I have often heard people say “God doesn’t give you anything you can’t handle” or “things happen for a reason” and even “you may not understand it now, but God has a plan.” Religious or not, I am sure these quotes are somewhat familiar to you. How you chose to incorporate them into your life can differ drastically from one person to another.
For me, when put in a situation that I felt was almost impossible to get though, it was hard to remember these words of encouragement. Some would argue that because I hadn’t built my life on a strong spiritual foundation, I then had trouble finding comfort in these words when I needed it most. Others might say that my ability to “get through” a tough situation would rely mostly on the strength and determination I had developed within myself and that would then give me the courage to handle almost anything.
I find myself in awe of those people I meet or hear of that have been through situations that I don’t think I’d be able to come back from. In the scheme of things, I do believe I have been blessed. Regardless of the troubles I have had, I do believe that I can learn from those around me who have endured the unimaginable. When we open ourselves up to truly listening to those we meet, it is then that we can really learn something about life.
I have always wanted to be a mother. Maybe that came from my inner desire to do things much differently than my mother had done for me. Maybe it came from watching my friends’ mothers and wishing I had a “normal” life. Or maybe it simply came from always wanting to have a big family with lots of little minds to help shape! Wherever the desire came from, I quickly realized that my path to motherhood would not be as easy as I anticipated.
My journey through the land of infertility was an eye opener to say the least! Doctors – tests – heartache – disappointment and finally – SUCCESS! Two beautiful and HEALTHY girls! At that moment, the journey seemed like a distant memory. My family had started and I was genuinely blessed and grateful.
Over the past few years, we would experience more fertility struggles. Although some of our struggles were unintentional, they were still ever-present. My husband and I would unite during these difficult times, but when things settled, our reactions would drastically differ. I viewed each hurdle emotionally and negatively. I found myself withdrawing from situations that I should have clearly been present. He, on the other hand, had a much different attitude. An air of sadness for me, but an inner sigh of relief seemed to linger with him. He had an “it was meant to be” attitude that I quickly grew to resent.
Like every other household, raising children can be both trying and rewarding. For us, juggling work both in and out of the home, combined with over 3 hours of daily commuting, adding in our financial obligations caused a lot of unwanted stress for our family. Over the years, we settled in, but we always struggled to find the right amount of family time we both truly needed.
For my husband, each new day as a family of four was viewed as a successful victory. We were “figuring things out” and that, in and of itself, should have made us both happy. For me, something was missing. I wanted another child. This feeling of wanting to expand our family would consume me at times. I longed to feel another child move within me and I wished more than anything to experience that again.
I’d vacillate back and forth between rational and, what seemed to be, irrational thought. Often convincing myself that no matter what the cost – literally or figuratively – having another child would somehow complete “us.” I grew to fully understand that “us” was really “me.” “I” wanted another child; “I” wanted a bigger family; “I” wanted to make the decision and “I” wanted to be able to conceive a child like everyone else – “I” was wrong!
Expanding our family became a vicious debate. Both of us standing strong with our arguments and not wanting to waiver. For me, it was a gut-wrenching feeling of “how could you deny me of this desire that feels stronger than myself?!” For him it was “why can’t you focus on what we HAVE and remember how tough it was to get here!?” This debate often divided us and led to many wasted moments of sadness and self-pity. I was losing precious moments longing for what will probably never be, all while losing grasp of what actually was.
Our daughters are now six. Happy, healthy and thriving little girls. Balancing is still a daily chore, but becoming more enjoyable. I still find myself hoping that there is another child in our future, but I am finding solace in a more spiritual way of thinking. Not just thinking that “God doesn’t give you anything you can’t handle” or “things happen for a reason” and even “you may not understand it now, but God has a plan,” but believing it. I am learning that I should remember the wonders of my pregnancy and smile because I did get to experience it. Every day is a new day and I am slowly starting to embrace every moment with the two precious gifts that “we” have been given.
Are you comfortable with the number of children in your family? Have you ever struggled to find peace within yourself about something you had no control over?
This is an original post for World Moms Blog from mother of two, TwinMom112.
Photo credit to http://www.freedigitalphotos.net