Putting Fertility Into Perspective

Lex Jacobson
By Lex Jacobson

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about fertility. Since I’ve become pregnant, two of my good friends have also shared pregnancy news, as well as three colleagues in my relatively small office. So far, I’ll be the first to give birth, if everyone goes full-term.

I honestly don’t know what I’d do had we not conceived and had we still been trying to get pregnant and I heard all of these announcements. Although it felt like forever at the time, we were actually incredibly lucky that we got pregnant in nine months of trying with fertility treatments. It was an incredibly tough road, but reading other people’s journeys – especially those of LGTB couples – puts everything into perspective.

Unfortunately, when I couldn’t get pregnant, I also couldn’t let myself be happy for other people who got pregnant, no matter how close they were to me. I couldn’t help it – I really wanted to, but couldn’t find it in me. Selfish, maybe, but definitely something I felt I needed to do to get by.

Every time I’m on Facebook and see that my sister-in-law, who has four beautiful children, posts yet another status about how she can’t wait until school starts so she doesn’t have to deal with the kids all day or how there are too many mouths to feed or how she needs booze to get through the endless soccer games and gymnastics practices or how she should be paid for her incredible homemaking, I can’t imagine reading this without crying every time. Her comments are heartbreaking and I wish I had it in me to tell her how it might be hurtful to people trying to conceive – or how much harder it was for me to read when I was trying to conceive – but so far, I haven’t had the ovaries to do so. She thinks she’s being funny.

I feel similarly about people who update their statuses 5 times a day about their children, and though I do “get” this one a little more than I do bitching endlessly about your children, it’s still tough sometimes. I am a big fan of STFU, Parents and use that as a good meter of what not to do when the time comes. (I will not be updating my Facebook status during labor.)

At work, I can’t imagine what it would be like to see all these women around me grow beautiful, big bellies, when mine was just getting emptier. I realize I wouldn’t have the strength to deal with these everyday meanderings – on social media or at work or within my group of friends – had I still been trying to conceive. I just don’t know how this would look. Devon and I have one friend who refuses to see me right now, as it is too painful. She’s been pregnant 5 times and has lost each and every baby. I understand why she wants to sever ties, but wonder whether I would do the same. But maybe this is the only way to deal with the pain.

I’m incredibly lucky that things worked out the way they did, and there isn’t a day that goes by that I am not thankful. I think dealing with fertility setbacks has taught me a lot about how to deal with certain situations, and I am not that pregnant lady that won’t shut up about every single aspect of her pregnancy. My personal blog is really the only place where I let loose about everything… and that’s one of the purposes of the blog for me, but I still feel horrible that there are some readers out there who are struggling to conceive, and there I am writing about how awful heartburn is.

Puts things into perspective.

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