My latest blog, I have been playing with these ideas for months, I hope you like it:
I’ll be happy when I’m pregnant. I’ll see those two little lines and all the anxiety, worry and grief of the last few years will be lifted like a huge weight from my shoulders. I will heave a great side of relief and feel like I can breathe again. I will have a permanent grin on my face, the world will become a beautiful rosy place and the sun will always shine!
I think I am more likely to take another deep breath in and start to hold my breath again, waiting to get to the ‘safe zone’ of the 12 week scan. Our mother’s generation did not believe that they were pregnant until they had missed 3 periods and (I wish I didn’t have to write this but as the 5 foot poster at Finsbury Park station shouts at me) 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage. Devastatingly we also all know people who have gone much longer than 12 weeks and still not made it to the medical establishments ‘goal’ of a live birth.
So let’s start again, I’ll be happy when I’m leaving the hospital with my healthy bouncing baby. But the first few months are so overwhelming, I’ll be happy when he/she is a bit more robust and crawling…..…maybe walking….…maybe driving!
My mum will never stop being my gran’s baby, her youngest, in turn I will never stop being my mum’s baby and I will never stop loving and worrying about my child no matter what age. There is no destination to be reached in parenthood, a point in time when you can sit back and say “I’ve made it”, parenthood is a journey to be experienced.
Therefore I have a choice, spend my entire life in a state of perpetual anxiety or, if only for a few precious moments at a time, release the past and gently let go of my expectations and worries about the future and just exist in this moment, the present moment. In truth we only ever live in the present, our past is made up of thousands of present moments strung together and the future never arrives, it is always just now.
Ask yourself why do you want a child? The essence of any answer you give will boil down to:
“I want to be happy, to feel content in my life.”
If we envisage having a child to be a source of joy and we know that once we have a child there is no end-point, no goal other than to enjoy and experience parenthood itself, then does it not make sense that we should strive to feel happy and content on the journey to parenthood as well? Some of you may be shaking your heads and saying this is simply not possible when dealing with infertility. I’ve been there, I’ve been in a place where nothing can lift the darkness of what I am experiencing and everything that used to make me happy has no relevance as described in my poem “The Unborn Mother”.
It was a real eye-opener when a dear friend said to me:
“It sounds like what you are experiencing is grief.”
I have not experienced a miscarriage, I’m yet to see a positive pregnancy test, so what am I grieving for? When I started to think about it, it was so many things, the baby I have not yet conceived, the old me, my life before infertility, our relationship before infertility. A quick Google search brought up the five stages of grief.
This completely changed the way I viewed how I felt, this was normal, it was okay to feel like this. The model is not a set of rules for how everybody experiences a traumatic life experience, nor is it the set order in which you may experience these emotions, but it gave me something to work with. It meant that whenever I found myself back in a dark spot instead of panicking and thinking “I can’t cope with feeling like this” I could be sure that it would just be a matter of time before I shifted into a different emotional state. I felt like I was on a merry-go-round of the first four emotions, denial – “This cannot be happening to me”, anger “This is not fair what have I done to deserve this?” Bargaining “Just let me be pregnant this month and I promise that I will………” and depression where nothing felt real anymore.
For the rest of blog visit:
it's quite long!