Thursday, August 7, 2008

An Open Letter

To the expectant mothers in my life (with love):

I know this is a very special time for you – a time filled with excitement, anticipation and unbounding love for your baby soon to enter the world. This time is for you – a chance to celebrate, to contemplate, to prepare. This is your moment to delight in the joy of expectancy, to embrace the promise of parenthood, to exude radiance. To rejoice in feeling life grow inside with every fluttering heartbeat, every kick. Soon you will enter the sacred sisterhood of women who become mothers, forever transforming their lives. Soon your arms will hold new life, as you bask in the warm glow of your child’s beaming eyes. Soon your heart will fill when you hear his/her laughter, the tight grasp around your finger. You will marvel at the wondrous little being you created out of love, in an act more natural than any in the world.

And yet. As you enter perhaps the most magnificent time in your life, we are finding our way through crisis, trying to navigate a life-altering journey with persistence and grace. We don’t know where it will lead us, how it will end. Our future is uncertain. I don’t expect many people to understand what we are going through. But I would hope that you would try to appreciate that it is real. It is crushing. It underlies and permeates every aspect of our lives, everything we do. As impossible as it is to imagine, as hard as it is to see, and as challenging as it is to live, it is our life and our story. And it is staggering. Such a primal urge, a natural instinct, a deep desire – unmet, unfilled, unlived…

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Luna is the contributing editor for Infertility. She writes daily at Life From Here: Musings from the Edge where she covers her infertility story from loss and IVF to her current journey through domestic adoption.

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8 comments:

m de p said...

Wow. This is a beautiful post. It's honest, gentle, true, and clearly heart-felt. Thank you for sharing it.

chicklet said...

The start (I have to go to your site to read the end) totally grabbed me, cuz it is soooo how I'm feeling right now. It's hard with so many around me becoming pregnant, and me, still not. Not ever maybe.

Whoa, I'm depressing...

Julia said...

This is beautiful. Dare I hope it got through to those you needed to understand?

Pamela Jeanne said...

You are such a gift to those of us who are walking the same path. You capture the raw, oh so raw emotion and the challenges that come with living the polar opposite of a pregnant woman who conceives with nary a thought to the state of her uterus or hormone levels. Thank you for sharing your story so openly and so honestly. It means more than you know...

luna said...

I'm so glad we used this as my introductory post. it seems to have resonated, with infertiles at least. I still hope that someone else reading it might begin to understand (or at least appreciate) what we struggle with. every probably has a friend, sister, cousin, or daughter who is misunderstood as a result of infertility's wrath.

to answer julia's question -- no, I never had the opportunity to share the letter with the intended audience. those babies have all been born by now, and there's still one I haven't even met (but will this weekend)...

yet I realized as I was writing the letter that it wasn't only about the five pregnant close friends and family in my life at the time. it was really what I had wanted to say to so many people through our years of trying (and failing) to bring home a baby. it was very cathartic to just write it. and then the comments started coming in, and it was so wonderful and affirming to hear that others felt the same...

anymommy said...

It's an incredible post.

You are getting through to me, Luna. I haven't experienced infertility, but I have tried to be a friend to someone grieving and living experiences like yours. I have learned so much from reading your story and other's as well. I know I've made mistakes (wince) supporting my friend - I hope I've gotten better at understanding.

I have experienced adoption and I am so excited to share your journey with you.

Kristin said...

Wow...that is so powerful. It truly explains how I felt when we were experiencing loss after loss.

luna said...

anymommy -- the fact that you are trying to be a supportive friend and understand your friend's struggle is nothing to wince at. that is more than most people do. it's hard to know what to say, what not to say, etc. but a little compassion goes a long way. thanks for trying to understand.

kristin -- I'm glad you liked the post, and I'm so sorry for your losses.