For all of those dealing (or who have dealt with) infertility, pregnancy loss, and/or baby loss, I present for your consideration, a truly terrible grouping of some of the nonsense we go through in daily life:
1) Bellies. Round with child, bumping into you on the train, sitting on laps at the doctor’s office, or staring at you from opposite the table at a coffee date.
2) To go along with #1, BABIES. Seriously, are we in another baby-boom? Because they are EVERYWHERE.
3) Gaining 10 lbs, and having people ask if you have “news.”
4) Barfing your guts out from stomach flu, and people asking if you have “news.”
5) Having no news to tell.
6) Having news, telling it, and then having to retract it. People looking on with pity.
7) Watching two lines turn to one, and knowing that there is nothing you can do to stop it.
8) Well-meaning friends offering advice on how to get pregnant and/or avoid pregnancy loss… even though they’ve never had to worry about it themselves for an instant.
9) Trying everything they’ve said on the sly, and hoping it might help.
10) How there is no separate ward in hospitals for baby or pregnancy loss, so you end up in antepartum.
12) Lightening-fast internet connections, coffee, and WAY too much time on your hands in the middle of the night.
13) Effing “baby-dust” in forums and on various social media.
14) Doctor Google. Damn his hide.
Related: When the Storm Continues to Rage
15) Never seeing two lines in your lifetime.
16) Only seeing two lines in your life with no child at the end of it.
17) “Oh! You should TOTALLY adopt! My aunt’s friend’s sister-in-law adopted a baby and found out they were pregnant in the SAME MONTH!!”
18) People believing that adoption takes away all the pain of your journey with pregnancy loss, baby loss, and/or infertility.
19) Not having the funds/health/willing partner to adopt.
20) All the cute ways out there to tell your partner you’re pregnant.
21) Father’s Day and Mother’s Day. Because even if you have a child (or children), they can still hurt. And if you don’t, they are horrific.
22) Sister’s, sisters-in-law, and cousins all announcing pregnancies. Or subsequent pregnancies.
23) Baby shower invites.
24) Friends who don’t tell you they’re pregnant, but just fade off into the distance in order “not to hurt you.”
25) Holidays. Any of them. All of them.
26) Buying pregnancy tests in bulk because you are a pee-stick-addict.
27) Thinking that every single PMS symptom *might* be a pregnancy symptom. (“Wait….do my boobs hurt?” Feels self up in public. “Yep! They hurt! Better pee on a stick!”)
28) That first visit to the RE (Reproductive Endocrinologist), and the hope it brings.
29) Watching “reality” birthing shows on TV, knowing that they’re going to hurt, but being unable to stop.
30) Questions from strangers. “How many kids do you have?” “Don’t you WANT kids?” Both tragic.
31) Anniversaries of when you started trying.
32) Anniversaries of when you saw two lines.
33) Anniversaries of miscarriages, stillbirths, or other pregnancy loss, and how the world seems to (cruelly) continue on anyway.
34) People being afraid to use your child(s) name(s) in front of you.
35) People acting as if you should be totally past it by now.
36) People without boundaries. Asking all sorts of questions they have no right to know the answers to. Getting upset with you when you don’t answer. “Geez, SOMEONE’S testy. I was just asking!” Yeah.
37) The term “only child.” Loaded, much?
38) Being sooooo happy you’re pregnant, but soooooooooooooooo scared at the same time.
39) Being asked by doctor how many children you have, how many pregnancies you’ve had, and watching them write down the numbers.
40) The sheer volumes of paper in your medical files. Seriously, they might need 3-ring binders to store your info in instead of a file-folder.
41) Triggers sneaking up on you unaware…leaving you crying in the diaper aisle in grocery stores.
42) Thinking that your partner would be happier without you, or that they would be so much happier with someone who could give them a family.
43) Being scared your partner will leave for the above reasons.
44) Partners handling grief differently, and the bitterness that can creep into marriages because of it.
45) Platitudes. Ugh.
Related: A Closer Look at the Wrong Things People Say
46) Family sweeping your history under the table because they don’t want anyone to “feel bad.”
47) Desperately trying and trying and TRYING to have a baby, for years, and nothing coming from it. (Except a shattered sex life, tarnished dreams, and an empty bank account.)
48) The fear that you’re becoming bitter and jaded, so you slap on a smile and become the perkiest person on the planet. For five minutes.
49) Actually becoming bitter and jaded.
50) The knowledge that life is far from fair.
What would you add to this?
Photo by Green Chameleon on Unsplash
Jill Kawchak is the proud mama to one truly amazing daughter, the wife of a good man, and a companion of a very troublesome Labrador retriever. Her days are spent homeschooling from the shadow of the Rocky Mountains in Cochrane, Alberta, where her daughter constantly begs to go exploring. She had always wanted to be a mother and started TTC just after her wedding in 2006. Jill has been diagnosed with PCOS, and was told motherhood would be a difficult goal to attain, but after 3.5 years of infertility with one early loss, the clouds parted, and the sunshine that was a little girl with blue eyes and brown curls broke through. However, in the years since her daughter arrived, there have been another 4 early losses. After *much* debate, angst and tears, Jill and her husband, Mark, have decided to end their fertility journey and are now focused on ‘what comes next’. She writes to keep sane, and support those who are also experiencing infertility and baby loss.