I can't emphasize it enough. I had sound, medical rational for thinking I would have trouble conceiving. I know what it feels like to fear infertility.
I have stayed up nights, entertaining thoughts of what my life would look like if I was never able to have children. Would I adopt? Or would I go the Dual-Income-No-Kids, embrace-my-career-and-disposable-income route? Where maybe I would take up an expensive shoe habit? Perpetually live with chic white furniture? Play a martini-addled Auntie Mame to my sisters' and friends' kids?
I have cried at pictures of everyone else's kids. Not because I felt any ill will towards them, not for one second. But out of a kind jealousy, if there is such a thing. Will my life always look so different from theirs? Will I never know what it's like to take a photo of my own child?
I would never have described myself as baby-crazy. I just happened to spend the first 25 years of my life assuming I would have kids. So as I crept towards 30, and then towards 35, and the possibility of kids seemed less and less likely, I just didn't understand how I could have been so wrong. I started to regret my life choices and feel a sense of betrayal in my body, my conceptions.
So I want to make two points, if I may. If you know what I'm talking about and you're reading this, me, my blog anyway.
One: I do not take "having a baby" for granted. I know what it's like to promise the Fates that I would gladly accept a nightmarish pregnancy or week-long labor or breastfeeding malfunctions if I can just have a baby.
And getting pregnant and having a baby has not made me forget those thoughts. I tried not to complain about being pregnant. (Neither in real life nor on this blog.) I will never complain about having a c-section instead of a "traditional" birth. I will try desperately to never be mindless about how lucky I am and how precious this experience should be.
Yes, I know that millions of people have been having babies for thousands of years, but I also know how hard it is to be on the other side. To have to wonder, if it's so goddamned easy to have a kid, why I don't seem able to.
NOTE: If I ever DO complain mindlessly, if I ever AM insensitive to those struggling with fertility, please call me on it. Please.
Two: This is not a "baby blog," not any more than this is a "marriage blog" or a "life in the suburbs blog." Of course I know that Having A Child Changes EverythingTM. My blog is already one of those things, as evidenced by nine million posts about pregnancy and the subsequent baby photos. But this is still my space, where I write about my life and my perceptions and my messes. I'm no longer single and living in San Francisco, but I'm still the tripping-spilling-martini-drinking-crazypants I always was. If my married-suburban-baby circumstances make me less interesting to you, I understand. Just know that I'm not trading in my "life blogging" card for a "mommyblogging" one. (At least, that is not my expressed purpose.)
Lastly, and just because I loved it when I read it (though it made me weep), here is a fantastic site that details the top things NOT TO SAY to someone dealing with infertility. I think it's a fantastic thing for anyone and everyone to read...because you probably DO know someone who's struggling, even if they haven't made that public yet.
Just wanted to put that out there.