When I lay down at night, completely and utterly exhausted, my brain starts to wander. I come up with all kinds of wonderful ideas and blog posts, which will most likely never come to fruition, because I’m too tired to take the effort to write them down. Over the past couple of weeks, I have sat down several times to write a post, only to get called away to something else, and I forget about the post. And, I tend to live in the moment, and sometimes the moment for the post just passes me by. I have been cooking/baking a lot over the past couple weeks and hope to get around to posting the recipes.
So, I sat down with the intention of sharing one of those recipes, and found myself looking up a blog that I read periodically. It has been a few months since I last visited this woman’s blog, but one sentence in her latest post caught me up & spoke volumes to my heart. I’ll sum it up in one word: infertility.
As I read through more of her recent posts, tears streamed down my face and my heart went out to her & her husband. And now as I’m typing this, more tears are streaming down my face. I read a post about a situation she was in and some stuff people said to her – and I can’t believe the insensitivity of some people. Of course, I know some of it was said with good intentions. [I have always been one to say something that came out sounding entirely different than the way I meant it (and most of the time sounded horribly insensitive or even mean). To prevent that, I switched to not saying anything at all - but that's not good either, because then the person doesn't know that you care.]
At first, I chalked the tears up to crazy pregnancy hormones (and yes, I do think that played a part), but as I read more and more, I started to understand more of where the tears were coming from and who they were for. They were not only for this woman and her current trials, they were for my family members and friends that have struggled with infertility and miscarriage, and they were for my own (deep hidden) hurts.
I’m going to let you in on a secret that only my husband knows (and God, but He knows everything). I have not struggled with infertility, and my pregnancies have been fairly easy (with the exception of a scare at the end of my 2nd pregnancy) – those are not the secrets. You see, even though those are things I have no control over, they have caused others to treat me differently, and I have allowed that to suppress my pregnancy giddiness. When I was pregnant with #2, just a few months after having our first child, a family member said something about others not having it so “easy”. For the rest of the family gathering, I felt that the person was treating me differently. I did not feel like I was boasting or anything, just passing along the news that we had a baby on the way. I felt that my good news had hurt this person and that they were not happy for me.
So a little over a year later, when we found out we were pregnant with #3, I was hesitant about who to tell. More people close to me had struggled with infertility, pregnancy and loss. I actually felt guilty for being pregnant again. I didn’t understand why my husband & I were being so abundantly blessed, while others were going through heartache and pain. It wasn’t fair & I didn’t want to add to their heartache with our good news. My husband was actually able to get through to me and help me to find true happiness about our blessing from above. However, when I found out that we were pregnant with #4, I again found myself hesitant to share the news to some people.
I recently read a post over at Life as Mom about What to Say to the Mom (or Dad) of a Preemie, since I always feel like I end up saying the wrong thing. And then I read those posts today about struggling with infertility, which brought to light my personal hurt about not struggling with infertility – which in turn made me think about all the things I do struggle with. And what I’ve realized is that trials stink. We all go through trials, they’re part of what defines us and makes us who we are. That doesn’t change the fact that they stink. No one likes to go through trials, but it can be pretty amazing to look back and see God at work & to realize His purpose for the trial in the first place.