Infertility is a constant wound, a constant aching in your heart and often even after having a child, this pain remains for couples, it is grief, it is a process and nobody controls it. All we can do is work through it and surround ourselves with loved ones who understand this. Even after remarrying, a widower dons't just say "Okay, I'm fine now." Someone who has lost a child doesn't just stop grieving their child because another one is born.
In infertility, each month two people, a whole extended family of loved ones, looses a child we will never know. I have seen that little one countless times in my mind. Held her hand, snuggled her in bed with a cozy book, jumped into the cool rivers of summertime with her, seen her grow up and become a woman and have her own children. This is what every healthy couple does when they find out they're going to become parents, except with infertility issues, often those dreams and realities and visions come to a stark nothing and we are left to grieve once again.
Today, most of my post is going to be from an article on what they call Infertility Etiquette. I'm not a huge etiquette person but this piece hits the issue on the head and I do think there are times in our life when we need to observe appropriate practices and etiquette in order to be there for loved ones.
For example, nobody would ever arrive at a friend's funeral and tell her husband, "You know what, my wife is a pain in the butt sometimes, you're lucky not to have that old ball and chain." That would be horrifying. Just like a friend loosing their child and someone saying "Yeah, I just don't get why you can't just get over this." That would be unthinkable. But sometimes people don't understand infertility and accidentally or even on purpose say things exactly like that.
The old adage is still true; If you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything at all. Being silent on a topic you don't understand is so much better than saying something unfortunately ignorant or hurtful that can never be taken back.
Nick and I, and our families, have had so much love poured down to us throughout this process. One of my favorite ways that people have shown us love is just the quick, short, loving text that says, I'm thinking about you guys and I love you.
I can't tell you how many of those we've received. It's not always necessary to understand everything that a friend or loved one is going through as long as you're able to offer solid, simple, caring support.
We all know ourselves. Some of us are too close, too involved, too outspoken to do that and that's totally okay, the best thing to do then is simply educate yourself. Learn about what your loved one is going through. There are a million articles on the internet entitled 25 Things Not to Say When ___. Just find one about what your friend is going through and take note. That's the beauty of the Information Age. It's so easy to learn more about anything on this earth and it's never too late to learn something new and become a supportive person.
Often that is the happiest part of a difficult process, finding out how many people you have in your life loving and supporting you. I can't thank you enough. Even and especially those who have found my blog through social media and reached out. There are so many beautiful souls on this planet. In the pain there is always that love.
So educate yourself, learn, understand, open your heart, humble yourself, and become someone who supports, not somebody who tears others down.
That has been without a doubt the hardest part of all this; tragedy pulls back the curtain and reveals the inner parts of us all. Unfortunately there have been people in my life that I love deeply, that I thought I could count on for anything, that I believed would be there for me through thick and thin, my "ride or die" friends, my closest family that have shown themselves to be extremely unsupportive, ignorant, hurtful, self-centered, or just not up to the task of being there for a loved one who is hurting.
I would never change what has happened in my life because it has shown me who I am. It has humbled me, helped me grow, shown me my own strength, taught me how to advocate for myself, how to be firm and clear and how to rise up and be nobody's doormat. It has shown me what I am able to survive and what a powerful, soft, wise person lives inside of me.
It has also shown me that in others and I am forever grateful. I started making screenshots of all the kind messages I received over the past few weeks even, let alone months or years, and it was so many I couldn't fit them in this post.
I hope that today you think about someone you love who is going through a hard time and just send them a message that says, I'm thinking about you and I love you. It will make their day.
I truly believe the more love we put out into the world, the more we will be surrounded with love. The more gratefulness we put out into the world, the more we will be surrounded with gratitude. The more we try to learn and grow, the more understanding and peace will gravitate towards us and the more we will be surrounded with people who support these things in us.
So today I am thinking about you. I am grateful for you. I feel love and hope and happiness for you, for all of you. This post today is possible because of you. Something that did not exist before is possible because of you.
And when we become parents, when our child finally makes her way into this world, that will have been possible because of you. Because of those of you who stayed to fight, who stayed to cry with us, who stayed to love and live and learn and grow with us.
All things are possible in love. And in love we have all things.
Lots of Love,
Don't forget to read the article below. It will honestly help you no matter what you're going through. Nobody likes to put their foot in their mouth :-)