I mentioned about this very good friend of mine who announced to me that she was trying for number two, got pregnant pretty much right away, and was very sensitive to my needs when she announced it to me. Yeah at that time the news still hurt, and it took some time to get over it. Her pregnancy was even the cause of my little discord with our mutual good friend Chloe who told me that “you can’t avoid seeing pregnant women in public unless you aren’t leaving your house” and “Leanne isn’t pregnant to be malicious towards you” when I declined attending dinner with all of them barely a week after my last failed own egg cycle in March. In contrast to Chloe’s insensitivity, Leanne has always been the one who is compassionate and tries to empathize with my feelings and situation. We did meet up a couple of times during her pregnancy without any hard feelings on my part. Having an understanding (yet fertile) friend during tough times is truly a blessing.
Leanne gave birth in mid-June. Because of our Chicago trip, I had not met the baby. We finally made plans to have dinner one day last week. Another good friend of ours was also joining us. My wish was to share with Leanne about all the newest development of my donor egg cycle prior to the other friend’s arrival as I am not ready to share this aspect of my fertility journey with this other friend yet. We were going to meet up an hour prior to the dinner time. I had been feeling calm and at peace with our decision to pursue egg donation in the last few weeks as things seem to be falling into place. So when this sudden sad feeling came upon me while I was driving to my destination, I was really surprised. My mind was wandering during the drive. It just hit me how simple and easy it is for some people to have a baby. Less than a year ago, we were all talking about Leanne and her husband attempting number two. And boom. Nine months later, I get to meet a live baby. Just like that. As simple as say, Let’s go to the supermarket and get some vegetables. No struggles involved. No timing or basal body temperature measurement. Just like… Oh let’s have se.x and there it is. I really didn’t expect my mind to go that route. But I couldn’t help myself but wonder what if my life was like hers, then I would have maybe two babies by now, a whole 43 months after we first started trying. Why we struggle so much but other people have it so easy, I will never have an answer. I guess it is not news that trigger could come in any form at any time. It shouldn’t be a surprise to me that it came as I was approaching the coffee shop to see a newborn baby that was so easily conceived.
Meeting the baby was lovely. No hard feelings or negative emotions. Just admiration and awe of God’s wonderful creation and the family resemblance that one cannot deny. She reminded me so much of her 5-year-old brother. The same lips. The same chin. I will not have babies that will look like me, but I can find comfort in the future that there is a possibility that I will have children who may look like each other. Holding the baby was heavenly. That distinctive newborn baby smell is addictive. Having her in my arms, I can see myself doing the same with my own baby, hopefully some time next year.
My friend Leanne was very attentive while listening to the whole story of the last 2.5 months about how we have come to this point of the egg donation process. She was extremely happy for us. The only thing that made me cringe was when she said, “If I were to be an egg donor, I would always wonder what my child would look like.” I didn’t tell her that any children as a result of egg donation would be the children of the intended parents, not the donor. But I didn’t say much about her comment. It just tugged at my heart that if we are successful at having a baby, the child will never share my genes. You know what? It is okay though. At this point, whichever child that God grants us is going to be 100% ours and 100% supposed to be in our family. So I hope to focus on the gratefulness aspect of it rather than the disappointment in my own body. Obviously if a comment like that still bugs me, it means that I still have to continue to process my feelings.
The rest of the evening was quite fun with a very good baby who slept through the whole dinner. She allowed her mommy to have a peaceful, adult dinner. Leanne, our other friend, and I were somehow talking about the styles of fighting between spouses. We discovered that Leanne and her husband have the same style of fighting as me and Bob. We talked about how the wife wants to engage and is always in the husband’s face while the husband always warns the wife to walk away before the fight escalates. After our little discussion about it, our 41-year-old single friend was quiet for a few moments and suddenly said, “I wish I could have marital discords”. After hearing what she said, I tilted my head and rested it on her head. The three of us remained silent. As much as I hate being infertile, I feel fortunate to have Bob in my life to share all the good and not-so-good moments with me. My friend here who wants to be married and to be a mom is yearning for what she does not yet have. It puts things in perspective for me, and helps me cherish what I have in life, despite the difficult journey.
Life is tough at times. I just want to be a parent and want my friend to find a special man and to be married. When things don’t turn out the way we want, what do we do? I hope both she and I persevere and continue to attain our goals and at the same time find joy and contentment in the presence.