{Outside of} Infertility

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I’ve got a secret. I’ve been on Outside of Infertility-1the outside for almost exactly 7 years to the day.

You know that scene in the movie Groundhog Day (I may be aging myself a bit here) where the clock flips to 6:00 a.m. and the music starts and Bill Murray’s character wakes up and realizes he’s starting the same day over again for the millionth time? In the movie it is hilarious, but if that happened in real life it would be horrid. To me, that was being inside of infertility. On the inside your thoughts are consumed with the same thing, every day. Why isn’t it happening? Will it ever happen? Will it be this month? Next month? Next year? And then the dreaded…never? Am I prepared for never? Same scene, over and over again, each month.

It’s such a personal thing, an elephant in the room. I honestly barely ever discussed it with anyone. My outlet was online chat groups, or maybe mentioning it offhand to a friend who had been trying for a while. No one really knew. My closest friends knew that it was taking a long time, but since having a baby was something that none of them were even considering in the near future, they simply couldn’t wrap their heads around why it was affecting me so much. And quite honestly, seven years ago people really didn’t talk about it very much. Nowadays it is everywhere, infertility has its own week that recognizes the struggle and celebrities even grace the glossy pages of People Magazine with their own infertility stories.

But still, even now, as I write about it and realize that this is something that my friends, family, co-workers or neighbors could read about, it makes me cringe a little. Then I remind myself, infertility shouldn’t be an elephant in the room. For the people going through it, infertility it is a daily struggle and by talking about it (instead of sweeping it under the rug) we shine a  light into that dark place. It lets the ones going through it now know that infertility isn’t something to be embarrassed or ashamed of and that there is hope for a light at the end of the tunnel.roadlesstravelled

We were lucky. We were inside of it for two short years and it felt like a long road. I could even say that two years is nothing if I start comparing with others – 5 years, 10 years and, of course, the dreaded “never.” If I think of it that way, it seems like my time on the inside was small and insignificant in comparison. It’s not. That’s like telling someone with a broken leg than they can’t hurt because it’s not cancer. Is the cancer worse? Absolutely. In any situation, I can safely say that someone always has it worse. But that doesn’t mean that it’s not painful no matter how long the road.

It’s been seven years since I defined myself by that word, since I found myself caught in that same scene, over and over again. It’s funny how infertility consumes you and your life so completely and then, in a matter of seconds, your definition of yourself shifts completely. In a moment, you’re on the outside and the clock flips over to the next day.

It sounds so cliché, but I remember it like it was yesterday. We had been going to a fertility clinic in Portland for only two months because it had taken us that long to save up the money for the visits, since my insurance had no infertility coverage. We had testing done and, when they couldn’t find anything clinically “wrong” with either of us, had gone with the least expensive option first, a drug called Clomid and an IUI done in the fertility clinic.

Mom-Baby-FeetSeven years ago – April 28, 2008 – it was a Sunday morning. I was never one to take pregnancy tests, but I gave in and bought a couple dollar store tests the night before. Yes, I’m cheap, even in the middle of a possible life changing moment. I thought that it couldn’t possibly be that easy. I took the test alone before my husband even woke up. Two lines. I think I sat there just staring at it for a while. I had no idea what to do. Then, right there in that moment, there was the shift. It’s like a weight being taken off your shoulders, the world going from upside down to right-side up. You aren’t defined by that one word anymore. And a new definition began – motherhood.  Technically, you could say that day in April was the birthday of my motherhood. It was what I had been waiting for. The clock flipped and there was no more groundhog day with the same song playing over and over again. I was on the outside. It was surreal and amazing and life has truly never been the same in the most wonderful of ways.

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As a teenager Beverley dreamed of being a glamorous career woman. She proclaimed to anyone that asked that she wouldn’t ever be having children, and likely wouldn’t be married. Thankfully, life didn’t happen as she planned! Fast forward to present day, she’s an expert juggler of three adorable, crazy kids and full-time career. She lives in Hillsboro with her husband and her wild brood. Beverley loves makeup, bargain shopping and a good book. (Does anyone not love those things!?) You can follow her lunchbox drawings for her daughters on Instagram at @illustrate_her.

1 COMMENT

  1. Thank you for sharing this. I think it’s very brave of you to open up to that vulnerability that other women can see and relate to. I have a SIL that has struggled with multiple miscarriages, and it was so heartbreaking to see her suffering. She has since had a son and is currently expecting their second. I am on the opposite of the spectrum where my husband and I were trying to space kids and had 4, one each year starting with a honeymoon baby. I started being embarrassed to announce my pregnancies due to negative reactions and hurtful comments like “don’t you know what birth control is” and “are you doing this to be on welfare?” (Which we aren’t and provide a wonderful life for our family.) I realized that I should be thankful that I am able to have this gift of life and be happy with my family because I love them all, not because of the acceptance of the size of our family.

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