Thursday, March 3, 2016

Finding courage to finish my thoughts

There are a few posts that I started and lost the courage and strength to finish it. I have decided to revisit those posts and combine them here As I read through them I realize together they are a complete post. I have had time to sit with these ideas and feelings and I don't like making decisions out of fear, much less leaving things unfinished, so here I go.

This post was called: So much more than being a mother. I started it in October 2015. Here is what I had written at that point: 

I have been thinking a lot about why infertility still hurts. I no longer feel a horrible hollowness when I am around children, I feel awkward cause I have protected myself from the sadness that being around children caused for so long that I feel like my interactions with children are robotic and skiddish. But still, when I think about what I am going to do with my life and realize I am in this tailspin because of what we have gone through I get upset and the unfairness of it all hits me again. In a conversation with my husband the other day I realized that if we decide to stay childless that we would not go through that growth period of becoming parents and learning about selflessness, to set aside everything for someone who depends on you so absolutely. That fear and awe of being everything to a small child. For parents, its an external motivation, your child, but for those of us who don't have an external motivation, how do we obtain that growth?

This post was called: When I need feminism the most. I started it in December 2015. 

There is one thing that I have been genuinely afraid of talking about on this blog. I am afraid of talking about a life without children. I fear judgement, disappointment, outrage, pity... I have recently come across a blog called
They recently had a summit with women who are childless by choice and by chance as they say. When I learned about it I really wanted to go, but I couldn't gather the courage.. what would I tell my family? My friends? I wouldn't post about it on social media for fear of judgement. I lost the courage and decided not to go. Maybe some of the judgement I fear is in my head as much as it is in society, but a recent article I read on the website tells me there may be some truth in my apprehension and that I'm not entirely paranoid, the writer says "I believe that we can talk about women’s lives in ways that broaden the idea of what a fulfilled female experience looks like!"
Let's be honest, when we think of fulfilled lives of women, it has to include a husband and children, and then she will be complete. This is where I feel feminism hasn't made enough progress, or at least the progress that affects me directly. I don't want to feel that fear, or that pressure that if I do not exhaust all resources, or if we decide not to adopt, that I am not a complete woman, I am not fulfilling my destiny. I also don't want to have to surround myself with childless by choice women who tend to kid-bash and judge other women who do decide that they want to be mothers no matter what.
In my perfect world, women will be friends no matter their family status and their feelings on children. In this perfect world, there will be no kid-bashing, shaming for being childless,

Fast forward to today, March 2016: 

All of this still rings true for me. I realize that I lacked the courage to complete and submit these posts then because I was afraid of what others might think or say to us about considering living childless... because I hear them in my own doubts and thoughts. But this is part of that issue that I think God is working out in me, that perfect plan that doesn't deviate or change, that I can write out in permanent marker with a timeline and due dates. I need to accept that it is ok if the plan changes. This is my reality right now.... isn't that what reality means? "What is true right now." This is what is true for me and I don't need anyone's validation.It is such a blessing that my husband and I are on the same page his is the only validation I need. This is not a decision to make alone, but I have never been alone. Some how we have managed to keep pace throughout this journey and we have reached this same point together. When we disagreed it was because I was holding on to the white picket fence dream with tooth and nail.

Sometimes I feel like I can hear people's thoughts... "this is how you feel now, but things will change." It's what I used to think of young women who had decided to not be mothers. Shame on me.

So I am trading in my permanent marker for some sidewalk chalk that can be washed away by God's rain so that I can start over, wherever I am. Here I am Lord. Do with my life as you will. My Rock and my Redeemer.

Reinvisioning Christmas

December 22, 2015

I have struggled with Christmas for a few years now, even before we started treatment. I have had trouble feeling the true purpose of Christmas amid the noise, unrelated traditions, and consumerism that surrounds this time of year. It's like trying to have an important heartfelt conversation in the middle of a busy mall with obnoxious music blaring, people rushing around and hitting me with their shopping bags. I can't hear what the conversation is suppose to be about but I know it's important. And then there are the others around me trying to pull me away from the conversation because the conversation isn't important to them....
I try to find purpose in the story, the birth of the Savior... but the songs and the story talk about the birth of the long awaited child, of Mary full with child, Mary seeing her baby for the first time.... and as you can imagine, I can't. I wish I could detach my story from Mary's, but when it comes to faith, my emotions are the eyes with which I see and understand.
I need to find a different approach to Christmas. I want to be able engage in the anticipation of Advent and with the joy surrounding the season.
I was reading a devotional today with my favorite scripture for the season:
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being 4in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. 5The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it."  (John 1:1-5)

This is the beginning of Jesus' story, which began at the beginning of life itself.  Christmas is the celebration of the Incarnation of God, which is a bittersweet story. God, knowing of the rejection, pain and suffering that was to come, decided we were worth it... God in his infinite grace decided to come into the world to guide us and show us truth, hope, justice, mercy, life... LOVE

It's not just about a mother giving birth to a holy child, fragile and small that held the hope of the world. It's about WHY God did this... "For God so loved the world..."