First of all, welcome to any readers that might venture here from IComLeavWe! Thank you for reading and commenting! I'm Melissa, also know as Mel (especially in the online IF community). I've been writing here for (holy crap, I just checked and I missed my blogversary!) seven years. This started out as just a place for random thoughts, very lighthearted and probably pretty boring! Over the years, I've documented my life as a young (ish) married average woman in the Midwest, to a new mom, and more recently I wrote of my struggles to conceive my second child. After over a year and a half of unexplained infertility that included an early miscarriage, I gave birth to my second son. Now I continue to write about the joys of parenting my two amazing boys, Tyler and AJ and other random things, including current project--working on a book of infertility stories.
Now on to today's post!
The other day, I was reading a blog that I was linked to from another blog I read faithfully. The post can be found here and it really struck a chord with me. She is in the early stages of pregnancy after having struggled with infertility for several years. She talks about an encounter with her boss, who has just told her that another of their coworkers had just announced that she was pregnant after a struggle with infertility. She commented that it seemed as if starting work there triggered fertility trouble. Her boss pointed out that she was now pregnant, as if the fact that she had achieved pregnancy erased what she had been through trying to get there. Read the full post for the whole story.
I left this comment:
Once an infertile, always an infertile. Even when you reach that goal and get that take home baby, you can never forget what you've been through, how it felt. And that dark time isn't diminished, even by the joy of the birth of the baby you longed for. There are so many different "degrees" of infertility, everyone has a story, but even with all the happy endings, we all still know a pain that can never be understood by anyone else but another infertile. No one can take the journey away from you. It's made you who you are.
I really feel that way. A few weeks ago, while jotting down an intro for my chapter in my book, I wrote that I had some reservations about including my own journey. After all, I had a child before I came up against infertility. I "only" struggled with infertility for 19 months. I "only" had one early miscarriage. And now I have my second healthy baby.
But you know what I realized? There is no such thing as a little bit infertile or a small loss. I will never forget that part of my life and I am a different person for having experienced it. Even if I never try for another child I still remember what that felt like. I realize that I am "lucky" in terms of infertility. It can be so much worse. That's why I want to write the book. But what has driven me to want to write it all goes back to my own struggle. I never would have heard and read so many stories and met so many incredibly strong women if I hadn't gone though it. I love my kids in a different way. It has made me appreciate my time with them even more.
We all have the same goal. Some of us reach the finish line and some don't. I wish it wasn't that way. But the lucky ones weren't always lucky and we've all felt the pain associated with IF. It's not something that we could leave behind. And, though it seems strange, I don't think I would want to.