To say that motherhood has always been my greatest hope and dream would be an understatement. Saying I believed I would be a mother is an understatement. I always felt that it was a certainty. I knew I would be a mother, like my mother, her mother, her mother, my aunts, my cousins, my friends, their mothers, etc. I feel so foolish looking back now at how certain I was. I had no exposure to how uncertain motherhood is. I was completely ignorant of the struggles countless couples face to have children. I had no idea how common infertility is. I had no idea how common miscarriages are or how often stillbirths happen. I just had no idea how difficult it could be. I had no idea how devastating it can be. It just never occurred to me that babies might not happen for me.
I’ve always wanted to be a mother and have multiple children. Growing up, I had a wonderful family with loving parents and brothers, lots of aunts and uncles and cousins and second cousins, etc. My expectations were to have a family of my own one day. Simple as that, right? Ha! I had no idea and so I was unprepared, as maybe we all are in this situation, when it turned out to be difficult and then probably impossible for me to carry my own children.
I have other skills and talents that are important to me, but I always felt that the thing in life I would be best at would be motherhood. It’s hard to describe, but I feel like I am a mother. I just don’t have my children. I don’t really know how to describe it any better than that. I just feel like I’m a mother without children and it is the emptiest, saddest feeling I’ve ever had. My maternal feelings and instincts have always been strong. I have always loved kids, connected with kids, and looked forward to my own. I always have wanted that meaning and experience in my life. It’s hard for me to comprehend the reality of my situation. It’s hard for me to accept that I might not carry my own biological children. I’ve been surprised at how strong my feelings have been now that we’re really down to it.
I do believe we will have a family one way or another. My husband has been so supportive and we are willing to foster, adopt, whatever it is that God has in store for us. But none of those options are easy either and I learn more about the challenges of adoption the more we look into it. I know that we will get through this and something beautiful will happen. But first, I know I need to find a way to accept this reality and grieve. I feel like I can’t, but I know that I will.
Image: “Mother” by Mikulas Galanda
Text Copyright Snowdroplets 2015