Sunday, July 19, 2015

New Grief

As a small child, I dreamt of "growing up".
I read the books.
I watched the movies.
I heard what the adults said.
I had expectations based on what I thought "normal adult life" would be.

I was to graduate high school.
I would go directly go college and graduate in four years.
I would have a great job.
Shortly after college, I would marry my one and only true love soulmate.
We would buy a house.
We would have kids.
I would have mommy friends.
We would have family vacations.
We would have neighbors who wanted to befriend us.
We would have couples to go out & do things with.

I started this blog because my life was not normal.
It did not go according to the script.
I did graduate high school and then the script was ripped into a million tiny pieces, burned, and then thrown into the wind.
College took much longer than expected.
I married and then widowed six months later.
Getting a great job took much longer.
And there is not just one soulmate. Thankfully.

Then something happened and I tried to compartmentalize.
And not share a new struggle on this blog.
A new type of grief.
A new loss of plans.
A new loss of dreams.
And eventually what seems a loss of friendship.

Mr. X and I have been trying for over three years to have our kiddos.
Three. Very. Long. Years.
We are at our final stop after many rounds at various levels of fertility treatments.
One more last shot.
One more try at IVF in a few months.
It's really about a 50/50 shot this will work this time.
So all those parenting plans.
All those potential baby names.
All those dreams of our ideal family.
All those plans of family vacations.
All the things we have already done for the "when we have kids..."

But then you get to the other parts of grief in this journey.
The loss of other unexpected things.
Mr. X and I are not always invited to birthdays.
Both adult and children's birthdays.
Cause who wants to invite the childless odd couple, right?
We are not always included in outings with other couples.
We are told: "You don't understand; you don't have kids."
Or "Wait till you have kids..."
Or "I have other priorities..."
Jabs and stabs.
Over and over and over again.

Our friends move to a land and culture we are not invited to.
We are not given the choice to opt out.
We are ousted.
Maybe we will be able to join the baby cult eventually.
And maybe we won't.
It is not our choice.
But the grief goes on.


John Robinette said...

Thanks for sharing your story; I'm really sorry.

mel said...

So sorry you're having to go through this stressful process. Definitely incredibly difficult. You expressed it well as a new kind of grief.
Not sure if this helps, but I stopped inviting single friends (and friends with older kids) to my kid's birthday parties because they are incredibly boring for adults!! As you've seen, this is pretty standard in the kid-party circuit.
After watching these friends come year after year, standing around knowing fewer people as my son made friends at school, I asked if they would prefer to be dropped off the list. I didn't want them to feel obligated to come to an event where I had little time to spend with them. I really didn't mean to exclude them as not part of the club, just to relieve them of the gift and standing around awkwardly on a Saturday afternoon at a noisy bounce house place.
That said, I totally get how parenthood can feel like an exclusive club until you're in it. It's hard to make friends once you're an adult, and having kids is this age's answer to that. I'm so sorry that you're not there yet. I just wanted you to not feel bad about the parties ;)