Next week is my 3rd blogoversary.
I've thought a lot recently about my blog and how it's changed over these last three years. And how I have changed over the last three years. In the beginning, I didn't speak to many people about what I was going through. I didn't want to talk about it. I was/am not the most outgoing person in the world, so shouting to everyone that my ovaries were jacked up seemed unnecessary. Plus, what was the point? Telling people I was infertile wasn't going to change anything. It wasn't going to make me better. It wasn't going to make me a mom. It wasn't going to take the pain away. So, I closed myself off. I shut down.
Except for here. I blogged my little heart out. And, eventually, I blogged the introvert right out of me. Blogging turned into talking. It turned into advocating, interviews, and speeches. Blogging made it seem easier to share my story.
Lately, though, I feel like I've retreated back into my shell a bit. Blogging in depth about our adoption journey so far has been difficult. I rarely go on Twitter to talk about infertility or the adoption process anymore. And when people IRL ask how things are going, I have a hard time discussing it. When some people ask me questions, I get flat out bitchy.
I've been trying hard to figure out why. Why I feel this way. Why I don't want to talk about it. Why I get offended when people ask me certain questions. Why I'm struggling.
I think part of it is the normalcy of it all. The talk about why having a baby swing is so important or how I plan to decorate the nursery. It doesn't bother me from members of the IF community, but I get turned off by pushy questions and comments from people who don't get it - who aren't sensitive. Don't get me wrong. I have no desire to be pregnant anymore. I have stated that at least a couple of times here and many times off of this blog. I've accepted my infertility, and I don't let it define me. But no matter what, it will always be with me. It will always be my baggage, even though I feel like the suitcase is at least manageable to carry now with one hand. There will always an element that makes my path to motherhood a little more complicated to wade through emotionally.
It's sort of the same sentiment I felt when writing the truth about resolutions. The pain has gotten easier. I don't get upset about baby announcements anymore. I can actually attend baby events without feeling a sudden urge to drink heavily. But the pain is still there. It's subtler, but it exists.
The other part is the happiness. I get it. People are happy. We are happy - believe me. But adoption isn't all happy. Like infertility treatments, it comes with baggage. Another suitcase for me to lug around. While people are busy getting excited about meeting our future child, we're busy talking through tough details like wait times, gender, race, drug use, and mental illness. And while I would love to spend every waking moment of the day educating people about these issues, I don't have the time or the energy to do it. I don't always have it in me to counter every person's rosy picture with the harsh reality. I don't want to always be viewed as a Debbie Downer for tempering the joy.
It reminds me a lot of what I went through with infertility treatments. Every time we had an IUI, our family and friends would get excited. This is it, they would say. You'll be pregnant in a couple of weeks! And every time, I wasn't pregnant. Not only did I then have to deal with the disappointment I felt over the latest failure, but I also had to deal with the disappointment everyone else felt, too. So imagine my fears now when there are much bigger stakes and concerns. Of course, there's the potential for a disrupted adoption. But there is everything beyond just bringing a "cute baby" home. There are bonding issues, integrating a child of potentially a different cultural background into our lives and our community, the feelings of loss our child will go through during his or her life as an adopted person. Because adoption IS a loss. It's not all sunshine and roses, and I'm not sure too many people understand that.
So these are the burdens I carry. In a lot of ways, I feel like Tom Hanks in that shitty movie, The Terminal. (My apologies if you liked that film.) Stuck, carrying around all of my luggage, waiting for someone to tell me what the next move is. And - above all else - unable to communicate with anyone.