Sunday, July 13, 2008

To My Dear Friend on the Day After Her Wedding

Dear Friend, 

First, I'll tell you again that you were an absolutely beautiful bride last night. You and your new husband were so visibly happy and hopeful about the future and all it holds for you. On my card to you, I wrote that I wish you a lifetime of love and happiness. That's true, but there are other things I wish and hope for you that I didn't feel I could put on the card:  

I wish you hadn't told everyone that you were going to TTC right away (starting last night). You've been so open about starting a family immediately. I hope that you don't regret your honesty as time wears on.  

I wish that the excitement you felt last night, as you and DH had "baby-making sex" for the first time, is all you ever feel as you TTC. I hope you never feel like sex becomes a chore because you're having it not because you want to but because your chart or your doctor say you have to. May you never ever feel the need to let an OPK tell you when to make love with your husband.

I wish for you that you get pregnant quickly, that you get to see the two pink lines you long for in the next few months. I hope you never begin to wonder if maybe sex won't lead to a baby after all and start researching REs online "just in case."

I know you'll find a sweet and clever way to share the BFP with your husband.  I wish for you to always remember that moment when you both knew your love for each other was going to be made tangible in the world.  I hope you never have the memory of your husband holding your hand as the nurse calls with your beta results and crying in his arms when your last chance to have a baby with his eyes and your nose fails.  I hope you never feel like your body has failed the one you love. 

I wish for you to savor the excitement of both your families when you share your happy news with them.  The prospect of the first grandchild on either side will bring extra joy, I imagine.  I hope you'll never have to see the worry in your mother's eyes as you share with her that you have an appointment with the RE next month because it's just not happening. 

I wish for you to revel in the enthusiasm of friends and coworkers when you share your pregnancy with them, the squeals of excitement and questions about due dates and morning sickness.  Please know that I will be glad for you when the time comes, but my first reaction may not be the one you want to see because your gain will remind me of all I have lost. However, that moment of grief will pass and I will feel genuinely happy for you.  I know you will be a wonderful mom.  I hope you never have to excitedly announce the news that you and your husband will be adopting to be told, "Now you'll get pregnant for sure." May you never sense that congratulations from others are mixed with pity, or worry that your child will be viewed as a consolation prize.  

I wish for you that you feel connected to other women as they share their pregnancy stories with you and you get to share your own. You will finally be part of the club.  I hope you never feel on the outside looking in because you have no story to share. 

I wish for you to see your baby's heartbeat beating strongly on an ultrasound while you husband sits next to you with tears in his eyes.  I hope you are never looking at the picture of the embryos you and your husband have created with tears in your own eyes knowing that, because you just got your period, they will never grow any bigger than in the photo.  

I wish for you to be showered with gifts and love at your baby shower.  I know you've attended many and have long wanted one of your own. Have fun playing How Big Is My Belly? and unscrambling baby names.  I hope you never feel selfish and superficial because you feel sad about not having a shower; you've always imagined having one but it's not really done when you adopt from foster care.  It's a bit awkward when you don't have specific child for it. Besides, shouldn't you just be grateful to have a child at all?  

I wish for you to hold your newborn in your arms and see your late dad's eyes in his tiny little face, to feel wonder that this little infant grew inside you for nine months and is unmistakably yours. I hope you never worry that someone could take your child away from you because, after all, he's not really yours until a judge says so.

And of course, as I wrote on my card to you, I wish you a lifetime of love and happiness.  

Love Always, 
Karen

26 comments:

B said...

I could have written this myself. Good luck to you Karen on your adoption journey :)

Me said...

It's 9:06 am and I'm sitting at my desk at work... crying. This is so poignant and raw and tender and honest and beautiful. I'm smiling a sad smile while I'm crying. You, my dear, are the Real McCoy.

Wendy said...

What you wrote is so honest, sad, and beautiful all at once. You've been through so much. What a wonderful friend you are, too. I hope your friend knows how lucky she is. Good luck on your adoption journey. I'm following your steps, especially since I may be right behind you at some point!

Deborah said...

I just wanted to write a quick note to say this is one of the most touching posts that I have ever read. It truly touched my heart and I too connected with your story-been there.

Good luck to you as you move forward!

Yoka said...

This is so beautifully written. Karen, Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

Lost in Space said...

Wow. I have chills and, of course, I am bawling. What a beautiful and honest letter that went straight to my heart. Thank you and giant hugs.

Me said...

I miss you...

Shelby said...

Your lovely writing expresses so much of what I feel. Thank you for this post. I am very grateful to have found your page!

The Genetic Mule said...

I am so glad I caught this from La Creme.

All I can say is "Amen"

loribeth said...

Here from Lost & Found (you're Mel's Kirtsy pick of the day!). This is an amazingly beautiful post & I too am sitting at my desk at work trying not to cry. You've captured perfectly the contrast between what just about every young women thinks will happen to her (& usually does)... & what it's like for the rest of us. Thank you!

projectkjetil said...

Sitting here sobbing out the grief that's been stuck in my chest these last few weeks. (Oh yes, and I got here via LFCA.)

What a beautifully written letter. The way that you genuinely wish your friend well, even as you contrast her hopeful best-case scenarios with your own worst-case ones, amazing.

Good luck in your next steps!

And if you don't get a real life baby shower, that's crap.

Emily said...

What a beautiful & heartbreaking post. I am bawling - so much of it rang so true. Thank you!

Jendeis said...

Here from L&F. Crying hard - feeling everything. A beautiful post.

Mrs.X said...

What a wonderful letter. I wish so much that you never had to write it.

But, if it helps to educate just one person about how life is not always fair and what the other side deals with, then, you have done more for the world today than most people in a lifetime.

Susan (5 Minutes For Mom) said...

Tears in eyes.

I struggled with infertility for over three years before conceiving. It was unbearable pain.

A friend who had survived cancer at 18 said that her 5 year struggle with infertility was harder than her struggle with cancer.

Mom Of Faith said...

Thank you for this. It's beautiful. You are a fabulous and honest writer. I hope that never changes. Good luck with your adoption. Your child is lucky to have you.

Midwest Mommy said...

Wow, what an amazing letter.

I have to ask what does TTC mean?

Lori said...

So well done. Very articulated.

Cassandra said...

What an incredible letter.

When people announce their family-building plans at their wedding, I scoff at the hubris. Your heartfelt wishes are much more constructive -- even if neither of our sentiments are ever shared with the brides.

Best of luck with the adoption process.

itsazooaroundhere said...

Your letter was really beautiful. I attend dozens of weddings a year as part of my job, and I suffer each time the couple (or another family member) announces they will be starting a family *now*. I struggle with what you have done so beautifully...shared your thoughts, hopes and pain without being bitter and mean.

Thank you for sharing this.
Betsy, Here from Creme de la Creme

Lisa @ Crazy Adventures in Parenting said...

Amazingly written, beautifully done. So poignant, and so heartbreaking. I'm so sorry for everything you've gone through and I wish you much love and success with your adoption journey.

Leslee said...

I've got goosebumps. I wish I could tell my 22-year old self all that you wrote here.

Thank you for writing this. It's beautiful and sad, but so very honest. Did you end up sharing this with your friend?

Leslee
babyattheend blogspot

Tammy said...

here via the Creme... and in tears as your letter just hit it home in all the ways I wish for others, that they never know the agony of the journey through/with infertility and loss, that they always embrace the moments that so many take for granted. One of the many conclusions I've drawn from ten years of trying and giving up and learning to live with infertility, and live joyfully in spite of it is that I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy, that I long for all those whose hope was like mine on my wedding night that they would stay the innocent and just never know the heartache. I hope your friend gets her dream, and you as well. Many blessings...

Abby Jo said...

What a beautiful letter..



I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish that He didn't trust me so much.
Mother Teresa

S said...

This is such a heartfelt, heartbreaking post. I feel your pain - so honest and tangible - as you wish you everything to go wonderfully - wonderfully 'normal' for your friend. My best friend started trying about 4 months ago and this is the sort of thing I'd love to say to her... except I keep choking on the words because of my own pain, grief, inability to feel happiness for 'normal' fertile people, and mostly because of my very real fear that all her baby dreams will come true, and I will be stuck in this hell for eternity and a day.

We're doing an embryo adoption cycle in the near future... and I just want to wish you all the best from the bottom of my bitter little heart.

xx

midlife mommy said...

Still crying - you really expressed the feelings that I've always carried around in my heart.