The Face in the Mirror


Today is my one year blogiversary, and I can’t quite believe it. Over a hundred posts, new friends made, celebrating the highs, mourning the lows. I am so grateful for the community I’ve joined and those that are here by my side. Looking back over some of my early posts, I feel bad for the me of a year ago. Not knowing what was to come, and how bad it was going to get. I spoke about how traumatic dealing with infertility had been and how I was in awe of those who had been through so much more and kept on going. Those who fell down the rabbit hole and came out the other side. I lamented I didn’t know how much more I could take (little did I know it was only just the beginning). Now here I am, where I didn’t think I would end up, and didn’t know I would survive (I suppose that’s yet to be determined).

A couple of weeks ago, I was having a down day. As I stood at the sink in the bathroom, I looked at myself in the mirror. Really looked at myself. And I had a hard time reconciling the me inside with the me staring back in the mirror. It’s an odd feeling not knowing yourself. Obviously, I know what I look like. I get dressed, do my hair and make up every day. But I never really stop to look. I make myself presentable but I avoid myself as a whole. I don’t look myself in the eyes, I see the pieces that make me, not the whole picture. It’s a little like when you glance at the clock to check the time, only to find that when you look away you still have no idea what time it is.

As I examined my face I concluded that I look the same (more or less), and yet different. More tired. Less youthful and naive. The excitement for life has dulled in my eyes, my mouth doesn’t smile as much as it used to. I’ve built up a wall, and perhaps that’s why I no longer recognize myself. It isn’t often that I let my guard down, so I never truly see who I am inside. I’m afraid soon the wall will be so tall and wide that I won’t be able to break it down. It all just feels like some elaborate set up, this can’t be real life, can it?

As my time in the land of IF has progressed I’ve found myself still frustrated with a lack of progress. Still with empty arms after all of this time. Except now, instead of pain, anger and sadness, I feel mostly feel numb. And that is one of the scariest things of all.

I look to other women out there who are still fighting for their turn, and I feel their pain and know their struggle. There are those who have enjoyed a brief time in the rays of hope, only to have them dashed again in the blink of an eye, with the dropping of a beta. I see the women who are in early, middle or late stages of pregnancy, many still afraid to enjoy this time; the mystery of pregnancy taken from them, replaced with knowing too much and too many fears. And then there are the women who have succeeded at what we all hope to achieve. They bring a little person out into the world, sometimes too early, but those babies are strong like their mothers.

I see those who have gone before me, and although I had wished not to follow their path’s, I look to them and hope I can follow them further down the rabbit hole and we can walk out the other side together.