Let’s play a game.
Pretend you’re a kid and it’s almost Christmas. Think of the toy or item you wanted most: the one you begged your parents for, wrote to Santa about (maybe more than once) and made insane promises for (like you’d keep your room clean forever and ever and ever).
Pretend you have all the accessories for this toy: your way of preparing in excitement for this big gift. Like you saved all your nickels and allowance money for all the accessories, now you just need the main event. You’ve been dreaming about it for months, maybe even years and you have a feeling this Christmas you’re finally going to get it. All your friends asked for the same toy for Christmas too and you can’t wait for all of you to get together and play. YOUR TIME IS NOW, LET’S DO THIS SANTA.
Cut to Christmas morning. You come tearing down the stairs at 5 AM, a ball of excitement and nerves. WHERE IS IT? YOU WAITED ALL NIGHT FOR IT. WHERE IS THE PRESENT?
You sit in the remnants of holiday wrappings and realize the toy isn’t there. Imagine the disappointment, the feeling of being let down. Now imagine you go back to school after Christmas break and, low and behold all your friends got the toy you wanted so badly. They’re all playing together having all kinds of fun and totally bonding; only you can’t play because you’re the only one without this coveted toy.
This is what infertility feels like.
It feels like being that disappointed kid on Christmas morning. It feels like being left on the sidelines while it seems like everyone you know is bonding over their little ones. It’s having all the right things in place for a baby, but not having one.
Infertility feels like a hope and sadness smoothie: blended together and consumed at the same time. It's being happy to have medication to help you along, but sad that the medication is needed in the first place. It's thankful and fearful of the 50% chance those medications give you. It's weeping on your way into the office at 6 AM because it just hit you that, even with the medication, you still might not conceive a baby this month. Infertility is praying for joy while sticking yourself in the stomach with a shot before you've had your morning coffee. It's wanting to share your story, but worrying about the person who approaches you in the grocery store and says the wrong thing.
I'm still navigating through all the feelings these last 2 weeks have brought up for me. I'm still processing, and writing is helping me so much with that. I'm taking this one day at a time and trying to remind myself to choose joy and be grateful for all the things that I now know and the plan for the future. But, I still can't help but feel like that kid on Christmas morning.
To be fair, I never said this would be a fun game.