Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Infertiles Everywhere (within the readership of this blog), Read My Call!

(If you're not infertile, you can keep on reading as well, this may interest you as well.)

I was involved with a moderately extended Facebook conversation in which some Infertiles sounded off about how frustrating it is when people who have been trying to get pregnant for less than a year claim infertility. You want the definition of infertility? Our friend Wikipedia shares its take on the matter:

"Reproductive endocrinologists, the doctors specializing in infertility, consider a couple to be infertile if: The couple has not conceived after 12 months of contraceptive-free intercourse if the female is under the age of 34. 12 months is the lower reference limit for Time to Pregnancy (TTP) by the World Health Organization." [link here]

I'm going to be honest, it is frustrating on occasion, when other's claim infertility when it's not. But that's my fault, not theirs.

We, as Infertiles, need to reach out to people who are experiencing the fears and sadness of wanting children and not having them, no matter how long they have had those emotions. It's still scary, it's still heartbreaking, it's still lonely.

The first person I shared my fears with was a close friend. She was single and did not know even a morsel of the worries I had, but she empathized and cried with me. That experience happened after Nick and I had been trying to get pregnant for a whopping 4 months! How foolish I would have sounded to others who had been dealing with actual infertility and not my little problem! My friend was an angel for me, but how nice it would have been for me then to have someone who really understood my pain and fears to hold my hand through that scary time in my life!

I naively thought the every other woman got pregnant whenever she wanted, but that was ignorance. Can we really be upset with those who sincerely are searching for a helping and comforting hand and do not know enough about infertility to identify it appropriately? Those syntactical errors maybe keeping us from loving and serving others, which is really silly! Are they trying to offend? No, and it is a fool who takes offense when none was intended. Often times they can't go to a doctor, and they may only have a handful of friends who have experienced what they're feeling. What would we have them do, suffer alone? 

Personally, I don't want others who maybe feeling the fear of infertility to be afraid to come to me and ask for help, no matter if those feelings have been with them for a day or a decade. We, as Infertiles, should be other women's first resource of help and strength, and not someone they are worried of offending. 

Did Christ ever say "You don't know pain or sorrow. Once you get to Gethsemane and are suffering for the entire world, then come talk to me about heartache and trials"? No, instead He puts up with all our little petty problems and doesn't make us feel like less than He is. In fact, He does not even make our petty problems even feel petty or less than our own personal Gethsemane. 

When we struggle, Christ says "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest...For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." [link here] What do we as humans really know about being "heavy laden[ed]," but Christ, our Redeemer and Savior, said we can take our burdens to Him. If His yoke is easy, what do any of us have to complain about, or why should we make others feel less because we think their burden is less than our own?

Infertiles everywhere (within the readership of this blog), let us take upon ourselves the yoke of Christ, which is to "bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light; Yea, and...mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort." [link here] We went through our infertility trial for a purpose, and I like to think that purpose is to better serve our fellow [wo]man and God. Isn't that what all our trials are for anyway?

Speaking of serving, a dear friend of mine who held my virtual hand through our failed adoption is having a Hysterectomy and is sad and scared. Please keep your thoughts and prayers with this amazing woman! She inspires many and now needs our help. Thanks!


marianneanddoug said...

Has anyone ever told you how well you write? It's great.

You know as I was reading this post it made me think some of the same thoughts from Sunday morning General Conference by Pres Uchtdorf.

I tried to find the exact quote but that isn't available til Thursday so here is an excerpt from a lds.org new article:

"President Uchtdorf said it has been his experience that some of the most powerful promptings a person receives are not only for his or her own benefit but also for the benefit of others. "If we are thinking only of ourselves, we may miss some of the most powerful spiritual experiences and profound revelations of our lives."

kenna said...

thank you for your sweet remarks at the end. it's true, i'm scared out of my mind.

i hope my facebook post didn't come off as i didn't want to help or be there for people who are struggling.

i have a few close experiences (in laws) with what i posted about, and when i'm told that after their 9 months of trying for their 4th kid in under 5 years qualifies as 'infertility' and 'the know what i went through' i wanted to scream and throw up.

it's true, no one is going to know how hard it is for you, just as we don't know how hard it is for them.

these certain individuals were using infertility as an attention card, which again, makes me want to scream and throw up.

i hope i wasn't taken the wrong way, you know, as a big mean jack wagon who writes insane things on facebook. :)

hope all is well with your new little one.

Jenni said...

Satan uses sneaky tactics to tear us (women in particular) apart. He knows the strength of women, particularly in the roles we play as mothers--whether we use our mothering skills with children or with our fellow sisters who need love and support through such difficult trials (especially those including how we develop our families). Thank you for your insights. I just finished reading "I am a Mother" by Jane Clayson Johnson and it it so important for us to reach out to one another in support and love no matter our trials. Our worth is so wrapped up in our "divine calling" to be mothers. We could all do to look outside ourselves and be loving and supportive to other mothers around us, no matter how or when they received their children. All righteous women are Mothers. I'm always so moved by adoption and infertility issues that I want to cry with every sadness and bawl with every success!

Anonymous said...

I'm choosing to post anonymously, and I hope that's ok. My husband and I are infertile by the definition posted on your blog. I won't tell you how long, or how old I am as that may give me away. We fully support our friends and family members who seek for other ways to bring children into their family, but I don't think that I will be able to have children no matter what options are available out there. Rather than focus on this, I just keep going. I know the atonement of Jesus Christ makes it possible for us to all have perfect bodies one day. And when that day comes then so will children for my husband and I. I am honestly fine with our situation. I don't pine after little kids. I don't cry when I hear someone is pregnant, and I don't curse God because I can't be a mother. I am perfectly happy with where I am right now. Every once in a while I will be sad for my husband who would make an outstanding father. However, there are so many ways that he can be a father-like figure, and we can be parent-like figures to others and we can focus on those instead.

I know there are quite a few women out there who become overwhelmingly sad that they can't have children. One of my dearest friends is going through this right now. It breaks my heart to watch them go through such heartache, but I really try to keep them focused on other things so they don't become consumed by it. Being angry at God is a natural reaction from the natural person. We are children of God and know there is a bigger picture and that all is not lost provided we do our best on earth. This alone should give us the courage to continue enduring to the end, but having some friends to help lift us up is always good idea, too.

Rachel said...

I love your post!!!

I think I saw your comments on Kenna's facebook--is your last name Nelson? Because I am Rachel NIelson, and my husband and I are about to move to Colorado and adopt a baby. Small world!!

Anonymous said...

Не that goes a borrowing, goes a sorrowing.