Trying to understand

As many of us have discovered and observed, one upside of IF is the sensitivity and compassion we all gain from our journeys. We learn that things are not always as they seem. We are less likely to pass judgement, make comments without thinking, or take things for granted. I have seen this in myself during my interactions with coworkers, with my family and with my friends.

Remember back in November when I was getting all hyped up about our friends S and J visiting right after Christmas? I knew they were trying to get preggo with number two, I knew we’d have their baby running around the apartment…and frankly, I was feeling just a little jealous and not exactly up to the task of hosting these fertile-mertile friends of ours. Anyway, the post where I talked about that is sickeningly prophetic, as you will see.

As I sat in the RE waiting room with hubs this morning, an email from S titled “Update” came into my inbox. I braced myself, expecting  that it would be news that they were X weeks pregnant. And it was indeed an announcement of pregnancy. But then came the heartbreaking part. They lost the baby last week. She miscarried. Ugh ugh ugh. How my heart aches and breaks for her. Life freaking sucks sometimes.

S is emotionally distraught right now. It was so easy for her to conceive Baby A that she took it for granted it would 1) be anything less than a breeze to get preggo again, and 2) that a miscarriage could happen to her. She is dealing the best she can and I could feel her anguish through my iPhone.

Before I wrote her back, I visited Al’s most recent post (“There are those that understand…”) and re-read it. Even though I have this newfound sensitivity and compassion and feel like I can relate to S in a way a non-IFer cannot, I don’t know what her pain and suffering feel like. I wanted to say the right thing, the best thing. I actually pasted this text from Al’s post into my email back to her.

All they can say is “I’m sorry that this is so hard and I know you’re struggling. Please know that I care for you and I love you. I am here for you in whatever you need.”

I tweaked the words to make the them my own. I can’t tell her I know how it feels. I can’t tell S that I know she’ll feel better. I can’t tell her that next time it’ll work out like it’s supposed to. I can’t tell her not to worry/stress/etc. I can only tell her that I’m here for her, in whatever way she needs. I hope I helped her in some tiny way, or that I can in the future.

Today I stopped and thought and felt in a way I never have before, except in blog-land. It’s like you study and study (fertility treatments) for some exam (getting pregnant and having a baby), but then you find yourself using what you’ve learned in a real life situation. Does that make sense? Not that all of you amazing women aren’t real life!!! I just haven’t known you since I was 22 years old, like I have S. I don’t think I could be the friend that I will be for her without IF. I don’t know if she would’ve opened up to me without IF. She didn’t know about our IF struggles, so it’s not that…I feel like something is a little more open in me now. I’m a little softer. A little more approachable. More honest and raw.

This IF experience pretty much made me a better friend. Al’s post and all of your blogs make me a better person. And as much as IF 110% sucks, for that I am grateful. Thank you guys.

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10 Comments

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10 responses to “Trying to understand

  1. Great post. I often find it hard to leave comments when I want to leave support but I’m struggling to find the “correct” words to say. I think what you said was perfect. My heart goes out to your friend. Reading blogs has definitely shown me many more perspectives than I would have known otherwise.

  2. You, my dear, are a good egg. 🙂

  3. Really nicely expressed, and resonates with me for sure. When my sister in law had a loss five years ago I was like oh, how sad. When my dear friend had a loss a few weeks ago, I felt her pain in an all new way, and was actually able to offer comfort. So thanks for that, IF! I pointed my friend to the loss section of the Stirrup Queens blogroll–maybe your friend would find some comfort and validation for her pain there.

  4. JC

    You are a very good egg. I’m sure your support means a lot to her right now and I know you’ll be able to support her in whatever she needs. I’m thankful for what IF has taught me also and how it’s helped me be more aware and sensitive to other people.

  5. LTB

    I agree with JC…you are one heck of a good egg. A real sweet friend! I am so sorry for your friend’s loss and hopefully she will find peace and let you help to support her. I hope your RE appt went well today and that hubby got a better idea of what’s going on first hand and who is treating you!
    LTB

  6. Al

    Such a sweet post, Egg! i know your friend appreciates it. It is amazing just how much more we can feel and understand their pain after dealing with IF…and being there for our blogging buddies through their ups and downs. I’m glad that my post helped you be supportive in your friend’s time of need. That made me get a little teary :-). I heart this little blog world of ours and it has made us all more sensitive caring people (and amazing moms some day).

    Can’t wait to hear all about the RE appointment!

  7. IF makes definately makes you more aware and sensitive to other’s feelings and life experiences!! You are a great friend Egg and I am so glad to call you mine!

  8. Tio

    It’s great to read this and be reminded that there is a positive side to all this IF crap. I’m going to take a leaf out of your book and try to be a better friend too.

  9. Tarah

    I agree – Al’s post made me realize how my outlook on pregnancy has changed too. It’s an amazing process and a huge huge blessing that I believe those with TTC issues or IF really “get”. I’m so sorry for your friends loss. She’s lucky to have someone like you to lean on right now.

    http://lovelyladybump.blogspot.com/

  10. I’m so sorry for your friend. I say all the time that as horrible as IF is and as agonizing as things can be, I really do try to find the bright side of things. There is always something to be grateful for and I’m glad that you can see it. However, I’m so sorry that you have to use these skills. I know that when I miscarried and sent out the email, I just so appreciated those friends who simply said that they were there for me. There really is nothing you can say, but just being there is important so I think your email was perfect.

    You really are a better friend for your experience. Best wishes to S,
    Christina

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