lilies and lambs

Yesterday we got some news. News we weren’t hoping for. The result after weeks of pills, and shots and monitoring and about ten pounds of hopeful-pre-pregnancy weight gain.

And the news, once again, wasn’t what we wanted.

But yesterday, I made a choice- a choice I hadn’t made in the past- not in the 9 negative blood tests prior; not in the 7 IUIs; not in the 2 other biochemicals.

Yesterday, I decided that instead of being angry, or mad or drinking too much wine; I would be grateful. For all the good I have in my life. For all the yes’s; for the one positive result named Madeline. And while I’m grateful every day- in happy times and in times like these- yesterday I made an effort to call them out, and name them- all the things I’m grateful for.

And instead of doing and thinking and saying all the counterproductive things I’ve done those countless times before; this time, I was good to myself. Yes, I cried. I cried until my head hurt when I fell asleep. I had, and still have, fears- about the future, about my health; about our family and what it may look like; if I’ve had enough.

But I also decided, yesterday, in that moment- to search for all the good these challenges could mean:

My husband and I are strong. Strong as shit. I have, and continue to, fight for my family. At any cost. I’ve taken innumerable shots, and pills; I’ve compromised my dress size, my comfort, my bank account; I’ve shielded blow after blow. And I’m still standing. Most of the time, with a smile. And so for the first time in this four year journey I said it out loud. To myself. I am strong.

I love him and he loves me. He has never once shown me the sadness; the sadness he undoubtedly has himself. He’s given me hundreds of shots- some at the expense of hockey games or boys’ trips or time for himself. He’s never once wavered in his optimism; in his faith in our family, and our ability to create it. He is not perfect. We are not perfect. But I couldn’t do this with a better, more sensitive, understanding partner. So I said it out loud. To him. We are in love.

My daughter, the one I have now, is an absolute blessing; and, perhaps, a miracle. And this piece of medicine is great enough to cure so much- any stage of toddlerhood; any tantrum; any moment in motherhood where I want to quit.  The times in infertility where I wonder if I’ve had enough. And had I quit on our family- after the sixth or seventh “no”- I’m not sure we’d have her. She pushes me to keep trying; she keeps my spirits high and shines a bright light on what all this pain can lead to. So I said it out loud. To us. Our family, this one we’ve created, the one we’re still making, is beautiful; and so, so worth it.