Sunday, May 12, 2013

On This Mother's Day

One of the best things I've ever read on infertility and Mother's Day. From

Dear Infertile Friend,

I wanted to let you know I’m thinking of you this Mother’s Day. Of course, I think of you every day, but on this day, which I know is particularly difficult for you, I want you to know that you’re in my heart.  I imagine,  at times, it may seem that I’m oblivious to your struggles.   As if somehow I’ve forgotten what it was like to stand in your shoes.  I assure you, I haven’t.  In fact, I’ll never, ever forget what it was like to walk the very lonely and scary path of infertility.  I acutely remember when Mother’s Day was a reminder of everything I wasn’t, instead of a celebration of everything I ever wanted to be.

In honor of Mother’s Day I want to give you a gift.  A gift I hope you’ll treasure.   It’s not a magic bullet.  I don’t have one of those.  Instead, it’s a promise—actually a few promises.  Promises that I hope will sustain you through your journey.

I promise not to give you unsolicited advice about conceiving.  I know you are relaxing.  That stress isn’t the problem and a vacation isn’t the answer.  I’m also very aware that how it finally worked for me (or my cousin or my neighbor or my grandma’s friend’s great-niece) probably isn’t the cure for you.  I’ll never assume I have the answer to your prayers…I promise.

I promise not to complain about my kids in front of you.  We all know that raising children is challenging.  I’m also aware you’d give your left arm to be knee deep in messy diapers and snotty noses.  There’ll be no child-related venting to you…I promise.

I promise to include you in our family related activities and understand when you decline.  I know you love my family.  I also understand being around little ones can be hard for you right now.  I’ll be sad that you’re not there, so I’ll continue to pray fervently for your miracle…I promise.

Most importantly, I promise to be here when you need me.  I’ll listen empathetically and squeeze your hand for encouragement.  Lean on me when you need to—my shoulders will hold you up and my love for you will catch your tears.  I’ll walk through this with you, admiring your bravery every step of the way…I promise.  

Please accept this Mother’s Day gift.  It’s a reminder that even though at times I may say or do the wrong thing, I know, in the depth of my soul, that you would make a terrific mother.  I can’t wait for the day when we can celebrate this occasion differently.  Until then, please remember you are not alone, my friend.  Whatever—whenever—just say the word.  I WILL be your biggest cheerleader…I promise.

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