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Tuesday was by far the hardest day so far and it took everything in me to sit tight until Shaun walked through the door after work. I thought perhaps I could write but was beaten down by the prospect of another crappy comment on my blog, I really wasn’t in the mood for it nor did I have the strength to deal with it. So I just sat concentrating as hard as I could on the TV to try and beat the feelings away, wishing the hours away where I would be forced to speak up and no longer feel alone in my head. I made it through to live another day.
I feared the next day even more than I fear most days so I woke up and tried to convinced myself that things were ok, desperately trying to keep the feelings out of my head, listening to music really loud and performing basic tasks to just keep going. Getting dressed, washing up, making lunch. And then my friend send me a text. “Fancy doing a bit of shopping with me” my initial thought was no, I don’t want to go out there just yet, but then I looked around and thought that perhaps this could be the escape I need, time out from my rather broken mind.
I’ve managed to post a couple of times online and everytime I have I have been flooded with messages of kindness, good thoughts, love and hope. Hope that things will be ok, hope that I will get back to me and start again, hope that one day, I will feel strong enough to try again.
I could have written a book over the last few days, a very dark one, delving into the depth of my despair, once again trying to highlight the struggles of dealing with infertility here and now combined with my mental health issues. I probably would have sounded like someone who needs to be locked up, these blogs don’t truly come to me until it’s the right time.
Right now there is a little bit of clear sky above me, I’m not sure how long it’s here for but whilst it is, my thoughts are better organised and clearer so the words are coming to me a little easier. Perhaps Doris has cleared a little space in my mind and given me a breather to compose myself and face another day.
Perhaps you are helping me, as cheesy as this probably sounds (I never read my blogs back so I won’t see this again). Of course I get love and support from my amazing partner, he’s the one who sits up with me at night, the ones who’s just a short drive away, the one who feeds me when I can barely hold my fork. And then there’s you.
Yesterday’s shopping trip went better than expected (from my broken mind) my friend is so lovely, she knows and she completely understands, because we are the same. There’s no need to remind her, no fear that I’m going to be put in a position where I don’t want to be, I’m safe with her. A little bit of fresh air, a little bit of food to put in the fridge so Shaun doesn’t have to do a shop run after work, a chocolate treat for Shaun (and me…) a sense of feeling useful and alive.
I am aware that to most functioning human beings this could sound a little pathetic, perhaps even like I’m feeling sorry for myself. Well I am and it’s ok, and perhaps if you spent an hour in my mind during the dark times, you’d run a mile. Only I can’t escape, and no I won’t take drugs to numb myself and that’s my choice, I choose to deal with things full frontal, as they come and however my story ends, it’s my story. I don’t walk in anyone else’s shoes because I don’t have to and people who read me have a choice. I’m not asking for opinions or “options” I’m helping myself the only way I know how.
I woke up today feeling a little lighter, I got dressed and even started to make a Cutie, then my dear friend text again, needing a bit more help today, or so she said to get me out again. Just a quick trip to a charity shop, I’ll pick you up in the car, out of town, safe. So I said ok, saves me from having to fight the feelings and be scared of me for a couple of hours.
It was safe, and again gave me a break from me, I even found a couple of proper retro mini tables to renovate when I’m up to it. I love a bit of old furniture and some upcycling, there’s so many things I love to do that my mind won’t let me do.
I took pictures of them and send them to a couple of friends online to show them as we’d been chatting about me going out and one of them sent me a message saying, I’ve sent money to your paypal, treat yourself. A random act of kindness.
My friend found what she was looking for and dropped me home with my tables, back to silence or actually back to Billy asking for food. It was 4pm so not long until Shaun comes home.
I sat with a cup of coffee and put the TV on and I popped online. I was greeted with the following message:
“Hello, I’m going to be posting new baby gifts on my page within the next hour or so. Thought I’d give you a heads up, so it doesn’t just appears in front of you on your newsfeed. I’ll hold off posting until I know you’ve seen this. Lots of love and hugs xxx”
Another random act of kindness.
I was completely overwhelmed and it came to me that this message sums up what two years with madebysteffieb has got me.
In a society where I mostly feel excluded, where I get angry daily because I feel that infertility is misrepresented or even just ignored. Where everything is geared towards families and women doing what they do, there has to be a space for women and men like me, a place where some people actually do think of us and our feelings, this space is amongst you.
I know, I don’t have a baby, I have now been given a five percent chance of success for my next round of IVF, perhaps this might explain why I have sank so low over the last few days. My chances are so small I can barely feel hope but something deep inside is still telling me that I will get back up and want to fight again. It’s not over til it’s over and even one percent isn’t no percent. As sad and desperate as it sounds, perhaps even deluded until it’s a no, I can’t be a no. What comes after that I don’t know but I don’t have to yet.
Shaun has been given the option to leave, the chance to put his argument forward but he stands beside me, the rock he’s always been, carefully putting me back together hoping to see my fire come to life once again.
Over the last few weeks I have been “spoiled” by you, beautifully written cards, flowers, books, beautiful gifts some even handmade, those of your sharing your Cuties. And then, there are your words, I know they say that actions speak louder than words but this message I received today wasn’t just words, it was consideration, empathy, kindness and love. It was someone who thought about this, in a world of Social Media filled with babies. We don’t all live in the same town (sadly) but your words have got me to one round of IVF, these are words of action. You are not lip service.
I’m not crazy enough to think that the world is going to stop because I’m sad that I can’t have a baby, business has to go on and to be honest, I’m a little over it. People have kids, some are a little easy on the camera posting about them, others aren’t, that the way it goes. I’m not even that bothered by Mother’s day, Christmas is worse to be honest.
Amongst you, there are mothers who love their children so much that they can feel my pain. There are some of you who have been through my struggle or are still going through it and you feel like home, you keep me sane knowing that what I feel is ok, it’s “normal”.
I cry for you as you cry for me, I wish you the success I wish for myself, I don’t want you to go through this pain.
Some of you don’t know what to say so you send me love, hugs, you adopt Cuties, you tell me that it’s ok to heal and grieve and that you are here, ready for when I’m ready to be back, encouraging me and supporting me.
There are the yous with your own struggles and pains, you are patient with me and I hope that I am the same to you, loving me as I try to love you.
There are the yous I chat to everyday, trying to make me smile, sending me photos and gifts, discussing current affairs and changing the subject, we even watch TV together and we laugh and rant in harmony, thank you for being here.
YOU mean the world to me and to Shaun.
There will always be someone who thinks they know better, someone to say something negative, someone to try knock you down even when you can’t go lower but my mind does that by itself so it doesn’t matter.
My comments have been redirected to another inbox so that for now I don’t have to put up with the negativity. Right now I’ve got what I need, I’ve got you, Shaun, my Mum and Dad and my friends and like one of you told me last night, it’s ok to ask, it’s ok to cry, it’s ok to need us.
Perhaps I will never have children, the odds aren’t in my favour and decreasing by the day, so perhaps I will forever feel the way I feel, there will be bad days, awful ones, but whilst I have you, maybe I’ll keep swimming. I hope that I can keep growing my business for many years to come, whatever the aim is. There will always be a new Cutie needing a home.
There will come a time soon where I might need to consider an alternative future, there’s isn’t really much else I can do. I hope that the darker side of my mind never takes over and takes me down the wrong path and that I can hold on during the dark times. I hope I can conquer my fear of the negative put downs and continue to write my thoughts so I’m not stuck with them, maybe even the darker ones where I can’t see the sky. Somedays are so bad I struggle to talk so writing is the only option.
The anger in me keeps telling me that I have wasted my life on people that didn’t deserve it, now I’ve learnt to pick my friends, as distant and online as some of them may be, I’m sticking with you. You are the ones who will get me through the looks and the judgment of others, I’m not a lesser person, I’m still a woman and I am mother, I still have so much love to give, the only true definition of motherhood.
I acknowledge and appreciate your kindness and even when there are too many clouds, looking back at your love is all I can do to keep going so please don’t stop giving me hope, the hope to keep living no matter what.