In honor of NIAW this coming Monday, 4/22, I wrote the following entry. It is being nominated for the “Hope Award” for best blog, via the RESOLVE organization. I could win a trip to NY to speak about my story & infertility if I win! Fingers crossed…
I strongly believe that women are the strongest beings on Earth, and here’s my tribute to those of us who have been down this rocky road.
Don’t ignore time. Four months ago, I was four months pregnant – and it was taken in an instant. Don’t take any second of your life for granted, it is all with a purpose. My first and only pregnancy I will ever experience is now a precious memory that I will carry with me always, but I have learned that time presses on with or without your consent. I wanted to stay wrapped in the week that I lost him, because it was easier to say that “earlier this week, I was pregnant”. That week grew to a month, and now has turned into a quarter of a year. A month from now, what would have been my due date will approach and time will not slow down or cease to exist just because I dread that day. And after that, it will be one bundle of memories that I tie together in order to move forward and still remember it all; time heals all wounds.
Don’t ignore the fact that we women warriors fighting the battle of infertility deserve a family just as much as a woman who can get pregnant naturally. Without my uterus, I am still human; I still have emotions and feelings, and the insatiable need to be a mother. I can still be one of the best mothers that this Earth has ever known, even if it means that my child will come from another woman’s womb. I have learned a lot from this tragedy life has handed me, one thing being that I will never give up. I always wondered when my “breaking point” in this path would be, but it seems as though the harder the path gets, the stronger my will becomes. I am not scared of the cost, or the trials, or the tests, or the legalities, or the nay-sayers and pessimists, or the possibility of failing; because I have already failed and picked myself back up. Life gets no worse for me than what I have already been through, so bring on the storms and I’ll show you what steel magnolias are made of.
Don’t ignore the priceless gift that those extraordinary miracles of women that we call “surrogates” or “gestational carriers” give to us infertile women. If the birth of a baby is considered a miracle, then the selflessness of a woman willing to carry that miracle for someone else must be a Godsend; these saints on Earth that we have the privilege of knowing are here to be the real heroes in these scenarios. Sure, our foundation is going on to help other couples like us begin families, but the truth is that we cannot help people like us without the women who are willing to be the missing link that we need in the chain of what creates a family.
Don’t ignore your own feelings of hopelessness and sorrow through this journey. While no sane person enjoys being sad, it is necessary to understand that you have a disease just as other women who suffer from other debilitating illnesses. Emotionally, mentally, and physically you have felt the wrath of one of the most unfair and unfortunate situations any woman can imagine. Let your beautiful soul heal in whatever way is necessary, so that one day when that miracle of life is given to you, you can look at your new life with a deep and undying appreciation for yourself and your new family. I am proud of my scars both internally and externally, because they are the accessories to my life story and proof that I have earned my incredible strength.
And don’t ignore the safety net that is formed from the network of family, friends, and community that support the people like us walking this path. Whether it’s a best friend or a business, a neighborhood or a supper club, we need the support system that God provides us with – no matter how small or large. We will weather this storm, but it is a much more tolerable storm when we have the umbrellas of care, compassion, love and understanding provided by the incredible people in our lives that refuse to leave us out in the rain.
Please visit our website, www.RobertWilliamFoundation.org, to learn how we are working to help other couples begin families. We are also advocating for change in legislation regarding IVF/ART coverage in insurance mandates in NC. Read all about it, and learn how to help us help others!
Please visit these fertility services and advocacy sources:
- http://www.resolve.org/infertility101 (Basic understanding of the disease of infertility.)
- http://www.resolve.org/national-infertility-awareness-week/about.html (About NIAW)