My little girl is 16 weeks. I can’t believe how fast time is passing! I decided I wanted to make a post about how infertility impacts my new role as a mom.
The good: I feel infertility allows me to put the negative aspects of parenting in perspective and be in the moment more with my daughter. Sure there have been days I have broke down covered in bodily fluids. Days were I felt an exhaustion I have never experienced before. But with every difficult moment I have been able to reflect upon my infertility journey and it immediately puts the stress in perspective and I feel lucky and joyful and grateful. Every day I look at my baby and my heart smiles. Sometimes I can’t believe that she is mine and am in such awe of this miracle in my life. I’m sure as I get further away from the blood draws, the procedures, the pain I won’t have such a quick rebound from the stress of parenting. But for now, it is helping me to feel grateful for both the joyous and the difficult aspects of parenting.
The bad: Despite feeling so grateful there have been a number of outside comments that have been bothering me. Certain family members have been asking me when I’m going to have baby number two. They are telling me it will probably just happen naturally the second time. Some family members are even saying it’s selfish of me to have only one baby. Implying that if I don’t give Brynn a sibling I am depriving her.
These comments are bothering me on so many levels. First off, I want to bask in the joy of my daughter. I want to bask in my triumph over infertility. Did I always want two children? Yes but infertility has taught me that things don’t always go as planned. I have already bargained with god that if I can have just one baby I will not want or need more. I have come to terms with the realization that I may just do this parenting thing once and I am so lucky to be doing it once. I have already thought of all the benefits of having one child. We can travel more and bring Brynn to amazing places that we probably couldn’t afford with two children. We can help her out more financially with college if she chooses to go that path. Being an only child may help her develop more independence, maybe creativity…who knows. Sure she won’t get a chance to have the amazing sibling relationships I have experienced but she may develop incredibly close relationships with her cousins that will hopefully continue after my husband and I are gone.
As you can see these comments are bringing up an exhausting internal dialogue. They are also bringing up a slew of negative feelings. I feel these comments have minimized my struggles. Haven’t I put my body through enough? Why can’t they realize the chance of me getting pregnant naturally is incredibly slim? Why do they still don’t understand how real infertility is? Is it really selfish not to put my body through the hell that it went through before? Is it selfish not to open myself up to the mental anguish of infertility- the disappointment, nervousness, anxiety and sadness I have felt? These questions have also brought up the really tough questions I have buried in my heart….What if down the road I did open myself up to wanting another baby and then it didn’t work out? What if I had another miscarriage? What if Brynn desperately wants a brother or sister and I can’t give her one? Perhaps it would be so much easier to never open that door. I just want to scream. I know these questions are probably future conversations with my husband but for now I want to keep them buried. So I am getting them out and burying them in this blog post. Brynn is enough for me to do so for now and maybe forever. I just wish my family members would be more understanding and sensitive.