Infertility is such a heavy topic for an abundance of reasons. I have seen first-hand the devastating effect it can have on the lives of those it touches, and it hurts to even imagine how they must feel. My parents struggled for close to a decade in an attempt to have children naturally and were unable to succeed. Even after reaching out to doctors, it took two attempts with in-vitro fertilization (IVF -not an “inexpensive” procedure) for them to finally be rewarded with triplets! I realize that this success story, although long and filled with emotional ups and downs, is not a reality for many couples. I also realize there are many women out there who have legitimately tried every option available and still have not been blessed with a baby. I can’t imagine what that must be like. I can only commend these women on the immense strength they possess to carry on regardless of the pain they endure every time they see a mother with her baby. I will never know your struggle. I also want to make sure that my purpose in this post is clear; it is not to invalidate your pain and suffering, but to point to the fact that there is pain and suffering on the other end of the spectrum as well. It might seem incomprehensible to someone who has been told they can’t have children of their own, but when a woman is given the gift of a baby before she is ready, it brings its own set of emotions and hardship to work through.
“You’re pregnant!…already?” is something I got used to hearing in the months after my husband (Tim) and I announced the news to our friends. We had only been married for about 3 months before we found out that I was pregnant (despite being on birth control). Initially, I was heartbroken. I have always loved children and wanted children of my own…just, not yet. It took a month with no cycle and three positive pregnancy tests to convince me that it was real. Tim was very supportive through the process, but I could tell he was stressed as well. This was not something we planned for. We were living in a rental house in the Susquehanna trails – an area notorious for drug use. I had just rescued a puppy who was incredibly high-strung and not yet house trained (although we did find another home for her). I was nowhere near my parents (who live in central Florida). I was working part time and also working on my degree. Lastly, we were still newlyweds! We didn’t know what to do next.
I couldn’t help but feel crushed by the weight of this immense, life-changing event that I knew I should feel blessed to have. I told myself over and over again how I should be thankful because so many women want what I have but are unable to achieve it. Yet every time I thought about the new life growing in me, I would break down. I thought about all the negatives – the fact that I’m still a student, completing my undergraduate degree online. The fact that I’m young and not yet ready to relinquish my body to the effects of pregnancy and childbirth. The fact that we are hundreds of miles away from my parents and not in the position to buy a house. The thought that weighed heaviest on me, however, was the fact that I had only a few more months of alone time with my husband before a new life took up residence with us. This was something I especially struggled with because of how quickly Tim and I were married. I wanted to have him all to myself for at least a year or two before we had kids, and this ruined that plan completely.
Fast forward a couple months and there is light at the end of the tunnel. With constant prayer, leaning on God and Tim for support and encouragement, I have overcome many of the negative feelings that went along with my pregnancy. My family has been extremely supportive and their excitement for us has helped as well. I assign full responsibility for my change of heart to God. Over the past few months I found myself running to Him often, still searching for a reason why this happened when it did. Through prayer and searching His word, I came to a place of peace where I not only accept the new life He has given us, but celebrate and embrace it! I am grateful for this immense blessing He has bestowed on us. We can’t wait to meet our little girl and see what the Lord has in store for our family! While being a mother is not something I had planned for this point in my life, I have accepted and embraced this new direction my life is going in. I love to have everything planned out, but the whole point of faith is that we trust God to work things out for our best, even when it doesn’t seem like it.
I also realize that a positive ending such as this is not the reality for many women who have struggled (or still do) with the feelings I did. I feel for you. I pray that every woman will be able to eventually see the true blessing that it is, despite the pain that initially comes with feeling unprepared for such a life-altering event.
The pictures at the top are some that my sister took of us for our announcement of the pregnancy. These are to show how deceptive social media can be! We both look incredibly happy (and we were) but I was still struggling with many of those negative feelings at that time.