infertile with a lower case i

so i’m pretty sure that i have sung mel’s praises here before.  i found her and the community she created while we were going through testing, when i was feeling lost, overwhelmed, and completely alone.

every now and then she writes a post that, when i read it, fills me with deja vu.  it’s like she managed to explain something that i didn’t even know had been stuck in my head, and did it so much better than i could have.

that’s how i felt this morning when i read her quotes from last year’s niaw post. ok, that could just really be deja vu since i have read it before.  but you know what i mean.  last year during niaw, we were in the two week wait of our second ivf cycle, a few days from finding out i was pregnant.  ralph and i talked about “outing” ourselves on facebook to all our family and friends, but weren’t quite ready yet, fearful that this cycle hadn’t worked either.  it was a vastly different experience rereading mel’s words now, as a parent and an advocate, and still very much an infertile:

Every week is Infertility Awareness Week in my world.  I don’t have weeks where I’m not aware of infertility; where it fades into the background.  It is still something that I think about on a weekly (if not daily) basis.  Maybe I’ll feel differently down the road and will be grateful for this yearly kick in the ass to talk about infertility.  But right now, it’s still the lens through which I see the world.

 I owe it to everyone who is affected by infertility to speak about it as best I can.  Because I am comfortable speaking about it (whereas I know that many people are not, and I don’t fault them for that).  Because I agree with Resolve — no good can come if we’re going to ignore the problem; the problem being not just infertility itself but how the world perceives infertility and family building options.

I can’t think of a problem that has been solved by not talking about it.  By not slogging through it with words.  Seriously, name me one.

it’s such a perfect way to describe infertility, as a lens through which i see the world.  there isn’t a day that goes by that i don’t think of what we went through to bring our beautiful baby boy home.

and at the same time, i wonder who else is going through it.  silently.  alone.  afraid to share their struggles with those around them, for many reasons: fear of judgement, fear of unintentionally hurtful comments, fear of involving others in their heartbreak, fear of talking about subjects our society has deemed taboo.

so i hope you understand why i may sound like a broken record sometimes; inundating you with daily blog posts and facebook statuses, even with little comments in every day conversation.  infertility has profoundly changed my life, changed me as a person.  i may not be Infertile with a capital I, stuck in the trenches of treatments.  i like to think that now, while we just love our little boy and think about the future, i’m still infertile with a lower case i.  and i think – i hope – i always will be.  it’s not just something i can be done with, even now that we are parents.  because i can’t forget what it felt like when i was afraid to speak out.

i can’t forget that there are those who still are.

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