Tuesday, July 19, 2011

I Made An Old Lady Cry

I am fortunate to have a loving family. Not only the miracle of my son who entered the little family Shooter and I created but also my extended family. My parents, my sister and the few relatives and friends who harmonise in our existence.

My parents recently moved close to me to help babysit The Boy whilst I work part time. The bus stop is conveniently across the road from them. The bus that takes me to the train station that I catch to go to work.

The bus stop where I met Kate.

A little old lady in her late 60's. Shopping bag with wheels in tow; whose been meaning to drop in to the "loud old Greeks" a few doors down to welcome them to the neighbourhood and maybe steal a recipe or two of baklava and kataifi.

As we shook hands, introduced ourselves and exchanged the few pleasantries, Kate asked me if I had children. I haven't been asked that question in a while. I beamed, and answered yes and described what my little fella looked like. The words he has learned and the sentences he now constructs together. The toys he likes and how much he loves his grandparents. I can't catch a breath when I talk about my son. After all, he took a long time to find me and I deserve to relish in my achievement. Kate smiled and delicately said "that I am blessed with a true miracle" something she has never had the pleasure of having.

I just met another woman who has experienced infertility.

Kate was brought up by two loving parents and 3 other children in her family. She grew up and accomplished as a secretary and married a hard working man. She suffered 2 ectopic pregnancies, several operations, lost a fallopian tube and then eventually a hysterectomy. She was married for 20 years and then he left her. She lives alone now, on the pension and loves her gardening. Her siblings are estranged from her. Her nephew and nieces live in Queensland. She sees them rarely. Kate tried for many years to have children. She described to me the heartache and especially the stigma that she felt in a society that revered mothers, in a time where 4 children were the norm and working women were shunned. Fertility assistance like IVF didn't exist then. If it did, it would have been in the experimental stages where only the comfortably rich could afford it.

I then felt compelled to tell her about my IF journey, not for pretentious reasons but just so she knew that it was difficult for me to have children too and that her comment about him being a miracle rang more true. I acknowledged her discomfort talking about this issue and could empathise with her history.

I could see her eyes become watery and then she reached to her bag and grabbed a tissue to wipe the tear that had just trickled down her cheek. In that moment, I could have put on my counsellor hat on and leaned back, actively listened and nodded, but instead I grabbed her and hugged her and cried with her. The other passengers on the bus would have been oblivious to the fact that we were 2 women who had only just met, from dissimilar religions and cultures and distinctive generations, yet one identifiable factor joined us - infertility.

I survived, she didn't. To this very day she feels pain. To this very day she wishes her life had been blessed with a child. To this very day she cries for what she doesn't have.

My heart bleeds. If only I can describe to you how my heart and soul aches for Kate. Only a few of you will understand.

Let it be written... again - that I appreciate what I have in my life.

We are thrown many obstacles and experiences in our life. Open your eyes and you will see the truth. Appreciate what you have.

I will never forget Kate and I know where she lives.

“Blessed is the influence of one true, loving human soul on another.” ~ George Eliot

Monday, July 11, 2011

Happy "1st" Birthday Blog

You started as a seed. A true story of infertility and hope. Reaching out to people who were searching for information and inspiration for their own journey.

The blog remained stagnant for a few months, just a page and a blot in the blogosphere. An amateur at writing but with many stories, feelings and thoughts that needed to escape from the head and be written.

The seed was planted and you were born. You wrote about your sister that garnered thoughtful comments.

You teased us with recipes of sweets that formed pools of drool on the floor.

A makeover made you look pretty.

Parenting after Infertility added you to the Stirrup Queen's Roll Call. This post and this one brought you new followers and readers.

Your fat bum series caused many to smile at your adventures of shedding the kilo's, though it has been suggested that a finale is on the horizon.

Your head ballooned to a double size as you were awarded for being versatile and stylish.

You hosted a baby shower for a special friend who battled infertility and now holds her precious son in her arms and is trying to get him to latch on to her boobies.

The month of June was your saddest as the tears continue to flow for a friend who lost her life to mental illness and another friend who lost her baby.

You remembered our soldiers whilst remembering your experience with infertility and busted a myth.

You are proud to be a working mother.

Your favourite posts though would have to be about your son. His eyes and his stickiness.

How odd that you share your name with an American baseball movie. It's as boring as Cricket. But you're not boring, no not to me sweet pea.

You are still looking for that perfect bag.

Although you are not a regular poster and you do not blog for profit, I thank you for your insight, knowledge and humour. May you celebrate the day feeling all warm and fuzzy. Happy Birthday and now let's eat cake!