I Never Understood Infertility—Until I Did

I never knew how hard some couples try, only to become disappointed month after month, year after year. Now I do. It was hard for me to imagine what that was like when my first time was so easy. Now I can. That feeling of hope that rushes over me month after month, year after year. It’s like wondering when my life will finally take a right turn. When can we start preparing that empty room? When can we discuss baby names? When will I have to give up sushi? When will it happen? Will it ever happen? Will I ever have the opportunity to bear another child?

I never understood infertility—until I did.

I feel inadequate to other moms who have two, three, or even four kids to take care of when I’m only responsible for one. I’ve been blessed with one. Shouldn’t one be enough? I harbor envy in my heart for expectant mothers. A sickness encompasses my body when I learn that another person I know is pregnant. I’m happy for them, yes, but I want what they have. I want to walk into the ultrasound room and see a picture of my growing baby. I want to be the pregnant one at my OBGYN, not the one seeing the fertility specialist. I want my husband to stop worrying that it’s his fault, to stop blaming himself. I want to see his face light up when we find out the gender. I don’t need a boy or a girl, just a baby.

I never understood infertility—until I did.

I wish I could quit thinking about my past. About how selfish I was to wait until my 30s to have kids. It was my choice to wait, and wait I did. My 20s were about me, about my wants and my needs. After having my son, my world became about him. I want him to have a sibling, he deserves that. I grew up with a brother and I loved having a brother. I loved having a partner in crime, an enemy to battle, a best friend for life. It’s not just what I want for him, my son wants it too. He asks for a brother or a sister—he can’t quite decide. He loves babies. He enjoys spending time with his friends’ siblings, and when we visit their homes, he notices their separate rooms. He recognizes the joy they experience in having each other. I don’t want him to miss out on that.

I never understood infertility—until I did.

The look my husband gives me and the feeling I get in my stomach when another baby passes us in the store. It’s a pain like none other. It’s not grief or loss or fear or hate. It’s something different. How do you grieve something that you haven’t had possession of yet? But still, my whole body aches. Tears drip down my cheeks as I, once again, start my period. That little bit of hope I did have is once again gone. I wanted to cry happy tears today, not sad ones. I wanted to celebrate, not mourn. I wanted to discover that I was pregnant, not infertile.

I never understood infertility—until I did.

TC mark


About the author
I’m a student, a singer, a widow, a wife, a writer, and a mom. Follow Jess on Instagram or read more articles from Jess on Thought Catalog.

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