Sil’s Thoughts on Mothers’ Day: Coming Out of the Infertility Closet
For many years, I didn’t know where I would fit under the Webster 1913 dictionary definition of a mother:
“Mother: Pronunciation: mŭth´ẽr
n. A female parent; especially, one of the human race; a woman who has borne a child.”
I dream about being a mother… Would that count?
For the first 4 years of infertility, I caught myself praying on my knees one day before Mother’s Day asking the Lord that the following year I would not have to endure the painful sores of not being a mother and that the merciful Lord would take from me the trials of the big I (Infertility for those that couldn’t guess by now 😉 ).
I prayed and for my hubby’s sake and sanity, every year I attended all the Mother’s day sacrament meetings in an effort to convince him and myself that I would be ok. So I smiled and graciously stood up to receive the roses, plants or whatever they would give us that day and then I would go home, slip into my pajamas, stuff my face with food and cry my eyes out. It was awful for me and pitiful for those around me.
TV/radio ads, movies, posters and cards were everywhere. Like a sore thumb reminding me of what I could have been, a…
So instead of waiting for people to ask me if I have kids, and why not, I decided to start telling them at the first opportunity that I could not have kids, the uncontrollable reasons why we stopped trying, and that my trial is not any bigger than anyone else’s, but it is mine alone to face.
Let’s just say that it caused some awkward silence and it avoided some of the usual comments:
‘oh, everything will be ok’
‘you know, I heard about this great infertility Dr …’
‘maybe the Lord saved you from having a bad kid’
‘I am totally jealous of you, you will have the health, time and money to spend them’
and my two favorites; ‘I would give one of my kids to have a good husband like yours” and/or ‘You can babysit and spoil my kids’.
Coming out of the infertility closet helped me to clearly see who my friends were and that it was ok for me to be me.
This coming Mother’s day 2014, I will have some friends fighting the big I over at my home and while I am planning to have fun and I am also planning to attend sacrament meeting. I don’t want to run; I want to fight the good fight. I don’t know if it will ever get easier to the point that it doesn’t bother me, I don’t think that will ever happen, but I know that at least I’ve placed myself out there, allowing people to know me and give them a chance to respect my pain.
To all mothers out there, I am happy for your day and for your blessings. I am thankful for my mother as I am thankful for you.
To all non-mothers out there, don’t let sadness take your whole day, do something fun for yourself and remember you are more than you know.