[MomDom] Aching For A Child | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

[MomDom] Aching For A Child

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My husband and I meet weekly with six other couples. At one point four of them were pregnant. For a few weeks it seemed that each Monday night another couple announced their pregnancy. Our group of friends bonds closer as the women grow great with child. Each week Will, my husband, and I get to share in the joy of watching these expectant mothers' bellies get larger and larger. They talk about who will get an epidural or deliver naturally, if she will breast feed, how much diapers will cost and if she will go back to work. All this while we try to decide if the blob that somewhat resembles a baby on the black-and-white sonogram picture looks like the mom or dad. Although I am extremely happy for them, my heart aches.

I have always wanted to have redheaded, curly-haired children. My hair is curly; my husband's is red. I wonder if my children will be musical and artistic. Will they love to read? Will they dance and sing? Will they be athletic? Will they be introverted like me or extroverted like Will? I ask all the questions most women ask about their future children. But I also ask if I'll ever get pregnant.

My husband and I have tried for a year and a half to conceive a baby. We have friends who have gotten pregnant easily and others who have struggled with it. Some of our friends have seen fertility specialists, and a couple have spent thousands of dollars on in vitro fertilization (one with no results and another with multiple births). Still others we know have adopted because they couldn't conceive.

I have cried with women who learned of their infertility, but I never thought I would struggle with it. When I dreamed about one day having children, I never imagined it would be hard. I thought Will and I would decide it was time for us to have a baby, I would quit taking birth control pills, we would have sex, and I would get pregnant. How different our dreams can be from reality.

Starting my period each month is one of the hardest times for me. Not only am I hormonal and irritated, but it means that I am not pregnant. Sometimes I take pregnancy tests the day before I start my cycle, only for the test to be negative. I have woken Will up at midnight to go to the store to buy the tests. Those nights I can't sleep because I'm wondering if I'm pregnant. Then I calculate when my baby would be born if I were to conceive now. Every now and then, I walk through the baby section in stores to look at clothes or toys. Other times I go out of my way to avoid the baby section because it is too painful. People regularly ask my husband and me when we are going to start a family. They have no idea how piercing their question is.

I live in constant anticipation. Anticipation of getting pregnant. Anticipation of finally being a mother. But I also live in peace. This peace assures me that I will one day be a mother, whether it happens naturally or otherwise. So, on this Mother's Day, I will honor my mother for all she has given me and sacrificed for me. This Mother's Day, I will celebrate with all my friends who are pregnant. I will rub their bellies and talk to their unborn children. This Mother's Day, I will spend the day with my best friend, my husband, and it will be one more day that it is just the two of us silently grieving that I am not a mother … yet.

Previous Comments

ID
79762
Comment

This piece really touched me. And taught me so much. I think we often don't think of how our words effect another person. Sending you love this Mother's Day.

Author
tiffitch
Date
2006-05-11T09:52:39-06:00
ID
79763
Comment

Oh Renee! This is beautiful! And you are going to be a wonderful mother. Absolutely! I was in a library once with my son, and an older gentleman asked where my other children were. He then told me that I'm selfish to not make more children to share my love with, and that my son is going to be lonely and bitter. Ouch. In hindsight I thought, "Well, my sex life is just nunya business." But I was too hurt in the moment to think of that one! Keep the faith. It's coming and God's plan is going to be so much greater than what we can ever imagine. And I recommend the epidural.

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-05-11T22:14:50-06:00
ID
79764
Comment

emilyb writes: I was in a library once with my son, and an older gentleman asked where my other children were. He then told me that I'm selfish to not make more children to share my love with, and that my son is going to be lonely and bitter. The library is a special place. Once years ago, when my mother and I were visiting a booksale, she was chatting with an African-American patron. On our way out we were accosted by a visibly agitated elderly white woman who started ranting about how segregation was fine, but "they shouldn't be treated like horses and cows." Took us a minute to figure out what the hell she was talking about. I hope that cranky old man settled down with that cranky old woman, and that they're now happily raising many imaginary children together. Or something. Beautiful article, Renee. Thanks so much. I have to say that the JFP Mother's Day issue is becoming an institution--definitely something to look forward to every year. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-05-11T22:27:43-06:00

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