Grief is a funny thing. It comes in waves. A couple of months back; I was having a really tough day. I was REALLY down, and I am RARELY super down on my days off. It was just a tough day all around…in the evening, I finally chalked it up to (at least in part) our infertility. I was sad that we couldn’t have kids. Sad that we had been “dealt” this hand of cards. Sad that our life was just us and our cat(s). Sad that I will never know it is like be called “mom”. Just sad in general.
The thing with infertility (like most losses, and yes, it is a loss), is that you are fine (well, mostly “fine”) with it for a few weeks, or even months at a time, then suddenly, something will happen, and you will have an off day; and feel sorry for yourself. It comes like a flash flood….a wave. It almost paralyzes you. It isn’t fun to experience. You feel that there is no way out…that no one understands. Then, after a few hours (thankfully, the real hard part only lasts a few hours or maybe a day or so), it will pass, and you can get back to your regularly-scheduled life. And that’s ok. I am allowing myself to feel that. I don’t want to take over and to cripple me. I have been there (depression) a few times, and it is not fun. But for a few hours, or a day, I will let myself be sad, and then I will usually snap out of it. If it gets really bad, I will go to some of the infertility groups on Facebook, or I will talk with one of sisters, or mom. Sometimes, I talk with hubby…he usually help me that much. He is pretty good at reading me…and although I will usually have to bring it up, he can usually already tell…and will try to say something encouraging.
Grief can come on so suddenly…it strikes when you least expect it…it can be in the form of something so “small”, like a Pamper commercial, or a Gerber Baby commercial. It is sad, really. Or, it can be something SO huge and monumental, like a friend or a family member having a baby (or announcing it), baby showers (I rarely go to those anymore), pregnancy / adoption announcements on Social Media, or seeing a cute baby while out shopping. Don’t forget the cute clothes and toys!!! Those can also trigger it sometimes. When it last really hit me was when I read an article about infertility in a magazine. I think it was talking about IVF, and I just got super down about it all.
The thing is, grief is never planned. It always creeps up on you, usually with little to no warning. Very few people “get” the grief that is infertility. They certainly don’t think of it as a loss. When you lose someone you love, there are the Seven Stages of Grief. There are groups, books, etc., to help you. There are very few books, support groups, and virtually no stages of grief when it comes to infertility. Counsellors barely (if at all) know on how to counsel in this area. So, I am learning as I go (hubby, too, I am sure). It isn’t easy. It is hard. But, I guess this is what God wants me to undertake. If I help one person, whether through blogging, or in real life, then I will feel that it has been worth it.
You can find our more about April at The A Team