, their house is amazing (entirely renovated, and beautiful) and they LOVE their who can find fault with that?

M actually had a baby shower that afternoon, while in town -- my first baby shower since I'd found out I was pregnant. Buying her gift was weird... just walking into, knowing I was carrying our own little one, was beyond strange to me. I couldn't even let myself near the clothes--I knew I'd probably end up either a) crying over some precious little onesie or b) snatching up every cute thing I saw, that I never thought I'd get to buy for a baby of our own... so I restrained myself and kept to the product-focused areas.

The shower, too, was a weird experience. My first that I didn't entirely dread, or suffer through. It was sweet - M's mom truly had gone all-out for her, and the place was decked out in all blues & browns, with a ton of yummy finger foods spread out in between diaper cakes and diaper wreaths, all throughout their den & kitchen. They played a game (the High-low game, where you guess if the item's price should be higher or lower than what was listed), and then M and her husband opened up all their presents, assisted by their adorable 3 1/2 year old daughter.

Two months ago, just the thought of enduring a sight like that would have laid me low for weeks, wondering if I would ever get a chance to have a family like that, or experience a shower thrown for me... have a little one helping me open up my presents for their baby sister/brother.

I would be lying if I said it didn't make my heart hurt a little, even in spite of my current state.

The fact of the matter is that nothing is guaranteed in this world. Nothing. And there's no guarantee that we won't have to go through the prolonged suffering that goes hand-in-hand with fertility treatments at some point again in the future. There's no guarantee that Baby J will make it. There's no guarantee that our totcicles or our frozen eggs will survive, or that we'll have another shot at being parents.

I desperately HOPE none of this comes to pass -- but have no guarantees that it won't.

The real low moment of the day for me came when M and I were downstairs on our own, catching up before all the family arrived for the shower. She was talking about how disappointing her husband's reaction to their pregnancy had been.... This is their 2nd --both of which were unplanned--and they're struggling a bit financially. For him, she explained, he doesn't enjoy feeling so out-of-control. ...he told her that he just wanted them to be able to decide first that they were ready for another child, and then get pregnant...

As if it's ever that easy.

Hearing her voice their regret at not being able to 'plan' the births of their children was difficult... so many of us dealing with IF would give their right arms to 'just' get pregnant, to have an 'oops' baby, to never worry about whether you'll ever ovulate again.

My heart aches when I think of that.

And for my friend-- for her disappointment that her husband wasn't immediately thrilled at the knews. For her husband -- for taking for granted the incredible blessing that pregnancy is --even if it was unexpected. For his sheer arrogance at thinking he's really in control of ANYTHING in his life.

For all of us IF'ers out there... for the families that we hope and pray for each and every day.

Saturday's visit was just another reminder that IF will never leave me... It clings to me like my own shadow -- always there, even if you can't see it.


  1. you are an amazing person. infertility and miscarriage made me appreciate every single day of my life and subsequently my healthy pregnancy. every ache, every pain, every twinge, every kick, every cry, every everything. i dont take a single moment for granted. i know you feel that. i know that you appreciate every little thing about baby j. i will be praying for you as i know what the unknown, no guarantees road feels like. love to you sweet friend. you life only gets better with each day you live! :) blessings on you and baby j!!! love you!

  2. There are no guarantees of anything in life, are there?
    It used to bother me so much to hear anyone complain about things like that (the husband not being as excited) because of how much trouble we have both getting and staying pregnant.
    I just have to remind myself that we are all on our own journey, and that different things can be devastating to one person that might barely be a blip on my radar.
    I'm glad the shower wasn't completely awful for you. And I'm praying for your little baby J that he/she arrives safe and sound.

  3. Great post. Pregnancy after IF is it's own beast, for sure. It's a different experience than it is for people who just get pregnant easily. In a hard way, yes, but also because it makes you thankful for each day and each moment. Praying for you. Let's hang out in person one of these days!