Happy Mother's Day to all the Moms out there!
I'm so grateful for having the privilege to be the mother to my two wonderful sons, Jonathan and Christopher, who indeed are a gift from on high.
The following is my own personal story about becoming a mother. For my Mother's day post, I was initially only going to say something nice about our sons and what it has meant to have them in our lives but instead have decided to tell the whole story. I realize I may lose some of you when I get to the spiritual side of this but with all my heart I do believe God intervened in a special way.
I may end up writing this in 2 or 3 parts or more, consecutively or I may write this intermittently between other posts - I don't know. I hope it is interesting and who knows maybe when I get to the faith part - maybe, it will be of some help or inspiration to someone else.
There was a time for a couple of years where I was concerned that I might not be able to conceive a baby. I had just turned 22 when we bought our house and thought that it would be a good time to start a family. I remember being surprised that I didn't conceive right away. By the 2nd year I became concerned and my concerns were exacerbated when I saw my friends having babies.
So, I decided to get checked out by my gynecologist. After my initial exam, my husband had to be checked first to rule out that it wasn't him - which it wasn't. Boy how humiliating to have to do THAT test at the hospital! On the other hand - almost every test I have ever had involves physical pain or discomfort to varying degrees and often accompanied with a good dose of humiliation.
Actually, today guys have it even easier. Dr Schoor - "The Independent Urologist" and "Dr.Schoor's Urology Blog" has a kit that can be picked up in his office and then the men can mail their sample back in. How easy is that? My husband would have appreciated it.
After several infertility tests/procedures the last thing I had done was a laparoscopy. That procedure revealed that I had endometriosis. We already knew that my tubes weren't blocked, but the doctor said that the fact that I had it, reduced my chances of conceiving. He said it was on my bowels, bladder and something else and now I don't remember anymore. During that procedure he dilated my cervix because he said the opening was the size of a pin hole.
They actually kept me in the hospital for that laparoscopic procedure for THREE days!
That was ridiculous, but that is what they did then - nothing like today's SDS. :)
The doctor said he would give me 4 months to conceive and if I didn't, then he would put me on medication.
Like Turk and Carla on "Scrubs" - I became obsessed with calendars, cycles, basal thermometers and charting. It is easy for things to become mechanical in that situation. As each month went by that I didn't conceive - obsession fueled by fear was beginning to replace the joy of the experience.
I don't pretend to know what it is like to want a baby for 5 years, 10 years and maybe never get pregnant. But I do know some of that pain and disappointment.
I know what it is like to have the emotional knife in your heart when you see a baby commercial on TV or when you walk past the baby products in the supermarket. I know what it is like to feel joy for your friends who have conceived, shop for their shower gifts and listen to them talk about their experiences. I know what it is like to plan and host their baby showers, ooh and ah over the gifts and admire and long for the chance to have the big navel popping belly like them. I know what it is like to share in their joy - seeing their babies for the first time, holding these little miracles that are fresh from God...and...all the while feeling the relentless ache in my heart, of sadness and fear, wondering if I would ever experience these moments for myself. I know what it is like to feel like I am letting my husband down even though he never once indicated that he felt that way. If he was concerned - he never let on. He is 4 years older than me and I knew he wanted to start a family too and so I put that pressure on myself as well.
I know what it is like to be excited and hopeful that this month we made a baby only to be profoundly disappointed...again. Then while intellectually I knew better, to feel in my heart that I failed as a woman..that I failed and then ...to feel afraid...afraid with the kind of fear that only the threat of an eternally barren womb could evoke within a woman's heart, her very soul.
I love a full moon night. Unfortunately, for me...I almost always have had my period coincide with a full moon. It has gotten off track and then for some reason always gets back in sync with the moon cycles. (I know there is a joke here -somewhere) Actually, during one of my hospital procedures last year, the nurse inquired about my cycle and I answered "with the last moon." I was serious but it made her laugh. :)
Because my cycle coincided with the full moon, I would always know at that time of the month - that I still hadn't conceived. Since I am so drawn to the moon, every month I would end up looking up at the beautiful full moon and feeling so sad... I would cry and pray for a baby. "Please Dear God, can I p-l-e-a-s-e
h-a-v-e- a b-a-b-y.... p-l-e-a-s-e."
I am surprised that I didn't start howling. Maybe, in my own way - I was.