Couldn’t resist … 😂🤣😂
Well hello there strangers. I know … it’s been a while and I sincerely hope everyone is doing well in the Land of IF, cities in Between and points Beyond.
There is no excuse for not writing on this blog very much. The truth is, I haven’t had much to say in regards to living child-free (NOT by choice). And anything I’ve had to say about things has really been small snippets on my Facebook page about articles I’ve shared.
You see, unlike 15 years ago when I first started this infertility journey (well, actually, it’s been closer to 20 years, now that I think about it … yikes!), there is a lot more media surrounding IF. Seriously … where was all this support when I needed it?!
Social media aside, I’m just truly grateful that it was through the blogosphere that I met many wonderful people going through this infertility journey with me. Most of us have now resolved our infertility journeys; some managed to have biological children of their own either naturally or by way of IVF (one of them had TWINS!), some of them became adoptive parents, and some even became step-parents. And some of them … well, some sort of combination of all of the above!
As for me, I have pretty much resolved the fact that I will never have biological children of my own for these facts:
- I am over 40 years old
- I’m pretty sure I’m going into early menopause
- Adoption for us is way beyond our financial means
- I am way too exhausted to think of parenting at my age
- Being over 40, I cannot fathom having to raise a child now and be close to (or even over) 60 by the time they graduate from high school
Unfortunately, these facts don’t stop some well-meaning family members from thinking I’m going to have some sort of miraculous conception. (We won’t even go into our recent trip to the Philippines.)
So what brings me out of my semi-retirement? A damn movie.
But first let me clarify something. While we may have reached the end of our IF journey, this doesn’t mean that some things can slap us in the face and make us fully aware that we are not the norm … that we are quite different than the rest of everyday society.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve learned to accept that Hubby & I are on a unique path of our own (just like every other person / couple / family is). I’ve gotten used to answering “No” to when new friends, acquaintances, or other professionals ask us if we have any children. And I’m certainly used to and am very comfortable in explaining why we don’t either. I can stand on my own (without crying, to boot!) when discussing infertility and the emotions that a person goes through while traveling on that journey. I can be rational about debating why adoption isn’t for us. I can even easily ask and converse with others about their children without feeling inferior.
But every once in a while, there’s something that happens that can have me contemplating why we chose this Child-Free-Not-By-Choice life. Or has me feeling, once again, that I’m alone in the world of other adults that are parents … and that I can’t possibly know what it’s like to be one of them.
This time it’s a movie … particularly one that is specifically aimed towards motherhood and all the horrible things that occur during parenting a child.
Okay, I get it. Yes … motherhood isn’t always glamorous. In fact, I’d say the only time everyday parenting looks glamorous is on Facebook or Pinterest or Instagram … or any other social media outlet out there. And that’s only after 5 GAZILLION retakes to make it “just perfect.”
But it’s still something that I can’t fully understand.
Because, for being “over-worked, over-committed and exhausted to the point that [these moms are] about to snap” (directly from the plot summary, BTW)? I will never know what it’s like to feel that way. As a Mom, anyway.
And yet … Well, here’s something for all those moms out there:
Those feelings – while not as “ongoing on a daily basis”-type of way – are what those who have experienced / are experiencing infertility go through on a month-to-month basis.
Nothing hits you straight in the gut with a pregnancy test that doesn’t have that second line … and knowing you’ll have to go through the same treatments (-ie- shots, pills, holistic treatments, all of the above) for yet another month.
I know that I will eventually see this movie in the future (because – C’MON! The same writers as “The Hangover”?!). But next weekend, I’ll likely just chill with my Hubby and our four-legged child.
PS. If you want know where “I’ve” been in social media lately, check out this Instagram account.
Earlier this week Hubby & I woke up at an ungodly hour. My mom was flying out to the Philippines and needed a ride to the airport. It being an international flight, she needed to be at the airport at least 3 hours before take-off.
Her flight was at 7:00 am.
Needless to say, Hubby & I got little sleep the night before.
With Hubby staying curbside, I was able to help check my Mom in at the airport and say a proper good-bye before she headed into the security line.
What she said to me in those moments have stuck with me this past week and have made me realize that, as much as I think I’m okay, I’m still not quite okay.
On the way home from the airport, I cried. Cried, because I was already missing my Mom who would be gone for six whole weeks. Cried, because I knew that it was time to make another appointment … one I haven’t had in about six months now.
Cried, because as much of an adult I (supposedly) am, there are still some days that I just want to be a child again and want Mom to tell me that everything is going to be alright.
Things will be alright, I know. Even though they’re not right now. I know this because I have the love and support of a wonderful husband and … even though we don’t get along all the time … my mom.
I miss you, Mom. Hope you’re having a blast in the Philippines.
When I was little, I would typically spend “sick days” at home with my Dad. Mom would work the day shift, while Dad would work the off shift. Such was the life of a dual-income family.
During those sick days, I’d typically be relegated to my bedroom to sleep off the illness that would’ve plagued me for a day or two. And if I was lucky, I would be allowed to lie on the family room couch and watch daytime TV.
The thing I remember most about those sick days was the soup my Dad would make for my lunch. He’d make this chicken noodle soup that I absolutely loved. And I knew I’d be feeling better if I’d ask for a second bowl.
It was a soup that only my Dad could replicate, much to my Mom’s chagrin. Eventually it became known as “Daddy Soup,” and I’d always request it whenever I got sick.
It was comfort food for me; the warmth of the broth soothing my sore throat. The chicken bits providing nourishment for an otherwise lackluster appetite. The egg added that made the it taste like egg drop soup with chicken and noodles … The “secret ingredient” that made Dad’s soup unique. All of it just reminded me of home. And of being cared for as a child.
I think about this soup at times when I miss my Dad the most. And I know it’s because I’m missing the comfort of my childhood when things seemed so much simpler.
Nowadays life seems much more complicated; so much more complex. While I know that’s just part of normal life, having this memory helps remind me that I was loved by my Dad and that I am still loved by those people who reach out to me … Especially during this particularly difficult time in my life.
I’ll just refer to these reminders as “Daddy Soup for my soul.”
Celebrating the life of my Dad … One year later.