Being the Fertile Friend

Yesterday, Katie shared her experience of struggling with infertility when your friends are not. Today, Lindsey opens up about the opposite experience–coming to terms with high fertility among friends who struggle to conceive. Both stories show the love and support that both sides have for each other, as well as the challenge of relating to the other during these different journeys.

Becoming a mother was the last thing on my mind when I was growing up. I was never in a serious relationship, and had big plans of teaching children, not raising them. However, I found out at age twenty that I was very fertile, and expecting. This came as a shock, and at what seemed like the worst possible time in my life. The relationship was not good, and I still had two years of college to complete. In my eyes I had just thrown all of that out the window. My first instinct was to cry and play Kenny Chesney’s “There Goes My Life” on repeat. A logical response, right?

Being the first among my friends to get pregnant, everyone else was excited, especially when I found out there were TWO babies in there. We talked about raising our kids together, and how exciting the future would be. Like my pregnancy revealed, things don’t always go as planned.

fertile

The next twist came when a relative found out she had lost her baby during her pregnancy. I felt guilty being happy and excited almost immediately. Why should I get to celebrate when she is feeling so much pain? I remember my doctor exclaiming how fertile I was, releasing two eggs per month and what that might mean for future pregnancies. I wasn’t ready for the first, and had absolutely zero intention of any future ones.

The older we got, my friends started settling down, getting married, and starting their families. However, that last part did not always work out. Time and time again, I have learned about someone close to me having a miscarriage, or trying to conceive for a year or two, and each time my heart sinks lower.

I have watched the pain and suffering of amazing couples who have dealt with IVF and other treatments just to get pregnant. I have cried silent tears, praying to God that He would just give them the opportunity to be parents. Being a single mom for four years was hard, but I always reminded myself how blessed I was to even have these two. I could not tell my friends about our struggles; I did not want to burden them with more than they already had on their plates. There were weeks I could not pay the rent, I wasn’t sure how we’d buy groceries, and I hated that they were growing up in such a sad situation. I would lie in bed begging for answers…why me? Why was I the one He thought should have kids? Why are there strong, happy couples out there that are still deep in the trenches?

I have come to realize that I am not alone with this inner battle, and that it is okay to be happy about having healthy, happy children. And it is okay to cry for your friends and pray for things to work out in their favor. Maybe those people would not have cared if I had leaned on them, too, and maybe it would have relieved more stress to be open about my problems instead of concealing them to protect others. Being fertile is not a curse, and God works in mysterious ways.

fertile

One day I hope to add on to our family and celebrate the entire way through. My little ones are eight now and are surrounded with so much love, and I just wish I would have cherished those little moments more, because time really does fly!  And I’m thrilled to say that all of my close friends who struggled are blessed with beautiful little humans now.

Don’t suffer alone, regardless of which side of the spectrum you’re on. Fertile or infertile, we’re all in this battle together.


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One Response to Being the Fertile Friend

  1. Libby Lystiuk April 26, 2016 at 7:16 pm #

    Well said Lindsey. Struggles are Struggles. They come with different titles, but other than that the emotion and pain seems like an unbearable mountain climb. Is your mountain bigger that mine…No, just different.
    It took me 16 years, 4 surgeries, 2 failed adoptions, 9 IVF procedures before I finally had my Boy!
    i always showed true Joy and excitement for my friends that got pregnant, I never once felt bitter or sorry for myself because of their good fortune. Lets share our struggles and support one another, Women helping other women?