Swinging from the branches of my family tree


So Christmas is over…sort of. The big day has come and gone, gifts were exchanged, hugs were given, food was eaten. My in-laws are in the mountains for Christmas, so we are heading down today to do it all over again with them. Yup writing this from the car on the iPad. I figured out how to create a personal hotspot from my phone to get internet on the iPad. Yay me! But no clever ecards from me this time. I’m not that tech savvy.

I love my family, and it is nice when we can all get together for Christmas, see all of my cousins, aunts and uncles (although, not a lot of family on my side either). In the past year and a half 3 of my cousins have gotten married, yet there is still just one baby (well she’s hardly a baby anymore, at 3 1/2 years old) between all of us, and that one belongs to my cousin who was married around 7 years ago.

Their daughter was brought into this world by a surrogate, with my cousins sperm, his wife’s egg and their amazing friends’ uterus. Prior to their miracle baby they had 4 losses, from two singleton pregnancies and one twin pregnancy.

I don’t remember all of the details because I was in my early twenties when this was all going on (and quite frankly babies were the last thing on my mind, and it was all a little out of my scope), but their first baby was born around 5 months, lived for a few days but was just not developed enough to survive. The next two pregnancies were also lost in late in the 2nd trimester. I believe the problem was she had a weakened uterus, and once the baby got too large her body would cause her to deliver early, and the baby/babies couldn’t survive. On the third pregnancy she was on bed rest and they put a stitch in her uterus (I think) but to no avail.

It was after this that they had to find another solution. They were obviously very fertile, as getting pregnant wasn’t the problem. I think it is amazing that her best friend stepped up to do something so selfless, after having 3 children of her own. Now that I am in the infertility trenches I can so much more appreciate how hard that all must have been (even though I’ve never experienced a loss).

Her experience was open to the family, because she made it to the 2nd trimester 3 times, and we all knew about her losses, and it would have been a little hard for her to hide the fact that they used a surrogate (not that they would have wanted to anyways). Their surrogate mama is like a saint to our family. Now, over 3 years later, they have their own little family unit. I think there was talk of them adopting at some point too (a while back), but I think it will just be them and their little girl from now on.

Thing is, my cousin’s wife moved from suffering through infertility to one of those people who the only thing she talks about, or posts on Facebook, or lives for her is child. Once she got her baby, she flipped to the other side. Perhaps because she is so overjoyed to finally have their own little one, which is understandable, but I can imagine it was very hard for her dealing with other peoples babies, and families when she was suffering. So, though it is nice to see her get their happy ending, I know what I don’t want to do when it’s my turn, and avoid slapping the world in the face with my child.

So, anyways, thought I’d share that little snippet of infertility in my family. But back to Christmas dinner with the whole gang. One of my other cousins got married last September and just recently bought a house this year (August, or September maybe?). I have his wife on my Pinterest account, and she’s had a board called “Baby Rabies” for some time, so I know she wants kids, but her job has been sort of unstable, up until recently when she took a new (much better) job. So a couple of days before Christmas J and I were talking about who was coming to dinner, what we were bringing, ect. I said to him that I thought cousin R and his wife L might be pregnant. He asked me why I thought that, and I mentioned her Pinterest board, and the fact that they just bought a house, and have been married for a year. I said I wouldn’t be surprised if they announced it at Christmas (because apparently that’s the thing to do). I think you know where this is going…

I was right. Just before dinner, my Aunt (cousin R’s mom) said she had something she wanted to say, and announced that she was going to be a grandma again. She had a picture frame that had a note in it saying new addition August 2014. Even before she turned the frame around, or the words were out of her mouth I turned to J and gave him “the eyes”. As soon as she made a move to get everyone’s attention I knew what was coming. I had mentioned it to J beforehand, because I had been thinking it for a while, but I needed to say it out loud, so I could say “told ya so”! Though, who cares, I win at predicting someones pregnancy. It’s still not mine.

I love R’s wife, I think she’s lovely, it’s all very nice for them that they are having a baby, yada yada yada, insert all the obligatory nice things I am supposed to say/feel. But after that, I kind of avoided her for the rest of the night. Plus, as soon as the announcement was made I thought “wow, due in August, that’s early to annouce”. I mean, chances are she’ll be fine, have an uneventful pregnancy, and never know to be thankful for that. I also started doing the math, and I figured she would have gotten pregnant right around the time of my failed IUI. Ouch, adding insult to injury.

One of my other cousins is a labor and delivery nurse, she got married this September and commented how she’s tired of being asked about kids already. Tell me about it. Just after this conversation, another one of my cousins comes over and is chatting, and asks me when we are having kids. To which my mom snaps, “didn’t you just hear their conversation about how rude that is!” Ha. Thanks momma bear. I don’t discuss our treatments or anything with her, but she knows of our struggle, and knows I don’t want to talk about it, to her or anyone else.

A lot of my family doesn’t even ask me about kids anymore, they ask where I am planning a trip for next (we travel a lot, and I am a travel agent, so it’s a very valid question). We live the DINK life to the fullest, so I think some might assume we may not even want kids.

I’m not entirely surprised that yet another person has “beaten” me to pregnancy, especially with all of the weddings I’ve attended recently. I’m in that age where all of my friends got married a few years ago, so now all of them have, and are having babies. I just hope I can join the club soon because I don’t want to have to start avoiding my own family…

6 thoughts on “Swinging from the branches of my family tree

  1. Me too! The scrappy thing is I think I am already avoiding my family. Which is also part of the worst…I just don’t want to have to blatantly lie about what we are doing. And I don’t want to ever snap in a weak moment during a baby centered conversation. Praying New Year means many new beginnings!!!

    • Luckily (or unluckily depending on how you look at it) I don’t see my extended family very often and other than them it’s just me and my mom. So it’s easier to keep it all from them and I lie through my teeth when they ask when we’re having kids. Or I just say I don’t know. Which is also true. It’s true though that I might just lose my shit on someone someday. But I would bet it would be a stranger, not a family member.

  2. At a Christmas party with friends, an acquaintance told my husband to pull to goalie out already so we can have a baby… If she only knew. You handled the situation very well. You should be proud.

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