Ahhh, I feel like I am sitting down to write a controversial blog post today. I have been thinking and praying over this topic for a while because it’s not one where I want to offend anyone. And I don’t want to come across bitter, because I’m not. I started this blog with a vision of being able to speak for women struggling with infertility. And lately, after many conversations with others in my place, have realized that this is a topic that I would do my best to prayerfully, lovingly approach – the topic of pregnant women complaining.
Here is what I want to say before I go any further. I have several friends who are pregnant – both in real life and in the lovely social media world. Ones that have struggled to conceive and others where it came more easily. I am genuinely so happy for each and every one of them, as being in my place, I recognize the incredible blessing that pregnancy is. This post is not meant to make anyone feel bad, or create any anger. I am not looking for a “BUT I HAVE THE RIGHT TO COMPLAIN! IT’S A FREE COUNTRY!!” response. Well, I mean you can, but I will politely ignore it. (And you.) The purpose of this is simply to explain how the complaining makes us (TTC’ers and those that lost a baby) feel. You – pregnant mama reading this getting angry already – can chose to respond kindly to our feelings and acknowledge them or not to and you are welcome at any time to close this blog entry if this is a sensitive topic for you.
With all of that said – here is the thing, more and more often recently have I come across friends complaining about their pregnancies and each and every time it stings. It hurts that something that I would do ANYTHING for is something that is so “miserable and unbearable” – for a max of 9 months. I want to celebrate your blessing with you! But when you start changing the balance of acknowledging that you are the recipient of a GOD GIVEN blessing and spend more time complaining about your back, your feet, the fact that you have to be on bed rest, how hot you are or how sick you feel, it makes me not want to celebrate your blessing. Because I wonder if you really understand the amazing gift that you have been given. And it hurts. Because I want nothing more than my back to hurt, my hips to ache, to feel a hot flash that isn’t a result of 5 shots that day but because I am growing a baby inside me.
Granted, I will empathize with you when you complain respectfully. Occasional complaining is ok! It’s how you feel and I am so thankful for my pregnant friends who follow it up with “…but I am thankful for every time I throw up, because that means my baby is healthy.” I adore the Instagram pictures of swollen cankles with the captions “Love my cankles … because it means I am pregnant!!” Thank you for acknowledging that regardless of the hellish symptoms, you have a baby. I love my friends who get put on hospital bedrest and cheer that they are keeping their babies in and healthy and would do anything for them. THANK YOU! Thank you to the pregnant women who remember women like me when they are getting up 10 times a night to pee. I would give my left arm to pee that much because of a baby pushing on my bladder. I laughed at a friend the other day who complained after eating that she felt so full. I felt full looking at her! But she did it with a laugh and has been nothing but graceful and caring and constantly acknowledging of her blessing this entire pregnancy. To the women like you, I will chuckle and get you a glass of water (and tums) because I DO care that you are having a hard day.
Here’s the thing – if I knew that you were living in your parents basement and wanted a house of your own so badly, how would it make you feel if I wrote a Facebook status that said “Ohmygosh, I am SOOO tired of dusting my 3,000 square foot house! What a pain this is! Oh the miseries of owning a home.” Or if you were struggling with money, barely making the bills and had everyone praying for you to find a job, and I posted something on Instagram that said “Ohhh, my arms are SO tired from holding my purse with all this money!! Woe is me!” It just doesn’t make sense right? It’s not something that we think to do! Unfortunately I feel like it has become too socially acceptable to complain about certain blessings that God has given us – at the expense of others who haven’t been given that same blessing.
I am open with our journey and others know the pain we have faced and are facing. But you know what, I am 1 in 8. 1 in 8 women who are in a situation where they are struggling to conceive. I talk to women EVERYDAY who are struggling and do not share with anyone except a few family and friends. That means that you DO have people struggling that you don’t know about. I am speaking for them. If you have 300 Facebook friends, that means that with every “Good lord, I hate being on bedrest, I am missing out on SUMMER!” post you write, you are hurting about 37 people’s feelings. Not just hurting their feelings … putting a dagger into their heart as they recall the pain of sitting on the toilet bleeding as they lose their baby; or crying on the side of the bed as the pregnancy test shows the painful one-lined result; or passing a due date or getting that first scary doctor call telling them their husband has an extremely low sperm count. It hurts. It makes me struggling with confusion so badly with how people could be so blessed and not acknowledge it.
Moms, I know how hard the morning sickness is. I empathize with how hot you feel and how bored you are laying on the couch for a few weeks. Don’t forget I have experienced so many of these side effects as a result of going through several years of medications and 2 hard IVF cycles. It’s NOT easy! But if I could find reasons to praise God for even blessing me with the CHANCE to have a baby as I cling the toilet bowl in the morning, I beg you to find the silver lining blessings in your situations.
And to those women who sat in my shoes and struggled with TTC and now are the ones complaining – shame on you. You know how this feels. You cried the same tears 7 months ago when others complained about being pregnant, reminding them how badly you wanted to be in their place. Don’t forget that emotion. Don’t forget that you prayed for this baby and wanted it. Savor every single trip to the bathroom, every single hot flash and every ache and pain – knowing that you are going through 280 days of misery in order to be blessed with a child for the rest of your life.
Now, to those who are still shaking their head muttering about their right to complain – go ahead and complain. I can (and will) block you from my newsfeed and unfollow you on IG. I will return your calls less and less if that’s what you are going to choose to talk about. Just as you as the right to complain, I too have the right to stop being a part of your life. And I would hate that. I would hate that friendships would suffer at the cost of you simply acknowledging and being thankful for your blessing. Know your audience, I beg you.
There – I said it. And please, friends that are pregnant, so many of you have complained gracefully and it doesn’t bother me. But to those who feel the need to moan all the time. Stop it. Please. My and my TTC friends are begging you. And please understand, I am not bitter. I truly am so happy for you and your blessing. I just ache sometimes as a result of flippancy. We get it. We know you are pregnant.
Now – on to happier things! Josh and I are doing really well. I feel really grateful that we have been surrounded with so much support and love as we dealt with the reality of our BFN (big fat negative.) We are excited to be moving forward with our FET (frozen embryo transfer). We meet with our nurse consultant next Wednesday to get our final prescriptions, sign and sign and sign some papers, and finalize the cycle. I have so much to more to share about a great conversation with our doctor and answer many of the questions that you guys have been asking me about “why is this happening?” and “what are your chances now?”. I will save that for another post in the next couple days – as well as fill you in on my first fertility acupuncture appointment. (Funny story, I promise.)
I hope you all have a fantastic weekend! Thanks for being the rockstar supporters that you are. :)