Friday, February 11, 2011

Infertility

A few nights ago, I wrote the following entry into my journal. I’ve had a gnawing feeling ever since I wrote it that I needed to share my feelings on our blog. Disclaimer: these are my real, raw emotions and it’s hard for me to share them, but I feel like I need to do this. I think that the statistic is something like 1 out of every 8 couples is affected by infertility. What if sharing my feelings can help just one person to understand that the pain they are feeling is justified and that there is a light at the end of the tunnel?

I have felt the need for awhile now to write down my feelings about the things that James and I have been going through. I’m going to be completely honest with my thoughts as I write this so please don’t judge me for my moments of weakness that are sure to come in this entry. I remember the day that we received the phone call from the fertility doctor, explaining that we would never be able to get pregnant naturally. James was at work when he received this phone call and he called me immediately to explain all of the test results and what the doctor had told him. I was driving at the time and I remember that I had to pull the car over to the side of the road because I couldn’t see through the tears that poured from my eyes. When our phone call was over, I sat in my car for awhile… thinking, crying, and asking Heavenly Father, WHY? After depression swallowed me whole in that tiny car, I called my parents and asked them to both get on the receiver because I NEEDED them both. I remember telling them that James and I wouldn’t ever be able to be parents and then I proceeded to sob to them on the phone and then begged them to not tell James how upset I was. I needed to be strong for him, but on the inside I was in total despair. As long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to be a mother. I’ve made plans for places I want my kids to see, things that I want to teach them, and hobbies that I want to share with them. That day, sitting in my little black car, I felt defeated. Alone. Angry.

Infertility is a word that you hear often, but nobody can truly understand what it means unless they experience it. It means having to put on a happy face when you hear about a friends pregnancy. It means sobbing uncontrollably when I watched my nephew being born - knowing that I would never have that experience for myself. Infertility means feeling worthless and inadequate and undeserving of love. It means questioning my faith, doubting God, and blaming myself for the things out of my control. It means nights spent sitting on the floor next to our bed crying, hoping that I wouldn’t wake James. It means buying pregnancy tests every single month for 5 years and crossing our fingers that THIS is the month. It means creating a fake smile every time somebody says “As soon as you stop trying, it’ll just happen!” Infertility is DEVASTATING!

In a way, infertility is like death. All of the stages of grief are present. Shock & denial? Check! Pain & guilt? Check! Anger & bargaining? Check! Depression, reflection, & loneliness? Check! There is a grieving process that comes with infertility. The final step is acceptance and I feel this is where I am today. It’s been a long and bumpy road getting here, but I feel more HOPE than ever before. Why? What has changed? In a word… adoption! Once I truly grieved for our infertility, my eyes and my heart were opened to the miracle of adoption. My heart is literally filled every time I hear a birth mother share her experience with placing her child for adoption. I feel the spirit so strongly each time an adoptive couple is blessed with the gift of a baby. Every time I start talking about the blessings of adoption, I always choke up and my heart swells. I know, without any doubt, that it is Heavenly Father’s plan for me to adopt. I’ve been losing sleep lately wondering what it’s going to be like to finally meet the birth mom that chooses to place her baby with us. I tear up a little just thinking about that meeting and how I can’t wait to wrap my arms around her and say “Thank-you!” I can’t think of a way that I can ever repay such a selfless gift, except to LOVE both her and her child unconditionally.

Are we still infertile? Yes. Will I have a baby someday? Yes. It may not be the conventional way, but I KNOW I am meant to be a mother. I now know that I can turn to Heavenly Father and that he will fill me with peace and help me to understand the virtue of patience. I know that my day will come. I WILL be a mommy someday!

8 comments:

Amber said...

Heather,
Thanks for sharing your feelings! You guys are such an amazing couple and I love reading your blog! Every time I look at it I just think how lucky a child will be to have you both as parents! Heavenly Father has a child that is meant for you and it will happen!
Good luck with everything and keep sharing!
James' cousin Amber

Kara said...

Heather...wow what a honest and sincere entry!! I can't imagine what you and James have went through, and are still going through. I can't put into words what wonderful parents you guys ARE going to be! I've watch you with the kids in nursery and just how much my little Ethan adores you and James! I can only imagine the heartache, but I'm so happy for you in this adoption process and that it has made the heartache go away!! There is a baby out there that is meant to be yours! We can't wait for it to happen!

Ashley Ann said...

Thank you for sharing this. I'm very glad you did.

Shaun said...

Heather, I don't know if you remember me of not, but my wife and I sat with you at lunch during the FSA national conference. Anyway, thanks for writing that post. We have been there and it's comforting to know that we're not alone on the journey. Hope you're doing well and best of luck with everything! I too know that there is a baby coming to your home and that you WILL be a mother!

Mountain Shadows 4th Ward Relief Society said...

What an incredibly honest post. I just want you do know how much I appreciate you sharing your feelings. You don't know me...but, I came across your card at Leatherby's. We are experiencing some of these same difficulties. I was curious to know how you were going about the adoption process. I too know that adoption is in our future, it brings me peace to know that we will be parents someday. It is good to know you are not alone in the world...thanks for sharing. You will be incredible parents.

Melissa and Jason said...

Sorry that last comment was from me. I forgot to sign out of my ward blog first.

Kim . . . wyomingmade said...

I am so far behind in my blog reading, but I still have to comment. Your courage in sharing inspires me.

That crazy I-monster (what I call it) seems to pull out all the punches and is mean. Never let go of the hope, your family will find you and the journey will be unique and yours!

Ang said...

Hi, Heather. I found your blog from Chelsey Morton's. Thanks for this post! It brings up so many familiar emotions for me. We adopted our sweet little boy a little over a year ago. I know that you guys will find your baby and he/she will be worth it! Although I still feel a lot of the pain of infertility, the joy of motherhood is more than I ever could have asked for. It will be for you too! Best of luck with everything!
-Angela