Women fear it. Men don’t ever talk about it. Drew and I never thought it would be a part of our story.
What am I talking about?
Adoption was a rocky road, as we have previously discussed. The steps we were taking to adopt a child were not getting us anywhere it seemed. Since it sort of felt that that door was not wide open at the time, we decided maybe we should just check ourselves out to make sure we were healthy! Of course, we walked confidently into the doctor’s office because infertility was not a part of the story that we wrote for ourselves. That’s when one doctor told us we should go visit another doctor, who then sent us to another doctor, and then sent us to a third doctor. How was this word now defining us?
It’s hard to comprehend when a doctor tells you and your husband that even with science and medicine its highly unlikely that you will ever be able to biologically be a mother. It’s hard to sit in a fertility specialist’s office and be handed a number to an adoption attorney, not another doctor who can help. It’s hard to wrestle with the fact that I will never know what it is like to feel a baby kick inside my tummy. It’s hard to know that there are going to be times I will be around women who are discussing their pregnancy and I will not be able to contribute to that conversation. It’s hard to sit and be at peace with not knowing what our child, Drew and Becky Taylor’s DNA combined, would look like. Would our child have my big bug eyes? Would it have Drew’s captivating smile? Would it get my butt chin? What about Drew’s ability to just wow a crowd? We will never know these answers. Ever. It hurt. It still hurts, sometimes. But it was not the end of our story.
Rather than just dwelling in the dark space of infertility I knew I needed to find hope, peace, and purpose somewhere else. I had to search for resources to help chip away at my bitterness and sadness and help me find the joy in our journey. Some days I just needed to make jokes about it, some days I needed to cry about it, and some days I needed to research more about it.
Below are the list of resources I clung to during these days, and still do! If you or someone you know is battling the what-seems-like-monster of infertility please check out some of these resources. It by no means wipes away the tears or washes away the pain that you experience during this battle, but it helps a little bit. And sometimes, little bits feel like big bits!
Joy + Infertility Podcast: Just have tissues as you listen to each episode. It is so worth every minute of each episode. The creator of the podcast, Carly Porter, is a women who struggled with secondary infertility. Each episode she interviews a woman who has been able to find joy in her (and her husband’s) journey of infertility. The reasons for infertility range and they are all listed in the episode title, so you can listen to the ones that pertain to you! The raw emotion in the episodes allowed me to sit and rest in the fact that, “No, I am not crazy for feeling this way” and “Thank goodness someone verbalized that, because I have been thinking it” and “It’s ok to feel this way and have these thoughts. I’m allowed to be angry/sad/disappointed”. Every episode points to the truth of scripture, that God has a plan for our lives, and that God does not ever leave our side (even on the bad, bad days). Those small reminders were fantastic, and still are. If you ever pulled up next to me at a red light and saw crocodile tears falling, I was most likely listening to this podcast and loving every second of it and was so thankful for every tear that fell.
Hannah’s Hope: Funny thing, Drew and I had to read this as part of our adoption education. At the time of reading it we had not been to a doctor, so I kind of rushed through it just to get the book report done (I know, I’m a wonderful student). After visiting the doctors I went right back to this book. I needed the truth that is spelled out throughout it to sink in. The author cites many different women in scripture who struggle with infertility, Hannah being the main one. She also validates how painful different situations can be when you are on this journey (baptisms, baby showers, birthday parties, etc.) and offers amazing suggestions as to how to cope with those events and how to even turn them down, graciously. At the end of each chapter (there are too many good chapters to list, I would need like 15 blog posts) she provides scripture to find hope in your situation as well as a section for the “Burden Bearer”. This section focuses on how to help, love, support, and care for someone who is experiencing what the particular chapter is about (miscarriage, adoption loss, husband/marriage troubles, etc).
The Bible Recap: This has zero to do with infertility. Zero. But, I stumbled upon it at just the right time (I see you, again, God!). It is a year long reading plan podcast for getting through the ENTIRE Bible in a year. She gives you chapters to read (it’s in chronological order) and then provides a 7-10 minute debrief of the reading. Altogether it takes about 20-30 minutes every day. It. Is. Fantastic. In just 10 minutes she unpacks so much and opened my eyes to so much that I missed just reading and not “digesting”. She ends every episode with “He’s where the joy’s at”. That saying right there, man. So good! He is where the joy is at.
So there they are. Three little things that helped, and still do, so much! Don’t be fooled. Jaylen is the biggest blessing. He’s our bundle of joy. But, that disappointment and sadness still creeps in every now and then.
You aren’t alone. You weren’t meant to do this journey alone. You are stronger than infertility. There is a God who loves you more than you can imagine, and He has a plan for your life. Rest in that. Find your hope, peace, purpose. It’s worth searching for. As they say at Willow Creek, “You’re loved. Don’t forget it!”