I was reminded of you today. I was out picking up Christmas presents for my children. You know…
the ones you swore I would never have.
As I was waiting outside to pick up a big package, a kind gentleman began boasting about the love he has for his little girls. I concurred with him that girls really are quite special. I love hearing Father’s speak kindness about their daughters. He spoke about their ages, and that he would not trade them for anything in the world.
Dear Infertility, I agreed with him. I would not trade my daughter for anything in the world either.
As the conversation progressed, he mentioned that in just a few short years, things will be different with his daughters. Their bodies will be changing, and he is concerned that he will not fully understand what they are going through. He pointed out that he would “Send them to their mother” for answers.
“You know what I mean, right?” he asked me.
I was caught in a moment of not being sure what to say. The cold wind whipped around me as if it knew it would not take a lot to push me off of my feet. I nodded at him, and then said,
“Yes, girls are awfully interesting.”
Dear Infertility, the truth is, I do not know all that he meant. You changed my life as a girl. Well, maybe not just you. My illness, my hysterectomy, and the aftermath that followed, all played intricate parts in the unfolding drama of this life. All of you took away that unique experience that makes up life in a female body. The normal path I was born to take came to an abrupt dead-end. In its place, a new path emerged that diverted from the one taken by every other girl I knew.
Thinking about you feels as though I’m watching you from a rear-view mirror. You are in the distance, slightly distorted, and not as close as you once were. I can only see parts of you, but you are still there. Looking back causes my body to ache just a bit, as if it remembers the pain it once carried. It winces. It freezes up. It will not forget.
Dear Infertility, it appears as though I will never be fully free of you. Just when I have let you go, or do not feel you anymore, you come raging back at me. You come up behind me so quickly that I coil back into that girl who once wondered what the heck life was going to be like living as a girl, growing into a woman, and being forced to meander through a baby-bearing world.
As my daughter grows up, I will face you again, and again. I will have to admit that I do not understand what she is going through as her body starts to change. I will have to ask for help in explaining it all to her, or better yet, so that I can understand it as well.
Do you know how much that actually frightens me?
Dear Infertility, I will keep my eye on you. I will continue looking back in that rear-view mirror just to make sure you have not snuck-up on me again. I will especially watch you as my daughter draws nearer to the age where her God-given body starts to fulfill the experience of life as a female.
I was honest when I replied to the gentleman that, “Yes, girls are awfully interesting.” It is true. Girls are interesting in so many ways.
Dear Infertility, because of you, my life as a girl has been very interesting, indeed.
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