Wednesday, February 26, 2014

365 days ago, I was a different person

I hadn’t intended to write about this day – or even really think twice about it. But then Timehop reminded me of a few photos taken one year ago today, and I couldn’t help but think about what has changed in the last year. Because, 365 days ago, we found out we were pregnant.

We were overjoyed, yet naïve, thrilled yet a little bit overwhelmed. We had been waiting for what felt like forever. A year later, still waiting, I can tell you we had no idea just how long “forever” could be.

I was over-the-moon to see the word “pregnant” on a series—yes, a series—of tests. Even though a tiny little part of me knew that something could go wrong, and I instantly became a nervous wreck, deep down I just assumed that this was it.

But it wasn’t it. We lost the baby and started on a fertility journey that still has so many unanswered questions and no clear direction.

A few months ago, I had coffee with a friend who has been struggling with infertility for over two years. While our situations are different, we could relate on a lot of levels. I told her I felt these experiences had changed me, and she asked, “how?” Not because she didn’t believe me, but because she genuinely cared about how this journey was affecting me.

I had to think about it for a minute. There are a lot of ways I could describe it; it’s changed me in both good and bad ways.

My husband might tell you it’s made me depressed. He worries about me and doesn’t like to see me sad, even if it’s only on occasion or in completely normal situations.
My mom and my mother-in-law might tell you it’s made me stronger. I love their faith in me, especially on the days when I don’t feel it to be true.

Some friends might tell you it’s made me distant. Others might tell you it’s made me more empathetic and nurturing.

My faith might tell you it’s made me unsteady. It’s not easy battling conflicting emotions of wanting to lean into faith and prayer for healing, and at the same time feeling discouraged and confused.
My body might tell you it’s made me weak. I am not the same person I was before I got pregnant, and yet I don’t even have pregnancy to blame. The hormones and medical treatments have done damage in their own ways, but my emotions and comfort-seeking eating habits haven’t helped either.

I might tell you it’s given me a new perspective. Of course, sometimes this new perspective can seem angry for frustrated, but I like to think it’s not all the time. Most of the time, I try and focus on being grateful for the blessings we do have, and patient for whatever life has in store for us. I don’t take things for granted, and consider myself incredibly lucky to have a partner like Sean to wade through this messy stuff with.

I may have known 365 days ago that big changes were in store for me, but they weren’t quite as I had planned. Life is unpredictable, and if I’ve learned anything from this, it’s that. The next 365 days will bring about its own challenges. Of this, I’m sure. But I like to think we’re ready to handle it, and ready to embrace the changes that come along with it.

1 comment:

  1. Oh my word. So many tears I am crying as I read this. You're a brave, strong woman. There's a child out there just waiting for a mother like you. I can't wait until you and Sean get to meet him or her. I think of you often. Let's seriously grab that cup of coffee sometime soon. I am so bad at nailing down plans, but I promise I will for you. :)