Mother’s Day is suppose to be a time to celebrate the sweet ones who birthed us or raised us. Sometimes though, it’s a painful reminder. If you’ve lost a parent, lost a child, or are trying to have a child, seeing all of these cheerful posts can hurt.
After my mom lost her mother in 2014, she had us stop celebrating Mother’s Day with her. It was a painful reminder to her that she couldn’t call her mom, send her a card, or tell her Happy Mother’s Day. Almost four years later, it’s safe to say she’s still in the Anger phase of grief, I can’t blame her – but more on that later. My mom tells us that she doesn’t need a special day of the year to feel our love and I fully agree with that statement.
When Motherhood is a sorority that you’re desperately trying to pledge to, rejection can be hard. I read an article this morning that if you’ve only been trying for 8 months that you have no cause to complain, but I’m going to have to disagree.
Trying to plan a pregnancy is hard, especially when you have so many items that could be going against you. They say look at your mom and her pregnancies to get an idea of your own. My mom took fertility drugs to get pregnant with me because she didn’t ovulate and she desperately wanted to get pregnant. With my brother, she wasn’t planning, didn’t think she could with all of the difficulties she had with me, and of course when she wasn’t trying or thinking about it, she got pregnant.
I was also on birth control for 21 years. Yeup, that’s correct – 21 years. I was put on it when I was 11 to regulate my cycles because 4 periods a month was more than me or my parents could take as I was a little angsty. I tried several different oral contraceptives, but was on the Nuvaring for like 9-10 years. Naturally, I was naive thinking everything I read about “oral birth control” wrecking havoc on your body couldn’t possibly have anything to do with me because I wasn’t on oral birth control.
When my husband and I got married, I took out my Nuvaring and never looked back. You hear all of these wonderful things about how you’ll lose weight and your body will go back to normal, you’ll have a sex drive again. Well, some of these things are true. In my case, I gained weight, my hormones have gone crazy, acne, facial hair, emotions are all out of whack. If your sex drive goes up and through the roof then you cry thinking your husband will have nothing to do with you because you’re a fat, hair, pimply, wildebeest.
I went off in October. I had a normal 28 day cycle in November and December. In January I was late. I was nauseous, my breasts hurt, my back hurt, I could smell everything, I peed all the time, every sign in the world was pointing to “you’re pregnant AF”. I ran out and bought all different kinds of pregnancy tests. All of them came back negative.
Confused and defeated, I was told “well, maybe you tested too early. You need to wait a week”. I waited a week, tested again – first thing in the morning – negative. I didn’t get my period in February either.
I began to freak out. What was wrong with my body? I started to research the internet, anything I could get my hands on. I kept seeing articles where if you had been on birth control, it could take a year or more for your body to begin ovulating again. That the periods I could have had in November and December were flukes, they were left overs from where my body had been on autopilot for so long. I finally got my period back in March. In April when I started feeling those same familiar feelings of nausea and fatigue, I took more tests… all negative.. then I got my period.
Everything still pointed to “it’s going to take a year for your body to go back to normal”. At 33, I didn’t want to hear that it could be a year before I could even really begin trying to have a baby.
This isn’t how I planned things. Life never goes as planned though right? In my 20’s I thought I’d be married by like 27-28, have my first baby or at least be pregnant by 30. I didn’t like the idea of being an “old mom”. In my 20’s, I finished college, started a long “career” in retail due to an economy collapse which made PR jobs a nightmare to land, especially in a non-urban area like in WV, and completed a master’s degree. I started going to bars and living that life – all of my friends went to bars, I dated here and there until I met someone who I thought was going to be “real”. Turned out he was a real loser – no career goals or ambition, a drug problem he tried to hide, cheating he did an even worse job of hiding, verbally and emotionally abusive, and just made a fool of me for 4 years.
When I finally found my inner bad bitch and walked away I felt… free… I didn’t have someone blowing up my cell phone accusing me of all the things they themselves were doing. I didn’t have to question every girl who was on his Facebook or the Plenty of Fish profile he told me hadn’t been active in 5 years (coughlifecough) or any female who bumrushed him in public really… most importantly, I was no longer the “crazy ‘ex’ girlfriend who refused to believe it was over” or whatever lie he was telling girls as to why his relationship status hadn’t changed to single. I was FREE for the first time in 4 years and it felt AMAZING. I felt like a crippled bird who learned to fly again.
I was going to do ME for a change. I started working out and losing weight. I quit smoking. I wasn’t going to bars as much as I was hanging out with friends and re-connecting with people. If a rebound happened in that then oh well. I needed to find ME again and did what I had to do to feel something for myself again. I also started to think about my future. I made appointments to see houses as I was in the market for real estate.
I showed up to my first ever real estate appointment and when I was expecting an older guy with a potbelly and several grandkid photos in his wallet and ended up meeting a young athletic guy with blonde hair and bright blue eyes and a killer smile. I thought this guy has to have a girlfriend so any romantic thoughts were kicked out of my head. At the end of our appointment, he Facebooked me. I started receiving text from him that I could have sworn were meant for his friends and not me. It really did not dawn on me that this guy was into me at all. Even our first date was not something I was suspecting as a date. Maybe it was because I wasn’t use to being thought of in any real way. Maybe it’s because I never thought a guy would try so hard to get me to come over to make dinner for me.
Almost five years later we have: bought 2 homes, become landlords, adopted a doggie, made career changes, started businesses, suffered loss and tragedy, gotten engaged, gotten married, and began planning a family. I never thought 5 years ago that I would have someone in my life that I wanted all of this with after everything I had gone through. My husband is truly my best friend, my other half. He’s my person. Words cannot describe how in love I am with my husband. A little of him, a little of me would make one gorgeous creature. We have discussed baby names, nursery themes, we agree 100% on how we want our children to be raised…
And every time a pregnancy test comes back negative it’s a soul crushing ‘oh wait… not your turn”.
I have loaded up on prenatal vitamins, Vitamin D, and as we’re trying to have a girl, I’ve taken to a gender friendly diet (at least according to 1000 different articles on the internet), I have red raspberry leaf tea on my next grocery list. I have 2 different ovulation trackers on my phone and log BBT, cervical mucus, all activity, and all symptoms.
Still, I feel bitter. I feel jealous. I feel a sense of unfairness that some figure from above has decided it’s not the right time for me… I feel pissed that medical professionals say “well, you haven’t even been trying for a full year yet so…. you can’t be upset…”.
I know that we have yet to be labeled “infertile” or “reproductively challenged” so others may be shaking their head telling me I don’t know heartache in this department yet, but maybe you shouldn’t be so quick to judge because you either haven’t been here or worse, you have been here.
I hope that this is the last babyless Mother’s Day, and my thoughts and heart are out there to all of the hopeful Some Day Mommas.