This article is mostly based on my own infertility feeling of being stuck, so I use a lot of "feels" and "seems" and "maybes".
When a relative that could have technically been my mother (in age) told me she has yet to feel like an adult at times, I realized my yet to feel like an adult-edness solely due to not having children theory was off. She has children and has felt similarly. And then Jesus Christ pops into mind among others who didn't procreate biologically.. it would be silly to say they weren't adults or "couldn't understand.." or whatever else on the basis of not having children.
Despite knowing this feeling of immaturity is universal, it still hits me at moments with infertility in hand. It doesn't help when cliche's that start with "you don't know love until.." or ".. without which life isn't worth living" sort of silliness abound online, in regard to becoming a mom. The message is that I am practically a non-person, stuck in a gooey pod person cocoon and yet - if ever - to hatch out with babies in arm and therefore "be someone". I'm on hold. I'm stagnant. I'm barren.
It's all so dumb when you put a light on it. But when you're down, almost anything is believable. And it makes the grief so much worse if we start to believe it.
To feel on hold has the potential to hold you down and suck the life out of you. Why bother to do more than just exist, if your life feels on hold? So many aspects of infertility grief can be crippling, but I think this may be the biggest one. If we feel we have yet to live, and that the whole point of living is tied to fertility, we won't really live. Perhaps early on our decisions will be about children that might be coming any odd nine months or so from now, then you may find yourself in a child filled neighborhood with a stocked baby room and a lifestyle ready for SAHM-ness or balancing home and work and.. no baby. You have a soccer mom A+ rated vehicle and.. no soccer kids. Years go by, you are living your motherhood-compatible years with.. no baby. Years go by, and your life is built up to suit someone that doesn't even exist.
So why bother? You sit on your hands with expectations dashed. Maybe until menopause. Maybe past then because, after all.. no grandchildren!
Life isn't "happening to us" like it seems to for others.
What a depressing mindset, huh?
The only cure for the grief enhancing on hold-itis may be to make life happen. And that is a tall order when your heart is broken and change comes with risk that might make for a little more heartbreak. This is the year, folks. This is the year I am taking these risks. I am pursuing another dream or two that have nada to do with babies. I'm not even taking baby steps (although I have nothing against baby steps if you do walk the talk!) This move is a huge leap. I can't base my life around a what if anymore. Perhaps I'll share more details later. What are you doing to make life happen?
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