We are nearing our next try, however, we are also nearing our first would-be due date, March 3rd. I should be 3 weeks from delivery, or having a baby at anytime. I should have a huge belly and an unprecedented amount of joy and excitement. I was doing pretty well not thinking about it, but a series of events have brought it to the forefront of my mind daily this week.
The first: My mom was visiting this weekend, and we were shopping for a professional-looking bag for me to use for school. We were in a store that sells handbags exclusively, and I knew the only thing big enough would be what they had deemed their “diaper bag”. When I asked where I would find them, the sales lady looked me up and down and asked, “Is it a gift for someone?” I was infuriated! It hit too close to home. Like I couldn’t possibly be pregnant! And to be judged unable to have a baby by a perfect stranger. Like somehow just by looking at me, she could see I was infertile.
Then, at school the other day, one of the common conversations was happening. A girl in my cohort was talking about being worried about possibly being pregnant, and how awful that would be for her. Another student, overhearing her and misunderstanding, started gushing about her being pregnant. Then the girl who just had a baby, who knows that I was pregnant at the same time as her and obviously am not now 8 1/2 months pregnant, shouted, “It’s not that hard!” I immediately got up and left. No one followed. I cried it out in the hall, with the additional blow of no one noticing or seeming to care that I was upset. When I came back in, I decided something needed to be done about it, and sat down with the group of girls. I explained that I had been trying to get pregnant for 2 years, and had multiple miscarriages, and how much it hurts when they’re so flippant about pregnancy and babies. I cried, and they cried, and it was super awkward after it had all been said. Where do you go from there? I spent the rest of the afternoon acting happy, seemingly trying to “prove-it” to them that I was okay and that they didn’t need to be awkward around me.
Then today I arrived at class to a plate of cupcakes and a card. The text of the card said, “I wish I knew some words comforting enough for the hurt you’re feeling. All I can do is tell you I care, I really do, and my heart is with you.” The inscription, “I know that was hard to share and even more difficult to experience. I’m so sorry for your hardship and loss. I’m here to bake cupcakes whenever you need- honest.” It was just what I’d felt I’d been missing through this whole experience. My friends who’d known before didn’t make any effort to see how I was, or offer their continued support, or acknowledge how awful it all has been. Finally, because I had that difficult and awkward conversation, about such a seemingly taboo subject, I have the support and understanding I’ve been lacking and wanting so desperately. And hopefully a little more discretion on their parts in conversation.
WordPress just informed me the other day that I’ve had this blog now for a year. I remember blogging tentatively at first, thinking that I would pour out my frustrations and worries and get pregnant right after starting it. That each month, I may be pregnant and make it all null. And here we are, one year later, and I’m the one still here. Still talking about infertility, and loss, and the struggles and woes of trying to get pregnant. It feels like everyone else has either moved on, or just begun, or had their beloved babies. And I’m still here.