13 January 2014

Fighting Biology (or, the Secret Thoughts of Infertile Women)

I hesitate in sharing this blog out of fear that some will think that they, specifically, have hurt me. Let me assure you that this is not the case! Secretly, every pregnant woman hurts me…and I secretly pity each and every one of them. This juxtaposition of emotions comes with the territory of infertility, at least for me and few other women I know.

I’m calling this post “Fighting Biology” because I am fighting against my body and its stubbornness as well as fighting my natural desire for children. They’re messy and demanding and expensive and sometimes in my head I am secretly glad I don’t have any yet nor will I in the next 9 months. So why does my heart break every time one of my friends announces that they’re expecting? My heart was made to care for children. My hands long to caress a soft, round cheek and my shoulder yearns for a tiny head to rest upon it. Tears fill my eyes when I think about it, but then I stop yearning and am relieved to be sitting on my couch uninterruptedly watching TV for 3 hours or looking at literally every item at Target or staying out late with our friends. My head and my heart are at war here! And then there’s this biological clock thing along with LDS cultural expectations vs. the world’s expectations and I’m even more confused. I need to be happy about it or I need to be sad. Pick one, body!

These mixed emotions always come about 2 seconds apart. It goes something like this: see announcement on Facebook about newly expecting friend, pain in my chest. Think about how their social life will be dead soon and their bank account drained, instant relief. I don’t know why! It must be some kind of coping mechanism. Like my body’s saying, “this environment is too hostile for a child, but I’ll help you to not feel bad about it! Do what you want!” So confusing!

You want to hear an infertile woman’s dirty little secret? When I meet a couple who has been married for “a while” who isn’t pregnant, I feel GOOD knowing they might possibly have infertility issues too! Who does that? Who wishes one of the very worst things on someone who is undeserving of it?

You want to know an even dirtier secret? As one of my good friends put it, “that secret moment when you’re glad you’re infertile…”

Whether it’s a natural coping mechanism or a product of the screwed up hormones (or lack thereof) inside of me, I’m glad it’s there. I’m so grateful for silver linings on dark clouds and for prayers that are answered by me not getting what I want. I’m grateful for the empathy I have for other women sharing this trial, and especially for the fervor and gratitude with which I will love the little miracles who will one day be my children.

1 comment:

  1. These emotions are very familiar. After my miscarriage and then the even more months of trying my head tried to play games with my emotions as well... I really do think it is its own way of trying to protect the heart. I'm praying for you!!