I think one of the more difficult things for couples suffering infertility is the constant reminder of what you don’t have. None of it is done directly, but simply comes with the territory and is just part of the ache that continually stays in your heart.
I feel lately I have been experiencing more of those reminders. Awkward moments when people ask, how many kids do you have or I bet your family is on your case to have kids. Without fail every time…I produce awkward silence…wondering how I should answer. As often as I get the question I am beginning to think I should have already come up with a generic answer by now, a go to response, but I seem to be thrown every, single, time.
I realize a generic answer doesn’t always work depending on the person or situation, but I usually always walk away wondering if I should have said something different or something more. Then again what if I would say too much, the last thing I want to do is make anyone uncomfortable with my answer.
Do I share about the miscarriages, do I share about the adoption, do I share about the desire in my heart to be a mom or do I choose to just be silent? More often than not I choose the latter. A simple no, followed by silence, and I move on to change the topic.
No matter what the situation, the end result is always the same the reminder of what I don’t have. The continual reminder of the road we have been on for the past 6+ years and the feeling like sometimes we are the only ones.
I guess if there is no other purpose to this post, it’s to say I know what you are going through. The thoughts and feelings of wondering what others are thinking about you, hoping you are not being judged, but concealing in your heart your inmost longings.
Couples who experience infertility often suffer in silence, not wanting to inconvenience anyone with their troubles. It’s something that can’t be seen, so it’s not noticed. Often deeply personal and hard to initiate in conversation unless they are asked. It almost becomes a taboo topic.
Now I begin to wonder if my silence in conversations only contributes to it. Perhaps acknowledging the five babies I carried, but never held, would provide an opening in the conversation. An opening for someone else to share their story, their loss and their hurt that they have held on too for so long, but dared not to tell anyone. Perhaps sharing would help another woman find healing.
Although, I always dread what seems like a million questions when we tell someone we are adopting. Perhaps sharing about our journey, even though it hasn’t been easy it is filled with so much love, would inspire someone else. Perhaps it would help them love their neighbor a little more.
As I reflect on what I am writing, I can’t promise the next time the question is asked I will have a good answer. I know for certain though, I will think twice and perhaps maybe allow my heart to help someone else’s hurt.
So for all the times I keep silent, I hope that in some small way through posts like this, the silence will be broken and perhaps someone out there will also begin to experience healing. Perhaps someone will also feel they are no longer alone when the question arises.