I can feel it happening as if I am watching myself walk through life from a bird’s-eye view. I see myself slowly slipping further and further from the woman I used to be, and I feel powerless to stop it. I miss her—the woman I was before infertility.
Infertility has changed me to my core. It has challenged my deepest beliefs about God, and it has made me question my worth more times than I can count.
Infertility rears its ugly head and steals the peace from my marriage as my body is flooded with hormones in the form of self-injections day after day.
It steals my confidence as I look into the mirror hardly recognizing my own bruised and knotted body.
It steals the calm from my soul as the stress and pain of IVF weigh down my heart.
Walking through infertility and miscarriage has changed and challenged every part of me.
It changed the way I see a positive pregnancy test. It changed the way I hear the first heartbeat. It changed the way I count down to 24 weeks. It changed the way I approach my birthing time. It left me breathless at every appointment, praying my rainbow baby’s heart was still beating. It changed the way I walked back into IVF treatments after my first miracle baby was born.
Just because I have walked this road before doesn’t make it easier, I’m just more keenly aware of the mountain I must climb again.
Infertility is so much deeper than the perfectly curated photo of a onesie surrounded by dozens of syringes.
It is month after month of pain, struggle, tears, disappointment, and loss.
It is having yet another negative pregnancy test.
Infertility is desperately needing an emotional break but being too afraid to take a month off from treatments because you know that doing so will make your infertility journey last even longer. What if this month would have been my month?
It is more dates with your doctor holding the intrauterine ultrasound wand than your husband.
It is blood draws and scans and surgery and recovery . . . alone because partners are still not allowed to come to appointments.
It is getting inseminated while your partner isn’t even in the same building as you.
Infertility is grieving that you can’t give your child a sibling because treatments just aren’t working.
Infertility is isolating and full of decisions we were never designed to make.
Your friend going through IVF? She had to say goodbye to multiple babies at once as her embryologist reports went from 18 living to 12 living to 7 living within three days. She grieves each loss and it feels like simultaneous miscarriages. She deeply loved each one. It isn’t fair.
Your friend going through IVF? She has to leave her 6-day-old embryo babies frozen in a lab with strangers.
Her life is counted by cycle days, and she feels as if she is in a constant state of waiting. Waiting for the results . . . waiting until she can attempt another round . . . waiting until her miracle comes.
In the blink of an eye, she looks up and six months have flown by. Then two years are gone.
Infertility steals so much, but it cannot steal our hope.
We hope for our turn. Our turn to make special announcements. Our turn to hold our miracle. Our turn for late-night snuggles and first steps.
We aren’t there, yet, but we hold on to hope.