Sunday, February 12, 2012

Just When You Think You're OK

Don't get me wrong, I really don't feel too bad today. Still excited about where we are in our journey and excited about this IVF, but sometimes things just catch you off guard.

A girl at church recently had a baby and hadn't been back yet so alot of people hadn't seen her in weeks and had never seen the baby. My mom was kind enough to text me this morning to give me a heads-up she heard they were coming this morning. I thanked her for telling me and we decided to not arrive super early so we wouldn't get caught in all the oohing and aahing over said baby. It's not like I didn't know it was coming, but it's still hard.

I guess I should give you the back story on this too, this girl was once my very best friend.

We've known each other since we were about 7 and grown up together. We had our times growing up when we weren't close but we've always been a part of each others lives. We went to high school together, played basketball and volleyball together, graduated together and were both in each others weddings.

Our lives have taken slightly different paths, she got married two weeks after we graduated while I had just started dating someone (who is now my husband). By the time I got married she already had one little boy. We decided to wait before having kids and by then she had baby #2. We were never really sharing the same life experiences after H.S. but we go to the same church and stayed close.

She is not aware of the details of our struggle with IF but obviously knows of our desire to have children. We had been ttc for nearly a year when she announced she was pregnant with baby #3 (summer '08). I remember being so excited at the time (and so naive) and thinking how much fun it would be for us to be pregnant together. But as we all know, that never happened.

When my little sister announced in March of '10 that she was pregnant she did what a good friend should do - asked me out to dinner to see how I was doing. We talked and cried for several hours as I poured out my heart as to how I felt. How hurtful it was that we had been trying for over 2.5 years and now my little sister was pregnant before me. I remember even telling her that night how sometimes I wished I could pick up her adorable little baby and just pretend that he was mine. Trying to convey to her the hurt that it caused every time someone else so easily got pregnant.

The interesting thing about this dinner was the fact that our relationship was never the same again. Maybe I was too honest with her. I looked at it like she could never figure out how to be friends with my sister and me at the same time. She had her three kids and now my sister was pregnant, of course she'd want to be happy for the little pregnant girl! We talked less and less, we got together less and less.

When we got pregnant after IVF #1 (January '11) I made an attempt to include her. Before we made a big announcement to everyone else, I called her and personally told her the news myself. Of course she was ecstatic and for a few weeks we were "close" again.

Those precious weeks were shortlived as we miscarried shortly after that. The thing that bothered me the most was that 99% of those people who jumped on our happy pregnant bandwagon were no where to be found. Including her. Don't get me wrong, she dropped off a card a few days later but it happened to be when I wasn't home. My mom had talked me into getting out of the house for a few hours so I wasn't there. I called her when I got home and got her voicemail and then I text her as well to say thank you. And that was the end of our conversation.

I had the sneaking suspicion that they were "trying" again too but I didn't think too much of it, I had enough of my own stuff to worry about. I should've paid more attention to that suspicion... One day in June while I was at work, I got an email from her. I can't recall all of it right now but she wanted me to hear it from her that they were pregnant again. Maybe I shouldn't have been surprised but what really bothered me was the fact that a girl who was once my best friend emailed me this news. At work, in the middle of the day and now I have to go on with the rest of my day like nothing's wrong. Not just that, but we live on the same street, exactly six houses apart - I'm a realtor and sold her the house. Why couldn't she have walked down the street and come to my house to tell me face to face, friend to friend?

The ensuing email responses pretty much told her how I felt about that and also alot of other stuff that had happened over the last several years. I was probably a little more blunt than what I should've been in those emails but it's how I felt.

Anyways, that baby arrived on January 25 and I saw him for the first time today. Of course he is beautiful and perfect. It wasn't easy, but I made myself go over and see him after service was over. I had to get it over with and I knew people would be watching to see if we did.

It's just really hard to see a baby that little and put a face with what we're missing. It's hard to see that "friend" who now has two little boys that have both been born since we've been ttc and yet our arms are still empty. It was hard to hear everyone's comments about this little boy, their 4th, while we're still waiting to experience it once.

But I guess there's nothing easy about IF, we all know that. Today was just one of those days it got to me a little more. But today is also a day that makes me happy that I started this blog. That I can share these feelings and emotions with wonderful women who truly understand them. That I can take the time to work through them, write them down and be lucky enough to have the support of other women who have been in similar situations.

So to all of you out there, thank you. For taking the time to be there for someone you've never met and joining hands as we all trek through these uncharted waters together.

18 comments:

  1. It's always hard in these kind of situations and you handled the best way you know how. Luckily my little sister hasn't gotten pregnant yet but when she does, that will be a hard day for me. Hang in there my friend!

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  2. Hey, I haven't been on this road for as long, but my twin sister had baby #2 right when we first started trying. Then I got pregnant and miscarried and then 8 months later she got pregnant with baby #3 and had the baby this past December. Needless, to say it was very difficult for me the entire year, so I totally get it. Hang in there!!

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  3. I've been in such a funk for so long and I read your post...and it all came out. Tears and all. I get it. I get you.

    Thanks for getting me too.

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  4. Augh. I get it. I always feel like I should be prepared for that kind of news, and it always still manages to feel like a stab in the heart. A friend of mine had her baby in September and ever since she got pregnant our friendship has felt different and weird at times. Hang in there.

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  5. It just doesn't get easier, does it? I'm sorry your friendship has changed so much. Sending you big hugs.

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  6. My heart ached for you as I read your post... IF brings so much hurt & the hardest thing is when people we once cared so much for either ignore our hurt and/or add to it. I'm so sorry that this happened for you & admire you for saying hello - I would have found that incredibly hard. You're so right... we're all here for each other in a special kind of way xoxo

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  7. Sending hugs your way. There is nothing easy about IF!

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  8. First off, I'm so proud of you. You did a HARD thing today. You put aside your feelings and wished someone congrats on their new addition to their family. Lady, that took guts. And I guarantee that anyone else in the room who had experience half of what you've lived with wouldn't be able to do that.

    Like you, many friendships have changed due to infertility. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that they're afraid they'll say or do something wrong. What they don't realize is how much worse the silence is. That and the fact that grief makes people uncomfortable. It sucks that this person hasn't been able to be a source of support for you. But this has nothing to do with you and everything to do with her.

    Sending you so much love and many, many hugs.

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  9. I guess that's the only thing infertility is good for... weeding out the people who don't deserve to share our lives. A true friend is there every step of the way and asks what you need and asks how you'd like to find out about a pregnancy announcement. She apparently can't do that and it's too bad. You're so strong for going over and meeting that baby.... I sure as heck wouldn't have. Hold on a little while longer, I'm hopeful for this IVF cycle for you :)

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  10. Boy this is the story of my life. People only want to be around for the good things, then when it gets too real they jump ship.
    My little sister is close to having her second while I mourn two of my own. It's such a hard line to walk - being happy for others while grieving for yourself.
    Peace to you friend. I know how you feel.

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  11. It takes great strength of character and emotional fortitude to get through IF without cracking completely. You are so much tougher than you know. I'm so sorry you are enduring this road of pain. I wish your friend could understand what a mammoth effort you've put forth to show joy over her growing family.

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  12. I know how you feel! People have been so scarce since we had our miscarriage. It really sucks to have a miscarriage, but also to lose any support that was there for the happy times. Some of the best support comes from those of us in the ALI community.

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  13. Hang in there honey. We are always here to support you. Good luck for all your stims and lots of positive vibes your way!

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  14. That is so incredibly hard. I think you were brave and did the right thing, even though it was painful for you.

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  15. I'm so sorry. This is all incredibly painful. It's amazing how strong you are and that you were still able to be happy for her (wow, four kids!--and so many of us are still waiting for just one, it's so unfair).

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  16. "So to all of you out there, thank you. For taking the time to be there for someone you've never met and joining hands as we all trek through these uncharted waters together."

    That's what I've always wanted to be able to say...thank you!

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  17. Fair weather friends suck. Like someone else said, this is how you find out who your real friends are. You have handled it in the best way you could and I am proud of you. Hugz!

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