mommy+baby=not me

6 Nov

Babies.  I love them. 

My body, though?  Not so much.  In fact, it does a rather crappy job making them, keeping them in my belly, and breastfeeding them (if they are lucky enough to make it that far).

This dissention, or as my faith teaches, this cross, folks?  It’s a mighty hefty one. 

When Jason and I got married, not only did the best man and maid of honor, as well as my dad and brother (we have a touchy feely family that way) give a speech, but so did Jason and I.  In both of ours, we commented about how we couldn’t wait to see how many kids God was going to bless us with.  We had every intention of living out our faith, trusting God to make the ultimate decision in how many kids our family would have.

And here we are today. 

We have gone through infertility, miscarriages, two major surgeries to remove an aggressive case of endometriosis,  secondary infertility, bed rest,  babies born, 2, 4, 6 weeks early.  I have had countless blood draws, hormone supplements, and nutrition supplements.  My bottom has literally taken a beating from injection after injection of hormones.

And then there is breastfeeding—oh my gosh—hate it with every ounce of me mainly because my experiences have been wretched.  After seeing three different lactation consultant with James and a breast center specialist, it was determined that the 8,634 cases of mastitis have left terrible scarring.  These girls, they just don’t like it.

And then there is the aftermath of all of the being pumped full of hormones for three pregnancies thing.  I still have liver and gall bladder issues three years post partum from James.  And what’s worse is that I’m confident my endometriosis is back. 

But you know what?  It’s OK. 

I’m going to say that, again…it is OK!

OK, well, maybe it’s not always OK. 

I mean, I have my moments.  Of course, I’d love more kids.  I’m joyfully and orthodixically (that’s a word, right?) Catholic.  My friends, well, most of them “multiply like bunnies.”  It is hard to be the “small family” among the masses when every amount of you thought you’d be among the ranks to fill an entire pew at Mass. 

For us, every pregnancy is a very calculated, prayerful, and a difficult thought process.  It’ not about, “can we afford another baby?” or “do we have room for another baby?” 

Instead, it is weighing, can we handle another loss.  If we make it far enough along, how will we manage bed rest with three other children at home?  We know that my prognosis is dim.  Bed rest, a NICU baby, sickening hormone supplements, they are all guarantees.  As my pro-life, nine kids at home OB said, “I’d be good with you taking a long time to pray before considering another pregnancy.  In fact, I’d be OK if you never got pregnant again.”’

Ouch.

So if you are reading this and you have walked a similar journey, my heart, oh my heart–it understands.  I’m sorry.  The pain and saddness can be overwhelming at time.  I do believe that God has a beautiful, yet mysterious plan in all of this.  But, I know it is a difficult journey to walk.  The cross can feel awfully heavy some days. 

And, if you are on the other side of this, please extend grace to those on this side of the camp.  Don’t assume that because you see a small family it is because the couple is not open to life.  Be gentle to these families.  Offer the benefit of the doubt.  And more than anything, pray for them. 

Everyone, every last one of us has a story.   Some of ours are just a bit more complicated than others. 

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3 Responses to “mommy+baby=not me”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. End of the road | His New Day - March 29, 2014

    […] I wasn’t ready to even engage in a discussion about whether this was the end of the road for us. But this last year has left my heart stirring, with a deep, deep, maternal desire to have that large family of which I have always dreamed. […]

  2. a peace-filled year | His New Day - January 2, 2015

    […] miscarriages, infertility and so on.  And so I’ve written about our losses (and here), our struggles, and God’s final answer regarding a big (biological) family.  I wish I could say that my […]

  3. just walk away | His New Day - January 22, 2015

    […] I wrote about it.  A few times. […]

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