Tomorrow is my surgery. I’m actually looking forward to it as much as anyone can look forward to being cut open. I’m glad that we are finally moving forward and getting this taken care of. Woo hoo! I also get a week off work. WOO HOO! You can find me on the couch watching Mad Men and being incredibly lazy ;) Please say a prayer that all goes well. There is no reason for it not to, but you never know. Most especially pray about the anesthesia. That is the part I am dreading the most. Other people go under and they think that it is grand. They come out and feel delightfully loopy and happy. Not me. Nope, I would have to be different and difficult. I hallucinate about demons trying to claw me and drag me to hell. Yeah…it’s a heck of a good time! So let’s everyone pray that I don’t see any demons (and that I wake up, because Mom and Josh keep pointing out that dying while under is a possibility…um…thanks?).
When I first wrote about getting this surgery done and the infertility debacle that Josh and I have gone through I said I would write the five things I learned. Here they are, not so briefly:
1. You need a support group to talk to, one person is not going to cut it. It doesn’t have to be formal or anything, you don’t need tshirts, but you do need people to talk to for whatever “stage” you are in. For example, Josh is incredibly upbeat and I talked to him whenever I was feeling low on hope. My mom had been through a similar situation and I talked to her whenever I needed advice and words of wisdom. A couple of my friends were just there to listen to me rant about how it wasn’t happening and how “Everyone else in the Whole Wide World had a baby, but ME, what is wrong with me??? Sob sob sob”. You need those people. You need someone who can sympathize and you need someone who will say “quit your whining and have some ice cream”.
2. There really are more pregnant women around. When we started trying I saw pregnant women Everywhere. I couldn’t go out without running into a woman who looked like she might birth that very moment. I thought was going crazy. I wasn’t (well, at least not about that). It seems like every other woman is pregnant, but you really are seeing more pregnant women that at any other time in your life. Think about it. If you are my age, give or take a few years, most of your friends are popping out kids left and right. Your Facebook page is blowing up with announcements and baby pictures. Even going to Target has you confronting more pregnant women. It’s just that stage of life. It’s easy to understand when you consider FB and Sunday School classes and places you are around other women your age, but even places like Target or the mall apply to this same logic. Most 20-30 year old women aren’t shopping in Rue21 and Claire’s. They aren’t at the mall at 9:30 on a Friday night or Midnight Bowling on Saturday. They are shopping on lunch breaks, early evenings, or even during the day. They are at Michael’s and Hobby Lobby, the bookstore, the salad bar, all these places and times that you are there because you are in the same demographic. You aren’t crazy, the pregnant women…they’re out there.
3. You have to know when to put it aside. It is easy, especially when you first start trying and you still have bubbly enthusiasm, to get caught up in the Pinterest Kid’s section or searching “Thomas the Train nursery ideas” on google or whatever. None of that is bad, it’s preparing, and it can be exciting, but you have to know when to say “no more” because it can get depressing as time goes on. The same goes for charting. If you are charting, that chart can become an obsession, especially if it is readily accessible. Mine is on my phone and I would find myself checking it way more often that was necessary, counting til the next time we try, counting to when I would know if I was pregnant, reading possible pregnancy symptoms, yada yada yada. Put it down and step away. Nothing is gained by obsessing. In fact, it will make you more stressed and stress is a baby making enemy.
4. Get a system/pat phrase/don’t even touch the subject look for people. Gah! People! I am not a people person, I’m just not. I’m super introverted. When it comes to pregnancy people can be nosy, insensitive, and mean. Nosy is the easiest to deal with. Having now tried for so long, I have a new appreciation for how nosy the question “When do you plan on having kids” is. It seems like simple conversation, but at the wrong time, it can be taken poorly. Get a pat phrase for those people. They aren’t trying to mean or call attention to the fact that you STILL aren’t lugging around a stroller, but you don’t have to give them the whole spiel of “oh we’re trying and not having any luck”. It’s none of their business, give a response and move on.
Insensitive people take that nosiness just a step farther. These are the people that can’t take a hint that you don’t want to talk about your family plan. They usually launch right into some story about either their cousins who were never able to have kids and died alone and were eaten by raccoons or how very “modern” it is that you are waiting til “later in life” to have kids. I’m rolling my eyes with you sister. You may have to be a little more pointed with these people. Honestly, sometimes I make up an excuse to leave the conversation. If you can’t do that though, say they have you trapped in a literal corner, turn the conversation to those dead raccoon eaten cousins because these people usually want to talk, so let them run with a topic and mildly nod your head while planning anything more pleasant to do later as a reward for not being snarky.
The third people are in a class of their own, the downright mean. I have had people say that God is punishing Josh and me, that I would make a terrible mother, and that I don’t deserve to be a mother. None of those are nice and none of them are true. These people are rarer, but they are there. Ignore them. They don’t deserve to be credited with a response. If their lives are so empty that they have to stoop to that level to make themselves feel better, let them wallow in that muck, but don’t get down there and start slinging mud with them.
5. Finally, you have no bargain with God. At one point I was talking to someone about not getting pregnant and I said “I did what I was supposed to do. Josh and I waited til we got married to be intimate, we waited until we were financially ready, we waited until we had a house, we are in church and doing the things we are supposed to, so why has God not given me a baby?” It was a completely subconscious thing that built up until it overflowed out of my mouth. I was shocked to even confront the fact that I thought that I had some “arrangement” with God where if I was good and did was I supposed to do as a Christian then He would hold up His end of the “bargain” and give me a baby. This is NOT true! The only thing I deserve from God is punishment for my sins. God has given me grace to cover all the bad things I have done in life, but He didn’t have to do that, and He certainly doesn’t have to do anything more. I think it’s a common trap that Christian’s fall in, especially those who have been saved a long time. We start to think that there is a give and take between yourself and God. You give time, money, praise and He gives blessings. God doesn’t require anything we give. We give because we have already been blessed, not to earn a blessing. It stems too from wanting to have some sort of control. It’s a simple system we use in life every day. If I give you X, you will do/give me Y. That system doesn’t work with God. I had to spend a lot of time in prayer getting to the point where I completely gave the baby situation to God, where I was able to say “I am okay with never being a mom if it means being in Your perfect will”. Now, I do think I will be a mom, but if you get in that place, remember that God doesn’t owe you anything for being “good”, but you owe Him everything for being Him.
If you read all that then you get a gold star! Pat yourself on the back!